We’ve all experienced drastic changes to our lifestyles over the last few months. Whether your corporate job forced you to carve out a workspace in your living room or you’re a parent with kids who are now learning at home, most of us are spending more time than ever at home with our technology.
As an entrepreneur in the AR space, I’ve noticed a general shift amongst adults when it comes to children and teenagers and their devices in the post-COVID world. Here are a few major changes in consumer tech behavior and consumption during the pandemic.
1. PARENTS ARE EMBRACING ‘SCREEN TIME’ FOR THEMSELVES AND THEIR KIDS.
Just a couple years ago, people I spoke with about AR would say, “My child is not allowed to use devices.” Despite the Bay Area being the mecca of tech, it was common to keep children away from all devices as much as possible.
Now, with kids forced to use Zoom and education shifting more and more online, this stigma against devices has weakened, if not completely gone away. Also impacting this attitude shift is the increased number of parents working from home with a lack of off-site childcare. These overwhelmed parents are open to whatever helps keep the children quiet while meetings are in session, and that’s often their devices.
2. PEOPLE ARE MORE RELIANT ON TECHNOLOGY FOR ENTERTAINMENT, SHOPPING AND SOCIALIZING.
While parents are embracing screens and technology as a mainstream way to teach and educate, children are also finding new and creative ways to entertain themselves with so much down time throughout the day. It’s no surprise that gaming is up 75% and TikTok’s traffic is now up 50% since January. Even with limited space, indoor entertainment has become a fun way to spend time.
People of all ages are using screens to entertain and socialize digitally, as well as relying on the online world for more grocery and retail shopping. As a whole, technology has become a crucial part to surviving these times where the only way to entertain, function and carry on is through our connected devices.
3. THERE’S BEEN A BOOM IN TECH-ENABLED CREATIVITY.
We’ve seen an explosion of creativity coming from not only kids, but adults as well. Whether adults using AR apps at their desk, or using AR as a creativity break from their dull work. Children are finally able to create their own “Jurassic Worlds” and swim with sharks with laughs and shrills of excitement.
It’s been an exciting time as a founder to see all the cool fun and new ways people are using mobile AR. I can only imagine how this new technology will enhance our lives during this time when we need it most.
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Dana Loberg is founder and CEO at Leo AR, the #1 consumer facing app in AR.