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On average, U.S. iPhone users are slightly younger and much wealthier than Android counterparts,...

On average, U.S. iPhone users are slightly younger and much wealthier than Android counterparts, according to charts from Horace Dediu. ~40% of iPhone users have household income of at least $100K, compared with ~25% of Android users, while the % of Android users with household income of less than $25K is about twice as high as the % of iPhone users. Two possible takeaways: The iPhone's demographics will help it maintain its app monetization edge (which affects developer support), and the iPhone would likely grab more share if Apple cut unsubsidized prices and enabled cheaper plans. (Piper)
Comments (45)
  • 40% of Iphone users have 100K+ income, I don't know but I really have a hard time believing that statistic.
    12 Oct 2012, 07:19 PM Reply Like
  • HOUSEHOLD income. There's a huge difference.
    12 Oct 2012, 07:57 PM Reply Like
  • You are reading the chart wrong (or maybe it's just not a clear chart).


    Of the households who earn more than $100k, 40% own iPhones.
    12 Oct 2012, 08:19 PM Reply Like
  • Dennis, that does not appear to be what the chart is suggesting (although it would make more sense to me). If you look at the chart, each phone type appears to add up to 100%. So what this chart is really purporting to show is that among iPhone users, 40% fall into the >$100k category.


    This seemed surprising to me, but then I thought about the people I know. The vast majority of iPhone users I know are members of families (including children) whose household income is >$100k. So maybe what seemed surprising at first is kind of obvious.
    12 Oct 2012, 08:27 PM Reply Like
  • Here is the source of his data so you can get a feel for it.
    12 Oct 2012, 08:44 PM Reply Like
  • Yes, Dennis. Look again. Each category adds up to 100%.


    Gender = 100%, Age = 100%, Income = 100%. The breakdown is what percentage of iphone owners fall into each income category -- not what percentage of folks in that income category own iPhones.


    I agree it is confusing, but that is what the data is saying.
    12 Oct 2012, 10:34 PM Reply Like
  • Well I feel silly now. I should have paid more attention.
    12 Oct 2012, 11:58 PM Reply Like
  • I don't think the data was presented very clearly. It took me a while to convince myself I wasn't mistaken.
    13 Oct 2012, 01:35 AM Reply Like
  • I always hate data that is based on "Household Income". It's such a vague term. It could just as easily mean single people are more likely to own Android phones than married couples.


    In any case, the chart from Horace that excites me most (as an Apple investor) is this one showing Apple's growth accelerating faster than the market as a whole.
    13 Oct 2012, 02:17 AM Reply Like
  • My favorite is this one, showing cap-ex relationship to share price.

    13 Oct 2012, 02:51 AM Reply Like
  • That one is almost difficult to fathom. If his prediction pans out, the next six months will be insane. If you missed it, he has a full blog on that image here:
    13 Oct 2012, 03:23 AM Reply Like
  • iphone = overpriced, same too for all aapl products and the stock price


    gap btwn perception and reality is closing big time


    gonna get ugly for all the late comers who piled into it and refuse to believe it can go lower...and stay lower.


    take the next $25 rally as a gift and get out
    12 Oct 2012, 07:34 PM Reply Like
  • And invest in RIMM instead, right?
    13 Oct 2012, 12:59 PM Reply Like
  • how about some more FB? dang, would hate to see your returns
    13 Oct 2012, 01:03 PM Reply Like
  • Take two Facebook's and don't call.
    13 Oct 2012, 05:21 PM Reply Like
  • It's funny you say this, Eric Schmidt identified the four big players in the current economy. Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook. In his words "One billion users, you can do a lot with that".


    I know they didn't treat their IPO victims well, but Facebook is a player in the internet economy and it's foolish to write them off.
    13 Oct 2012, 05:36 PM Reply Like
  • Can you please explain why you believe the stock price is over priced? then maybe we can have a rational debate. Throwing out a comment with no substance is the equivalent of me saying you're an idiot without telling you why.
    15 Oct 2012, 12:48 PM Reply Like
  • 'sup?
    19 Oct 2012, 03:14 PM Reply Like
  • What's up?


    Well, the markets tanked because earnings have been proving soft. This has lots of folks running for the exits. Tech has people especially worried and some AAPL investors are either locking in gains or panicking. If Google and IBM and MSFT and INTC are doing poorly, the reasoning goes, AAPL must be in trouble too.


    And this belies a lack of understanding of many of the underlying reasons that these companies are doing poorly. But Apple is actually made stronger by some of the very forces that have led to declines for these companies. This will be made clear in short order, and there will be a rush to re-enter long positions in AAPL.


