Study: 56 percent of Americans own a smartphone

Fifty-six percent of U.S. residents own a smartphone.

Businesses have been spending more time in the last few years looking into the options of mobile commerce. While the functionality of mobile devices is making certain aspects of retail easier, merchants may need to start paying even more attention because a recent study found that a majority of American's now have a smartphone.

Released by Pew, the survey interviewed 1,127 adults and found that 56 percent of U.S. residents own a smartphone. That number is up from 35 percent when the study was conducted in 2011.

While every major demographic saw significant year-to-year growth, there was surprisingly not a difference in adoption rates among various age groups. The highest age range is 25 to 34, in which 81 percent own a smartphone. After that, 79 percent of the 18- to 24-year-olds owned one, the 35 to 44 demographic had 69 percent being smartphone owners and the numbers continued to decrease with each older age group. Those older than 65, 18 percent own a smartphone.

"It's obvious smartphone use is a generational thing and I don't think many people in their 60's and 70's will be adopting smartphones anytime soon," Llamas said. "And I don't think average prices coming down will necessarily boost adoption rates in the U.S. Lower phone prices are not a slam dunk. "

As more smartphones hit the market, companies would be foolish to ignore the devices in their payment options. By partnering with a payment solution provider, any company can easily add a mobile option for their customers to take advantage of.

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