Now, here’s a really good reason why Apple boasts a market value of $575 billion. Half of U.S. households now own at least one Apple device, according to a new survey of 836 Americans conducted by CNBC.

That’s one heck of a lot of iPads, iPhones and Macs. In fact, the survey found that American households on average now own 1.6 Apple devices.

“It’s a fantastic business model — the more of our products you own, the more likely you are to buy more,” said Jay Campbell, a vice president of Hart Research Associates who conducted the survey on behalf of CNBC. “Planned obsolescence has always been a part of the technology industries sales model, but Apple has taken it to a whole new level.”

The results were released as part of CNBC’s All-America Economic Survey, which found that 61 percent of households with children own an Apple device. Other findings: 57 percent of homes in the western U.S. own an Apple device, the highest of the U.S. regions. Also, just 28 percent of Americans who make less than $30,000 per year own an Apple device, compared to 77 percent of those who make more than $70,000.

The survey highlights just how important the mobile computing market is becoming in the U.S. And it shows how Apple continues to clobber Microsoft, which grew to prominence in the 80s with the slogan: “A PC on every desk, and in every home.”

But the mantle has been passed, at least for now in the computing arena. Apple’s $575 billion market value is more than Microsoft, Google and — combined.

Here’s a look at the chart from the survey:

[Apple photo via Bigstock]

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  • Guest

    I mean, really. . .

    If you take the iPod out of the mix, the number would decline rapidly.  The iPod was the only mass market device that had significant saturation in the U.S.

    Last November 2011, Apple computing products peaked at 5% of the global computing market for the first time in 15 years.  The iPhone is a whopping 11% of the TOTAL mobile phone market in the U.S. (and lower elsewhere).

    In general, this article features a pretty meaningless statistic.  About as meaningful as saying that half the U.S. homes have Microsoft product in them; or Proctor and Gamble product in them.  It means nothing.

    • guest

      I aggree.  This is the type of thing that John Cook as a journalist should be pointing out. 

    • Guest

      How do you figure it means nothing? What would the percentage have been a decade ago? 3%? Now it’s 50%. And that translates into tens of millions of devices they have sold, which in turn means billions of dollars in revenue and profit,  the majority of it now coming from product lines that didn’t exist for them even five years ago. And then we have the famous “halo” effect, where successfully convincing people to buy one Apple product has resulted in the sale of other iDevices. The net result is that Apple is now larger in revenue, profit and market cap than MS and still growing at about 7x the rate. Fairly meaningful, no?

      I think you’re in denial. The fact that despite that success they still only command a small relative share in most of the markets in which they compete just means they still have tremendous upside for growth and profits. Unlike MS and P&G who haven’t been able to create substantial new revenue streams and as a result are still almost completely reliant on aging legacy businesses.

    • Guest

      This comment could only be made from the shadow of Redmond.  This is an amazing statistic – 5-10 years ago it would have been in the single digits.

      The real value in the proliferation of Apple devices is not the hardware, it’s the credit card/itunes account/icloud account lock in Apple is creating for all digital media.

      • Guest

        I think it’s legit to pull the iPod out of the equation and then run the numbers.

        At one time, over 50% of U.S. homes had Pet Rocks in them…Apple sold alot of iPods, but those days are over.  They are poised to secure maybe 15% of the total mobile market.  The Tablet market, once it matures is an unknown.  If everyone else screws up, Apple may walk away with a larger chunk…then again, they may end up at 10-25% of the total Tablet market by the time things shake out.

        The underlying reality is that the 50% means just about nothing.  Most of it is related to $100/iPods.  So, not much different than a pair of Nikes.

  • Guest

    “I love our strategy. The board loves our strategy”

    – Steve Ballmer

    And you know for sure that Apple’s leadership and shareholders love MS’s strategy…

    • Guest

      More than 90% of households own at least one device running a Microsoft OS. I love that strategy. The board loves Microsoft’s strategy.

      • Guest

        Here’s the issue. Ten years ago it was more like 98%. Now, in NA at least, it’s below 90%. And it has been falling every quarter since Vista with basically nothing to take its place except Xbox, which still hasn’t paid back the money invested. If you include tablets and not just PCs, it’s even worse. So you and the board love a strategy where MS’s share of the overall pie peaked a decade ago and has been in decline every since?

        I can understand MS’s board loving it. They have already proved that they’re morons who don’t care about the company or its shareholders and have let MS be surpassed by Apple on virtually every metric that matters over the past decade. But what’s your excuse?  Employee? You love the strategy because for now it keeps you in a job despite whatever group you’re in likely losing share to competitors or losing out entirely? You can’t possibly be a happy investor given the record of the last decade.

        • Guest

          You seem to be upset that only 280 million persons in the U.S., and more than 6 billion worldwide, have access to Microsoft products. Why are you so upset?

          I’m not employed by Microsoft and I own no Microsoft stock.

  • Nick White

    Am I the only one surprised that a mere 1% of households own 6 or more devices? My 1 person household surpasses that benchmark…

  • Heidi

    Of course, personally, I have 5+ Apple product and love them all

    • Guest

      On a related note. . .

      Most household purchasing is controlled by females.

      What’s the breakdown of Male v. Female Apple purchasers?

      How are those numbers evolving?

      Let’s face it, an Apple iPhone ad is far more female friendly than a Droid ad (let’s not haggle over that, please, it’s pretty much true – though I bought my daughter’s Android devices so they could learn that “mobile is about communication” not pre-set filters to pretend they were artistic).

      But, how much of Apple’s growth in-home relates to female purchasing power?

      That would be interesting to explore in some depth.

      • Guest

        “But, how much of Apple’s growth in-home relates to female purchasing power?

        That would be interesting to explore in some depth.”

        As would why other companies, including Google and Microsoft, are letting Apple run away with that demographic pretty much uncontested.

        • Guest 2

          If you look at the first Windows/Mobile ads that ran in 2011 (the “Be Here Now” ads), they were very female focused (i.e. live in the real world, not the digital world).

          Tapping into a 70’s hippie mantra was a nice swipe against Apple (or, let’s say “differentiating itself” from Apple) and obsessive digital consumption habits that get in the way of our meat space existence.

          I’d say Windows/Mobile is very female focused; or, at least playing it 50/50.

          Also, if you look at something like Microsoft TAG, they were almost entirely focused on the female demographic vis a vis campaigns within major women’s magazines over a 12 month period (ignoring the value or wisdom of 2D or QR tags in general; it was an interesting focus).  Their “I’m a PC” spots are also fairly female friendly.  Apple may do a better job at positioning their product-line to females, but Microsoft are not letting them own the demographic entirely.

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