The Pew Internet & American Life Project recently reported on the proliferation of mobile phone usage in its first-ever standalone survey on this subject. The article, written by Senior Research Specialist, Aaron Smith, lays out some interesting facts about smartphone usage in the United States. Here are some facts and figures the piece provides:

  • 83 percent of U.S. adults have a cell phone of some kind.
  • 42 percent of those adults own a smartphone.
  • That means that overall, 35 percent of Americans own smartphones.
  • There is high adoption of smartphones within the following demographics and communities – the wealthy, the educated, non-whites, and those under the age of 45.
  • 87 percent of smartphone owners use their devices to access the Internet or email, with 68 percent of them saying they do so on a daily basis.

If we combine the fact that the majority of U.S. adults own cell phones with the notion that smartphones are becoming increasingly accessible to the general public, then it is only a matter of time before the former becomes obsolete. In fact, according to Nielsen, smartphones are already outselling their “dumber” counterparts. The company’s May survey indicated that 55 percent of customers who bought a new handset in the past three months reported buying a smartphone instead of a feature phone, which was up from 34 percent  one year ago.

A recent Nielsen study said that 55 percent of those who purchased a new handset in the past three months reported buying a smartphone.

Given these new numbers and what they represent, the mobile strategy game has changed (seemingly overnight). Organizations that are planning to implement a campaign or organize online should definitely take this research seriously because having a mobile strategy is no longer a thing of the future – it’s a thing of right now.