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iOS users aren’t as loyal as Android fans, study claims


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The battle between iOS and Android inspires bewilderingly fierce loyalty, but who has the most stalwart fanbase?

Apparently, it’s Android, with the Google operating system taking the lead for loyalty, according to new data.

Research shows that between July 2013 and June 2015, 82% of Android owners stayed true to the OS when buying a new phone.

Apple was close behind Android, with a slightly lower 78% loyalty rate.

The data comes courtesy of a new study by market research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP), released on Tuesday and first spotted by cnet.

CIRP surveyed 4,000 individuals across the US to examine smartphone buying trends.

SEE ALSO: How to switch from Android to iPhone

Not surprisingly, the study found that while Android and iOS both had a large number of steadfast fans, the same isn’t true for rival systems.

For instance, Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform managed to retain only 19% of its users.

Worse still, BlackBerry clung onto a paltry 4% of users over the two-year period.

As such, it seems that both iOS and Android are the most tempting options for operating systems in the modern age. No surprises there, then.

However, the study struggled to determine the reasons behind customers opting to stay with Android or iOS.

“The dynamic between Apple iOS and Google Android is not well understood,” said CIRP co-founder Josh Lowitz. “Even the basic loyalty rate, the measure of how each operating system retains its own users, is not widely known.”

Lowitz continues: “Conventional wisdom says the Apple ‘ecosystem’ promotes loyalty, while Android readily gives up users to iOS. Our analysis has a more nuanced view on OS selection, and indicates Android user loyalty has caught up and even exceeds that of iOS.”

SEE ALSO: How to switch from iPhone to Android

Both Apple and Google are due to launch major upgrades to their mobile operating systems in the coming months.

Apple is currently running a public beta test of its upcoming iOS 9 software.

Google, meanwhile, announced its Android M upgrade back at the annual I/O developer conference, due for launch in autumn.

Microsoft is also getting in on the action, readying up its own major software overhaul with the imminent launch of Windows 10 Mobile.

Are you a bleating iSheep or part of the Fandroid robo-horde? Tell us why in the comments below.

Check out our smartphone group test video below:

Prem Desai

August 12, 2015, 5:23 pm

Hardly surprising. I'm one of the defectors .....

Both iOS and android do almost the same thing - some differences but not major.

Both have tons of apps.

iOS is tied to Apple hardware so you're restricted to choice and have to pay silly money.
Android handset are plentiful so you can choose cheap to silly money.

Moving from iOS to android is like stepping out of the matrix into the real world. A lot more flexibility - don't like the texting app, mail app, calendar app, contact app, etc no worries, just install another.

And the widgets - genius!


August 12, 2015, 6:13 pm

What a headline! Say it ain't so. I thought it was Apple users who were all brainwashed kool-aide drinking cult members worshiping at the alter of Saint Steve Jobs. Have we been mislead? Should we now be speaking of "The Android Faithful"?


August 12, 2015, 6:39 pm

If customer 'loyalty' is conjured through holding them captive it will quickly evaporate the moment the barricades are surmounted. True loyalty is when customers are free to go but choose not to. I'm guessing Android device manufacturers have no option but to build loyalty through durably compelling products, since their customers can easily go elsewhere. Android loyalty rides on their coat-tails.


August 12, 2015, 7:21 pm

This is unpossible! Everyone knows (I guess, since I've heard this a zillion times) that all Apple buyers are iSheep that will only mindlessly buy Apple products.

Unlike Apple Haters, who are totally open-minded (rolls eyes).


August 12, 2015, 8:08 pm

I think Windows and Blackberry have the strongest loyal fans. Droids are 10 a penny on most devices and a security nightmare and appleBling are just that blingWare for the look at me's all looks no brains meaning hell yeah rip me off baby I need street cred :(


August 12, 2015, 8:47 pm

Durably compelling products that will almost never be upgraded to even the next OS version. Very loyalty inducing. Give me a device that can be upgraded a few times before I have to replace it.


August 12, 2015, 8:53 pm

iDevices may cost more to buy, but they get you more when you sell them too. I speak from experience. I've had two Android phones and gone back to iPhone both times. Usually when I change to a new iPhone I get at least half the cost back by selling my previous handset. When that handset was an Android it was almost worthless, even though it had been brand new about seven months earlier. The fact is it had already been cut adrift by the manufacturer as they'd said it wasn't going to be upgraded to the next OS version. It was 7 months old! It cost me a fortune to go back to iPhone as my Android was worth so little. But I still did it gladly, and after two dalliances with Android, I don't think I'll do it again. They're too expensive!


August 12, 2015, 9:42 pm

"This is unpossible!"

The word is "impossible", but I guess for an illiterate person it is "unpossible".

Either way, you are correct. It is impossible that Android users are more "loyal" than iOS users, simply due to the fact that there have been MANY MORE switchers from Android to iOS, than the other way around, and that ratio has been widening.


August 13, 2015, 5:49 am

"Unpossible" is a perfectly cromulent word, as any fan of the Simpsons knows.

Hamish Campbell

August 13, 2015, 7:12 am

I even find it hard to say IMpossible now.

One of the truly memorable Simpson lines.

Hamish Campbell

August 13, 2015, 7:16 am

These are percentages, so it's not unpossible. You'll have to check CIRP's methodologies to see if they are likely to have got it right, or not.

Andy Race

August 13, 2015, 9:32 am

Who really cares?

Prem Desai

August 13, 2015, 11:26 am

You raise a valid point.

Thing is though, when buying a new phone, I care more about the user experience than the resale value afterwards. In almost all cases, my older phones have been given away (apple and android) so the resale value has not cropped up as an issue.

At the end of the day, everyone has different requirements and choose what they think will suit them best. If the resale value is important to you, then that's fine too.

Alternatively, you can buy a cheapo android phone (moto g?) which you can discard after a year. You'll still end up with the android flexibility on a decent handset and the total price is less than the iPhone depreciation after a year .....


August 14, 2015, 7:52 am

Like a Moto G or similar.

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