Apple iOS closes market gap with Android because of better brand loyalty

in iOS
Smartphone activation estimates in the June quarter suggests that Apple's iOS has closed the market share gap with Android.

Credit: Andrew O'Hara, AppleInsider
Credit: Andrew O'Hara, AppleInsider

For customers that purchased or otherwise acquired a new phone in quarter ending in June, iOS and Android both had 50% of the total market share, according to estimates by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners.

This is significant because Android has long had a steady lead over iOS using the data metric. In most quarters, Android had as much as 60% of the market share.

"Apple iOS and Google Android are now roughly at parity in terms of share of buyers," said Josh Lowitz, a founder and partner at CIRP. "In the past couple of years, iOS has closed the gap, and now splits the market with Android."

CIRP suggests that loyalty and brand switching explain the change in smartphone activations. In a market with minimal switching, loyalty to the iPhone and the Apple ecosystem has remained steady or increased.

"In the most recent quarter, Apple had an edge in loyalty, with 93% of prior iPhone owners upgrading to a new iPhone, compared to 88% of Android owners staying with Android," said CIRP's Mike Levin.

Over several years, loyalty has been steadily increasing for Apple while remaining flat for Android. According to CIRP, this has allowed Apple to gain market share.

CIRP's findings are estimates based on a survey of 500 U.S. customers that activated a new or used iPhone in the three months between April and June 2021. Although that's a small sample size, other reports have suggested a similar uptick in iOS loyalty compared to Android.

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  • Reply 1 of 7
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,531member
    People buy knockoffs because they’re CHEAPER let’s get that straight. iKnockoff morons like to pretend that every user has a choice between both. Nope. Some
    people don’t even have iPhone in their budget and most people will buy the cheapest product available and go home. This is true in every consumer category. it’s why McDonald’s and Oreos are still around.

    With that said, Apple is doing phenomenal. If iPhone SE stays on the market next generation Apple’s market share will rise even more after an SE price drop. A $350 iPhone will dip into more people’s (not all) budget.
  • Reply 2 of 7
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,472member
    Loyalty remains flat for Android? Of course. Who remains loyal to a plain vanilla platform with almost no original ideas, whose only claim to fame is market share, a platform for lemmings.
  • Reply 3 of 7
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
  • Reply 4 of 7
    Rayz2016 said:
    More like @Davidw bait who was arguing with Gator that iOS does NOT have majority share in US smartphone sales against Android in this thread IAC CEO says Apple is 'worse' than Google, likely the next antitrust target - General Discussion Discussions on AppleInsider Forums
  • Reply 5 of 7
    thttht Posts: 4,040member
    I find this activation statistic rather remarkable for Apple. It's an amazing achievement. Apple has an ASP of $800 on iPhones while Android phones are probably around $200. That the number of phone activations could be about 50:50 split between the two is bonkers crazy.

    It's a testament to carrier subsidy/trade-in programs and payment programs from carriers such that they can get the upsell on much more expensive phones.
  • Reply 6 of 7
    IreneWIreneW Posts: 241member
    "CIRP's findings are estimates based on a survey of 500 U.S. customers that activated a new or used iPhone in the three months between April and June 2021."

    So, how could they compare to Android, if they only talked to iOS users? 
    avon b7tokyojimu
  • Reply 7 of 7
    The sample size of 500 is problematic for drawing conclusions. Did they just hang out at the local mall and ask people? That's going to skew the data heavily towards the norm for the socio-economic group that visits that particular mall, and you'd have to know whether or not that norm is representative of the nation as a whole (as an example).

    Any consumer survey that has a sample size of less than 10,000 is probably taken from a limited geographical area. Any survey that only includes responses from a single website suffers from a similar grouping problem.

    While the survey results may be in line with other reports, without knowing the sample size and collection methods of all surveys you simply cannot draw meaningful conclusions that are likely to hold true with a larger data set.

    Here endeth the lesson.
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