Prices and user experience drive smartphone OS switching, poll suggests

Posted:
in iOS
There are countless reasons users may opt to jump from one mobile operating system to another, but the results of a recent poll suggest hardware pricing and user experience are key factors in making such decisions.




PCMag recently conducted a survey of 2,500 U.S. consumers to shed light on the mobile switcher phenomenon as it pertains to iOS and Android, the segment's two dominant platforms.

Only 29 percent of respondents actually admitted to swapping sides, while the rest remained steadfast with their platform of choice. Interestingly, more traded in Android for iOS (18 percent) over those that went from iOS to Android (11 percent). Of those polled, 54 percent had an iPhone, while 27 percent had a Samsung handset running some flavor of Android.

According to the poll, 47 percent of those who moved to iOS (which comes to around 202 people) said they moved to iOS for a better user experience, while 30 percent of those switching to Android said the same thing. Android's biggest benefit over iOS was cost, where 29 percent of those who went to Android cited the lower prices, presumably attached to hardware.


Source: PCMag.com


Other features were less compelling, including better features, better apps, better customer service, and faster software updates.

The survey included a few other bits of information, including the fact that 56 percent of those polled don't care about the release of new smartphones, while 34 percent buy a new phone when their contract expires. Over half said they only replace their phone when it breaks.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 21
    claire1claire1 Posts: 510unconfirmed, member
    I bet the people who switched to knockoffs because of OS updates did so at the recommendation of some blogger or youtuber spitting anti Apple BS.
    lolliverlkruppracerhomie3watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 2 of 21
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,256member
    1) How could anyone think that Android has faster updates? Not just one percent, but even one person. All Apple devices get the update the same day. No carrier or HW vendor-pushed update that comes filled with crapware. Even if we look at the Nexus or Pixel products how is that faster than what Apple offers?

    2) If this was a US poll then what Andriod-based vendors offer better customer service than Apple? Do any Android-based vendor have anything that resembles the Apple Store?
    edited August 2018 lolliverclaire1watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 3 of 21
    Here in Oz I've had two friends (one female, one male, one a professional 50yo one a retired 70yo) go into different 'shops' (in different suburbs) to ask about getting a new iPhone as an upgrade to an ageing iPhone. In both cases they were told that it'll cost them over AUD$1,000. In both cases they qualify for a 'free' iPhone SE if they sign a two year contract - but the sales assistant didn't mention this. Of course that was my advice when they contacted me later. It seems to me that the Android vendors must be offering some nice sales commissions... There's a lot of phoney (pun intended) advice going around about price...
    lolliverirelandbb-15claire1sirlance99berndogracerhomie3watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 4 of 21
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,256member
    arthurba said:
    Here in Oz I've had two friends (one female, one male, one a professional 50yo one a retired 70yo) go into different 'shops' (in different suburbs) to ask about getting a new iPhone as an upgrade to an ageing iPhone. In both cases they were told that it'll cost them over AUD$1,000. In both cases they qualify for a 'free' iPhone SE if they sign a two year contract - but the sales assistant didn't mention this. Of course that was my advice when they contacted me later. It seems to me that the Android vendors must be offering some nice sales commissions... There's a lot of phoney (pun intended) advice going around about price…
    I can see how that can affect one's view of a device even if that's an issue with the carrier trying to affect sales.
    arthurbawatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 21
    irelandireland Posts: 17,668member
    We need some more affordable premium Apple smartphones. And we need a 4.5 - 5” small size iPhone with all the high end features on iPhone X, for all of us SE lovers who want the premium Apple experience and feel these features shouldn’t be exclusive to the beasties.
    edited August 2018 bonobobarthurbaPylons
  • Reply 6 of 21
    irelandireland Posts: 17,668member
    arthurba said:
    Here in Oz I've had two friends (one female, one male, one a professional 50yo one a retired 70yo) go into different 'shops' (in different suburbs) to ask about getting a new iPhone as an upgrade to an ageing iPhone. In both cases they were told that it'll cost them over AUD$1,000. In both cases they qualify for a 'free' iPhone SE if they sign a two year contract - but the sales assistant didn't mention this. Of course that was my advice when they contacted me later. It seems to me that the Android vendors must be offering some nice sales commissions... There's a lot of phoney (pun intended) advice going around about price...
    Yes this is typical. Their commission is causing them to lie. Sometimes they also do it because of personal views and platform preference. Your friends must have asked you because ultimately they didn’t believe the sales people.
    claire1arthurbawatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 7 of 21
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,129moderator
    arthurba said:
    Here in Oz I've had two friends (one female, one male, one a professional 50yo one a retired 70yo) go into different 'shops' (in different suburbs) to ask about getting a new iPhone as an upgrade to an ageing iPhone. In both cases they were told that it'll cost them over AUD$1,000. In both cases they qualify for a 'free' iPhone SE if they sign a two year contract - but the sales assistant didn't mention this. Of course that was my advice when they contacted me later. It seems to me that the Android vendors must be offering some nice sales commissions... There's a lot of phoney (pun intended) advice going around about price...
    Yes, they’re called Spiffs, commissions to salespeople who don’t work directly for the product manufacturer.  

