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Multiplying Mobile: How Multicultural Consumers are Leading Smartphone Adoption

1 minute read | March 2014

Smartphone ownership grew to 68 percent between November and January 2014, up 9 percent from the start of 2013. And among those who bought their mobile phone within the last three months, a whopping 84 percent chose smartphones for their new handsets.

Multicultural consumers have led the growth in smartphone penetration, as they’re adopting smartphones at a higher rate than the U.S. average. In fact, Asian Americans lead the U.S. in smartphones ownership, as nearly four out of five (78%) already use smartphones. Hispanics are ahead of the curve in adopting digital devices, including smartphones, as over three-quarters (77%) of Latinos in the U.S. use smartphones. And according to Nielsen’s Digital Consumer Report, about half of Hispanics said they plan to upgrade/replace their mobile handset in the next six months. African-Americans are also pioneers of smartphone technology, as 73 percent of Black consumers in the U.S. currently own smartphones.

As smartphone ownership continues to grow across most consumer segments, what mobile experience are they choosing? The majority of smartphone owners use handsets running Android OS (52%) in terms of U.S. market share. But Apple expanded its lead as the top smartphone manufacturer (42% of smartphone owners own an iPhone), while Samsung’s Android increased to 28 percent market share in the U.S., up 3 percentage points in the last six months since Q2 2013.

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