The first statistic that might surprise the reader is that roughly one in three Americans is apparently using an iPhone. Using raw numbers and discounting for multiple phone ownerships, anyway. Data recently compiled by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners shows there are currently 101 million iPhones in use in the United States.
The current population of the United States is about 318 million, meaning that a little over 30% of Americans are iPhone users. Accounting for the fact that millions are underage and do not have cell phones, and millions more do not have smart phones although they have cell phones, the number becomes even more interesting.
By analyzing data on iPhone buyers, their new model selection, and their prior phones, and overlaying Apple iPhone sales data adjusted to the US market, CIRP estimates the number and model of iPhones in use each quarter. This installed base grew on average 8% per quarter for the past eight quarters. In the September 2015 quarter, the installed base grew 4%, compared to 6% in the September 2014 quarter.
Of the reported 101 million iPhones, more than half are iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, coming in at roughly 58 million. The model was released last September for a base price of $199 MSRP, a competitive price in an increasingly crowded smartphone market.
The data comes with another important caveat: people who own multiple phones, phones that are issued by businesses, and so forth. That is to say, someone might own as many as 5 phones for different purposes, all activated, and if one or more of them were an iPhone, this would count in the data. Therefore, it would be disingenuous to say that a third of Americans are exclusively iPhone users.
Statistics released last June by Google showed that there were more than 1 billion Android users on planet Earth, and that they were slower to upgrade. However, the reduced cost of more recent iPhone models has led to a steady increase over time, as seen here in CIRP’s chart.
Other smartphone configurations, including Blackberry, Windows Phone, and Firefox OS, collectively make up a very small percentage of the market overall. As more and more people come online, however, it’s tough to say what will happen. Android could continue its hegemony, or Apple could turn things around, or a new contender like Firefox OS could make significant gains in economically disadvantaged markets.
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