iPhone, Android, and Pre Beat BlackBerry per CFI Group Customer Satisfaction Study

Posted by at 11:18 am on September 30, 2009

Smartphones with consumer-oriented functionality score best in a customer satisfaction study released today from CFI Group. A new generation of smartphone, lead by Apple’s iPhone and including Google’s Android and Palm Pre, is bringing in a new customer audience no longer dominated by business users. The CFI Group Smartphone Satisfaction Study, based on surveys of more than 1,000 smartphone users, also finds little relationship between smartphone satisfaction and satisfaction with the provider. Moreover, exclusivity contracts may have drawbacks for carriers if they invite customers drawn to the device and not the provider.

Using the methodology of the American Customer Satisfaction Index to compare smartphone platforms, the iPhone is the undisputed leader in customer satisfaction, scoring 83 on a 100-point scale, 8% higher than its nearest competitors, Android and the Pre (77). Smartphones popular among business users, like Research In Motion’s BlackBerry (73) and Palm’s Treo (70), trail significantly in customer satisfaction, while the “others” category, which includes Symbian and Windows Mobile, scores 66.

“The iPhone is the best thing to happen to the smartphone industry because it captured the imagination of a whole new set of consumers that might not have made the smartphone jump,” said Doug Helmreich, program director with CFI Group. “The iPhone raised the bar not only for other smartphones, but for the networks as well. The new breed of smartphone consumers expect more from their phones, and the iPhone may represent only the tip of a data-intensive iceberg.”

The iPhone, which is by far the leader in smartphone satisfaction, has done little to help AT&T’s customer satisfaction among smartphone owners.

Among smartphone providers, Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile tie in overall provider satisfaction, scoring 79. Sprint scores 74. AT&T’s non-iPhone smartphone customers score 73, while its iPhone users rate AT&T 69

The majority of new smartphone owners are using them for mostly personal use, a departure from the early adopters that originally used smartphones primarily for business. This new customer audience has much higher expectations of the smartphone, and the platforms that satisfy these needs rate the highest.

See full results of CFI Group Smartphone Satisfaction Survey at www.cfigroup.com.

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