Small Business News

Apple Commands U.S. Smartphone Market

Smartphones now make up over half of mobile phone sales worldwide and no two companies have benefitted more than Apple and Samsung. While Apple has continued to dominate the premium smartphone market, Samsung is now out-shipping every other smartphone manufacturer with its wide variety of smartphones at all sizes and prices.

In Apple’s home territory the story is a bit different. A new NPD Group report out today shows that Apple is still dominating U.S. smartphone marketshare. In the U.S., 42% of smartphone owners during the fourth quarter of 2013 were using an iPhone, up from 35% during the fourth quarter of 2012.

Samsung also saw a large increase in marketshare thanks to its lineup of Galaxy smartphones. The Korean company’s U.S. smartphone marketshare increased to 26% during the fourth quarter 2013, up from 22% during the fourth quarter 2012.

Overall smartphone penetration in the U.S. also increased last year. During the fourth quarter smartphone penetration was estimated to be at 60% in the U.S., up from 52% at the end of 2012.

The new NPD report also shows that U.S. smartphone users are using more data than ever, measured at 6.6GB per month during the fourth quarter of 2013.

The increased data usage is largely coming from streaming music services. NPD estimates that around 52% of smartphone owners now use at least one app to stream music to their device. The most popular three apps for music streaming in the U.S. are Pandora, iHeart Radio, and Spotify, in that order. That list could change slightly next year if Beats’ new Beats Music streaming music service is a success.

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