How Apple captured Generation Z, and how it will hang on to them

Posted:
in iPhone edited February 2023
The iPhone is so popular among in the US that platform loyalty can even affect dating choices. Here's how Apple captured Gen Z, and how it will hang on to an entire generation.

Gen Z users like their iPhones
Gen Z users like their iPhones


Generation Z refers to people born after 1996 and comprises 34% of all iPhone owners in the United States. Comparatively, only 10% of them use a Samsung smartphone, according to a report from the Financial Times.

A significant reason for the iPhone's popularity with younger consumers is iMessage since Android phones can't send texts through Apple's iMessage system.

In a group chat with iPhone owners, an Android user reverts it to SMS with green texts and low-quality images and videos.

"A green message -- anyone with an Android -- throws off the entire chat, because now the whole thing has to be SMS," said Annelise Hillman, the 24-year-old chief executive of Frontman, a men's grooming business. "So the social pressure to get an iPhone is pretty insane."

The divide between Android and iPhone even has an impact on dating. For example, "He's a 10 but..." a TikTok trend that went viral, asked women what their new assessment of a perfect guy would be after learning that he used an Android device.

Many women re-rated the guy as less than five or even called it a deal-breaker. "If that bubble pops up green, I'm not responding," said one woman.

The iPhone is a popular entry into Apple's ecosystem, and can lead to purchases of other Apple devices. Data from Canalys showed that for every 100 iPhones shipped worldwide, Apple sells 26 iPads, 17 Apple Watches and 35 pairs of AirPods.

Meanwhile, 100 smartphone shipments results in fewer than 11 tablets, six smartwatches, and six wireless earbuds for Samsung.

Despite campaigns from Google trying to get Apple to adopt RCS and improve messages between iPhone and Android users, Apple knows that the exclusivity of iMessage is a significant selling point for the iPhone.

In a 2021 report, Apple software Eddy Cue wanted to bring iMessage to Android as far back as 2013, but was overruled by executives such as Craig Federighi.

In a group chat with iPhone owners, an Android user reverts it to SMS with green texts
In a group chat with iPhone owners, an Android user reverts it to SMS with green texts


"In the absence of a strategy to become the primary messaging service for [the] bulk of cell phone users, I am concerned [that] iMessage on Android would simply serve to remove an obstacle to iPhone families giving their kids Android phones," Federighi wrote in an email.

And in response to a person mentioning messaging issues with their mother, who used an Android phone, Apple CEO Tim Cook said, "Buy your mom an iPhone," during a 2022 conference.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    hexclockhexclock Posts: 1,232member
    Judging people by what kind of phone they have? To me that sounds just like… oh never mind. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 8
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,282member
    The “Gen Z” thing bothers me because it seems to signify the “last” generation, as if some cataclysmic event will stop further generations from existing. Maybe it will rollover back to “Generation A” or do we move to multiple characters? Gen Z Rev 1? Who makes this crap up?

    Humans are tribal by design. Younger people live much of their lives through their smartphones so it is completely understandable that something that’s differentiated within the overlapping spheres of different people’s lives would be used as a basis for tribal selection.  Completely predictable human behavior and totally irrational all at the same time, in other words, exactly as we should expect it to be. 
    chasmmuthuk_vanalingamWhiskeyAPPLEciderwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 8
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,268member
    dewme said:
    The “Gen Z” thing bothers me because it seems to signify the “last” generation, as if some cataclysmic event will stop further generations from existing. Maybe it will rollover back to “Generation A” or do we move to multiple characters? Gen Z Rev 1? Who makes this crap up?


    The nomenclature was limited when it was decided to go from Baby Boomer to Gen X. Now we're out of letters, unless they go back to A like you said. LOL

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 8
    chasmchasm Posts: 3,232member
    hexclock said:
    Judging people by what kind of phone they have? To me that sounds just like… oh never mind. 
    We are talking about teenagers here. Maybe you were the exception, but when I was a teen I was judgey as hell and so was everyone in my peer group, about everything: music, clothes, hair, TV shows, cars, food, religion, and on an on and on.

    Google got themselves into this mess by hanging on to an outdated messaging standard for a decade too long, and then trying to foist a half-baked alternative it doesn’t even fully support as a new “standard” that Apple has to “adopt.”

    Simply put, no they don’t. When the telecommunications industry adopts a new messaging standard, Apple will have to support that.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 8
    Or…. Use WhatsApp like the rest of the world. 
  • Reply 6 of 8
    dewme said:
    The “Gen Z” thing bothers me because it seems to signify the “last” generation, as if some cataclysmic event will stop further generations from existing. Maybe it will rollover back to “Generation A” or do we move to multiple characters? Gen Z Rev 1? Who makes this crap up?

    Humans are tribal by design. Younger people live much of their lives through their smartphones so it is completely understandable that something that’s differentiated within the overlapping spheres of different people’s lives would be used as a basis for tribal selection.  Completely predictable human behavior and totally irrational all at the same time, in other words, exactly as we should expect it to be. 
    Gen Z = generation zombie?

    While judging people based on their choice of smartphone is ridiculous, there’s another divide happening between North American and European/Middle Eastern/North African users.
    They seem to be obsessed with “WhatsApp”. I have family in both France and Greece and they’re constantly trying to get me into that Meta controlled spyware app.  
    WhiskeyAPPLEciderwatto_cobralolliverAlex_Vmike1
  • Reply 7 of 8
    sflagel said:
    Or…. Use WhatsApp like the rest of the world. 
    A Meta/Facebook controlled app?  No thanks!
    WhiskeyAPPLEciderwatto_cobralolliverAlex_Vmike1
  • Reply 8 of 8
    It’s amusing that an article on iPhone’s market share doesn’t state iPhone’s market share. At least we did learn Samsung’s share.  

    (Side note:  Siri’s predictive text refuses to predict Samsung, lol.)
    watto_cobra
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