The App Gen Z Says They Can’t Live Without

What are the apps the mobile-addicted generations can’t live without? We found out, and Gen Z can live without some of the social media that Millennials still rely on…

Despite a growing movement to limit smartphone addiction, there is no doubt that Gen Z and Millennials are chained to their phones. According to Ypulse research, 85% of 13-17-year-olds and 99% of 18-36-year-olds have a smartphone—and they’re looking at their phones over a hundred times a day. And they know they’re hooked. Three in five say they’re addicted to their phones, and 86% say they always have their phone within reach. From our mobile behavior research, we know that apps dominate young consumers’ attention on their phones. Their time is split between social media apps and other apps, with just 6% of their time on mobile spent on mobile sites accessed through their browsers. Half of 13-36-year-olds tell us they have between 11 and 30 apps downloaded on their phones, and 30% say they have more than 30.

As always, the competition to capture their attention on phones is cutthroat. From HQ Trivia to the Fortnite, there always seems to be a new power player sucking up their mobile time. But while phone fads may come and go, these mobile-addicted generation see some apps as necessary to their everyday existence. In our survey on mobile behavior and app use, we asked 1000 13-36-year-olds, “What is the one app you couldn’t live without?” Here’s what we heard from Gen Z and Millennials (spoiler, they aren’t the same)…

*This was an open-end response question to allow us to capture the full range of apps that Millennials and Gen Z say they can’t live without—without our preconceived ideas shaping their responses. As with any qualitative question, the responses include those that are top of mind and those that are most…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “A lot of people stay in jobs they hate. They feel stuck or need the money. I refuse to do this. I just gave up a Nursing career to be a CSR and I have never been happier.”—Female, 27, IN

YouTube is cracking down on creators that participate in dangerous viral challenges. The media giant updated their community guidelines to take a stronger stance against stunts that spin out of control—like the Tide Pod Challenge. Any creator that performs “pranks that make victims believe they’re in serious physical danger” will earn a strike—three and they’re out. What could constitute a strike? Just ask Jake Paul, who recently drove blindfolded for the #BirdBoxChallenge. (The Verge)

The inner five-year-old of Millennials everywhere is jumping up and down for Hot Topic’s Polly Pocket collab. In partnership with Mattel, the brand that wins at delivering unique styles is dropping a 17-piece collection of nostalgic merch. (The line looks a lot like another throwback collection we called out last year.) In celebration of the iconic toy’s 30th birthday (feel old yet?), ‘90s kids can cop everything from bags to hats to mini makeup palettes that feature shades like “Made in the 90s.” (Nylon)

YouTubers Life OMG! is like The Sims for a generation of aspiring social media stars. Players can pretend to be a video game streamer, a passionate creative, or another influencer. But the game is just as realistic as the kids who play it, making them do chores and deliver newspapers when they’re off the air. Similarly, most kids seem to know the dream is not a full-time gig; just take it from nine-year-old Oliver, who explains, “Of course I will have a good job as well, not just YouTube." (Vice)

Big brands are swooping in to save young shoppers from 2018’s oat milk shortage. The buzzy beverage has become the environmentally friendly alternative to almond milk for Millennial & Gen Z shoppers seeking dairy-free and vegan options. It became a barista favorite this year, mainly thanks to industry upstart, Oatly, which is opening a new factory to up their production. But they better hurry: big brands like Pepsi Co.’s Quaker Oats, Danone’s Silk, and Califia Farms are all getting in on this grain-based trend. (Bloomberg)

The most old-fashioned form of TV is experiencing a surge: over-the-air. While the Post-TV Gen continue to cut the cord, more are buying physical antennas to tap free networks and watch live events. Nielsen data found that this kind of old-school appointment viewing jumped from 9% of all homes in 2010 to 14% last year. Diving deeper into that 14%, about three in five also subscribe to streaming services like Netflix, and their median age is 36. (Fortune)

Quote of the Day: “I’d rather do a job I'm passionate about for a lower salary than do a high-paying but low-rewarding job.”—Male, 18, MA

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