...and other interesting smartphone statistics.
AdMod's latest Mobile Metrics Report, which revealed that 73% of Android users are male. Meanwhile, on the iPhone, iPod Touch and Palm platforms, the ratio of male-to-female owners was more even. However, males were still in the majority even on those devices, accounting for 54% to 58% of the users.When compared with some of the other smartphones on the market, owners of phones running Google's Android mobile operating system are predominantly male. This finding comes from analytics firm
This was only one of the findings from the firm's January report, which also examined ages of smartphone owners, propensity to download and pay for mobile applications and interest in purchasing the upcoming Apple iPad.
Kids Love the iPod Touch and the Free Apps
Most of the statistics AdMob revealed weren't all that shocking. For example, iPhone owners are more likely to purchase an iPad than owners of other smartphones. And while 16% said they intend to buy Apple's new slate computer when it arrives in March, only 11% of Palm webOS users and 6% of Android owners said the same. This finding can easily be attributed to the so-called "fanboy" syndrome among Apple hardware owners - that is, the tendency of those who own Apple products to want to buy more Apple products. Sometimes described as fanaticism, it's really just a testament to the popularity of the brand and its repeat customer business.
Another interesting, but still explainable, statistic involves the buying habits of iPod Touch and iPhone owners. Those who own the less-expensive iPod Touch devices tend to download more free applications than those who own an iPhone. And they download a lot of apps, too. On average, iTouch owners download 12 apps per month - that's 37% more apps than iPhone and Android users. They also spend more time playing with their apps - 100 minutes per day, 25% more time than iPhone or Android users.
At first, those figures may have you scratching your head - after all, isn't the iPod Touch the exact same mobile operating system as the iPhone? And doesn't its Wi-Fi-only connectivity actually limit the functionality of a lot applications since so many require an Internet connection to work? The answer to both questions is yes. But the reason why the iPod users appear to be more active and engaged is explained in another section of the report. According to the demographics, they're much younger. 78% of iPod Touch users are under 25 (compared with 25% of iPhone users) and they're often students, too. These are the very sort of users who have time to play with a ton of apps. They're also, not surprisingly, the least likely to pay for them. iPod Touch owners download an average of 10.5 free apps per month and only 1.6 paid apps during that same time. iPhone owners, however, download 7.0 free apps per month and 1.8 paid ones.
Why are So Many Android Owners Male?
The only truly odd statistic to arise from this report is the gender variance among Android owners. With a 78%/22% male-to-female ratio, the question that comes to mind is why are so many owners male? There is a wide range of Android-powered smartphones for people to choose from, including everything from sleek-and-shiny HTC devices to keyboard-ready Droids from Motorola and Verizon. In other words, there's an Android handset out there for everyone.
Our only guess as to why the statistics are skewing male for Android may have something to do with the latest Droid marketing efforts. Commercials for Verizon's Droid send the message that the phones are the equivalent of having a "robot in your pocket," and the latest show a robot's finger quickly typing out searches on the phone's on-screen keyboard. While arguably, some females are sure to love robots, too (especially those interested in reading about smartphone statistics here!), a campaign that uses robots and reminds you of all the things the Droid does that the iPhone doesn't, is a not-too-subtle attempt to play to the male ego and that gender's stereotypical desire for constant one-upmanship among their peers. And that's not the worst of it, either. Another Droid ad, spotted by CNNMoney blogger Elmer DeWitt in December, targeted the male demographic in the "most testosterone-heavy TV commercial to date," he noted at the time.
The ad copy read:
Droid. Should a phone be pretty? Should it be a tiara-wearing digitally clueless beauty pageant queen? Or should it be fast? Racehorse duct-taped to a Scud missile fast. We say the latter. So we built the phone that does. Does rip through the Web like a circular saw through a ripe banana. Is it a precious porcelain figurine of a phone? In truth? No. It's not a princess. It's a robot. A phone that trades hair-do for can-do.
So congratulations, marketers. It appears you have successfully attracted the males to your handset. But in ignoring the potential female users, you're doing smartphone owners a disservice. The Droid, and other Android-based phones too, are powerful, attractive and easy-to-use handsets that should have a broad appeal. It may be time to remind the women of that.