Nielsen: Young Adults and Teens Lead Smartphone Owner Growth

Nielsen: Young Adults and Teens Lead Smartphone Owner Growth

Nielsen took a look at the mobile market in the U.S. and released the results of their study this week. U.S. smartphone penetration continued to grow in July 2012, with 55.5% of all mobile subscribers now owning smartphones, compared to July 2011 when only 41% of mobile subscribers owned them.


Overall, young adults are leading the growth in smartphone ownership in the U.S., with 74 percent of 25-34 year olds now owning smartphones, up from 59 percent in July 2011. Interestingly, teenagers between 13 and 17 years old demonstrated the most dramatic increases in smartphone adoption, with the majority of American teens (58%) owning a smartphone, compared to roughly a third (36%) of teens saying they owned a smartphone just a year ago.

Nichole Henderson, an Nielsen analyst, said that American teens are the fastest adopting age group when it comes to smartphone adoption. “As teens increase in their share of smartphone owners, mobile carriers and manufacturers should consider how to market to this growing group.”

Android continues its lead in the smartphone marketplace, grabbing both a majority of smartphone owners and recent acquirers (those who purchased their handset in the last 3 months) owning a phone that runs the Android OS. Apple followed right behind with a 34% share of smartphone owners, and 33% of recent acquirers selecting an iOS handset. Blackberry came in with a mere 8% share of the market, and only 3% of recent acquirers.