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The Apple iPhone is tops in customer satisfaction

The battle for mobile phone dominance has recently been dominated by the Apple iPhone, though the iPhone burdens its share of complaints as well.

recent report from ChangeWave looks at how satisfied mobile phone owners are with their devices. The report shows that the Apple iPhone has the most satisfied customers with a full 72% of iPhone owners saying they are very satisfied with their phone.

Coming in a strong second is RIM with 55% of BlackBerry owners saying they are very satisfied. The recent outage of the RIM data service my now have some BlackBerry owners feeling otherwise. Third place in satisfaction according to the report goes to LG with 41% satisfaction. Rounding out the list is Sanyo with 37%, Nokia with 36%, Samsung, Sony/Ericsson, and Motorola tying with 34% of customers saying they are very satisfied.

The bottom spot on the list of very satisfied customers goes to Palm with only 30% of customers saying they are very satisfied with Palm phones. The report also shows that the cell phone market is weak with only 23% of respondents saying they will purchase or upgrade their cell phone in the next six months.

Of the 23% of respondents planning to upgrade their phones in the next six months the top choice for a new phone is the Apple iPhone with 17% saying the iPhone was for them. The second place phone on the upgrade wish list was a RIM device with 15% saying a BlackBerry was in their future.

The most recently introduced Palm smartphone is the Palm Centro offered via Sprint at a bargain price for a smartphone of $99. Even the low cost of the Centro couldn’t make Palm customers happy according to the report.

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Lets think this over?
By pauldovi on 2/13/2008 1:43:04 PM , Rating: 5
I would expect the iPhone to be on the top of the list. After all, those users payed close to $500 for their devices. Most of us with smart phones got them for free or less than $100.

I have a Moto Q that I got for free. I can't complain, it works great.

This reminds me of people comparing OSX on a $2500 Mac Book Pro to Vista on a $400 Dell. Which one do you think is going to be faster?

RE: Lets think this over?
By Hoser McMoose on 2/13/2008 5:35:29 PM , Rating: 5
There's also the matter of Apple fanboys. The simple fact is that Apple could release a shiny, polished turd and have thousands of people pay hundreds of dollars for it and say that it's the best turd they had ever used!

The iPhone seems like a fine product, but really you need to take some of these customer satisfaction surveys with a grain of salt, they certainly don't always indicate product quality.

RE: Lets think this over?
By masher2 on 2/13/2008 6:45:18 PM , Rating: 3
In general, I don't like Apple products, but the iPhone really is a step above most phones in useability and overall ergonomics, in a way that's difficult to explain to anyone who hasn't tried using one themselves.

RE: Lets think this over?
By Lord 666 on 2/13/2008 9:36:58 PM , Rating: 4
After using a real QWERTY keyboard on a BB or Treo, I found it extremely difficult to "type" on the iPhone.

If they release an update that allows keyboard typing in landscape mode and 3G modem, then the product will be viable for corporate use.

RE: Lets think this over?
By winterspan on 2/14/2008 3:05:59 AM , Rating: 1
"then the product will be viable for corporate use."

So you represent all corporate users in the world now?
I have had or used just about every PDA, Smartphone, and PocketPC in existence in addition to being a mobile.NET developer. I've ALWAYS hated the small mushy plastic keys on most WinMo phones, especially on the Treo's I used for so long.

The iPhone is a breathe of fresh air. I don't even put it's keyboard into the same category as other attempts at doing a soft touch-keyboard. It is miles ahead of the rest.
And after about 5 days of writing TXTs and emails, I'm actually about 50% faster then typing on my old Treo 700W.

RE: Lets think this over?
By Locutus465 on 2/13/2008 5:41:30 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder how Windows Mobile figures in, I have a Windows Mobile 5 device (i730) right now. Generally I like it except the following complaints some of which might be blameable more on samsung/vzw software than Microsoft.

1) A touch slow, then again this was designed for WM 2003
2) Had to reformat due to lockups, seems mostly fixed since reformat
3) Bluetooth support quesionable, the phone app will in many casese let you start a call form your head set, then turn off the headset when actually placing the call. grrrr.

