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(Pocket-lint) - YouTube is rapidly becoming the de facto source of entertainment for the UK's children.

A study by the country's independent communications regulator, Ofcom, found that 49 per cent of kids aged between 8 and 15 prefer YouTube over traditional programming viewed on a television set.

Only an average of 15 per cent prefer watching TV shows.

YouTube is the overwhelming favourite service, although Netflix is also used by many of them.

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Influencers (YouTubers) have seemingly won them over, with specific, targeted content rather than the more general programming on television.

Videos based on hobbies and passions rank highly in the study, such as hands-on activities and sports instructions, as well as content from vloggers and communities.

Sensory videos are also important to children. They enjoy videos that include "satisfying noises", such as people making and playing with slime. Any parent will confirm that kids are obsessed with slime, much like the Pocket-lint brood.

In terms of screen time, more than a third now struggle with moderating the time they use a tablet or smartphone in comparison with other activities. And 71 per cent of children aged 12 to 15 admit that they are allowed to take their mobile phones to bed with them.

Writing by Rik Henderson. Originally published on 29 January 2019.