NEW YORK: Smartphone ownership has risen to 33% of young American mobile subscribers, a new paper from Nielsen has shown.

Mobile Youth Around the World, which questioned 15 to 24-year-olds from eight nations on their mobile preferences, also found that smartphone penetration as a proportion of mobile users has reached 28% in Europe.

Italy topped the charts with 47% of youth owning at least one of the devices, while Russia and India were bottom of the chart on 25% and 10% respectively.

In seven of the eight nations, price was the top ranked mobile phone purchase driver.

Only Russians bucked this trend, with 21% of respondents citing style and design as the primary motivating factor.

Parents were found to have little influence when it comes to young people's mobile phone choices.

The paper also revealed that across all the countries surveyed during the first half of 2010, on average 84% of young people with mobile phones decided which model to purchase by themselves.

Around the world, Smartphone users tend to be male with the exception of the US where 55% of 15-24 year old users are female.

Data sourced from Nielsen; additional content by Warc staff