Communicus Study Findings Show Demand for Mobile Devices Sky-High for Children

One-third of U.S. Pre-K Kids Have Own Tablet; Major Potential for Non-Apple Brands to Gain Market Share in Devices

TUCSON, Ariz. TUCSON, ARIZ--()--Communicus, the research-based advertising consultancy with 25 years of experience in measuring and diagnosing billions of dollars in placed advertising, has revealed the findings of their research into how parents and children engage with and purchase mobile devices.

The Mobile Device Path to Purchase: Parents & Children includes these key findings from Communicus’ research:

  • Two-thirds of American pre-kindergarten age children use tablet devices, and one-third own their own tablet. Among pre-K youth who don’t have their own tablet, 50% ask their parents to buy them one.
  • 18% of pre-K children ask their parents for their own smartphone and 34% ask for their own tablet.
  • Demand for devices from children is high, both for first devices and upgrades. Among kids who already have a cellular phone, 78% ask their parents for a new one. An exception is in tablets, where demand declines among teens – supporting recent statements from Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly and others that tablet sales are “crashing.”
  • Friends, family, and acquaintances are parents’ primary resources when seeking mobile device recommendations, followed by user reviews and then brands. The only group that relies significantly on social media for information gathering on devices is teens.

“Youth demand for mobile devices creates an interesting dynamic for electronics brand advertisers,” said Ms. Jeri Smith, President & CEO, Communicus, Inc. “Addressing the concerns and needs of both parents and children, while also achieving the ‘cool factor,’ can be a challenge – especially for brands other than Apple. Samsung has succeeded in cracking the adult market, but hasn’t been able to become a desired brand for younger consumers. This creates remarkable opportunity for non-Apple brands to command greater market share.”

More than half of all kids, tweens and teens specifically ask for Apple iPhones, with pre-K children not far behind as 43% ask for iPhones. Samsung only attracts 25% of kids’ smartphone requests, with numbers dwindling to 9% for pre-K youth.

Analysis to be unveiled in fall 2014 from Communicus’ research will include the role of advertising in the demand cycle, focusing on its influence on parents’ and kids’ purchasing and purchasing intent. This will examine the dynamics of competitive advertising as Apple and non-Apple brands compete in this fiercely contested market.

Between July 7 and July 17, 2014, Communicus interviewed over 2,000 adults and nearly 1,400 children ages 6-17. Children were grouped as pre-K (ages 2-5), kids (ages 6-9), tweens (ages 10-12), and teens (ages 13-17). More data and insights from The Mobile Device Path to Purchase: Parents & Children can be found at

About Communicus, Inc.

Communicus is a research-based advertising consultancy specializing in integrated campaign measurement solutions that isolate the impact of a brand’s advertising. For over 50 years, Communicus has employed a unique and unparalleled research method to track consumer response to advertising campaigns and individual campaign elements including both traditional advertising and newer, non-traditional online and offline communications venues. Partnering with Fortune 100 brand advertisers like ConAgra Foods, MillerCoors, New York Life, Wrigley, and AT&T, Communicus provides research and consultation enabling brands to improve the effectiveness of campaigns. Communicus helps clients fully understand how to build more successful advertising and IMC campaigns, maximizing advertising’s impact on brand perceptions and behavior. To learn more about the Communicus difference, visit


For Communicus
Ann Keeling or Jackie Danicki, 513-381-3248

Release Summary

One-third of US pre-K kids own their own tablet device; Apple is kids' favorite brand. Research-based advertising consultancy Communicus reveals the opportunity for Samsung and other device brands


For Communicus
Ann Keeling or Jackie Danicki, 513-381-3248