Smartphones account for half of all mobile phones in the U.S.

Summary:Over the past three months, more than two-thirds of those who bought a new handset chose a smartphone.

As of February 2012, almost half of all U.S. mobile subscribers now own a smartphone, according to research by Nielsen.

The actual figure for smartphone ownership is 49.7 percent, an increase of 38 percent sincelast year. Over the past three months, more than two-thirds of those who bought a new handset chose a smartphone.

As you might expect, Android is the market leader in terms of operating system, accounting for 48 percent, while iOS is at 32 percent.

This erosion of the dumbphone market really doesn't come as a surprise. The masses of hype surrounding the iPhone propelled the smartphone into people's minds. Now that there are more players in the game, there's more choice and more price points for buyers to choose from. Then there's the price-drop, especially when the handset is bought as part of a contract. Do your homework and you can pick up a smartphone for next to nothing (the price is buried in the monthly fee you pay). With deals like that, dumbphones really don't make much sense.

The biggest limiter to smartphone adoption is the cost of the data bundle.

The smartphone has essentially been the gateway drug that took us out of the PC era and put us firmly in the post-PC era. People are demanding that their handset does more than make and receive calls and text messages.

Image credit: Nielsen


Topics: Mobile OS, Apple, Hardware, Mobility, Smartphones


Adrian Kingsley-Hughes is an internationally published technology author who has devoted over a decade to helping users get the most from technology -- whether that be by learning to program, building a PC from a pile of parts, or helping them get the most from their new MP3 player or digital camera.Adrian has authored/co-authored technic... Full Bio

zdnet_core.socialButton.googleLabel Contact Disclosure

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Related Stories

The best of ZDNet, delivered

You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
Subscription failed.