For Apple, the kids are alright

Piper Jaffray's biannual survey of U.S. high school students shows that Apple continues to enjoy a strong position with the iPod while interest increases in the iPhone.

Tom Krazit Former Staff writer, CNET News
Tom Krazit writes about the ever-expanding world of Google, as the most prominent company on the Internet defends its search juggernaut while expanding into nearly anything it thinks possible. He has previously written about Apple, the traditional PC industry, and chip companies. E-mail Tom.
Tom Krazit
Teenagers like fun, and they continue to see Apple as the best source of music-related fun. James Martin/CNET News

Apple continues to do well among some of the most fickle and influential consumers of technology: teenagers.

Piper Jaffray does a biannual survey on the purchasing habits of 769 teenagers as they related to devices like cell phones and music players, and released the results of the latest survey Tuesday. Not surprisingly, the market leader in portable digital music players is the market leader among high school students: 84 percent of those surveyed own an iPod, up from 82 percent last year.

The iPhone is also gaining ground, perhaps as a result of the new $199 entry fee to iPhoneland this year. Just 8 percent of teenagers surveyed own an iPhone, but that's up from 6 percent from the last survey in the spring of this year, before the iPhone 3G was released. And 22 percent of those surveyed said they planned on buying an iPhone in the next six months, while 33 percent said they wanted one.

However, as Larry Dignan notes over at ZDNet, those plans and wishes may be very much dependent on the health of their parents' wallet. Even at $199, the monthly fees associated with the iPhone--or really any data-enabled phone--might be considered a luxury in times of economic crisis.

What wasn't noted in the study was the mindshare of the Mac among the high school set. Macs are very popular with college students, but Piper did not release any data on how the Mac is doing among younger students.