Touchscreen Handsets Coming to Dominate Smartphone Segment

Among handsets segments in the US, smartphones are the healthiest; and within that category touchscreen devices are, to use a colloquial expression, "on fire." ComScore reported sales figures today in a press release. The metrics firm is breaking out touchscreen handsets as a category separate from "smartphones":

comScore, Inc., a leader in measuring the digital world, today released a study of touchscreen mobile phone adoption in the U.S., which showed a significant 159-percent growth rate during the past year to 23.8 million users in August 2009. The growth in touchscreen device adoption substantially outpaced the already strong 63-percent growth in U.S. adoption of smartphones.

Picture 26

Together smartphone and touchscreen handsets equal more than 57 million units. Using a base of 260 million mobile subscribers (less than the CTIA number of 277 million), comScore appears to be saying that the combined smartphone segment constitutes about 21% of the overall market. Either I'm reading this wrong or it represents a major revision of comScore's prior statement (in July, 2009) that smartphones were 12% of the market. 

 Picture 29

Source: comScore, July 2009

Among touchscreen phones the iPhone commands a dominant share in the US, according to the comScore data: 

Picture 27

And finally here's comScore's demographic breakdown of smartphone/touchscreen ownership by age group:

 Picture 28

While I don't believe the number has yet been reached, smartphone/touchscreen penetration is inching up toward 20%.