16 mln US teens have a cell phone

According to NOP World Technology, 16 mln teens and tweens in the United States own cell phones. 44% of 10- to 18-year-olds own a wireless phone. Ownership among 12- to 14-year-olds increased from 13% in February 2002 to 40% in December 2004. In addition, the majority (73%) of 18-year-olds own cell phones, a 15% rise from 2002. 75% of 15- to 17-year-olds also carry cell phones, up from 42% in 2002. 10-18-year-olds are fairly loyal. 77% of them are still using their first wireless provider, and only 11% are planning to switch in the next 6 months. That’s even though 74% are aware they can take their number with them to a new carrier. Plans to upgrade an existing cell phone are actually more common than switching providers (26% versus 11%). Among kids who switched cell phone providers, the top reasons were seeking “better reception” (20%), “lower costs” (19%), or “persuasion from parents” to switch providers (13%).