When should you give your kid their first smartphone?

A new campaign is calling on parents to "Wait Until 8th."
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Kids are more tech-savvy than ever, but the obsession with devices has some parents worried their children are missing out on their precious childhoods.

A new campaign named "Wait Until 8th" wants parents to wait until their children are in eighth grade – so 13-14 years old – before buying their kids their first smartphone.

The basic reason given on its website is that "childhood is too short to waste on a smartphone," with parents asked to "let kids be kids a little longer."

Last year, TechCrunch reported the average age at which children get their first smartphone has fallen to 10.3 years old.

Wait Until 8th founder Brooke Shannon, of Texas, is calling on parents to resist the pressure to buy their children their first smartphone that early, and sign the pledge that they'll hold off.

Smartphones, the campaign argues, are addictive to children, an impairment to sleep and an academic distraction at a time when education is paramount. 

There are also content concerns too, such as exposing children to cyber-bullying or sexual content.

The campaign comes amid wider discussions about the age at which children are exposed to smartphones. Fortune reports that a group in Colorado is trying to push penalties for companies that sell smartphones to under 13s.

The man behind the effort, Tim Farnum, was inspired to start Parents Against Underage Smartphones after noticing his children becoming "moody, quiet and reclusive" while on their phones.

How does the pledge work?

Wait Until 8th wants parents to pledge not to give their child a smartphone until they've reached 8th grade.

But to ensure it's not just an empty promise, parents agree to sign the pledge as long as "at least 10 other families from your child's grade and school pledge as well."

The idea, then, is that they police each other.

If you're worried about keeping in touch with your children, you can still sign the pledge if you've given your child a basic call-and-text phone.

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