Millennials And Gen Z Internet Use: 51% Gen Zers Can’t Live Without the Internet!

Today’s youth are growing up with the internet and social media, but the ones before saw a different world. Millennials and Gen Z internet use have some stark dissimilarities that we explore in this article.

The individuals born between 1981 to 1996 are known as Millennials or Generation Y(26 to 41 years as of 2022). They represent a quarter of the United States population. The individuals born between 1997 to 2012 are known as Generation Z(10 to 25 years as of 2022). They comprise 27 percent of the United States population.

Millennials And Gen Z Internet Use

There was a rapid change in the development of technology between these two generations. The internet has become a very integral part of the life of Gen Zers, but millennials can still remember a time when the internet was just a cute new fad that people were logging onto. 

According to a one-year survey between 2018 and 2019, 48 percent of respondents aged 18 -29 years reported that they accessed the internet almost constantly compared to only 36 percent of those aged 30-49 years.

This article compares and contrasts the statistics of internet usage between Millennials and Gen Zers. Read the article to see how things have changed in such a short space of time!

How The Generation Z And Millennials See The Internet in The United States

  • According to a 2019 survey, 51 percent of Gen Zers reported that they could not live without the internet, whereas only 21 percent of Millennials said the same.8
  • 37 percent of millennials reported that their job would be very different without using the internet, which in comparison, 28 percent of baby boomer respondents said the same.9
  • According to the March 2019 Survey, 22 percent of Generation Z respondents reported that internet access should be basic human rights.Surprisingly, 52 percent of millennials and Generation X respondents reported that internet usage should be the rights of human being.10
  • According to the July 2019 survey, 39 percent of Generation Z respondents aged 18 to 24 reported that their online data and personal information are vulnerable to hackers. In comparison, 50 percent of respondents aged 35-44 years said the same.12
  • According to a 2019 survey, younger generations were less concerned about data privacy compared to baby boomers and other generations of the measured survey period; 28 percent of Generation Z respondents and 29 percent of millennials were much concerned about data privacy. 9 percent of millennials and Generation Z respondents were not concerned about the data privacy.13
  • In 2020 32.9 percent of Gen Zers were digital buyers. It’s estimated that it would be 85 percent by 2025.15

You might also like to read: Older Adults And Internet Usage: More Than 59% Seniors Are Online!

Millennials And Gen Z Internet Use

Online Activities In United States By Millenials

  • A survey done in 2018 with 2000 respondents found that 59 percent of respondents within age 16-24 years(Generation z) have increased their usage of YouTube compared to the previous year. In comparison, 46 percent of individuals with 25-34 years(Millennials) reported the same.11
  • According to an August 2018 report, Gen Z smartphone users unlock 79 times daily on an average, while millennials smartphone users unlock almost 63 times on an average.2
  • According to a 2018 survey, 48 percent of millennials said that they always or sometimes tweeted about or read tweets about TV Programs.3
  • A study was done in the U.S. regarding T.V. related activities among Millennials. Nearly 49 percent of respondents reported that they read or post comments on YouTube instead of TV.7
  • Fifty-five percent of millennials said they watch video clips from T.V.T.V. shows on YouTube, whereas 31 percent of millennials said they subscribe or watch T.V.T.V. shows on Youtube channel.7

Owing Of Electronic Devices By Millennials

  • According to a Pew Research center survey, 93 percent of millennials own smartphones compared to 90 percent of GenXers,68 percent of baby boomers, and 40 percent of silent generation in 2019.4
  • In 2019 53 percent of millennials owned tablets compared to 55 percent of Gen Xers,52 percent of boomers, and 33 percent of the silent generation.4

Use Of Social Media By Millennials

  • In 2019 86 percent of millennials use social media compared to 76 percent of Gen Xers,59 percent of boomers, and 28 percent of the silent generation.4
  • The use of Facebook has grown in older generations.5
  • In 2019 84 percent of millennials use Facebook compared to 74 percent of Gen Xers,60 percent of boomers, and 37 percent of the silent generation.5
  • Seventy-three percent of online millennials reported in 2018 that internet usage positively impacts society compared to 69 percent of GenXers,68 percent of boomers, and 63 percent of the silent generation.6
  • In 2016 58 percent of millennials were using Instagram. It became 66 percent in 2018.14
  • In 2016,56, percent of millennials used WhatsApp.It became 66 percent in 2018.14
  • The average daily social media time by millennials in 2017 was 2hours 39 minutes. But it decreased by one minute in 2018.14
  • According to the 11th February to 14th February 2019 survey period, only 36 percent of millennials trusted social media ads.16
  • 61 percent of millennials use social media to communicate with friends or near and dear ones.18
  • Fifty-one percent of millennials use social media to kill time, whereas 47 percent use social media to learn about new trends, and 43 percent use social media to get breaking news.18
Millennials And Gen Z Internet Use

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Online Shopping By Millennials

  • According to May 2020 survey, online shopping was common in Millennial internet users, with a penetration rate of 86.2 percent.19
  • According to the January 2019 survey,45 percent of millennials reported voice assistance while shopping online, whereas 55 percent said that there is no use of voice assistance.20

