How Your Technology Habits Reveal If You’re A Gen X Or Millenial Mum
Did you know that our digital habits and preferences can reveal a lot about our chronological age (more so than our wrinkles, or taste in fashion)? You see, the way we use (or avoid) our digital devices can reflect our age.
Nick Jr Parents, Multi Channel Network (MCN) and Baby Center have recently released new research about how technology has impacted modern mums in today’s society.
The study found that there’s no universal description of a “modern mum”. We’re all different. We’re all facing different challenges. And we’re all at different stages of our parenting journeys.
The research revealed that modern mums, be it “Millenial” mums (those born between 1982 and 2003) or “Gen X” mums (those born between 1961 and 1981), are experiencing some common concerns.
We’re all feeling the pressures associated with modern parenting. We often feel that life’s too fast. We’re often feeling overwhelmed by technology and information. We hanker for a slower pace of life. Many of us (48% in fact) are concerned that technology is having an adverse impact on our kids’ health. There’s also a sense that modern parenting is harder than it used to be.
Whilst there are many common denominators amongst Gen X and Millenial mums, the study also found some stark differences. Modern mums approach and use technology in distinctly different ways, as either a “Millenial” or “Gen X” mum.
Most modern mums rely heavily on their smartphones (97% for Millennial Mums compared to 89% for Gen X Mums use smartphones). We view our phones as our “back up brain”. It’s often our digital organiser, meal planner, recipe-finder, kids’ entertainer and educator and much, much more.
But what’s interesting to note, is that we use our smartphones (and other technologies) in very different ways.
How are Millenial and Gen X Mums Using Technology in Different Ways?
- Modern mums have different information sources and advisors. Millenial mums use social media platforms and online groups and platforms (like Facebook and mummy blogs) to seek and give advice and share opinions. And they’re often doing this in the evening during TV time (they’re savvy media-multi-taskers). In fact a quarter of millenial mums use Facebook for parenting advice. In contrast, Gen X mums are a little more reluctant and skeptical about using social media platforms to source parenting advice. Instead, they often turn to friends and medical professionals before they head online.
- A greater proportion of millennial mums report that they use apps on their smartphone, compared to Gen X mums. Perhaps it’s millennial mums’ digital familiarity that makes them more confident about selecting and using apps, for both themselves and/or their kids.
- Millenial mums watch a lot more online videos, than their Gen X counterparts. In fact some millennial mums watch videos 3 times/week (60% of millennial mums do this while only 32% of Gen X mums do this).
- Gen X mums match their digital device to the task at hand. Different devices for different tasks. For example, they might use their smartphone for social media, but restrict their online purchase to a computer and viewing of You Tube clips on a tablet. In contrast, millenial mums are more likely to use their smartphone for all tasks (shopping, social media, research).
So why are modern mums using technology in different ways?
Gen X mums are “digital adapters”. They do remember a time when “face time” meant a coffee and a chat in a real coffee shop. They distinctly remember a time that wasn’t constantly buzzing and pinging. On the other hand, millenial mums are “digital natives”. They’ve grown up in this digital landscape. Digital technologies aren’t foreign to them. They’ve grown up surrounded by technology. So their parenting journey is much the same and an extension of their existing digital world.