Parent-child reading format

Technology has replaced books at bedtime, with more than a quarter of parents trying to use home assistants, apps and voice notes to tell their child a story in the evening, research suggests.

A study commissioned by children’s reading charity BookTrust indicates a growing reliance on digital storytelling.

The survey of 1,000 parents with children aged 10 or under found that, while almost half (49%) said they aim to share a story with their youngsters every night, only 28% manage to do so.

It is just not a substitute for parents reading to their kids

Author Francesca Simon

Three in 10 (31%) say work or commuting stops them getting home in time, while one in five simply feel “too busy”.

One in four (26%) UK parents said they had tried to use tech such as virtual assistants for bedtime stories.

However 83% of parents said they generally use print books.

Conducted by Fly Research, the poll suggests technology is picking up the slack.

Sixty-five percent of parents admit giving their children time on a smartphone, tablet, YouTube or in front of the TV, instead of sharing a bedtime story.

For parents who do read stories with their child at night, tech is now a part of that routine.

More than half (53%) say they would choose to use a smartphone, tablet, app or YouTube for the task.

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