U.S. Smartphone Penetration Hits 64%, Young People Lead the Way


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The modern smartphone market is now six years old. As the technology improves, analysts are predicting that smartphone markets in the U.S. and Europe will soon reach saturation points, with emerging markets such as Brazil and China leading smartphone growth in the coming years. This week, Nielsen released new research providing some clear evidence for these assumptions.

The new Nielsen report shows that 64% of U.S. mobile phone owners own a smartphone. In addition, 80% of Americans who had recently bought a mobile phone (within the past three months) bought a smartphone.

Nielsen smartphone os graph

Nielsen also broke its data down by OS and demographics. Of those recent mobile purchasers, over 90% of them bought either an Android or iOS smartphone, with 61% choosing an Android device. Over half of U.S. smartphones now run Android, while 40% are still iPhones.

It also seems from the report that age is a large factor in smartphone adoption. Half of the Americans still using feature phones are over the age of 55. Twenty-somethings are the leading smartphone users in the U.S., with a full 81% of Americans aged 25 to 34 using the devices. Teens aren't far behind, with almost 70% of those aged 13 to 17 already using a smartphone.

(Image courtesy T-Mobile; Illustration courtesy Nielsen)