    That's 'sup. You?
    19 Oct 2012, 06:44 PM Reply Like
  • hiliarious
    20 Oct 2012, 05:14 AM Reply Like
  • Thank you for your thoughtful rebuttal. It really helps bring the issues into focus. At first I thought I may not have time to read the whole thing, but I'm glad I did.


    I look forward to continuing this enlightening discussion in the weeks and months ahead.
    20 Oct 2012, 01:06 PM Reply Like
  • dude, hedge your AAPL
    20 Oct 2012, 02:51 PM Reply Like
  • Of course iPhone users have a higher income - you NEED a higher income to afford one!
    12 Oct 2012, 07:49 PM Reply Like
  • Yes. The $0 iPhone 4 is so expensive.
    12 Oct 2012, 07:58 PM Reply Like
  • It's the cost of ownership - the two year contract that's expensive. My carrier for example, charges an extra 10/month which is $120/yr additional if you want texting.


    That's included with many phones offered by the competition.
    13 Oct 2012, 06:29 AM Reply Like
  • Which carrier charges more for the iPhone?
    13 Oct 2012, 06:37 AM Reply Like
  • I have ATT and texting is 10 more per month for the iphone
    13 Oct 2012, 06:42 AM Reply Like
  • Everyone I text has iPhones so my texts are free : )
    13 Oct 2012, 01:00 PM Reply Like
  • AT&T charges the same rates for iPhone as any other phone. Same exact rate as a Galaxy S3 or any other LTE phone.
    13 Oct 2012, 04:10 PM Reply Like
  • Have to jump on here and point out that if you shop for a data plan with ATT there is no iPhone premium added. It takes so little research to verify this.


    Maybe, if you showed that there are VERY limited options for pay as you go iPhone5 plans (one, I think) you could justify your iPhone premium, but those no-contract plans don't include other premium smart phones like the GSIII.


    As for the future, I think we're at the tip of the iceberg of shared data plans making a real difference and those include unlimited talk/text.
    15 Oct 2012, 08:55 AM Reply Like
  • My takeaway would be that AAPL's overall market is by definition smaller if it depends upon a higher income demographic.


    Eventually price will become an issue.
    12 Oct 2012, 08:02 PM Reply Like
  • Selling to a smaller market of people with more disposable income is a perfectly valid market strategy. On a global basis, almost everything sold in America falls into this category. We are only a fraction of the planet's total population, but we buy the most things. Selling to where the money is is actually very smart.
    12 Oct 2012, 08:30 PM Reply Like
  • Number of Android users is almost double that of iPhone.


    40% vs 25%? Yep, sounds about right to me considering Apple only sells flagship models vs Android's multi-pronged strategy.


    I don't see this news as a positive for Apple - far from it, in fact. What it means is that the older models (ip4/4s) don't sell well, inspite of being $99 or free on contract.


    Guess which segment of the market is growing under current economic situation.......?
    13 Oct 2012, 01:26 AM Reply Like
  • "Guess which segment of the market is growing under current economic situation.......?"


    By definition that segment of the market has less disposable income. You can make money selling low priced, low margin items to folks on a tight budget (just look at Walmart) but you need to sell a lot of stuff to do it. Higher margins require fewer sales to make decent money. This is why Apple has 75% of the smart phone profit. That is where the "positive for Apple" comes in.
    13 Oct 2012, 02:56 AM Reply Like
  • Agreed. BMW does just fine with that strategy
    15 Oct 2012, 12:51 PM Reply Like
  • thank you gene munster the broken record one man apple hype machine
    12 Oct 2012, 08:32 PM Reply Like
  • It's based upon survey data, meaning there is a sample size. It also relies upon the honesty of the respondents. Considering that most iPhones are bought on contract in the U.S. market, the up front price should not be an issue in comparison to other smartphones, or in comparison to monthly fees from carriers. Basically, if someone can afford the monthly smartphone plan fees, then they can afford an iPhone.
    12 Oct 2012, 08:54 PM Reply Like
  • "It also relies upon the honesty of the respondents."




    Since the iPhone, as we all have heard non-stop from Apple bulls, is now considered less a gadget and more of a "status symbol". The iPhone users would obviously be more concerned about "status" and keeping up with the Joneses than their android-buying counterparts and thus more inclined to lie about things like household income on an anonymous survey. ;)
    13 Oct 2012, 02:09 AM Reply Like
  • There is a lot of evidence that people who buy iPhone's use them far more than their Android counterparts get used. For example this web use survey which shows the iPhone 5 is generating more web traffic than the Galaxy S3. Here is another fresh study ( which shows that in spite of a huge market share advantage, Android users are less inclined to use their phones for mobile apps or surfing the web.


