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GenY's Jerry is a PC mouse

Children above the age of five are already living a life of and with technology, writes Charubala Annuncio.

india Updated: Jan 11, 2007 15:56 IST
Charubala Annuncio
Charubala Annuncio

“I plus Pod, IPod, lap plus top, laptop, cell plus phone, cell phone…” -Chorus in children’s voices in a radio ad for an NGO that ran this Christmas.
Move aside Mary with your little lamb. Here are the new nursery rhymes that will define the world the new generations are going to live in. The five-year plus is already living a life of and with technology. And technology is not a clever trick you learn to master but actually simpler than ABC as it follows simple logic.

The post liberators as MG Parameswaran, Executive Director and CEO (Mumbai) of FCB-Ulka Advertising, calls them, are the under 20s who were born or barely gained consciousness at the same time that India started its long journey of liberalisation. This generation has come to see a world that has no queues for ration or vehicles, a generation that truly believes that the world is its oyster.

Gaming is a big hit with children. 

Take Ambika Nayak, 9 years old and her friend Hridaya A, 8, as examples. While Ambika wants a Discman for the New Year, Hridaya has just received a bunch of CDs for Christmas. Both have expressed a strong desire to have their own cell phones. When they spend time together they often surf the Internet or communicate using email. Says Ranjeetha Menon, Vice President, OgilvyOne, Director, IBM Brand Services: “For the urban Indian youth of today, the mobile phone is an extension of them and a sizeable chunk of their life is spent online.” According to a recent study conducted by the Internet And Mobile association of India (IAMAI) in April 2005, a full 55 per cent of the total respondents (half of them under 25) polled shopped online.

So we have a new generation growing up who consume media significantly differently and whose comfort with the digital world is real and growing. And marketers have to understand that.

The global brands are already leading the pack. Before hitting TV, Pepsi's most recent commercial first ran as a three-part “webisode” for a week on Yahoo! From a mere 80 advertisers, MSN has over 150 in just six months of the launch of its Desk Top TV. Media Turf's CEO, V Ramani explains: “For advertisers, the Internet is fast evolving from a fancy add-on to an essential part of the media mix.” We are poised to enter the second phase of Internet usage. If the early years belonged to emailing, chatting and probably e-commerce, then, according to Alok Kejriwal, CEO, contests2win, “Searching, gaming and networking will drive the resurgence of the Internet.”

“What's interesting is that the content here is increasingly being created by consumers themselves if you look at or or the most happening youth video portal,

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