Mobile Media Nearing the Mainstream: 38% of US Homes Now Have an Internet-/App-Capable Mobile Device

50% growth in smartphone ownership helped drive increase – new Knowledge Networks study

NEW YORK – On-the-go use of the Internet and apps is approaching mainstream status, according to new research from Knowledge Networks. The study shows that 38% of U.S. homes – roughly 45 million – now have at least one Internet- or app-capable mobile device, such as a smartphone, tablet, or iPod® Touch. The proportion grew 5 percentage points in one year, which equals an increase of over 5 million homes.

This technology puts the world of media – video, audio, gaming, and text-based – in consumers’ pockets, almost everywhere they go; its adoption is therefore providing a host of new opportunities for brand interactions.

During the same 2010 to 2011 timeframe, smartphone ownership grew by about 50% at the household level, jumping from 25% to 38%; and tablets can now be found in 6% of U.S. homes, compared to essentially none (< 1%) a year ago.

Most notable to marketers and media stakeholders, these mobile devices are now prevalent in the homes of key media audience groups, such as:

– household member age 18 to 49 (54%)
– children under 18 (53%), and
– household income of $50,000 or more (52%)

The new findings come from the just-released 2011 Ownership and Trend Report, part of Knowledge Networks’ The Home Technology Monitor™ research series – the gold standard in media technology measurement. Now in its 31st year, KN’s report tracks ownership of hundreds of media-related devices and services, from wireless Internet access to DVRs to videogame consoles.

“As smartphones become the standard and tablets continue to grow, understanding distributed media becomes more and more important to media sellers and buyers alike,” says David Tice, Vice President and Group Account Director, Knowledge Networks. “Traditional media like TV, Internet, radio, and print will need to take many forms to deliver content in the format best suited for the consumer at the time he or she wants to consume it.”

Knowledge Networks is passionate about research in marketing, media, health and social policy – collaborating closely with client teams throughout the research process, while applying rigor in everything we do. We specialize in innovative online research that consistently gives leaders in business, government, and academia the confidence to make important decisions.

KN delivers affordable, statistically valid online research through KnowledgePanel and leverages a variety of other assets, such as world class advanced analytics, an industry-leading physician panel, an innovative platform for measuring online ad effectiveness, and a research-ready behavioral database of frequent supermarket and drug store shoppers.