Boomers currently rank last in nearly every category and metric when it comes to technology and social media use. This generation didn’t grow up inundated with technology in the way today’s youth are. However, Boomers are showing the greatest increase in activity on social media platforms. For example, usage of Instagram and WhatsApp is up 59% and 44% respectively for this group since 2016, which is more than double the national average.
Generation X, also known as the ‘MTV Generation’, was the last generation to grow up before the Internet truly took off. The early years of this group were marked by a burst of new technologies, from wireless phones to personal computers. On average, Gen Xers spend nearly two hours on social media per day—less than Millennials and Gen Z, but more than Boomers.
Perhaps surprisingly, Millennials show a slow-down in the time spent on social media. From 2018-2019, screen time for Millennials on social media decreased by one minute, to 2 hours 38 minutes per day. This trend points to Millennials seeking real-life experiences and better engagement from the brands they interact with online, rather than passive scrolling. Other factors also play a role in this evolution─nearly 50% of Millennials admit that their activity on social media has caused them to overspend to impress their networks.