Use Of Social Media BY Generation Z

  • In 2016 64 percent of Generation z individuals were using Instagram. It became 75 percent in 2018.14
  • In 2016,51, percent of Generation Z individuals were using WhatsApp.It became 65 percent in 2018.14
  • According to a 2019 survey, 77 percent of Generation Z respondents distrust influencers and bloggers.17
  • Generation Z individuals in North America, Latin America, and Europe lead several social media accounts. Many are moving away from Facebook in favor of Instagram and Youtube.14
  • The average daily social media time by Generation Z individuals in 2017 was 2 hours 53 minutes. But it increased by 2 minutes(2 hours 55 minutes) in 2018.14
  • In 2015, only 20 percent of Generation Z individuals used social media to follow celebrities or celebrity news. It became 25 percent in 2018.14
  • In 2015, only 17 percent of Generation Z individuals discovered brands by celebrities or well-known individuals. It became 18 percent in 2018.14
  • Almost 61 percent of Generation Z consumers want companies to know them better by social media activity.18
  • Almost 52 percent of Generation Z consumers expect companies to read their social media posts.18
Millennials And Gen Z Internet Use

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Generation Z And Smartphone

  • Nearly 64 percent of smartphone Generation Z users say they are constantly connected online.21
  • Fifty-seven percent of Generation Z admit that they feel insecure without mobile phones.21
  • Generation Z individuals usually spend four hours 15 minutes a day on mobile.21
  • Seventy-eight percent of the Generation Z individuals consider mobile devices the essential device to go online compared to 74 percent of millennials.21
  • Generation Z individuals are now spending 1.13 minutes more on their mobile phones compared to 2015.21
  • The most common activities done by Generation Z individuals on mobile phones are watching videos, visiting social networking sites, search engines, or messaging app.21
  • Ninety-five percent of Gen Zers use or visit social networking sites on mobile.21
  • Sixty percent of Gen Zers check the weather online on a mobile phone.21
  • Social networking apps are dominated by Gen Zers, followed by messengers, music, and shopping apps on mobile.21
  • The Zen Z individuals aged 16 to 24 spend almost 11 hours on mobile devices in a week.23
  • Nearly 86 percent of teenagers anticipate their next mobile phone to be iPhone.24
  • Nearly 28 percent of Zen Zers reported that they like to watch T.V.T.V. series and video content on a smartphone compared to other devices.25

Digital Habits By Generation Z

  • Seventy-four percent of Generation Z individuals want to spend their free time online.22
  • 75 percent of Generation Z prefer the smartphone to remain online rather than any other device.22
  • Twenty-eight percent of Gen Z desires to share online history with a brand.22
  • Thirty-two percent of Gen Z do transactions online.23

Streaming Habits Of Generation Z

  • Thirty-seven percent of teenage Gen Zers prefer youtube.24
  • 35 percent of teen Gen Zers prefer Netflix.24

Wrap Up

Generation Z are digital natives. This generation has grown up with computers, video games, social media, the internet, and others. They are well versed in internet-related things.

Millennials spend their time online, and on smartphones and other devices. But they were not born in a digital World. They don’t spend as much time online compared to Generation z individuals. 

Millennials And Gen Z Internet Use

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For instance, a 2020 survey showed that 17.3 percent of Gen Z watch 10-20 hours of online video in a week, whereas 14.9 percent of millennials(26 to 35 years) watch 10-20 hours of online video per week.

I hope this article helped you understand the generation gap between millennials and Gen Z with regards to the internet. Please don’t forget to share this article with those around you to help bridge this gap.

References

  1. • US adult constant internet usage by age 2019 | Statista
  2. • Selected mobile apps increased usage among internet users in the US by age 2018 l Statistic | Statista• Average unlocks per day among US smartphone users 2018 | Statista
  3. • US user digital engagement with TV shows 2018 | Statista
  4. Millennials lead on some technology adoption measures, but Boomers and Gen Xers are also heavy adopters | Pew Research Center
  5. Since 2012, use of Facebook has grown fastest among older generations | Pew Research Center
  6. Older internet users less likely to view the internet as a positive for society | Pew Research Center
  7. • US Millennial TV-related activities YouTube 2018 | Statista
  8. • US adults who could live without the internet by generation 2019 l Statistic | Statista
  9. • US perception of the internet’s effect on their job by generation 2019 l Statistic | Statista
  10. • US adults internet access as a human right by generation 2019 | Statista
  11. • Selected mobile apps increased usage among internet users in the US by age 2018 l Statistic | Statista
  12. • US online users who feel their data is vulnerable to hackers by age 2019 l Statistic | Statista
  13. • US consumer concerns on data privacy 2019 | Statista
  14. Who uses social media the most? | World Economic Forum
  15. Generation Z News: Latest characteristics, research, and facts
  16. • US consumer trust in social media ads 2019 | Statista
  17. • US distrust in influencers and bloggers 2019 | Statista
  18. How Different Generations Use Social Media—and What this Means for Your Business
  19. • US digital buyer reach by generation 2020 | Statista
  20. • US Millennials who use voice-assisted shopping 2019 l Statistic | Statista
  21. A look at Gen Z mobile behaviors – 64% of mobile users are always connected
  22. Uniquely Generation Z
  23. Based on the Criteo Shopper Story
  24. Piper Jaffray 38th Semi-Annual Taking Stock With Teens® Survey, Fall 2019
  25. How Gen Z is Watching TV & Video Right Now, In 5 Stats – YPulse