Marketing research and insights news and information. This issue's keywords: top brands; causes of stress; smartphones; customer service

Amazon is now the most-loved brand among moms of children aged 6 to 12, topping the list of 283 family-friendly brands, according to an annual brand tracking study conducted by New York research firm Smarty Pants. Reese's ranks second of the top brands, followed by Oreo, Disney, Netflix, Hershey's and Crayola.

Twenty-nine percent of people cite the amount of money they have to live on as the leading major cause of stress internationally, found a survey of 22 countries measuring the major causes of stress by Nuremburg, Germany, researcher GfK. The pressure that people put upon themselves (27 percent) came next, followed by not getting enough sleep (23 percent), not having time for the things they want (22 percent) and the amount of work people have to get done in the day (19 percent). However, 30 percent of people overall are relatively stress-free, saying none of the things on the list count as a major cause of stress for them, though many rate them as minor causes of stress. In Japan, nearly half of respondents (48 percent) say none of the listed items are major causes of stress, followed by Germany with 44 percent and the Netherlands and Hong Kong with 37 percent. On the other end of the scale, only 10 percent of those in Turkey make this claim, followed by Argentina (12 percent) and Mexico (13 percent).

Facebook took the lead as the top U.S. smartphone app in 2015, which had more than 126 million average unique users each month, a growth of 8 percent from last year, according to Nielsen, New York. YouTube came in second with over 97 million average unique users each month, followed by Facebook Messenger with more than 96 million, Google Search with over 95 million and Google Play with over 89 million. Nielsen also found that smartphone penetration grew to 80 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers at the end of September 2015 from 78 percent at the start of the year. In third-quarter 2015, 53 percent of subscribers used Android and 43 percent used iOS devices to access their apps. Three percent of U.S. smartphone owners used a handset that operated on a Windows phone, followed by 0.7 percent on a BlackBerry.

Consumers are becoming fed up with poor customer service and often cut ties with businesses as a result, shows a survey by Milwaukee-based cloud communications firm Corvisa. Nearly half (48 percent) of U.S. consumers said they have stopped doing business with a company because of negative costumer service experiences in the past year, with nearly a quarter of Millennials saying they would stop doing business after just one negative interaction. Some customers said they have gone as far as yelling at the call center agent (18 percent) or hanging up the phone (40 percent). The survey also shows that 41 percent of customers still rank phone calls as their top method of communicating with customer service, a number that increases to 56 percent when customers are frustrated. Seventy-eight percent of respondents would hang up if they had to wait on hold for more than 15 minutes, while a quarter would be lost at five minutes or less. Lowering hold times is an area the majority of respondents (57 percent) believe businesses can improve on.

India will soon overtake the U.S. to become the world's second-largest smartphone market by 2017, with China being the largest, according to research from Boston firm Strategy Analytics. In 2017, China is forecasted to sell 505 million units; India is estimated to sell 174 million and the U.S. will sell an estimated 169 million. Global smartphone sales are estimated to grow from 1.5 billion units in 2015 to a record 1.7 billion by 2017.

These reports were compiled from recent issues of the Daily News Queue, a free e-newsletter digest of marketing research and insights news and information delivered each business morning. Not already in the Queue? Sign up here!