    Another advantage Android has at retail is big bright screens.  That sells phones when a customer is standing at a retail location doing a comparison.  No matter that those screens suck more juice, requiring a larger battery, that in aggregate across hundreds of millions of smartphones over years and years adds up to a bunch more coal-fired power plants dotting the Chinese landscape and fogging the skies, plus more lithium mined, and higher piles of electronic waste.  Apple thinks about such things and leans toward more ethical behavior whereas it’s my impression Android vendors are out for market share and the next sale.  And it’s only months or a couple short years later that the consumer taken in by that big bright display sees ghost images burned in or dead pixels and is trashing his Android handset because it never worked very well, was sluggish and buggy and can’t be updated.  But the next big bright screen and promise of the latest Android version awaits at an affordable price at the local mall. And the con game goes around one more cycle...
    edited August 2018 racerhomie3arthurbakuduwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 8 of 21
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,296member
    I don’t think Apple has anything to worry about in the platform switching game. More handwringing and fretting about nothing.
    tmaywatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 21
    nunzynunzy Posts: 662member
    It looks like very few people care about software updates.
  • Reply 10 of 21
    bonobobbonobob Posts: 196member
    nunzy said:
    It looks like very few people care about software updates.
    At least when you're only allowed to give one reason for switching. Notice the results add up to 100%, so nobody could give multiple reasons.
    radarthekatmuthuk_vanalingamnunzywatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 21
    nunzy said:
    It looks like very few people care about software updates.
    Most folks I’ve taken the time to discuss it with don’t know the difference between lollipops and ice cream and actually have no idea what operating system version they are on and less know how to upgrade at all. They also have no idea that in the android world you might be buying a device brand new that is many iterations back down the trail....They simply know they have a new phone that is cheaper and can make a call, do facebook and google and Pokémon go.... 
    arthurbaradarthekatnunzybonobobwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 12 of 21
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,665member
    Who here is surprised that Android buyers (and switchers from iOS) are primarily driven by price and are willing to trade down from a superior user experience? Anyone? Anyone?

    Strange that "security" and "privacy" weren't on the list of factors, but I suppose that would be too lop-sided.
    watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 13 of 21
    PylonsPylons Posts: 21member
    ireland said:
    We need some more affordable premium Apple smartphones. And we need a 4.5 - 5” small size iPhone with all the high end features on iPhone X, for all of us SE lovers who want the premium Apple experience and feel these features shouldn’t be exclusive to the beasties.
    Completely agree! I am still using my iPhone 5S and would really like to upgrade this autumn, but I'm quite annoyed that only the iPhones with the biggest screens get the best cameras. In my opinion the size of the X may still be alright, but it's on the border of being too large.

    On the Android vs iPhone debate here are my personal opinions:
    Reasons to get an Android phone:
    - Better hardware selection (especially for the price).
    - More RAM (yes some say Android also needs more, but with 4-8 GB commonly available on Android flagships there's no need to wait when switching between apps).
    - Memory card!!!
    - I really really hate using iTunes for managing media.

    Reasons to get an iPhone:
    - Not selling my soul to Google.
    - Apple cares more about the environment.
    - User experience and UI is properly thought through, including app development guidelines.
    - iOS upgrades are available instantly, and supported even on older models.

    Not selling my soul to Google is probably what I feel most strongly about, which is why I'm still leaning towards a new iPhone, despite the other frustrations.

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 21
    I'm not so much interested in the rationale of switchers. They opt for the neighbour's greener grass. I'd be more interested in switching penitents: those who switched from Android to iOS and back, or the other way around. How many do repent and what was the reason they switched back? Did the neighbour's grass turn out to be synthetic turf? 
    bonobobwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 21
    Soli said:
    1) How could anyone think that Android has faster updates? Not just one percent, but even one person. All Apple devices get the update the same day. No carrier or HW vendor-pushed update that comes filled with crapware. Even if we look at the Nexus or Pixel products how is that faster than what Apple offers?

