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Gen Z’s Tech Dependence Surpasses Millennials

New study finds Gen Z phone usage outpaces previous generations

You thought Millennials were hooked to their phones? They don’t hold an iPhone flashlight to Gen Z.

According to our new national study, titled “The State of Gen Z® 2018,” this mobile-dependent generation is reliant on their smartphone for everything and views it as an extension of themselves. They even feel anxiety without their phone and are losing sleep because they’re on it. The research revealed that:

  • Over half of Gen Z uses their smartphone five or more hours per day, and 26% use it 10 or more hours each day!
  • 65% of Gen Z is on their smartphones after midnight a few times a week or more
  • 31% of Gen Z feels uncomfortable if they are without their phones for 30 minutes or less

Jason Dorsey, Gen Z expert, explained, “Gen Z is truly immersed in a digital-everything world, with many spending double-digit hours each day on their phones. When you think about Gen Z’s typical time commitments of school, sleep, fun and possibly even work, this is a significant amount of time dedicated to interacting with a small screen, but that doesn’t faze Gen Z.”

Denise Villa, PhD, and CEO of The Center further explained, “Gen Z feel a surge of stress without their phone or if someone touches their phone without permission. This is tech addiction like we’ve never seen before, and it’s showing no signs of slowing down.”

Visit to learn more about the study’s findings and download the complete Gen Z whitepaper. Researchers Jason Dorsey and Denise Villa, Ph.D. are available for comment.

The Center for Generational Kinetics is the #1 Gen Z and Millennial research, speaking, and consulting firm. Our team of Ph.D. researchers work with more than 160 clients annually to solve generational challenges, from marketing to Gen Z and selling to Millennials or employing multiple generations. The Center helps clients through original research, consulting, and keynote presentations. The Center’s clients range from automakers and financial services to retailers, CPG, private equity, and global technology companies. The work of The Center’s co-founders to explore and bridge generations has been featured in hundreds of media outlets, from 60 Minutes and the BBC to The Washington Post and The New York TimesLearn more about us and access the new Gen Z research findings at

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