At the turn of the 21st century, Apple was in rough shape. It had narrowly avoided bankruptcy, and Steve Jobs' return as CEO a few years earlier was turning the company around, but the market share of its products -- then almost exclusively Mac computers -- was dismal, at about 2% worldwide.
Then came the iPod, which begat the iPhone and the iPad. As Apple's gadgets gobbled up market share (and in some cases created new markets), its Macs experienced a rebound, too. Now, according to CNBC's All-American Economic Survey, 51% of U.S. households own at least one Apple product.
Few brands have such a deep reach among American consumers. Certainly, product categories such as refrigerators or even smartphones have achieved even deeper penetration, but looking at single companies, it's a short list with probable names such as GE (light bulbs) or 3M (Scotch tape). Reducing to just technology companies would make it even shorter.
Of the households that own Apple products, they own an average of three, making the overall ownership rate of the American public 1.6 Apple products per household. About 25% plan to buy another Apple product in the next year.
The survey shows Apple buyers tend to skew male, young, with higher education and incomes (77% of households making $75,000 or more have an Apple product). If you have kids, the likelihood of being an Apple household grows -- 61% compared with 48% if you don't.
As far as politics is concerned, both Republicans and Democrats appear to like Apple products equally, with 56% of people counting themselves a member of either party owning Apple, although a greater portion of Democrats plan to buy more products soon.
CNBC's survey polled 836 Americans via both landlines and cellphones over three days in March. The network says it has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4%.