One-Third of U.S. High School Students Now Own an iPhone
Piper Jaffray ascribes the boom in iPhone use among students to new low-cost options from Apple. Apple and AT&T lowered the price of the iPhone 3GS to $49 back in January 2011, dropping it to free on-contract with the introduction of the iPhone 4S late last year. These low handset prices are attractive to high school students who may not have significant upfront cash to spend on the latest iPhone models.
In our most recent survey the percentage of teens that own an iPhone came in at 34%, up from 23% in the Fall and 17% last Spring. We believe the meaningful uptick in iPhone ownership among teens may be driven by the cheaper $49 iPhone 3GS (in some cases free). Interest in purchasing an iPhone in the next 6 months rose to 40% (another all-time high vs. our previous surveys). Purchase intent was at 38% in our last survey in the Fall.The 40% purchase intent rate for the next six months is the same among current iPhone owners and those who do not yet own an iPhone.
On the tablet front, an identical 34% of students report owning some sort of tablet device, with 70% of those indicating that they have an iPad. 53% of those iPad owners also own an iPhone. Notably, the iPad's momentum may even be increasing, with 19% of students indicating that they plan to purchase a tablet within the next six months and 80% of them planning to purchase an iPad.
In our Spring 2012 survey, 34% of students owned a tablet computer (same percentage as iPhones), up from 29% in Fall 2011 and 22% last Spring. Of those tablet owners, 70% owned iPads, 19% owned Android tablets, and 11% owned Kindle Fires. 53% of iPad owners also owned an iPhone, demonstrating the halo effect of entry devices like the iPhone.As with the lower iPhone pricing, Piper Jaffray believes that the new $399 entry price for the iPad 2 is a significant draw for the student market, with a rumored smaller iPad device at an even lower price point leaving open the possibility of even greater attraction.