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Teen girls choosing BlackBerry over iPhone in the UK

Smartphone brand survey
By Kerri Neill on 6 Aug 2011 06:02 pm EDT
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Ofcom, an independent regulator and competition authority for the UK communications industries, showed some suprising information in their 2011 Communications Report in regards to user smartphone brand preferences. According to their information, U.K. teens, especially females, seem to prefer BlackBerry devices over other smartphone brands. Their anecdotal information suggests this could be due to the free BlackBerry Messenger service. Overall, it seems females, in particular, prefer BlackBerry over the other options out there. The report also shows app use is higher amongst teens than the adults who are iPhone’s biggest fans. This could be a huge opportunity for BlackBerry App World and BlackBerry application developers.

This is good news for RIM, and with a little effort, hopefully they will keep this generation of cell phone users hooked on BlackBerry for many years to come. I know my teenage daughter can't wait for me to upgrade again so she can move from her BlackBerry Curve 8330 to my Style 9670. Let us know in the comments if your kids are bugging you for a new BlackBerry too.

Source: Ofcom

Reader comments

Teen girls choosing BlackBerry over iPhone in the UK

53 Comments

You could say 'best choice ever', Sveninho, but other than that...

I was at Alton Towers recently ans saw dozens of BB's in the hands of the young. The only iPhones (and Androids) were held by older people and they were outnumbered overall by about four-to-one.

Not scientific and very anecdotal, but still interesting...

We see the same thing here, bigbamboo!

Now, we know why the new BB 7 Curve is so important!

Actually, I was thinking... although the new devices will be late for back-to-school shoppers, the new BBs did force the price down on the existing devices quite a bit making them more affordable for the back-to-school crowd. So, if you really think about it, RIM really didn't miss the back-to-school shopping. Great deals are to be had for a new Torch 9800, Curve 3G, and Bold 9780.

The new devices would be priced much higher than most kids could afford anyway.

If you need to be out and about communicating a Crackberry is a good choice I notice Iphones seem to be more popular with those who use the phone less and wants a mini tablet..

I work at a high school and there are more BBs on campus than iPhones. Every year as the new crop of freshmen arrive more and more BBs do too.

Even my neice said all her friends said you might as well have an iPod You don't need the iPhone. Even the one teenager that had the iPhone took off the OS and put Linux on it.

Oddly enough here in Southern BC, I see Iphones with the teens (my own daughter being 1) and a whole lot of people in their 20's using BlackBerries (all my nieces for instance) then of course there are the more mature folk like myself (40's & 50's) who wisely choose BlackBerries too. lol

Here is a quote from my 16 year old daughter, who was talking about the kids attending her high school in North Vancouver (southern BC):

"Everybody has a BlackBerry. Everybody."

I've read about this a few times. Young girls seem to love the interactiveness of BBM and of course the boys follow along.......

It does seem that its a viral thing that one girl gets a BBerry and then others follow and before you know it, everyone in the school has one.

My son only wanted a BBerry and I think I know why.......

I'm very interested to see how iChat fares.

The adults that I know who have the iPhone seem to be the ones that image is very important to them - they have to have the designer this and that and the Beemer....the ones who feel the need to impress constantly....that's just my observation

I need a workhorse that is dependable, reliable, and can take a beating (from the tile floor it gets dropped on all the time).

My prediction when the Bold Touch and Curve Touch comes out the biggest demographic buying it will be teens.
I did notice they are all asking for the Playbook too although they keep calling it BlackBook..whcih would have been more appropriate.

My son wants a BlackBerry so bad, but he has to figure out how he'll pay for the data plan. I'll chip in for the voice plan but the deal is that he'll have to pay for the data. Hey, nothing in life is free.

In his school, I'll say that BlackBerrys outnumber iPhones more than 2-1. Reason: BBM. Apple hopes to change that with iMessage. Now you'll have two camps. In the meanwhile, RIM will have to convince folks to try out the new BB 7 devices rather than flocking to the iPhone 5.