    The data seems to indicate exactly the opposite of what you suggest.
    Some more links if you are interested in the numbers:
    ( (
    13 Oct 2012, 05:19 AM Reply Like
  • NetMarketShare users their base of LiveStats customers. StatCounter Global Stats uses search engine data. The downside of the first is the limited user base, though that does contain 160 million users. The downside of the data on the second is that not everyone uses a search engine to get to a website. Somewhere between those two, and using a few other sources, we can spot some trends.



    What I like about StatCounter is that you can see the information easily and quickly for time and location changes. One thing that should be obvious is that trends in the United States do not match trends in other parts of the world. U.S. based investors seem to forget that there is a larger market. This is becoming even more important, in that the U.S. smartphone market appears to be saturated, which implies that devices will be bought mostly as replacements in the future, and that there are fewer new smartphone users entering the U.S. market.


    Many companies have made mistakes thinking that what works in one market area can be repeated in another. Savvy companies realize that products and advertising more uniquely tailored to a region or area can lead to better growth rates. If you want to see Apple grow more, then you need to look outside the U.S. to spot the trends.


    We are approaching a time when "market share" (new device sales) will become slightly less important, and "user base" (number of active users on a platform, even with older devices) will gain in emphasis. Some mass media articles already touch upon user base. The importance is one of monetizing the user base. Beyond simply selling a device, recurring revenues from a large user base can be highly profitable. Apple has iTunes and apps, though I would expect user data to allow monetizing iAD in the near future. Google monetizes search and browsing data from Android. Microsoft don't appear to have much of a strategy yet, though we may know more soon. Research In Motion has a BlackBerry user base that allows them recurring revenues through carriers for every device still in use. User base is mostly about monetizing software and accessory items, which are far more profitable than selling a new handset at regular time frame intervals.
    13 Oct 2012, 03:59 PM Reply Like
  • Yeah... none of that has anything to do with my point.


    There are 2+ times more Android phones sold than iPhones yet the volume of iPhone web traffic exceeds Android web traffic (or approaches it depending on which stats you decide to use). It's pretty solid evidence that the iPhone is used more than Android not a "Status Symbol" as Shangjeen suggest.


    As for stat accuracy, they all have biases which is why I linked wikipedia's which gives a nice summary of four major stat counters (including global statistics and the stat company you linked).
    13 Oct 2012, 04:27 PM Reply Like
  • It depends upon which set of data you view, and the time period. There are lies, damn lies, and statistics. We can claim more iPhone users access the internet, or we can claim that more Android users are doing other things on their devices.



    How do you explain Opera being the number one worldwide mobile browser? Which mobile operating systems have a choice of using the Opera browser? Do you know the Series 40 operating system, and why it recently increased in web usage?


    The status symbol idea use to be important. The old joke was that if you wanted to know if someone had an iPhone, just wait and they will tell you. A friend of mine recently got an iPhone 5, and I told him that will be good for about one week of conversation. He's also the one who showed me first hand the melting buildings and falling bridges in the maps. I disagree with the status symbol idea now, because so many people out in public already have an iPhone; there is no longer anything special about having an iPhone; very few people now flaunt having an iPhone, as compared to a year or two ago. In fact, doing that now would make you look like a tool, because no one cares anymore who has an iPhone or who does not.


    Apple is not directly monetizing the action of users accessing the internet on iPhones, unless they are compiling data like Google, then selling that data for usage in advertising. Quite likely that is the next direction, as Apple load more of their own apps and content onto their devices. There are still several hardware changes they could do in iPhone 6, but I think Apple knows the real path to future revenues is monetizing the user base.
    13 Oct 2012, 04:59 PM Reply Like
  • To have a household income of at least $100K merely requires a slight increase over the average of the latest BLS average of $23.58/hr which is approximately $47000/yr or $94000 for a household where two working people earn the average wage.


    I'm surprised the percentage for iPhone owners isn't much higher than what's reported here.

    13 Oct 2012, 06:39 AM Reply Like
  • Why is anyone surprised by this, just look at the App Store versus Google Play numbers. An article I read a couple of months ago stated that the top 200 apps on the App Store were generating $5.4 million a day in revenue. On Google Play, the number is $600k; With that disparity, it's no wonder developers are often still developing apps for IOS first before Android. Not to mention the fragmented nature of the Android market where only a small minority are even running the latest OS version, which means developers have to restrict themselves to creating apps for the lowest common denominator OS version.


    Until these change, IOS and Apple will firmly be in the lead. And for the record, I have an IPad and Samsung Galaxy, so I see value in both systems.
    13 Oct 2012, 09:38 AM Reply Like
  • This is why I am cautious on Intel and AMD, despite seeing value.
    The consumer is irrational, preferring syle over performance. Netbooks beat the ipad, but we all buy ipads. Apple needs no research to stay on top. Intel needs to spend $30billion. Intel forgot consumers are irrational.
    13 Oct 2012, 02:33 PM Reply Like
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