US teens love their iPhones and Apple Watches, but it isn't all good news with Apple streaming services lagging behind the competition

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If you're a teen walking around the United States you're probably reading this on your iPhone. You're likely wearing an Apple Watch as well, but the chances are good that you aren't all that much of a fan of Apple's streaming services — whether that's Apple Music or Apple TV Plus.

That's according to a new survey that took a look at how teenagers feel about various things in their lives, including what technology they like to use. As is often the case, Apple came out of the survey pretty well with teens seemingly in love with their iPhones and Apple Watches. But where Apple's hardware rules the roost, it isn't such positive news when teens talk about Apple's services.

Instead, where Apple would like Apple Music and Apple TV Plus to be more prominent, it seems that Spotify, YouTube, and Netflix are much preferred.

iPhone and Apple Watch are clear winners

This is all according to the Piper Sandler "Taking Stock with Teens Survey" which is shared twice annually and is designed to get a feel for how teens are finding lives and what they're using to navigate the world. As always, Apple found itself prominently mentioned — although not always in a positive light as reported by Apple World.

Starting with the good news, iPhone ownership among teens is at a record high of 85% according to the survey. The news is only bettered by the 86% figure found when teens were asked if they intended to buy a new iPhone in the next six months.

It was a similar story when the Apple Watch was mentioned, with 34% of teens already owning Apple's wearable. Notably, there was an increase in the number of teens who said that they intended to buy a new model within the next half-year as well. The figure now sits at 13% which is notably more than the 10% that claimed the same thing in the fall of 2023.

As for its services, 55% of respondents said that they prefer to use Spotify while 35% pointed to Apple Music as their choice of music streamer. In terms of people actually paying for their music, only 30% said they paid for Apple Music.

There was more positive news around Apple Pay, however. 57% of those surveyed said that they had used it while 44% said they had bought something using Apple's contactless payment system within the last month.

Unfortunately, that's where the good news ended. When it comes to watching content, YouTube and Netflix dominated while Apple TV Plus ranked right at the bottom of the pile with a single percentage point to call its own.

Those looking for a silver lining will note that weekly VR headset usage increased to 13% from just 10% last time out, something that could potentially suggest that Apple may be on to something with the Apple Vision Pro. However, we can probably safely assume that the VR headsets teens are using are more likely to be of the Meta or PlayStation variety rather than Apple's $3,499 high-end behemoth. Still, the suggestion that teens are ever more comfortable wearing a headset of any kind suggests there are sales to be made in the coming decade and beyond.

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Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.