As we welcome 2019, the world seems anything but prepared for what is coming next. We will welcome 2019 with no way to predict what we will see over the next 52 weeks. 2018 showed us some bizarre times, and we’re sure 2019 will be filled with even weirder ones.
One thing we can be sure of, however, is what we face to lose. Trends continue to shift away from conventional norms and into unknown territory. We’ve outlined some of the things we might be saying goodbye to in the next year. Strap in for a healthy dose of nostalgia…
The Battle Of The Straws is well and truly in full force. In 2018, we saw a strange culture war take form in those who wanted to ban the billions of plastic straws vs. those who felt it was unnecessary virtue-signaling. The US state of California will phase out plastic straws and private companies like Starbucks have also pledged to reduce their use. But why? Well, young people are now spending more money eating out than cooking at home, resulting in 300 million metric tonnes of plastic waste per year. Say goodbye to your plastic!
You’ll be hard pressed to find anyone under the age of 35 who relies on a landline at home. Even office spaces are going without them as they get replaced by smartphones and chat apps. It makes sense that phone companies are scrambling on how to make them relevant – most people just don’t bother with them today. Look out for fewer people relying on landlines as the year goes on. When was the last time you used one?
Folding maps briefly evolved into travel books for a short period before transporting into our smartphones. Young people won’t be rushing to pick up any folding maps in the near future due to their reliance on technology. Let’s be honest: GPS is a lot more convenient and accessible, and can even offer you live traffic updates! Sorry folks, but no one is going to miss these large wastes of space. Just look at your latest phone update and see for yourself!
Apple’s iPod series was huge in the early 2000s, revolutionizing how people carried and listened to music. When the iPhone was introduced in 2007, people now had a combined device that merged the convenience of iPods and telephones. Over the next 10 years, smartphones would evolve into devices that could store thousands of songs. In fact, there’s nothing an iPod can do that an iPhone can’t, so what’s the point in having both? Expect 2019 to see a massive drop in iPod sales. Apple has already retired some of their models and
When Apple removed the disc drive from their computers, there was nationwide outrage. Those of us who had spent 15 years collecting hundreds of DVDs felt personally attacked – how would we watch our films? It turns out, recent years has successfully seen a shift to digital streaming and downloads, making DVDs almost obsolete. And with BluRay still going strong for home cinema services, what do we expect for the poor DVD? We can guess they’ll sit collecting dust alongside their ancestor, the VHS.
This is sadly expected to see its demise if not by 2019, then a few years from now. Young people just aren’t putting as much effort into handwriting than previous generations. Today, millennials are proficient in typing, tapping, and choosing the perfect emoji – just not writing long-form content by hand. We can expect to see cursive handwriting fit comfortably into a time in history. Thankfully, this next slide has some great news about what we will be saying goodbye to next year.
Ok, so the world won’t suddenly see a drop in cigarettes next year, but countless studies are showing we are certainly on our way. In only two generations, the whole perception of smokers has been successfully changed into something dirty, unhealthy, and unwise. More young people are aware of the health and cost risks associated with smoking cigarettes and are staying away from the little sticks of poison. For now, millennials are enjoying replacements such as vapes and Juul pipes – although we can expect this to reduce, too.
Social media crept into our lives over a few years when no one was really paying attention. 2018 shed a light on some of the questionable acts that were taken by large tech companies who collected our data without explicit permission. If you add that to young people’s desire to be seen and broadcast, it’s safe to say we will be saying goodbye to our privacy in 2019. Next year will see the repercussions of our actions and how we can address some of these issues going forward.
To Go Cups
Following the same line as plastic straws, politicians and private institutions have started rewarding customers who save their takeaway cups or who reuse cups. You can already buy a solid cup at existing stores that encourage frequent coffeeshop users to keep a cup and save on plastic. 2019 can expect to see more people and places taking on this lifestyle change as people become more aware of the environmental drawbacks. This next item could shatter billions off the world economy…
The Hotel Industry
Young people have quickly traded hotel stays for Airbnb visits. With lower costs and fewer amenities, millennials have fundamentally altered the ways in which cities and large towns operate. According to Forbes: “the 10 cities with the largest Airbnb market share in the US, the entry of Airbnb resulted in 1.3 percent fewer hotel nights booked and a 1.5 percent loss in hotel revenue.” Expect to see more shifts in how people are choosing to travel and watch the hotel industry scramble to find an audience.
