11 Comments

Summary:

Apple has an 89-percent retention rate, according to a survey conducted by UBS Research. The research firm polled 515 smartphone owners asking which phones they owned and their next smartphone purchase. The results are good news for Apple, not so much for RIM and Nokia.

white-black-iphone-4

Apple has an 89-percent retention rate, according to a survey conducted by UBS Research. The research firm polled 515 smartphone owners asking which phones they owned and their next likely smartphone purchase. While the sample size is very small, it does give us a view into broader trends in the smartphone market.

In general, retention rates appear to be falling for most of the OEMs. Relatively, Apple’s retention rates have held up incredibly well even as its market share has risen. Interestingly, when we look at all consumers who are considering changing handset OEM provider, Apple remains a significant net beneficiary. Alongside Apple, only Samsung and HTC also appear as net beneficiaries (more users won than users lost). Interestingly, of our respondents who are current Apple subscribers, only 6% indicated that they intended to move to a different OEM, with 4% saying they were undecided. This suggests that the retention rate for Apple could end up being as high as 93%. [UBS Research]

RIM has seen its retention rate drop from 62 percent to 33 percent over past 18 months, when UBS conducted a similar survey in March 2010. In comparison to Apple, Android (ecosystem-wide) has a retention of 55 percent and HTC has a retention rate of about 39 percent. Samsung has a retention rate of 28 percent. Nokia, which had an implied retention rate of 42 percent, has seen it drop to 24 percent. Ouch!

  1. Kingsley Uyi Idehen Thursday, September 22, 2011

    Any route to the raw data provided by UBS? Basically, a Google Spreadsheet or even raw HTML table etc.. Linking Information to its Data Sources is immensely valuable to both publishers and readers.

    Share
  2. John Harrington, Jr. Thursday, September 22, 2011

    RIM isn’t getting any better at retaining their customers; slowly but surely even their most proud users are selecting app enabled Androids and iPhones to aid in their processes. Is your workplace ready for this type of change? Click to view an informative webinar by Fiberlink where you’ll learn how to manage your mobile devices in the enterprise in a post-BlackBerry world: http://bit.ly/mRS0dk

    Share
  3. was this global survey or done only in US?

    Share
    1. Look at chart 4

      Share
  4. And this is why Android OEMs put those skins on their phones. They aren’t able to separate themselves with the OS alone. Even if you like the specs of a new android phone better, if you are happy with iOS, odds are you will just wait for the next iPhone, even if your upgrade is available now.

    Apple’s strategy is what’s keeping them from winning the OS market share, but its keeps them selling the hardware, which is probably just what they want.

    Share
  5. The survey sample, which is small, seems to be biased towards current iPhone owners, which would always throw up a higher retention number for Apple using their methodology. I hope UBS isn’t building its models off this data…

    Share
    1. I agree, n=51, while significant, is not a big number

      Share
  6. find bbm users all around the world on aslpin.com.

    Share
  7. This entire survey is chicken$#!+. 515 people? First off, many could have had low end Android phones on pre paid carriers. The specific models weren’t listed. That makes a difference. People on Cricket or Virgin Mobile with sorry models would love to have an iPhone over their low end Android smartphone. In addition, some folks might’ve been in contracts on carriers who don’t offer and didn’t offer an iPhone at the time they got the Android model they’d like to get rid of now. This entire survey is so skewed to make retention rates of iPhone users, while high, high because Android phones are beneath iOS devices which isn’t true. Right now, and even after the new iPhone debuts, there will be newer more powerful, higher performing 4G enabled Android handsets on 3 of the 4 major carriers in the US. These carriers will also still be offering these newer Android devices at prices comparable to or exceeding that of the new and current iPhone, and people will choose those. They have iPhone money. They don’t want the iPhone. Poll high end Android who recently bought a current Android phone in the last year and compare that to the same population of iPhone buyers with a much larger sample size. That would probably yield a different outcome.

    Share
  8. I dont think we can compare mobiles of different brands, individuals who love to install and play with Apps will certainly go with Andriod, who likes the touch and the classic look will go with Apple & Blackberry is not meant for apps it is a business phone (the biggest question is if BB is not good they why companies prefer BB as official phone ?) ….. i would say every phone has it’s do and dont’s you have to choose what you want.

    Infact i love my Blackberry a lot and will definately go with blackberry blindly :)

    Share
  9. I dont think we can compare mobiles of different brands, individuals who love to install and play with Apps will certainly go with Andriod, who likes the touch and the classic look will go with Apple & Blackberry is not meant for apps it is a business phone (the biggest question is if BB is not good they why companies prefer BB as official phone ?) ….. i would say every phone has it’s do and dont’s you have to choose what you want.

    Infact i love my Blackberry a lot and will definately go with blackberry blindly :)

    Note: One drawback of Apple, you can only tranfer files from a Apple i phone to another Apple i phone, not with any other phone :)

    Share

Comments have been disabled for this post