Flip phones are Gen Z's latest obsession

19 Jan 2023 04:41pm
Photo for illustration purposes only - 123RF Photo
Photo for illustration purposes only - 123RF Photo

Gen-Z has found a new obsession in another 'vintage' technology - the flip phone.

According to CNN, the mid-1990s era phone has been trending on TikTok.

Aside from its blurry aesthetic pictures through the low-quality camera, Gen Zers are hopping on this obsession as the device enables them to be as "disconnected" as they can be from the virtual world.

Sammy Palazzolo, an 18-year-old freshman from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has joined the flip phone bandwagon.

One new routine that she and her friends have adopted with this phone is to just bring flip phones during their night out, leaving all smartphones behind.

They contact each other only through their flip phones and take pictures on them despite the now primitive camera.

"It eliminates all the bad things about college and brings all of the good things about a phone, which is connecting with people and taking photos and videos.

"I love the photos on the flip phones because they are grainy and blurry, and I think that captures the vibe of going out in college perfectly,” she said.

You may also like:

Her video on TikTok encouraging others to buy flip phones has gained more than 14 million views with over 3 million likes, using hashtags that include #BRINGBACKFLIPPHONES and #y2kaesthetic.

However, this vintage gadget comes with a safety concern where the lack of GPS feature disables individuals from being tracked in case of missing.

Palozzolo wanted to use a flip phone during one high school summer because she thought it would be awesome but her parents strictly opposed the idea as they want to be able to know where she is.

Another Gen Zer, Reagan Boeder, 18, said she’s trying to get her sorority sisters to jump in on the trend.

Boeder thinks people are going to go out more and more with flip phones just because it’s so fun and nostalgic.

“I don’t ever want to be that person that’s just on their phone the whole time and getting a flip phone kind of made that more possible,” Boeder said.

She added that people back then were more involved with each other and everything was more genuine and spontaneous.

CNN also reported that the International Data Corporation in 2022 said the market for foldable phones was expected to reach RM125 billion ($29 billion) in 2025 – a compound annual growth of 70 per cent.

CNN quoted Zaker Li, principal analyst on Omdia mobile devices' team that Samsung has taken the lead in the number and sales of foldable smartphones.

As of 2022, Samsung has shipped over 10 million units since its first generation model came out, which accounted for more than 88 per cent of the global foldable smartphone market.