GCN LAB IMPRESSIONS

Is your choice of smart phone political?

We all know that in this highly contentious political atmosphere, Democrats and Republicans can’t seem to agree on anything. You see it in political maps, where Democratic states and represented by blue and Republican-leaning ones are given red coloration. A popular program in New York, one of the bluest of states, often won’t fly in Texas, which is about as red as you can get.

But did you know that red and blue states also disagree on what mobile technology to use? That’s what one study is implying.

The Huffington Post recently compared a map of smart-phone usage that was released by Jumptap to a map of red and blue states from the past four presidential elections that they pulled from Wikipedia. From these they drew the conclusion that Republicans prefer Android platforms while Democrats would rather use Apple iOS devices.

Although there is some distinct correlation, I don’t think you can conclude anything based on it. Just to review, of the 48 states (Alaska and Hawaii were not in the Jumptap map), we have the following breakdown of which mobile platform is the most used:

Red states

  • Red states for Android: 9.
  • Red states for iOS: 6.
  • Red states for BlackBerry: 5.
  • Red states with no preference: 5.
Blue states
  • Blue states for iOS: 10.
  • Blue states for Android: 6.
  • Blue states for BlackBerry: 3
  • Blue states with no preference: 1
Swing states
  • Swing states for Android: 2.
  • Swing states with no preference: 1.

So that’s 46…47…48. Good. Now that we have those enumerated, let’s draw some conclusions of our own.

Well, the majority of the states that show no dominance of smart-phone platform are Red. Does this reflect the current division in the Republican Party between the moderates and extremists? Hmm.

Also, swing states seem to prefer Android, especially if you include states that are currently classified as “purple,” such as Colorado and Arkansas. Will Android users be the ones to decide the next presidential election? Hmm.

Of course the answer to both of those questions is: How should I know? I’m looking at a smart-phone usage map! With it I can only conclude things like: BlackBerry tends to dominate in states where there are a large number of government users, such as Maryland, Virginia and New York.

And: Android seems to have made a successful push into the Southwest. Stuff like that.

I guess it just shows how any statistics can be inferred to mean whatever people want them to mean. But that doesn’t stop us from having fun by speculating. So, if an Android phone ran against President Barack Obama…

Reader Comments

Mon, Aug 15, 2011 Walter Washington DC

The point of the study was to see if there is any correlations. Personally, I think there is too little data to draw these sorts of conclusions. The point of the article is that there is any number of reasons for this split in the data. It would seem that geography and business practices and such may determine more than politics. Of course, none of this will stop people from trying to draw odd conclusions from random statistical data points.

Fri, Aug 12, 2011

Well, this makes sense. Apple operates their business model in a very authoritative controlled manner, much like the Democrats want fo the country. While Android is a more open and FREE platform much like the freedom Tea Party "Extremists" are trying to bring back to this country.

Fri, Aug 12, 2011

The distinction is that you are a reader and the author is a staff writer for tech news publication. In the writer's case, I would hope that while he could write to the point of political views and tech choices, he could do so without such provocative language, aka click bait. Both of you are entitled to your opinions.

Fri, Aug 12, 2011

To the previous poster, so what if the author has some sort of political bias - that bias has nothing to do with the numbers posted and also intent of the article is the discussion of politics and tying it to smartphone choices. Oh and yes, I'm biased - the Republican right-wing extremists are going to destroy this country..

Fri, Aug 12, 2011

"Does this reflect the current division in the Republican Party between the moderates and extremists?" Not biased are we?

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above