After reading a recent article from Business Insider that discussed which apps teens think are cool I reached out to my favorite teenager to see what she thought. My 16 year old cousin, Teagan, uses plenty of apps and chats with her friends most of the day using technology. I sent her the article and asked her to send back her opinions. Here's about how our convo went:
The article polled 60 teenagers, age 13-19, and revealed what they think is cool — and what isn't — in 2016. Teagan's first comment was that they should have asked more teens to get a better sample!
The average age of a teen's first smartphone
Article says: Age 11.
Teagan agrees. She was 12 or 13 though.
Time spent on phone
Article: 6 hours a day
Teagan says: Everyone I know is always on their phones, like at least 18 hours a day. Their phone is always in their hand or by their side.
Time in front of other screens
Teens said they spent 11 hours in front of screens every day.
Teagan says: PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are popular.
61% say they prefer to shop for clothing online from retailers that also operate their own brickandmortar stores.
Teagan says: very, VERY popular. There's occasional mall trips, but it's more common to shop off of apps like Wish, Amazon or Wanelo.
Most Popular apps
Snapchat, Spotify, Instagram (Leads as most popular) & Twitter
Teagan says: Snapchat, Spotify, and Instagram are all popular. Facebook is popular. Less popular is Twitter or Pandora or iHeartRadio.
So, what exactly is Snapchat?
Teagan describes it as an app for communicating, but with live pictures and videos, or just messaging. You can send and receive messages, photos or videos. For photos and videos, you can add a text, emoji stickers, filters. You can make really fast or slow motion, zoom, or backwards. You add friends, post to your story so all of your added friends can see.
I asked what makes it different than fb or instagram, she said: It's different from normal social media because it's only pictures and videos, not really status updates, or check ins. It doesn’t stay on your story forever, it lasts for 24 hours and you choose how long a certain one can be viewed for, it's not really a profile type.
Ok, how often is it used for photos that really shouldn’t be posted online? She said, not as often as adults may think.
Which apps aren't so popular
Article listed: Google +, Vine, Whisper
Teagan says: Google Plus has always been dead. Vine is popular, but we just watch famous people and don't post ourselves. Whisper was never popular.
What about messaging?
The most common form of messaging was iMessage or SMS messaging (100% of the teens we talked to used one or both of those)
Teagan says: Facebook Messenger, it's kind of dead. Mostly people use iMessage or sms, dm's on Instagram, or kik.
Which phones are used Most often?
Most teens have a iPhone 5S, the iPhone 6, and the Samsung Galaxy S5.
Teagan has a iPhone 6, but at one point preferred the Galaxy because of the storage.
Netflix is a winner among teens
Teagan says: I don't think there's too many people that don't have it. AHS, or Supernatural, other than that it's drama or reality. And other than that I don't know what else is watched, lol.
apps that adults may not know about
Twitter, Tubmlr, Snapchat. (Most have heard of).
There were apps that were surprising to me too: After School, Musical.ly, Color Therapy, Wishbone, Neko Astume
So Teagan, what is After School?
You're given a random username, and nobody knows who you are. Unless you manually change it to your name. You don't post photos, you post updates, or thoughts. Anything like that. In our high school, there was a problem that happened. it was being used for bullying, so cops and investigators got involved and were using the schools IP address to track who they were. The wifi got shut down for a day or two from it.
It's kind of like Dubsmash, only with music.
What else do Teens consider "cool"?
Celebrities that are cool include those on YouTube, Vine, etc. Not just movie stars and musicians. Buzzfeed is very popular among teens.
I asked what Teagan's Home Screen had on it
Everyone has different phone screens, and they're all organized in a particular way that the person is comfortable with. Like me, mines divided into categories, then alphabetically. My friends aren't like that.
Lastly, she adds
Yes, this generation is very smart, but not given as much credit for, as stated.