Over all, I'm pretty happy with it though and plan to stick with WM for the forseeable future (make and certainly model are likely to change though). I love the compatibility with Microsoft products (partiularly office), I love pocket outlook (used to check hotmail/imap email/and push sync w/my pop acct via VZW custom app). 3rd party apps are another biggie for me. I bought a chat application that works with my AIM/ICQ/Yahoo/MSN and that's a requirement for me, I also musth have my pocket Mahjong as a meeting survial stradegy ;)

RE: Lets think this over?
By robinthakur on 2/14/2008 4:33:59 AM , Rating: 1
I guess the answer according to the survey is that it doesn't figure in at all. Having owned an HTC TYTN, considered the best Windows Mobile platform of its time, I got fed up with the poor build quality (screen fell out of calibration several times per day, keys all had differing sensitivities and there was alot of play in the slide mechanism), the unintuitive, and laggy PHONE software (it is a phone first and foremost), horrid grey brick styling and the absolutely horrid, fiddly interface. Along with the fact that it often dropped calls, I had to get rid of it. I swapped it for a Blackberry 8800 initially, which was amazingly better as a phone and txt machine, then got seduced and bought an iPhone. Currently the most happy I've ever been with a phone, it is absolutely the best to use. I'm sure even the TYTN probably beats it on specs, but what's the good if 99% of the population couldn't figure out how to use it, and the 1% that can take much longer to do anything? I'm not changing til the next iPhone hits, then it might well be upgrade time.

RE: Lets think this over?
By michael2k on 2/13/2008 8:08:30 PM , Rating: 1
Well, since you mention it...

For $499 Dell has a single core 1.86GHz Celeron with 512MB where Apple has a 2.4GHz Core 2 with 2GB for $2,499. Also assume that the Dell is preloaded with junk where the Mac is not (I've used both, that is how they are shipped) and you have anywhere from 1.5x faster on single threaded apps to 3.5x faster on multi-threaded memory intensive apps. Even more so if Core Audio can come into play where the Dell has a low end X3100 integrated graphics card and Apple has the Nvidia 8600GM with 256MB dedicated memory.

So you pay 5x the price for (at the extremes) 3.5x the performance.

Definitely agree
By BrownJohn on 2/13/2008 1:22:29 PM , Rating: 2
The Palm Treo 700w that I use for work is a pile. It could have something to do with the OS, though. If I had the choice I would have gone with a blackberry.

RE: Definitely agree
By Cygni on 2/13/2008 1:26:07 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed, this Treo is a hunk of junk and I cant wait to sell it on eBay (or throw it into a river... havent decided which one to do yet.) Im waiting for the Gen2 iPhone, then ill jump.

RE: Definitely agree
By Lord 666 on 2/13/2008 1:51:12 PM , Rating: 3
More than likely, the Treo would survive the river dip. Dropped my 700P in a toliet when i was trashed, but did not realize it at the time. Came back couple hours later and found it. Let it dry for 3 days and it was working with noticeable moisture between the touch screen layers.

I've had all of the Palm models (600, 650, and 700P) since 2004 and swear by them. Had a Verizon BB 8830, but returned it because the silver buttons with blue backlight made it tough to read. When the Verizon BB Curve finally comes out, hopefully it will not be silver... then I will give it a try.

RE: Definitely agree
By EntreHoras on 2/13/2008 2:04:33 PM , Rating: 2
Dropped my 700P in a toliet

And you later touch it and use it?!?!


RE: Definitely agree
By helios220 on 2/13/2008 4:12:46 PM , Rating: 3
Sure, sounds kind of gross. But then again, people do horrible* things to the very same body parts that are the source of some of the waste that goes into toilets... and well it seems less gross then. Everything is subjective.

* i.e. amazing

RE: Definitely agree
By oab on 2/13/2008 2:29:27 PM , Rating: 4
Dropped my 700P in a toliet when i was trashed,

You sent it back home to where it belongs, and then you re-enlist it for another tour of duty? DESPOT!

RE: Definitely agree
By JosefTor on 2/13/2008 10:56:55 PM , Rating: 2
I don't quite have a Palm phone but I have the Palm TX hand held organizer and it is the worst PDA I have ever used. It is large, has an old OS that looks ancient, lacks functionality, and just operates poorly in my opinion. I know use before looks but... it looks like they got both wrong.

RE: Definitely agree
By Samus on 2/14/2008 2:24:01 AM , Rating: 2
I've had my blackberry 7250 or whatever (older big one with full keyboard and not-so-colorful screen) for 3 years.

Two batteries later, I still dont have a need to upgrade. It works.

