The New Trend Among Gen Z: Location-Sharing Obsession

Sharon | January 28, 2024

Location Sharing Tool for Kids

Step into the digital footprints of Generation Z, where sharing isn't just about words but locations, a trend sweeping through screens and streets alike. Forget hashtags; it's all about pinpointing your place in the world.

Picture this: a world where your GPS coordinates are your status update. The new Gen Z obsession transforms smartphones into real-time maps of friendships. But is it a trend that's all glitter and no substance? 

Location-sharing, the act of voluntarily revealing your exact whereabouts, offers youngsters a unique blend of benefits and risks. From seamlessly coordinating hangouts to the unnerving feeling of constant digital surveillance, it's a double-edged trend.

So, what's driving this location-sharing mania among Gen Z? Dive into the psychology behind the pins, exploring the reasons behind this virtual breadcrumb trail. But for parents feeling lost in this digital maze, fear not! We've got the compass to navigate this trend's what, why, and how.

This article unpacks the allure and drawbacks of location-sharing, offering a snapshot of the psychology that fuels this trend. For parents, we've got the map to guide you through the landscape of your Gen Z's digital world. 

How Location-Sharing Became Popular Among Gen Z

Let's take a trip down the digital memory lane and explore how Gen Z became the generation that practically invented location-sharing.

These tech-savvy individuals practically cut their teeth on smartphones, and location-sharing apps are like the cool toys they couldn't resist playing with. According to the latest Digital Census, a whopping 88% of Gen Z members use location-sharing apps regularly. It's not a once-in-a-blue-moon thing; it's more like a daily ritual.

Overall, 94% of Gen Z said there are many advantages to sharing their location with others, even their parents. 87% stated that it can come in handy during long-distance drives, with 80% specifying that it helps them feel safer when visiting risky or new places. (94% of Gen Z Are in Favor of Location Tracking)

But why, you ask? First off, safety is a big one. Think about a scenario where parents can sigh relief knowing their kid is just a location ping away. It's like a digital version of saying, "I'm home safe, Mom!".

Then there are the convenience factors:

  • Need to find your friend in a crowded festival? Location-sharing.
  • Are you trying to coordinate a rendezvous at the local coffee joint? Location-sharing. 

But it's not all about utility. Location-sharing has also turned into a social affair. These apps serve as a digital lifeline, connecting friends in a way that transcends text messages and snaps. It declares, "I'm right here with you, even if we're miles apart."

And let's not forget about digital intimacy. Giving someone access to your real-time location is like peeling back a layer of the digital curtain and letting them know where you are. It's a whole new level of connection that emojis and GIFs can't quite capture.

Now, what about these enchanting apps that have become Gen Z's digital buddies? Well, think of them as Swiss Army knives for socializing. They let you share your location and help you discover nearby gems, plan meetups, and even keep tabs on your pals without feeling like a digital stalker.

They didn't just embrace location-sharing; they practically moulded it into a must-have feature of their digital lives. It's a tool for safety, a beacon of convenience, a bridge for social connection, and a portal to digital intimacy. So, the next time you're wondering where your friend is, just remember, there's probably an app for that – and they're likely already using it!

How Location-Sharing Affects Gen Z's Behavior and Well-Being

How Is It a Boon

  • Increased Security: Location-sharing can be a superhero cape for your teen's safety. Knowing where they are in real-time provides a sense of security for you and them. In emergencies or unexpected situations, it becomes a lifeline.
  • Accountability & Self-Regulation: With great power comes great responsibility. Location-sharing encourages a sense of accountability among Gen Z. They're more likely to make responsible choices, knowing their whereabouts are known.
  • Freedom & Independence: Location-sharing can be a trust-building tool, allowing your teen to spread their wings a bit more. It fosters a healthy sense of freedom, giving them the space to explore and grow while keeping you in the loop.

The Downside

  • Invasion of Privacy: It's a delicate balance. While location-sharing enhances safety, it can also be a slippery slope into privacy invasion. Teens need their space, and constant tracking might lead to feelings of suffocation.
  • Trust Issues & Autonomy: Trust is a two-way street. Relying too heavily on location-sharing may signal a lack of trust in your teen. It's crucial to find a middle ground where autonomy is respected.
  • Peer Pressure & Cyberbullying: The digital world has its dark corners. Over-sharing location details can expose your teen to peer pressure or, worse, cyberbullying. It's essential to educate them about the potential risks.

How Can Parents Encourage Gen-Z To Use Location-Sharing Responsibly

  • Open Communication: Keep the lines of communication wide open. Discuss the reasons for location-sharing and the importance of trust. Understanding each other's perspectives is vital.
  • Set Boundaries: Establish clear boundaries together. Mutual agreement ensures your teen doesn't feel like they're living under a microscope.
  • Encourage Responsible Sharing: Teach your teen about responsible sharing. Remind them to share locations only with trusted friends and avoid broadcasting their every move to the entire digital universe.
  • Stay Informed: Be aware of the apps your child uses for location-sharing. Stay informed about privacy settings and encourage them to review and update them regularly.
  • Be a Digital Role Model: Practice what you preach. Demonstrate responsible location-sharing habits. Show them the importance of balancing connectivity with personal space.

