Based on the 2012 study conducted by the Pew Research Center, the Millennial population (born between early 1980s to the early 2000s) or commonly referred to as the ‘Generation Y,’ is a group with the most number of heavy mobile and social media consumption. In fact, 61% of Millennials who belong to the age bracket of 18- to 24-year olds are too attached to their smartphones to the extent that they even sleep next to it, treating these handsets as an extension of themselves. This trend goes beyond just smartphone obsession – the Generation Y also loves being digitally connected through internet and cellular technologies.
By looking at this scenario, can we conclude that Millennials are comprised of people who are permanently attached to their mobile devices? What are the activities that they normally do using their smartphones? For this entry, we will examine and discuss the mobile behaviors of the Generation Y.
As Part Of The Morning Routine
Mashable released an infographic last year based on the 2012 survey conducted by Cisco Connected World Technology, showing that smartphones take a significant part of the Millennial’s morning routine. Nine out of 10 global respondents (or 90%) would check their mobile devices first before even brushing their teeth, grabbing a coffee, and/or making breakfast. Some people will most likely check on their social media sites, SMS, and other mobile applications first before leaving their houses.
The baby boomers (those who are born from 1946 to 1964) will not include smartphone in their morning ritual. As reiterated by Elisabeth McLeod of the International Journal of Emerging technologies and Society, they’re characterized as ‘technophobes’ or “those who are slow to adopt new technologies and when they do, they do struggle to understand how to use it.” As for the Generation X (born from 1960s to early 1980s), they also have the tendency to follow the Millennial’s attitude towards excessive use of mobile devices. However, not all of them are smartphone users or mobile dependent, as some would rather own feature phone owners.
Dropping Old School Video Platform In Favor Of Smartphones
There’s also a trend involving the sudden shift from TV to smartphones as the new platform for creating, sharing, and viewing videos. Television is considered an old school technology for the Millennials, with the highest drop off rate for TV usage over the last three years (10% for the females and 7% for the male Gen Y members).
In general, over 36% of this population group watches online videos for multiple times. They spend 50% more time watching and sharing online videos than the general population, according to Digital Future In Focus. This trend is highly influenced by the rise of free video sharing platforms such as Vimeo, Vine, Instagram and most importantly, YouTube (especially since these pages are widely accessible via mobile devices).
In addition, modern smartphones are also equipped with superb technologies for creating and sharing video clips. When Apple released its iOS 7 platforms for iPhone and iPad on September 2013, the company unleashed their free iMovie application which allows users to edit their clips using their mobile devices prior to uploading them online. In the case of Android devices such as HTC One, the consumer page of O2 also noted that the device also offers free video editing tool through the app called HTC Zoe that combines all pictures into a video.
Ultimate Medium For Consuming Internet And Social Media
Another factor why Millenials are attached to their mobile devices is due to the advent of social networking apps and omnipresent ultrafast wireless connectivity. The latest gadgets being offered on the market these days are equipped with ultrafast 4G LTE wireless connectivity which is capable of acquiring a speedy internet access, anytime and anywhere (up to 10x faster than 3G and 5x faster than the average broadband connection at home). Basically, smartphones act as standalone devices when accomplishing online and social networking activities. Since they can easily be taken anywhereas compared to laptops and personal computers, the number of social media mobile users becomes far greater than those who traditionally access social applications on personal computers.
Citing the latest eMarketer’s profile of US Millennial Mobile Phone usage, the generation Y has the highest social networking penetration (85%) than any other generations – Gen X (66%) and Baby Boomers (44%). Suprisingly, one-third of the Millennial respondents even exercise the habit of bringing their mobile devices in the bathroom just to be able to access their social media accounts.
When it comes to mobile tech consumption, the Millennial generation is taking the lead, as opposed to the Baby Boomers and Gen X. They are permanently attached with their mobile devices since most of their activities (social networking, internet browsing, and video sharing) involve the use of smartphones with access to ubiquitous wireless connectivity.
Photo courtesy of examiner.com