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Report: Apple Tops Customer Satisfaction Rankings

Fri, 09/09/2011 - 8:12am
Andrew Berg

Apple and LG devices are tops with consumers according to J.D. Power and Associates 2010 Wireless Smartphone Customer Satisfaction Study—Volume 1, which seeks to measure how cell phone design and performance affect customer satisfaction.

According to the study, Apple ranks highest among smartphone manufacturers, with a score of 810 (on a 1,000-point scale), and performs particularly well in ease of operation, operating system, features and physical design. BlackBerry (741) follows Apple in the smartphone rankings, while LG ranks highest in overall wireless customer satisfaction with traditional handsets with a score of 729, performing well across all factors, particularly physical design, features and operation.

Both Sanyo (712) and Samsung (703) follow LG in the rankings.

The studies, which are based on experiences reported by more than 18,000 traditional mobile phone and smartphone owners who have used their current mobile phone for less than two years, measure customer satisfaction with traditional wireless handsets and smartphones across several key factors.

In order of importance, key factors of overall satisfaction with traditional wireless handsets are operation (30 percent); physical design (30 percent); features (20 percent); and battery function (20 percent). For smartphones, key factors are ease of operation (26 percent); operating system (24 percent); physical design (23 percent); features (19 percent); and battery function (8 percent).

Touchscreens have considerably improved customer satisfaction. According to the study, satisfaction among smartphone owners whose device has a touchscreen is 771, which is nearly 40 index points higher than those whose smartphone uses other input methods such as a text keyboard.

The study also offers some insight into what features consumers are using most on their phones. GPS was big with users, and of course apps. Sixty percent of participants in the survey report downloading third-party games for entertainment, while 46 percent report downloading travel software such as maps and weather applications. Thirty-one percent report downloading utility applications, while 26 percent report downloading business-specific programs.

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