What about the customer base?
By awer26 on 2/13/2008 1:49:49 PM , Rating: 4
Even though it is a generalization, I think one overlooked factor is the type of people that own each device. Most of the buyers of the iPhone purchased it b/c they wanted an iPhone and nothing else - they would likely say they loved it regardless of how many times it needed to be sent in for repairs. Those who purchased a Blackberry or PDA-phone want whatever they feel allows the most productivity. These people are more likely to state that they are unhappy for whatever reason.

By AlphaVirus on 2/13/2008 5:00:29 PM , Rating: 2
Completely true.
Majority of people who purchase RIM phones are looking for a business solution and majority of people who purchase iphone are looking for a 'hip' class acceptance.

A blackberry can do just about anything you throw at it but a lot of the time business users like to push it to the limit (I work with several that do this). Electronics can only go so far and sometimes people try to overload them.

The iphone has well passed the point of being hip so its userbase is pretty happy with being the ones carrying them around.

Also I would be interested to see the age range of the users in this study. I only know 2 people that have an iphone, a few others had it and returned it. Majority of adults I know either have a simple phone that they only use for cell phone function while the other portion have smartphones that they use for business functions.

By robinthakur on 2/14/2008 4:44:09 AM , Rating: 1
they would likely say they loved it regardless of how many times it needed to be sent in for repairs

Whilst I dig Apple's appeal, bad products and bad customer service deserve and always will destroy a company's reputation with consumers. The fact that the iPhone is so high in the survey says that actually people are not having the problems you describe. If my iPhone developed a problem which necessitated it being sent for repair, it would severely dent my confidence in Apple and ding my satisfaction with the product, period.

I buy apple because out of all the ipod's iphones and 1 macbook i've ever bought, none ever had problems, hence my satisfaction with the products is high. Just because we own iPhones does not make us apple-zombies, prick us do we not bleed etc. btw I used to have a RIM blackberry 8800 which was superb little workhorse, highly recommend it, although that screen scratches like nothing else!

Not exactly what I would call a scientific study
By borismkv on 2/13/2008 2:10:58 PM , Rating: 2
There are a couple of major flaws with this company's findings.

#1. The group surveyed was not selected at random.
The Alliance is a network of 14,000 highly-qualified business, technology and medical professionals in leading companies of select industries. The Alliance is surveyed weekly on a wide range of business and investment research and intelligence topics.

What this means is that the results of the survey show trends among members of the ChangeWave Alliance, and while it can be an indicator of broad consumer tendancies, it is far from being fully representative of a real world result.

#2. The report given only shows the "Very Satisfied" results. What about the number of people that are just "Satisfied" with their phone? How about the percentage that would like to offer up their phones for a "Will it blend?" commercial? None of that information is given. The percentage of "Very satisfied" people is not nearly as important a measure for actual customer satisfaction as the ratio of satisfied or very satisfied vs. unsatisfied and very unsatisfied customers.

For example, what if 28% of iPhone customers rated themselves as "very unsatisfied" with the iPhone and let's say 30% of Blackberry users rated themselves as merely "satisfied" with it. That would tell you that more people are satisfied with a Blackberry than an iPhone, and the results of the study would change entirely. I'm not going to suggest that this is the case, but the simple fact of the matter is that without all of the survey information being available, the given results of this survey are useless as anything but fodder for fanboys.

By bldckstark on 2/13/2008 2:15:59 PM , Rating: 2
Samuel Clemson once stated:
There are three kinds of lies..
Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics.

This one falls into the Statistics realm.

By Alias1431 on 2/13/2008 10:42:04 PM , Rating: 2
By hij0deltiger on 2/14/2008 12:49:21 AM , Rating: 2
Beat me to the punch!

I don't need anything fancy
By CRimer76 on 2/13/2008 5:27:30 PM , Rating: 2
I just want a phone that has good reception and a decent camera.

And every LG phone I have owned has been just that. I've tried Motorola and Nokia and hated them. LG phones have always been good to me and extremely reliable and tough. I'll probably never buy another brand.

I <3 my LG VX8350

Rate Me !!!
By lolxman on 2/14/2008 7:22:11 AM , Rating: 2
Well, since what the users bought is considered "Pinnacle of technology creation" and "Gift of God", they must surely be(and have to be)satisfied with iPhone.

iKnow iHate iPhone. Wow

"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad
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