Eventually, someone will come out with a common messaging platform to run on BlackBerrys and iPhones. There are some possible options today. Skype is another. It's too bad you can't video Skype on the new devices because THERE IS NO FRONT CAM!!! Grrrh! (sorry, my little gripe!).

Once RIM unties BBM from the device PIN to BlackBerry ID, it will open doors to running BBM on other devices as well. I saw one fellow claiming to run BBM on an iPhone on YouTube. Not sure how they did that.

I don't think that iPhones with it's iMessage will change the current landscape to a big extent. The reason? iPhones and iPads doesn't have a physical keyboard and typing a lot on those devices is a pain in the ass. That's why I think heavy texters will still stick to BBM and Blackberry. :)

Just to give some understanding of why - here in the UK, curves (8520s mostly) are v inexpensive off contract, and are bought with 'pay as you go' plans, enabling those unable to get contracts (or with parents unwilling to pay for them) to run a smartphone for around $10 or less a month. I suspect the popularity is therefore, more cost related than anything else.

True, though the cheapest plan you can get here in the UK is at £10.21 per month. It doesn't offer much, such as 50 texts, 250MB of data and 250 texts, but kids see it as a 'BlackBerry' which they want because their friends have one :)

This is old news... I'm from the UK, and its common knowledge that teens prefer BlackBerry devices; mainly the cheaper Curves and Pearls, and the number one reason is cost and BBM. I myself use to be hooked on BBM, but then I wanted more out of a phone instead of just IM.

Currently its STILL too expensive for teens to own and run an iPhone. But rumors are floating that Apple may include 3G chips in their next iPod touch and or release an affordable/cheaper version of the iPhone4 ...so I guess we'll have to wait and see if that and the inclusion of iMessage shakes up the market.

BlackBerry phones such as the Curve 8520 are becoming the new throw-away phones. They are THAT cheap to own these days, especially with prepaid sims. Teens top them up with £10 or whatever (which should probably last them a fair bit) and just BBM all day. They don't even ask for each others numbers anymore, all you hear is "whats your PIN" or "inbox me your BB PINS"

Their small girly little fingers can type more easily than the average person. I guessing bbm is probably a factor too.

But, but, but...Blackberries are for professionals and iPhones are toys! Isn't that what we get lectured on in the forums if we dare post and are no longer using BBs? A BB means you are an important and powerful person! Or something. Heh.

I definitely agree that these statistics are correct. I'm a 20 year old male but blackberry has such a strong presence in america too.

I run a 85xx blackberry curve :).

If you look at the chart, the 25-55 old range is clearly iPhone. I'm not surprised as they have the most money to spend and we all know Apple is all about up-sell, cross-sell and, oh yeah, app-sell.

So, while RIM has consumers that have limited disposable income, Apple owns the economic sweet spot.

If you come here to the Dominican Republic all you see are blackberries. If someone around here has an iPhone it's probably because they are from other, english-speaking, countries because most of the international Hispanic culture choose blackberry over others.

My guesstimate of this country would be it's probably 10/15-1 ratio of blackberry to iPhone.

yes!! its true i live in DR and i currently own a bb9800 i used to have an iphone 3g but when i got an ipod touch for my birthday saw no point in keeping the iphone's EXPENSIVE plan so i just decided to upgrade to a bb and im really happy with that desicion bbs in my opinion are more easy to use and all my friends who are teens (since im 17) have them as well so we all comunicate trough BBM!!! and its not because iphones are for english speaking countries is just that the data plans for iphones are super expensive!!! and you usually dont get what u get on a bb data plan for the price u pay on an iphone data plan!

here in indonesia blackberry are every where!!! BB grow so fast in last 3-4 years. now everytime i took a bus, people BBM while standing in crowded moving bus :D

Here in Australia,vodafone are offering the Bold 9780 including a Playbook for $49/mth which includes $450 in calls, SMS, mms and 1.5Gb of data AND unlimited BIS. On top of that, unlimited free calls between vodafone customers ans $20 credit per month bringing your monthly outlay down to $29/mth. That's just nuts. I signed up both my kids on this. They pay excess usage charges.

