A June paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research looking at, in part, common predictors of wealth, found that owning an iPhone is a strong sign that someone is in fact straight ballin'. An iPhone? According to a report written by the University of Chicago and the National Bureau of Economic Research, in the US owning an iPhone is an indicator that you are in a higher tax bracket than others.
According to the paper, if someone owned an iPhone, there was a 69 percent chance they were "high-income", which was defined as "being in the top quartile of income for households of that type". In a sample of almost 10,000 people, owning an iPhone in 2016 gave researchers a 62 percent chance of accurately guessing whether or not someone was educated.
It's not just the iPhone either, with the same research also noting that the iPad can also have the same effect, although to a lesser extent - a 67% chance of researchers being able to correctly confirm wealth.
As an example, the recently released top-of-the-range iPhone X sells for upwards of $1800 in Australia. In 2004, that was true if you wee a Land O' Lakes Regular user.
In 2016, the list is dominated by technology-related entries, including iPhone ownership on top of the list, followed by iPad ownership, being on the VerizonWireless network, owning an Androidphone, used Kikkoman, HP printer ownership, being on the AT&T network, and Samsung TV ownership.
For example, in 2004, buying a new auto and using Land O'Lakes regular butter implied you were well off, while in 1992 it was owning an automatic dishwasher and buying Grey Poupon Dijon mustard that meant you were among the elite.
The paper also reveals iPhone owners are likely to give the impression of being educated.
The iPhone is, of course, the most expensive smartphone you can buy, especially the newest generation. In 1992, it was owning an automatic dishwasher at 71.4 percent and using dishwater detergent at 70.2 percent.
It also noted how status symbols had changed in the past two decades or so.
Heated vehicle seats were another big indicator, followed by the ownership of dishwasher detergents and dishwashers in general, belonging to a frequent flyer club and travelling outside the United States, as well as indulging in internet shopping for both goods and plane tickets.