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5 ways digital natives are giving our lives a mobile makeover

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(BPT) - Their heads may be buried in their smartphones, but don’t be fooled; the youngest generation is changing the world as we know it, one emoji at a time.

According to recent findings from the Bank of America Trends in Consumer Mobility Report, Generation Z — the youngest generation — and millennials are drastically shaking up the status quo. With the world at their smartphone-clutching fingertips, these digital natives are transforming everything from communications to social norms and even family dynamics.

Read on to find out how the youngest generations are creating new standards and giving our lives a mobile makeover.

1. Screens over squads

Gen Zers are redefining the rules of friendship, as their smartphones are their new BFF. Nearly a third (30 percent) admit they would rather give up their friends for a day than their mobile device. They also prefer their smartphones over other technology, such as televisions, tablets and gaming systems.

2. Keep it short, sweet and … selfie?

The next time you have something to say to the Gen Zer in your life, you might want to say it with an “OMG” and a duckface. The youngest generation is embracing new methods of communication, as they are significantly more likely than their older counterparts to use emojis (95 percent vs. 79 percent), social media (88 percent vs. 77 percent), acronyms (87 percent vs. 69 percent) and even selfies (81 percent vs. 45 percent) to converse with one another.

3. Goodbye soul-searching, and hello self-searching

"Finding yourself" no longer means taking an extensive backpacking trip across Europe. Today, digital natives are "finding themselves" online using a simple Google search — no plane ticket required. Gen Zers and millennials are more likely than any other generation to search themselves online, with 10 percent admitting to checking on their digital footprint daily!

4. Plugged-in parenting

Pick up the kids from school? Check. Take them to soccer? Check. Monitor their screen time? Add that to the to-do list. As the younger generations become increasingly digital, parents are now finding themselves having to keep a close eye on their children’s technology use. Nearly half (49 percent) of parents say they monitor everything, and only 5 percent completely respect their children’s privacy.

5. There’s an app for that

This mobile-first mindset has changed the way we bank, too. More than three in five (62 percent) Americans say they use a mobile banking app, up from 54 percent in 2016, with millennials the most likely to use it at 75 percent. Millennials are also increasingly turning to their mobile banking app during life’s biggest moments, including planning vacations (52 percent), saving for college (45 percent) and buying a car (38 percent).