June 16, 2024

Gen Z embraces dumb flip phones, a smarter life hack than you’d think

4 min read


Young woman with blonde, curly hair on a silver flip phone.

Getty Visuals

Gen Z, the to start with era to improve up with smart tech’s evolution from novelty to day-to-day pocket equipment, is flipping the script and flocking to flip telephones. 

With each individual new smartphone generation, businesses like Apple and Samsung provide an arsenal of extra highly developed options all encompassed by more substantial and brighter screens to glue our eyes to. But Gen Z desires less, not far more from smartphones, to secure their psychological well being. 

Their answer: A flip telephone that can literally shut out content material overload. 

You read that proper, the technology that commonly turns to doomscrolling for consolation, is voluntarily heading back again to the 2000s to look for shelter towards the rampant customer financial system. 

Also: Foldable telephones might be the up coming significant thing: Here is what you need to have to know. 

“I feel I required to attain [I guess] a sense of just being much more linked with my good friends and spouse and children. And then I also just needed to slice down on display time,” a 23-12 months-old Buzzfeed reporter Fjolla Arifi told ABC News, after strictly using a flip cell phone for the 7 days

On common, the generational cohort born in and soon after 1996, dubbed “Gen Z,” watches of 7.2 several hours of video clip on their screens per working day. With content material consistently available, several Gen Zers uncover themselves “doomscrolling” on TikTok and Instagram.

Smartphones and social media have turn out to be ubiquitous, and algorithms condition young people to continue to be glued to their phones. Strategically curated feeds coupled with doomscrolling can be detrimental to mental overall health, not to point out a significant time sucker. 

“We understand that each one problem we have on a night out, anything that potential customers to us crying, anything that prospects to having a undesirable time, stems from our mobile phone,” described TikTok person @skzzolno for why she and her friends only deliver their flip telephones out with them. 

For Gen Zs, turning to flip phones is just not just to adhere to an adopted Y2K aesthetic, but possibly to revisit a time when engineering was not all-consuming, but basically an accent. 

“It removes all the bad points about school and delivers all of the superior points about a telephone, which is like connecting with people and taking shots and films with persons,” claims Gen Zer @skkzonlo in her TikTok. 

Screenshot of a college girl filming a Tik Tok video on why her and her friends only use flip phones when they go out.

Tik Tok person @skzzolno describes to followers why she and her friends only convey a flip telephone with them when they go out. 

Screenshot by Christina Darby/ZDNET/Tik Tok

And while companies like Samsung have introduced again the nostalgic flip cellular phone structure, notably with its Galaxy Z Flip series, the Z Flip is still customized for content creators and consumers. 

While using the Flip’s “flex method” to use the two screens as a mini tripod or as a camcorder is revolutionary, potentially innovation isn’t really the stage of owning a flip cell phone. The allure may possibly not even be in the nostalgia of flipping the clamshell open and shut, but in the device’s simplicity.  

Also: Samsung claims folding phones are now mainstream

When the handbook mother nature of sometimes possessing to push three keys to variety just one letter could possibly be far from hassle-free, is it much more human? 

“It felt like my day was extra unexciting simply because I had less superficial dopamine to fill it with. But, that was overwhelmingly trumped by this plan of peace and tranquil. I did not sense the require to regularly drench my mind in stimulation,” said a different Gen Zer Osamah Quatanani to ABC News soon after switching to a flip mobile phone for 30 days. 

Flip telephones are not the to start with piece of legacy tech to exchange the all-in-a single electric power of a smartphone. 

As a Gen Zer myself, I have to acknowledge that the luxury of taking a disposable digital camera photograph throughout a night time out, devoid of the influx of notifications, instant gratification, or stress to post beats a single of ease.  Ultimately, it can be a liberating experience and I picture working with a flip cellular phone is even additional so. 

While I really don’t have the regular flip cell phone, I do have the Z Flip 4, and I can honestly say that the act of flipping the cellular phone down provides a entire new amount of fulfillment. On top rated of the act getting a smartphone novelty, I like the notion that when it truly is time for me to physically shut away distraction, you will find the real, bodily motion that accompanies and facilitates it. 

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 phones lined up

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 is noticed on display.

Jason Hiner/ZDNET

Fellow ZDNET reporter and Gen Zer Jada Jones also not too long ago analyzed how legacy tech, this kind of as a Sony Walkman, fulfills a drive for tech to boost Gen Z’s lives relatively than overtake them. 

Though Gen Zers have taken to embracing the flip telephone as a quick deal with to slash again on monitor time, smartphones continue to dominate the sector. In quarter just one of 2022 on your own, Apple delivered 20 million iPhones in North The usa. So, do not count on your Apple or Samsung intelligent ecosystem to deal with deforestation troubles anytime shortly. As a substitute, you could choose to unplug or set display restrictions. 


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