US Mobile Phone Adoption Continues to Climb

Single-phone households are currently a declining minority, and households with four or more mobile phones have grown at a rate of 57 percent in the past year.

“The wireless market continues to defy predictions that it is approaching its saturation point,” says Forrester Research Principal Analyst Charles S. Golvin. “But while consumers keep buying, they are far from ecstatic with their mobile providers. Despite carriers’ focus on improving their networks and customer service, customer satisfaction has declined over the past three years and hovers around 50 percent in key categories like customer service and call dependability.”

The “US Mobile Growth Defies Conventional Wisdom” report draws from Forrester’s annual Consumer Technographics(R) North American Benchmark Study and includes findings on consumer attitudes toward mobile providers and phone features, data on carrier market share, and customer satisfaction rankings. Key data points include:

— Post-consolidation, the top three mobile carriers will own seven out of 10 mobile households: Cingular (28 percent), Verizon (27 percent), and Sprint/Nextel (15 percent).

— Despite a move by providers to add features like digital cameras and color screens to their phones, consumers’ priorities when purchasing a phone have not shifted over the past two years. Basic features like price, battery life, and ease of use continue to be most important features to consumers. Less than one in 10 subscribers says that a camera is important in their phone purchase decision.

— While basic features are most important to consumers when choosing a phone, wireless data functions, such as the ability to access email and share photos, are becoming increasingly important. Twenty percent of consumers say that having data capabilities is important when purchasing a new phone — a 39 percent increase over 2002.

— In 2004, the youngest age category in Forrester’s survey (18 to 24 years) surpassed 25- to 34-year-olds as the age group that is most likely to have a mobile phone. The only age group below 50 percent penetration for mobile phones is the 65 and older age group.

— Prepaid users have doubled in the past two years, reaching close to 11 percent of mobile phone consumers in 2004.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Grow veggies indoors and shower more efficiently

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Product Review

Nokia’s 3.1 Plus is an affordable phone that’s crippled by its camera

The Nokia 3.1 Plus is HMD Global’s first smartphone to be sold by a U.S. carrier in-store. It’s only available on Cricket Wireless right now, which underlines its focus on affordability. Should you buy a phone this affordable?

T-Mobile says Sprint merger will boost 5G speeds by up to 6 times

2019 will be a huge year for T-Mobile. Not only is a merger with Sprint likely, but T-Mobile is also in the midst of building out its next-generation mobile service. Here's everything you need to know about the T-Mobile 5G rollout.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.

Flip from portrait to landscape as we reveal how to rotate a video on iPhone

If you've accidentally shot a video in portrait orientation and you want to flip to landscape, then this is the guide for you. We'll explain how to use iMovie to rotate a video on your iPhone or iPad for free and suggest alternative apps.

The 2019 iPhone could put a charge into your other Apple gadgets

While it's not been long since the last iPhones launched, rumors for the next iPhone are already surfacing. Apple's 2019 flagship could include a variety of upgrades ranging from a new design to enhanced features.

5G is the swift kick VR and AR gaming needs to come to fruition

There's a lot of hype surrounding augmented reality and virtual reality, but is it really the next big thing? We take a look at where the new mediums stand, as well as how 5G is poised to help them break into the mainstream.

Own an unlocked Galaxy S9? The U.S. Android Pie update has landed

Android 9.0 Pie has been released. But is your phone getting Android 9.0 Pie, and if so, when? We've done the hard work and asked every device manufacturer to see when their devices would be getting the update.

This discounted smartwatch is a cheap Apple Watch or Fitbit Versa alternative

The Amazfit Bip isn't an Apple Watch or Fitbit Versa, but at the discounted price of $67, it's a very affordable alternative packed with useful features. With built-in GPS and 30-day battery life, this cheap smartwatch is a great option to…

Xbox's app lets you access your console while away from home. Here's how

Microsoft's Xbox allows you to access your profile information and launch media content directly from your mobile device. Check out our quick guide on how to connect your smartphone to an Xbox One.

It looks like Google may get rid of the back button in Android Q

Android Pie recently rolled out, but it's already time to look ahead to Android Q, the next version of Google's mobile OS. We've seen a number of rumors and leaks come out about the operating system -- here's everything we know so far.

Amazon cuts prices on the Apple Watch Series 3 for Presidents’ Day

The Apple Watch Series 3 is seeing the same price cut we saw during the Amazon sale just last week. So if you're hoping to pick up an Apple Watch for less than $250, this $50 discount from Amazon can make that happen for you.

Here are 20 portable tech gadgets you’ll want to use every day

If you're looking for portable tech to keep you charged up while on the go (or for some great small gift ideas), we've rounded up 20 must-have gadgets. You'll find everything from a mini gaming controller to a folding Bluetooth keyboard.

Need a new tablet? Here are the best iPad deals for February 2019

In the wide world of tablets, Apple is still the king. If you're on team Apple and just can't live without iOS, we've curated an up-to-date list of all of the best iPad deals currently available for December 2018.