Tween may be a particularly terrible word used to describe a segment of society, but it is one that wireless manufacturers will be paying a lot of attention to in the coming years. Yankee Group is predicting that the tween market, which they define as 8-12 year olds, is the next growth area for wireless providers. They suggest that this market segment could double by 2010. There are already 5.3 million subscribers in that segment, which makes up 2.6% of the market. The growth potential comes from the fact that only 27% of tweens have cell phones, about a third of the wider market rate. Within the tween market, 10-12 year olds will make up 75% of the market.
This is a part of an interesting trend. As the overall mobile market becomes saturated, manufacturers will have to create plans, brands or even look toward MVNOs to target under-served niches. Besides the tweens, the elderly are another segment that will begin to get more attention.