Correct! And also for anyone else whose priority is communication and social interaction. Does that mean iPhones are for little boys?

Not really shocking. Teenage girls want to text and that's about it, so Blackberry serves that purpose. I find I can barely fathom the idea of the volume of texts that teenagers use, so having the device that allows you to type the fastest just makes sense. It's kinda sad that RIM has fallen so drastically that we're celebrating victories in niche demographics.

I thought that the mentality around here has always been that BBs are business messaging tools for business professionals and governments and everything else like iPhones and Androids are just toys. Ha. What a crock of shit.

According to this, males are more likely to choose iPhone while female go for BlackBerry.

This likely because using touch screen phones is more difficult with long nails.

Weird that nobody questioned the methodology of this study and said surveys don't matter.. something you always see when such data are posted on the CB forums.

I'm 18 and most of the girls and guys I hang around with do indeed own a BlackBerry smartphone. Please don't bash me, but I have to say that about 85% of the young people I know who own BlackBerrys has an 8520, 10% have the 9300 and the last 5% are comprised of the 9700, 9780 and 9800. I ask my friends, why did you buy your BlackBerry? The most common answers are because it has BlackBerry Messenger, it's cheaper than an iPhone and it's available in different colours. Now, I'm not one who buys items for they way they look. Someone got their new 8520 when it came out and bragged that it was purple. Well, guess what? I don't care because I have built-in GPS, an LED flash, a higher megapixel camera, a larger keyboard, 3G and OS 6.

I use my 9700 mainly for emailing since I work in an office, BlackBerry Messenger and internet browsing (when it decides not to be a douché by closing the webpage).

blackberrys just work, they are tough, made of superior quality and are just a better e-mail text and social app phone and this is the age of social app coming up its blackberrys time to regain the top and it will

My son has been dying to get his 1st BlackBerry ever since I got MY 1st one (which was 4 years ago) just because he thinks they're cool. He's very tech savvy & is much more impressed with the reliability of BlackBerry than any other phone. Hes the only CrackBerry Addict I know that has yet to own a BlackBerry. I told him when he is old enough to get a job & have the phone in his name he can have one :) he's 14 now & keeps up on them so he'll be prepared lol

when the best phones (blackberry's) become as untouchable as they are, jealous ones envy and will use whatever sketchy means to attempt to make blackberry's look bad when deep down inside, they (android apple) just wannabe a blackberry.

i want to see more posts on this blackberry site from disgruntled android and apple users. i often wonder why they're even involved in a blackberry forum if they truly believe their own hype and think theyre using a superior product, which we all know they're not. now i think maybe i should go post some uneducated bullsh!t on the other platforms web pages for no apparent reason.

I totally agree with you. Apart from Sony Ericsson (since I used to have an SE phone), I have never created an account on any other mobile phone forum, let alone bash them about it. I see a lot of iPhone and Android users (mostly iPhone) come here and start bashing RIM when the tiniest little fault appears. To be honest, I don't care; what happened when iPhone users had the problem with dropped signal? I'll bet they kept quiet during that time. What is it about Apple that makes a lot of its iPhone users unable to shut their mouths and preaching how great the company is?

My daughter inherited my 8900 a couple of months ago and now that I have the 9780 and want to upgrade to the 9900 she is constantly asking me when are we going to Tmobile to upgrade. She has several friends with touch screen devices but prefers the actual keyboard ... she sends over 23000 text messages a month and tells me it is much easier and can actually text and carry on a conversation and look at me at the same time......

Same in the Netherlands, RIM is the leading company here for smartphones, especially for the dutch teenager girls!

Pinging is incredible popular.