The irony here is that Gen Z hates phone calls and voicemails.

It turns out “voice memos” are getting more popular, especially with young people.  That’s when you send an audio clip over text.  They’re also called “voice texts,” “voice notes,” or just “audio messages.”  

They’re more personal than texts because you can hear the person.  But unlike a phone call, you can respond whenever you want.

It’s not a new feature.  iPhones have had them since 2014, and WhatsApp had them even earlier.  But we’re suddenly sending more of them than ever.  62% of us have sent an audio message before, and 30% use them at least once a week.  On WhatsApp alone, over seven billion are sent every day now.

So why the sudden surge?  It turns out the pandemic might have given voice memos a boost.  We started craving human interaction, and texts didn’t quite scratch the itch.  We wanted to hear actual human voices, just not on long, boring phone calls.