Nielsen: Half of Americans 55 and older own smartphones

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By Brandy Shaul

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Smartphone adoption in the US has climbed to over 70 percent, according to new data from Nielsen. That means seven out of every 10 Americans own a smartphone, with a majority of smartphone-using Americans age 55+ now belonging to that group. As of Q1 2014, 51 percent of adults over the age of 55, who are also mobile subscribers, own a smartphone, a ten percent increase from Q1 2013.

When Americans buy new cell phones, 85 percent choose smartphones, from Android and iOS devices to Blackberries and Windows Phones. The majority (52 percent) of smartphones in the US run Android, with more than half of those being manufactured by Samsung, at 29 percent. Apple continues to be the largest individual smartphone manufacturer, with a 42 percent share of the US market.

Nokia’s market share has doubled over the last year, putting it in line with Blackberry at a two percent share, while LG and Motorola sit immediately behind Apple and Samsung, with seven percent and 6.8 percent each, respectively. Finally, Windows Phones now make up three percent of the total smartphones in the US.

Samsung isn’t only experiencing success in the US, as its new Galaxy S5 made up 0.7 percent of all Android smartphones worldwide within its first week on the market, according to data from mobile app analytics company Localytics. That’s a figure in line with the launch of the iPhone 5S last year, which accounted for 1.1 percent of all iPhones after its first week of release.

Nielsen’s full report is available on the company’s website.

Editor’s Note: Nielsen has clarified its data, which could have been misinterpreted. We’ve made updates in italics to highlight this change.