Apple and Samsung Grow to Represent 68 Percent of Smartphones Owned in the US, According to The NPD Group

Smartphone data consumption and use of music apps on the rise

PORT WASHINGTON, NEW YORK, JANUARY 16, 2014 – As more US consumers migrate to smartphones, they are increasingly opting for iPhones and Samsung Android phones. According to the Connected Intelligence Connected Home Report from 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.

Source: The NPD Group/Connected Intelligence Connected Home Report

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.

Top 5 Music Apps Used on Smart Phones (Q4 2013)
1 Pandora
2 iHeart Radio
3 Spotify
4 TuneIn Radio
5 Slacker Radio

Source: The NPD Group/Connected Intelligence, Smartphone Usage Report

“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.”


Smartphone Usage Report
Data is sourced from an on-device meter "SmartMeter" leveraging a three month rolling panel that provides the equivalent base of 4,500 smartphone users. The panel is weighted and representative of the Android and iPhone U.S. smartphone base. The data was collected between September and November 2013 and compared to trends from the same period in 2012.

Connected Home Report
More than 5,000 US consumers, age 18 and older were surveyed in the fourth quarter of 2013 for the Connected Home study; trended results are compared to the Q4 2012 survey.

About Connected Intelligence
Connected Intelligence provides competitive intelligence and insight on the rapidly evolving consumer’s connected environment. The service focuses on the three core components of the connected market: the device, the broadband access that provides the connectivity and the content that drives consumer behavior. These three pillars of the connected ecosystem are analyzed through a comprehensive review of what is available, adopted, and consumed by the customer, as well as reviewing how the market will evolve over time and what the various vendors can do to best position themselves in this evolving market. For more information: Follow Connected Intelligence on Twitter: @npdci.


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