Mommy’s Little Cyborg – Meet Generation Alpha
Meet Generation Alpha
AS GENERATION Z ENTERS THE WORKFORCE, GENERATION ALPHA IS STARTING OUT AT PLAY SCHOOL.
Generation Alpha, made up of children born from 2010 onwards, has already attracted the attention of marketers and start-ups around the world.
This is not surprising when one considers that, according to the Cartoon Network New Generations Study, children between the ages of four and 14 already control $1.8 billion in annual spending power. This spending power is made up of a combination of “pester power” – the uncanny ability small children have to nag their parents into making purchases they otherwise would not consider – and direct pocket money spending. In the UK, children under the age of five receive an average of £2 (approximately R34) a week as pocket money. In South Africa, according to a
Parent24.com survey, most kids under the age of ten “earn” R20 a week.That adds up to a lot of money when you take into account that 2.5 million Alphas are born each week.
So what can we expect from this tiny target market?
If you thought Millennials were spoiled by their parents, just wait until you see how those same Millennials are raising their little Alphas. Millennials want to give their offspring everything they had as children, plus everything they expected and did not succeed in achieving for themselves as adults. Millennials are having children later in life than previous generations, and they are having fewer children per family when they do have them.This means that Millennials have more time, more money and energy to spend on their offspring than previous generations. Generation Alpha will have the highest standard of living in human history.
Alphas will be the most educated generation ever. Not only are Alphas self-educating from the crib with tablet and mobile phone apps, their parents and schools are pushing them to succeed. The UK government wants formal schooling to start at age two. In South Africa, grade triple-zero is now non-negotiable for admission into most private primary schools. In the US, places like Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute ofTechnology (MIT) are offering computer coding summer camps for kids as young as six years old. All this additional educational input indicates that Alphas are set to be even more entrepreneurial and self-sufficient than their predecessors.
The Alphas are true digital natives. They are hyperconnected to the Internet. These tiny “screenagers” were given iPads and iPhones as pacifiers since they came home from the hospital.They learn to navigateYouTube before they say their first words. Common Sense Media reports that kids under the age of eight spend an average of 48 minutes a day staring at a mobile device screen. But watch out: Mobile devices have been dubbed “digital cocaine” for children, due to how addictive screen time is for small people. Psychologists and educators are still unsure of the nature and extent of the effects early Internet exposure has on developing brains. We
will have to wait and see how the results of our global tabletnanny experiment will pan out for the next generation.
Generation Alpha is already the most quantified generation in history. Smart, wearable baby monitors like Sproutling and Hatch connect babies with the Internet 24/7, and allow paranoid parents to monitor their offspring’s every vital sign and growth milestone. Now, as humans become more and more enmeshed with technology, the Alphas are on track to becoming the first human cyborg generation. Chaotic Moon Studios has already developed semi-permanent tech-tattoos which contain a microchip and circuit board which allows parents and healthcare professionals to monitor children’s vital signs through an app. Looking further into the future, thought-leader Elon Musk has proposed that we implant circuit boards into our brains to help us to compete with increasingly intelligent Artificial Intelligence, thereby completing our human-cyborg conversion.
In short, these little cyborgs are set to be the healthiest, wealthiest, smartest humans ever.Are you ready for them?
These tiny “screenagers” were given iPads and iPhones as pacifiers since they came home from the hospital. They learn to navigate YouTube before they say their first words.