August 18, 2016 01:35 PM

Laura Marano is only 20 years old – though that’s not what her flip phone might tell you!

The singer and actress, who rose to fame on Disney’s hit show Austin & Ally and is currently vying for the “Song of Summer” title with her hit-single “Boombox,” sports technology that would normally be associated with someone much older than her. But she swears the move isn’t because she’s a square.

“It’s not a burner phone,” she protests to PEOPLE Now’s Aaron Eisenberg on the heels of her performance Thursday at the PEOPLE Now Concert Series Presented by Toyota Music.

“In our [age of] social media and email, you can’t get away from work,” she explains. “Sometimes I just need to take a break and not have anything next to me!”

Of course Marano, who has over 5.1 million Instagram followers, has a smartphone like most of her contemporaries. But she trades it in for her flip phone when she needs some R&R.

“You still need your phone sometimes when emergencies happen,” she says, of the swap. “So I will let everyone know, ‘Listen, I’m going to be on my phone. You call me or text me if you need anything’ – because I can text on this – ‘But besides that, I’m done with tonight.’ ”

Laura Marano
Courtesy Big Machine Records

With a love for flip phones, it’s no wonder the songstress has a track named after another bit of outdated technology: the boombox. But the song has become a smash hit on the pop charts – with a video starring comedian Ken Jeong.

“His daughter goes to my mom’s acting class,” Marano says, of the connection. “He was amazing. He took it so seriously and so awesomely.”

Watch Marano perform “Boombox” and more of her tunes at the PEOPLE Now Concert Series Presented by Toyota Music – streaming live on and other Time Inc. digital platforms at 4 p.m. ET Thursday.

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