Gen Z Consumers More Likely to Play Video Games Than Watch Live TV

April 27, 2021

Verizon Gen Z Weekly Activities Apr2021The youngest generation of adults has embraced digital activities more than older adults. While this is far from surprising considering this is the first generation of adults reared in the age of digital, a report from Morning Consult and Verizon shows that this generation is much more likely to spend time with digital activities than traditional ones.

A full 92% of the Gen Z respondents (born adults born after 1997) say that they spend at least some time each week watching content through streaming services. However, far fewer report that they spend some time each week watching live TV (67%) or TV programs on a DVR (46%).

This group of adults certainly enjoys playing online video games. Some 8 in 10 (79%) spend time each week playing online games on a mobile device, while 7 in 10 (72%) play online games on a computer or console. Although video game playing is an activity enjoyed by all ages at least to some extent, and time spent playing has increased because of the pandemic, Gen Z are more apt to say they spend time with it weekly than other age groups.

Looking at other age groups, a few things stand out:

  • Baby Boomers are much more likely to spend time watching live TV (92%) than other activities such as watching streaming services (66%) or playing games on a mobile device (33%);
  • More Millennials say they spend time talking to friends or family via video calls than any other age group; and
  • Millennials, somewhat surprisingly, are also the most likely to spend time watching TV programs on a DVR.

Since the start of the pandemic, the adults surveyed say they have, at least once or twice, binge-watched shows (70%), downloaded or purchased a new game either on their mobile device (46%) or for their computer or console (36%), and/or subscribed to a new streaming service (47%).

The question is will these behaviors remain a year from now? While the report indicates that the majority of adults expect the time they currently spend with the activities previously discussed to remain about the same, some expect to spend more time watching content on streaming services (22%), playing online games on a computer or console (25%) or mobile device (22%), and talking to friends or family via video calls (23%).

The full report can be found here.

About the Data: Findings are based on a March 2021 survey of 3,000 US adults.


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