9-5 jobs are so passe. Nowadays, companies attract young and educated talent with gadgets and perks that never existed just a few years ago. Today, offices are more flexible with office hours and contact time. In a world where more people can work remotely and we never leave our devices, the 9-5 format will see a decrease. Companies need to adjust their
Ask any young person when they plan on buying a house and they will start laughing until they burst into tears. Due to rising costs in education and crippling debt, people are waiting longer to settle down and start families. This won’t just affect the housing industry – when young people choose to rent their homes, they will also place less emphasis on investing in home-improvement stores like Home Depot. As Forbes notes, “Millennials are redefining the American family.”
This is a strange one that doesn’t imply what you think it does. At first, you might think that young people aren’t investing in napkins for some environmentally-pious reason. The truth is both more simple and more complicated than that. According to The Washington Post: “paper towels are more functional than napkins and can be used for more purposes. And the Post noted that millennials are more likely to eat meals out of the home, contributing to the decline.” Say goodbye to the napkin industry in 2019!
Not only has The Oscars faced a steady decline in viewership in recent years, but now its own Hollywood talent is opting to stay away from the ceremony. The Hollywood Reporter recently described the Oscar Host as ‘the least-wanted job in Hollywood’ due to the difficult position it has put itself in. Hosts have to be politically relevant but agreeable; funny but not insensitive. Kevin Hart recently withdrew from the gig after nine-year-old tweets of his edgy material resurfaced. With two months to go, the Academy has yet to find a host to present the declining show.
2019 faces a culture battle that seems determined to promote the voices of some while suppressing the voices of others. The thin line of ‘free speech’ and ‘hate speech’ on college campuses is being exploited to protect those who demand safe spaces. Conservative voices are being silenced on social media and many people are demanding that everyone sing the same tune or risk getting fired/boycotted/attacked. Next year will challenge these rights in full force as we see how free speech will either be defended or defeated.
Mark Zuckerburg has monumentally failed in his New Year’s resolution to ‘fix Facebook’ following a controversial 2016 and 2017. In 2018 alone, the tech company saw its first usership decline in its history, a Cambridge Analytica scandal, it was accused of Holocaust Denial, disclosed a multi-million hack, and saw three executives resign. The last year saw Facebook enter dirty waters that some say it might not be able to recover from. Alternatives are already being adopted and Facebook could see its users unfriend themselves from the service.
Young people aren’t eating in chains as much as previous generations, resulting in massive losses for companies like Applebee’s and Ruby Tuesdays. According to Sally Smith, Buffalo Wild Wings’ CEO: “Millennial consumers are more attracted than their elders to cooking at home, ordering delivery from restaurants, and eating quickly, in fast-casual or quick-serve restaurants.” In August, Applebees announced it was closing 135 restaurants. Expect 2019 to see the decline in more chains as food and eating habits continue to change.
We all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day – unfortunately, young people simply consider it Fake News. Shockingly, 40% of millennials describe cereal as an inconvenient breakfast choice because they have to clean it up each time. Today, more people are opting to eat a readymade meal on the go instead. This has resulted in a 5% drop in sales between 2009 and 2014. It might not go bust in the next year, but it appears that cereal is on its way out.
Young people are not getting into the swing of golf, resulting in a decline across the industry. The biggest problem faced by golfers around the world is that its aging generation is retiring from the sport with fewer people picking it up. Today, golf is seen as an elite and expensive sport that takes up too much time – a whole four hours! Millennials would rather spend their time on quicker and more accessible sports, like Pokemon GO or yoga at home.
Just because young people aren’t buying bars of soap anymore, it doesn’t mean 2019 will be any smellier than 2018. According to Mintel, they saw sales in bars of soap drop while the rest of the shower-and-bath category grew more popular, such as gels from bottles. According to a press release, they deduced: “Almost half (48%) of all US consumers believe bar soaps are covered in germs after use, a feeling that is particularly strong among consumers aged 18-24 (60%), as opposed to just 31% of older consumers aged 65-plus.”