If the 2008 presidential election was the 'social media election,' will 2012's be known as the 'mobile election?'

The smartphone revolution was in its early years during the 2008 election, and the iPad didn't even exist.

In the U.S., a recent Pew Research Center study found 66 per cent of people between 18 and 29 own a smartphone. Added to that, they found 45 per cent of smartphone owners, who are also registered voters, downloaded political apps.

That fact didn't escape the presidential campaign organizers. Mobile apps today aren't just for Instagram and Angry Birds.

Both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney released mobile apps this summer.

This past summer, the Obama campaign began accepting text-message donations, followed by Romney's campaign about a week later.

"Americans deserve a government that works for them anytime, anywhere, and on any device," said Obama in a statement.

But smartphones weren't just being used to solicit donations - they were collecting crucial data that could be used for things like individually targeting campaign ads.

And of course, news consumption -- particularly political news -- is on the rise on smartphones.

Some of the bigger U.S. news organizations has election-themes apps, including CNN's Mobile Election Center for the iPhone, NY Times' Election 2012 for the iPhone and Android devices, and NBC Politics for the iPhone.

There's even an analysis into whether the type of phone you own predicts how you'll vote. Check out this infographic from Engine Yard.

The question for the next election could very well be, will you be able to start voting on your smartphone?