    2) If this was a US poll then what Andriod-based vendors offer better customer service than Apple? Do any Android-based vendor have anything that resembles the Apple Store?
    That’s the difference between objective data and perceived quality. What such polls usually throw together is the different expectations from individual target groups. Same as e.g. with car satisfaction ratings. An owner of a Tata might be super satisfied because he/she bought it for a relatively cheap means of transport front A to B. At the same time the owner of a BMW or some other premium brand might state to be very unsatisfied because last time in garage the coffee wasn’t good or some plastic part I side has exactly the wrong shade of grey. From their POV both are “right”. 
    In addition, i would expect the result to be skewed to some degree towards stated perceived reasons why android may be better while the real reason is e.g. the inability to afford something more expensive, or lack of data (e.g. “advice” given in some phone shops). 
    Soliwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 21
    MKMcMKMc Posts: 13member
    In my country, Apple doesn't spend anywhere near as much on advertising and promotion as Samsung. They just don't seem to care. And on top of that, most Cell phone shops you go into will actively try and put you off iPhones in favour of Samsung devices because they obviously get a bigger kick-back for every Samsung device they flog. The BS I've heard sales people talk about iPhone to gullible and uninformed consumers is actually criminal.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 21
    I once switched from iOS to android. As soon as my contract was up I went back to iOS. The sales assistant, in the UK, asked me “why are you switching from android to Apple when everyone else is switching the other way?”  I couldn’t be happier since switching back to iOS. 
    arthargwatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 21
    majorslmajorsl Posts: 119unconfirmed, member
    chasm said:
    Who here is surprised that Android buyers (and switchers from iOS) are primarily driven by price and are willing to trade down from a superior user experience? Anyone? Anyone?

    Strange that "security" and "privacy" weren't on the list of factors, but I suppose that would be too lop-sided.
    I'll bite. Not everyone thinks Apple's walled garden is a better user experience. Some switch to have more options and apps available to them that are not as locked down and "we know what's best for you". I'm one of them. For me, my Android device is superior in every way to iOS. Price was not an issue, although it was nice to save a few bucks.

    Note that I was careful to say "for me". For what I like to do with devices it is simply a better option. Naturally, some prefer iOS "for them" and that's fine too.
  • Reply 19 of 21
    crosslad said:
    I once switched from iOS to android. As soon as my contract was up I went back to iOS. The sales assistant, in the UK, asked me “why are you switching from android to Apple when everyone else is switching the other way?”  I couldn’t be happier since switching back to iOS. 
    I would love to see statistics regarding how often this happpens—I bet it happens a lot. I know a lot of people, including my sister, who have done the same. I think many people figure the phones and operating systems aren’t that different (thanks, copycats!), but in daily use the differences really start to stand out, and you realize that you’re paying every day, in time and frustration, for the few bucks—or few hundred—that you saved on the hardware. 
    arthargradarthekatwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 20 of 21
    Pylons said:
    ireland said:
    We need some more affordable premium Apple smartphones. And we need a 4.5 - 5” small size iPhone with all the high end features on iPhone X, for all of us SE lovers who want the premium Apple experience and feel these features shouldn’t be exclusive to the beasties.
    Completely agree! I am still using my iPhone 5S and would really like to upgrade this autumn, but I'm quite annoyed that only the iPhones with the biggest screens get the best cameras. In my opinion the size of the X may still be alright, but it's on the border of being too large.

    Absolutely. Even if they could get the X down to the size and weight of the 6, I feel like that would be a big improvement. For years, there was a push to make phones smaller, thinner and lighter, but once the market for bigger phones was discovered, it seems that everybody has forgotten about those of us who want power in a small package. My only thought is that they’ve been creating this equivalence between screen size and price, and they’re afraid it will be harder to ask high prices for a smaller screen. That, and maybe the question of getting a strong battery into a small phone. But it seems strange that the thinnest iPhone to date, if I’m not mistaken, is the 6, and they’ve been getting heavier since then too. And if you want the luxuries of one-handed operation, great pocketability and full built-in support for your high-end headphones, the only option is the low-end model (which is still a great phone, of course). My dream phone would be about the size of an SE, but with the full-face screen and cameras of the current flagship model. And I’ll take a lighter, thinner and shatterproof aluminum back over wireless charging any day. 
    edited August 2018 bonobobcrosslad
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