updated 01:03 pm EST, Thu January 16, 2014
Samsung advances to 26 percent
US iPhone ownership leapt to 42 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, up from 35 percent a year ago, according to new NPD figures. Samsung phones also advanced, but from 22 percent to roughly 26 percent. LG was the only other major manufacturer to see a gain, inching ahead slightly to 8 percent. Motorola and HTC both fell under the 10 percent mark, and BlackBerry ownership shrank even further to 2 percent.
NPD also notes that smartphones are continuously becoming more ubiquitous, now in the hands of six out of 10 American cellphone owners. During Q4 2012, 52 percent of those surveyed had smartphones. Data consumption is also growing, as owners are now using an average of 6.6GB per month, up from 5.5GB. NPD attributes this to the popularity of streaming music services, namely Pandora, iHeart Radio, and Spotify, which took the top three spots. Apple's iTunes Radio isn't mentioned, despite it launching with iOS 7 last September.
The growth in iPhone adoption, though, is linked by NPD to the release of the iPhone 5s and 5c in the same month. It's unknown to what extent the 5c helped, but the majority of current iPhone sales are generally believed to be 5s units.