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: “Retail should be a facilitator for experience, rather than just selling product.”—Sharmandean Reid, Founder, Wah Nails London (YPulse)

Millennials seeking portable booze are cracking open canned wine. Even though the category still only accounts for less than 1% of the Millennial-favorite alcoholic beverages’ market, Nielsen reports it spiked 69% last year and continues to gain ground. An exec at Delicato Family Wines explains, “Millennials have grown up in a world where consuming wine outdoors—or any location outside of the traditional table—is more acceptable than generations past.” (Wine Spectator)

Summer camps are cropping up to teach kids how to become YouTubers. At I-D Tech Camps, Level Up, and Star Camps, kids can learn all about how to, as the latter puts it, “Become an Internet sensation.” They offer courses in how to create and post videos, from shooting clips to editing audio, and how to build their personal brand. But don’t worry, most are framing YouTubing as a hobby, not a career, and setting kids’ expectations accordingly. (WSJ)

A new bill could change the free-to-play profit model that’s made games like Fortnite top earners. Senators have proposed the official ban of “loot boxes,” or items that players can buy (and sometimes must buy) to win a video game, often gambling on what’s inside. Senator Ed Markey explains that “Inherently manipulative game features that take advantage of kids and turn play time into pay time should be out of bounds.” For some, this will eliminate a key revenue stream and open the door to review other in-game purchases.  (The Verge)

A social media overhaul upped Corn Nuts’ sales by 12%—with no paid support.The snack’s sales were stagnant before a new exec took over their Twitter, infusing it with the personable tone food brands have become known for (and sometimes notorious for). Since then, followers spiked from 650 to 21,000, and what they’re calling a “scrappy” strategy “absolutely translated to sales,” reporting that retail sales spiked 12% and Millennials’ repeat purchases rose the same percentage. (Marketing Dive)

The retail apocalypse continues, with 7,000 more stores closing their doors in 2019. CoStar Group estimates that the square footage of retail space closed has topped its own record each year since 2017, and this year they’re “predicting more of the same.” PayLess ShoeSource, Gymboree, Dressbarn, and Charlotte Russe lead the list of number stores planned to shutter this year, as retailers learn to scale down size and up Experiencification for young shoppers. (Business Insider

Quote of the Day: “It’s a really interesting time at the moment in catalog [music]…Sometimes, it’s a question of how we make something out of nothing.”—Tim Fraser-Harding, President, Global Catalogue, Recorded Music at Warner Music Group (Rolling Stone)

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