Apple and Samsung Represent 68% of Smartphones Owned in the USA

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As more US consumers migrate to smartphones, they are increasingly opting for iPhones and Samsung Android phones. According to the NPD Group, over the past year, smartphone penetration increased from 52 percent in Q4 2012 to six in ten cell phone users in Q4 2013.

Apple and Samsung were the winners as more consumers migrated to their flagship devices. iPhone ownership increased from 35 percent in Q4 2012 to 42 percent in Q4 2013. Likewise, Samsung Android phones increased from 22 percent of smartphones owned in Q4 2012 to 26 percent in Q4 2013. In contrast, fewer smartphone owners reported having an HTC, Motorola, or Blackberry device in Q4 2013.

As smartphone penetration increased over the past year, so has consumers' data usage, which went from 5.5 GB per month in Q4 2012 to 6.6 GB per month in Q4 2013. While this increase in data usage came from a variety of activities, a key driver has been the adoption of streaming music services such as Pandora and iHeart Radio.

According to the Connected Intelligence Smartphone Usage Report, the percent of smartphone owners that use an app to stream music increased from 41 percent in Q4 2012 to 52 percent in Q4 2013.

The market for streaming music services is getting more competitive. While Pandora remains the most commonly used music app in Q4 2013, it is followed by iHeart Radio, Spotify, TuneIn Radio, and Slacker Radio, all of which experienced an increase in incidence of usage over the past year.

"Considering the increase in prominence of smartphone music apps, it's not surprising that hardware manufacturers such as Beats are leveraging partnerships with carriers, like AT&T to break into the streaming music market," said John Buffone, Executive Director, Industry Analyst, Connected Intelligence. "This allows AT&T to offer subscribers more of what they want in the way of innovative music apps and provides Beats a partner capable of driving trial in a market where consumers already have an affinity for the music services they use."

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Tags: USA 

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