How Parents Can Manage and Monitor Gen Z's Location-Sharing 

You could wonder how you will be able to balance independence and safety for your kid. We get it – you want your Gen Z to spread their wings, but you also want to ensure they're safe. Finding that sweet spot between fostering independence and keeping a watchful eye is a real juggling act. Trust is the glue that holds your relationship together, right? But, it can be a challenge when it comes to location-sharing. How do you maintain trust without feeling like you're snooping?

The next question is, what could be done? The solution for your valid concerns, which respects your child's privacy, is Parental Control Apps.

Mobicip serves as an indispensable tool in the digital toolkit for managing and monitoring Gen Z's location-sharing.

Mobicip Family Locator

Now, what and how could you achieve using Mobicip? We offer a range of features designed to enhance parental oversight while fostering a safe and secure online environment for adolescents, such as:

  • Real-time Location Tracking: Parents can stay informed about their child's whereabouts. The precise and up-to-date location data ensures an added layer of security, particularly in emergencies or when ensuring that your teen has reached their intended destination.
  • Geofencing Capabilities: Parents can define virtual boundaries, receiving alerts when their kid enters or exits these predefined zones. 
  • Customizable Location-Sharing Permissions: This flexibility allows for a tailored approach, ensuring parents can choose when and under what circumstances location information is shared.

Guidelines for Parenting Success:

  • Open a Dialogue Portal: The magic word? Communication! Make it a two-way street. Discuss the reasons behind location-sharing and listen to your young adult's perspective. It's a digital heart-to-heart.
  • Define the Map Rules: Set clear expectations. When is it okay to share their location? When is it time for a bit of digital privacy? Defining the map rules avoids confusion and frustration.
  • Team Up for Goals: Turn location-sharing into a collaborative effort. Set goals together, like reaching home by a certain time. It's a shared responsibility that fosters trust.
  • Rewards: Positive reinforcement can go a long way. Celebrate responsible behavior and address any slip-ups together.
  • Be Tech-Savvy Together: Embrace the tech journey side by side. Learn about the apps and features together. It's a bonding experience that ensures you're in the loop without invading their space.

How Location-Sharing Will Shape the Future of Gen Z and Society 

Future Trends in Location-Sharing 

  • Hyper-Personalization in Education: Just imagine, we could have customized learning experiences based on your teen's real-time location. As Gen Z moves through the world, their education adapts – be it historical field trips or language lessons in foreign lands. Location-sharing becomes the guide to an immersive learning journey.
  • Work Beyond the Office Walls: Say goodbye to the traditional 9-to-5 grind! With location-sharing, the future Gen Z adults will redefine the workplace. Imagine collaborative projects that dynamically adjust based on team members' locations. It's not just remote work; it's work that syncs with the rhythm of life.
  • Smart Travel: Tailored travel recommendations, real-time safety alerts, and interactive city guides
  • Entertainment Tailored to Your Locale: No more generic recommendations! Future entertainment will be location-aware. Movies, concerts, and events are curated based on where Gen Z is at the moment. It's like having a personal event planner who knows their exact coordinates.

Mobicip's Family Locator 

Mobicip offers the Family Locator features – the beacon for parents in the digital universe. With real-time location tracking, geofencing, and customizable sharing permissions, Mobicip empowers parents to stay in the loop while respecting their teen's growing need for independence. It's like having a digital guardian that understands the delicate dance between safety and freedom.

Visit How do I set up Locator features? | Support | Mobicip and follow the steps to set up the family locator features.

For further information, read our blog on Family Locator. Why a Family Locator is Essential for Your Peace of Mind? | Mobicip

Location-sharing isn't just a tool; it is a doorway to a future where safety and connectivity go hand in hand, not just a tool. As parents, embrace this technological marvel. Encourage open conversations with your Gen Z. Navigate the challenges together, set boundaries, and celebrate the opportunities.

Here's to a future where location-sharing isn't just a feature – it's a guiding light for our young adults to explore, learn, and thrive!


What is location-sharing, and how does it work?

Location-sharing lets you share your real-time location on your devices through GPS or similar systems. You can grant permission to an app, and real-time updates are sent to selected recipients through the Internet. Privacy controls enable you to manage when and with whom your location is shared, enhancing connection and safety. 

What are some of the benefits and risks of location-sharing for Gen Z?

Location-sharing offers Gen Z enhanced safety, streamlined social plans, and a sense of digital intimacy. This tool aids in emergencies and encourages self-regulation. But it comes with risks like privacy invasion, trust issues, cyberbullying, and data security concerns. Striking a balance is crucial for responsible use, enhancing connectivity while safeguarding personal well-being.

What are some of the popular location-sharing apps among Gen Z?

  1. Snapchat
  2. Instagram
  3. WhatsApp
  4. Google Maps
  5. Apple Find My
  6. Life360
  7. Meta Messenger

How can parents manage and monitor Gen Z's location-sharing?

Parents can manage and monitor Gen Z's location-sharing by using parental control apps like Mobicip, setting clear guidelines and expectations regarding when and with whom location is shared, and fostering open communication to address concerns and establish boundaries. Additionally, leveraging features within location-sharing apps for family safety, such as geofencing and real-time alerts, provides parents with tools to ensure their child's well-being while respecting privacy.

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