By examining my family’s phone usage you get an interesting representations of how different generations use their phones. The five of us - parents, younger brother, and younger sister - are all on the same plan and T-Mobile breaks down the usage into phone minutes used, messages sent, and total amount of data used. I played a game with my friends to see whether they’d be able to decipher who’s who but it turned out to be surprisingly difficult and unintuitive. Turns out that my teenage sister uses least talking minutes and data but consumers average number of texts. At the same time, my mom runs a business and has close to 2000 minutes of talk time with the most number of texts sent while only using a moderate amount of data. My brother and I have a similar usage pattern - low minutes and messages but the highest data usage out of the entire family. The biggest surprise is my sister’s data usage that reinforces how much time teenagers are spending via apps and on separate social networks. That stereotype I grew up with of teenagers being constantly on their phones is still true - texting and talking have just bee replaced by siloed apps.


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