48% of smartphone buyers want iPhone next, survey says

According to results from a new ChangeWave survey released on Monday, 48% of those looking to buy a new smartphone during the next 90 days plan on buying an iPhone. In addition, 46% of those buying a smartphone in the next 90 days said that they would prefer an iOS-powered device, 32% want a smartphone running Android, and just 4% want a BlackBerry OS device. Apple’s iOS users are the most satisfied with their operating system, too. 70% of those surveyed said that they were “very satisfied” with iOS. 50% said they were very satisfied with Android, 27% were happy with Microsoft’s Windows OS (which we assume means both Windows Mobile and Windows Phone), and 26% were pleased with RIM’s BlackBerry OS. The launch of the iPhone 4 on Verizon Wireless is also hurting Motorola. “After benefiting tremendously in the years Verizon subscribers were barred from the iPhone market, Motorola is now seeing a loss of market share at least partially attributable to the Verizon iPhone release that occurred earlier this year,” the study said. Finally, ChangeWave found that Apple’s free iCloud service is attracting customers away from other operating systems. 29% of the survey respondents who are currently Apple product owners said they are more likely to buy Apple products since the company announced its iCloud service, while 13% of non-Apple product owners said they are also now more likely to buy an Apple product. ChangeWave polled 4,163 consumers, 89% of which were U.S. residents. Read on for the full press release.

New Survey: Consumer Smart Phones – Apple vs. Google Android

July 18, 2011

A new ChangeWave survey of 4,163 consumers has taken a fresh look at smart phone demand trends – including mobile OS and smart phone preferences going forward.

The June survey focused on key comparisons between the Apple iOS and Google Android OS – including the impact of Apple’s new iCloud service – along with the latest momentum trends for Motorola and Research in Motion.

We note that this survey focuses primarily on the North American smart phone market – with the sample being 89% U.S. respondents and 11% outside the U.S.

ChangeWave Research is a division of leading analyst and data company The 451 Group.

Mobile OS Preferences Among Consumers

The Apple iOS and Google Android OS continue to dominate preferences for mobile operating systems, according to the latest ChangeWave survey results.

Going forward, the Apple iOS remains the number one preference for buyers – with 46% of those planning to buy a smart phone in the next 90 days saying they prefer to have the Apple iOS on their new phone, up 2-pts since the March survey.

Firmly in second in the North American market, the Android OS (32%) has registered a slight uptick (up 1-pt) in terms of future buyer preference. In contrast, Research in Motion’s BlackBerry OS (4%; down 1-pt) has once again hit its lowest level ever in a ChangeWave survey.

OS Customer Satisfaction. We also looked at OS customer satisfaction ratings based upon the operating system consumers have on their smart phones, and once again Apple is the clear leader – with 70% of customers using the iOS saying they are Very Satisfied.

The Android OS ranks second, with half (50%) of its users saying they’re Very Satisfied.

Both industry leaders are far ahead of the overall Very Satisfied ratings for the other major operating systems – Windows OS (27%) and RIM OS (26%).

But in an encouraging sign for Microsoft, we continue to see a big difference between the high Very Satisfied rating for Windows Phone 7 (57%) vs. the much lower rating for Windows Mobile OS (14%). Even so, the higher Windows Phone 7 rating has yet to produce a sustained momentum boost for Microsoft in term of buyer preferences.

Impact of Apple iCloud Service

Apple recently announced the iCloud service, which will automatically store music, photos, apps, calendars, documents, ebooks, etc., and wirelessly push them to any Apple device – allowing anytime, anywhere access for users.

With iCloud – which becomes available this fall – Apple joins competitors Google, Amazon and Microsoft in providing a product that many expect will change the way consumers use smart phones and other media devices.

We took a close-up look at the potential impact of the iCloud service going forward, and found 29% of Apple product owners say Apple’s iCloud announcement makes them More Likely to buy Apple products in the future, as do 13% of Non-Apple owners.

This initial look at the impact of Apple’s new iCloud service shows it enhancing existing customer loyalty. But the survey also provides highly encouraging signs that iCloud will generate additional customer demand for other Apple products, not only from current Apple product owners but from a substantial numbers of non-owners as well.

Smart Phone Manufacturer Demand

Despite no new Apple model launch, demand still appears strongest for the iPhone in terms of North American planned purchasing.

Nearly half of respondents (48%) planning on buying a smart phone in the next 90 days say they’ll get an iPhone – up 1-pt since our previous survey in March and the highest level of demand in the smart phone industry.

The same can’t be said for Motorola (8%; down 4-pts). After benefitting tremendously in the years Verizon subscribers were barred from the iPhone market, Motorola is now seeing a loss of market share at least partially attributable to the Verizon iPhone release that occurred earlier this year.

Still, Motorola’s situation is considerably less daunting than that of Research in Motion’s.

In seven of the past 10 ChangeWave quarterly surveys since 2008 we have seen a drop in RIM’s planned purchase share. Importantly, its customer satisfaction ratings have also fallen in nine of the past 10 ChangeWave surveys – and our latest survey shows them at their lowest level ever for this most critical of indicators.

For now, the dominant story in smart phones remains the escalating horse-race between Apple and Android.

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