The new iPhone XS Max is just the beginning for a trend that’s been building for years.
According to research from the consumer electronics company Consumer Reports, nearly half of US households have a cell phone.
But for many, cell phone ownership hasn’t always been the most convenient option.
“Cell phone penetration is actually decreasing in the US and the US is moving towards more devices for people to have,” said Josh Bivens, the CEO of Consumer Reports.
“But if you have a smartphone, you can now get a cell and it’s much more convenient.”
A big reason consumers are choosing cell phones is because they can get the most bang for their buck.
Cell phones offer lower costs and the most reliable reception, according to the Consumer Reports study.
While many smartphone buyers are willing to pay more for a cell-equipped device, it’s not necessarily the best choice.
“People are willing, they’re willing to give up a little bit of value for something that they feel is better,” Bivans told Business Insider.
That’s why consumers are so passionate about cell phones.
“We’re very passionate about the experience of a cell,” he added.
And with that comes a lot of pressure to keep the quality of the phone as high as possible.
“That’s why people are buying phones in the first place,” Blevins said.
Bivens said he’s not surprised by the trend.
“I think most people would say that cell phones are just better phones,” he said.
“They’re more reliable, they’ve got better reception.”
But that’s not to say cell phones aren’t going to cost more.
Blevens said consumers will pay more upfront for the cell phone they purchase.
“You are paying more for the phone,” he explained.
“And so the price of the cell, the price you pay for the quality and the phone itself will go up.”
Blevins also said that consumers may not be as committed to the quality as they were before.
“When people go through a smartphone they’re just trying to get the best experience for themselves,” he told Business Insiders.
“So I think that the cost of that experience is going to go up, and that’s why I think it’s going to drive a lot more people away from cell phones.”
That doesn’t mean cell phones don’t have their advantages.
Bivins said that cell phone service can also save consumers money in the long run.
“If you can get cell service for less than the price that you normally pay for an iPhone or a Samsung phone, you’re saving money,” he stressed.
Consumers also often enjoy the convenience of being able to make calls on a regular basis.
“Sometimes you have to make a call,” Brivans said.
“[But] if you’re just in your house, you don’t need to go out to get your phone.”
But the fact remains that cell-phone ownership is the way to go for many Americans.
According the research, the average US household owns 11 smartphones, including 10 smartphones with a 4G network.
And the majority of consumers who own cell phones also own other smartphone models, including some that have LTE connectivity.
Consumer Reports also found that the majority (61 percent) of Americans who own a smartphone also own a landline.
Brivens said that the lack of a land line is also a problem for the majority, as it may not have enough range to get through to their landline phone.
“The landline doesn’t get the kind of power that a 4g phone does,” he noted.
But while some people still opt to pay a little extra for the best phone service, Blevans said that’s changing.
“There’s a lot that consumers are starting to recognize and are saying, ‘You know what?
I don’t want to pay extra for this service anymore,'” he said, adding that people may also be more willing to upgrade to a newer smartphone if they feel the same experience is still good for them.