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Samsung irrelevant among U.S. teens, most own an iPhone

Samsung smartphones appear to be irrelevant among teenagers in the United States, with the vast majority of them owning an iPhone, and even more planning to go with Apple for their next handset.

New data gathered by Minneapolis-based Piper Sandler suggests the South Korean tech giant is missing out on hundreds of billions worth of annual sales. What’s more, Generation Z’s indifference with Samsung’s Android smartphones also has alarming implications for the company’s long-term operations in the U.S.

Why Samsung should care about U.S. teens

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, there were 41.7 million stateside adolescents in 2016, which amounts to just under 13% of the (legal) population. Even as that demographic is projected to stagnate over the next 30 years, Samsung still has reasons for concern seeing how this particular age group is a prime target for breeding lifetime customers. Combined with the fact the U.S. is the world’s largest market for premium smartphones, it’s easy to see how Samsung’s current failings could snowball into a greater issue down the line.

Not that things aren’t already looking bleak; the Stock With Teens survey reveals a whopping 85% of American teens currently own an iPhone and 88% of them intend for that to be their next smartphone purchase. In terms of direct revenue, that’s $830 billion in sales, the study estimates, falling back on previous data from Fung Global Retail & Technology. Ultimately, it appears Samsung will have to come up with something better than Fortnite skins if it hopes to improve its prospects with this key consumer demographic.

While all of that’s bad news for Samsung Electronics, the bright side is that the conglomerate as a whole is still positioned to make money from Apple’s domestic dominance given how Samsung Display has been a key iPhone supplier ever since the Cupertino-based firm switched to OLEDs in 2017.

Categories: Phone
Tags: USA

View Comments (52)

  • Being a US teen the #1 issue teens have with Samsung phone's is the emojis, my friends always point out "ew look at the android emojis" Samsung should really revamp them again and make them less cartoony.

    • As a teen, I really hate my generation. Mostly full of ignorant idiots who don’t pay attention to specs or what’s actually better, but instead what’s more expensive and trendy

      • Too relatable. Thankfully, online, I've had the pleasure of meeting some of the more intelligent people of my generation that don't just blindly follow trends and jump on bandwagons because everyone else is doing it. Most I've met irl do though. I could go on a whole rant about this but this is not the place for that.

  • I'm an s10+ user, I am currently a teenager in highschool right now, and I can say the number 1 reason kids go for iphones is the brand. Nothing else. Tbh, iphones are not even that bad idk why people keep on hating not picking all the little things android has that iphone doesn't, it's not about the features or anything like that for us. Generally having an iphone is just a little "cooler". Kids aren't going to change their minds so there's no point in trying to. Like a clothing brand that's a little more expensive but cooler rather than a cheaper brand thats considered lame.

  • I grew up on iOS. I was happy with what I had, but when I was introduced to Android it just felt like I was introduced to a whole new world of freedom. I have been a faithful member of an S10+ since July of 2019. I absolutely love it however they are both good in their own ways. I love Android at least 2X more than iOS and I sincerely love that Android gives more for the money. I am also in the 12th grade and completely understand why my teenage friends love Apple more. I go to a rich kid school and my friends are always amazed by what the Android's I rock bring to the table, and I love to stand out, but everyone at my school has iPhones and kids just want to fit in. That's the only reason why, plus that's the thing they are super familiar with.

  • Goes to show the uneducated teens of America. Samsung makes most components of the iphone any way. Features and bang for the buck, i will take a note 10 plus over anything i phones has currently which at this point is not much, and i phone technology seen today was seen on samsung phones years ago!

    • That is incorrect. Samsung does not make most components of an iPhone. The only part that is made by Samsung used in an iPhone is the OLED Screens which is also now being made by LG as well.

      • Samsung makes OLED, SoCs and Memory for the iPhone. Battery aside I really don't see what else is relevant inside a phone to disprove the claim that those three components make up most of the phone. Having said that, in Europe Samsung is attacked by Huawei, Xiaomi and OnePlus because Samsung is just too expensive for what they deliver (especially as our phones come with Exynos which drains the battery and worse cam than Snapdragon). So they're not much better than Apple.

  • I don't know why. Samsung is a better quality phone all the way around. IPhone is just a trend.

    • I agree that Samsung (and most Android devices for that matter) are better than the iphone, but I can't just put it down to a 13 year trend.

  • Whelp I'm an exception to this trend lol

    Still in my teens (almost an adult now) and I already have a samsung ecosystem

    If Samsung can do better software wise (esp. tablet app optimization from Google) on their tablets I would be samsung for lyfe

  • The only areas iPhone (Apple) has the edge on Samsung is the Airdrop feature and you don't have to be with the same carrier to video chat with someone; FaceTime with anyone that has an iPhone. I am with Verizon and I can only Video Chat with someone if they're with Verizon also. Mother in law is with AT&T we can't video chat unless we use a third party app. Come on Samsung we can do better.

  • Samsung is irrelevant because they have been duped. Iphone's are so over rated. Here is something I don't understand,if you forget or lose your password to your phone you have to hook up to a pc and then jump through a whole bunch of hoops to get back into your phone (dumb). No customization. Samsung phones have had features for year's that apple is just getting. To be fare Android for it right with rcs finally. Oh and another thing camera's no one can tell me iphone's camera's stack up to a s10 or Galaxy note,and when the s-pen comes out of the note it blow's iPhone out the water.

  • I am from the UK and it applies the same. All the people that I know own an iPhone. Most of these people have to pay monthly for the phone since they don't have much money to afford it. They mostly go around with cracked displays and don't replace the screen for several years. Fashion is everything and features don't really matter. If Samsung made it focused on people who want to know specs but in easy language it would make people chose the one that sounds more interesting then maybe highlighting different features in adverts