CIRP: No Big Spike In iPhone Buyers Who Dumped Android

Switching said to hold relatively steady during past three iPhone launches
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Chicago – The launch of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus didn’t cause a bigger spike in the percentage of U.S. iPhone buyers who switched from Android than previous iPhone launches did, Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) found.

A total of 19 percent of people who bought an iPhone in the October-December 2014 quarter said they switched from an Android device, up from 16 percent who switched in the fourth quarter of 2013 after the launch of the iPhone 5S and 5C but equal to the 19 percent who switched in the fourth quarter of 2012 after the launch of the iPhone 5.

For the past three years, during the first full quarter after the launch of new iPhone models, “Android users have accounted for roughly the same share of new iPhone buyers,” said CIRP partner Mike Levin.  Apple CEO Tim Cook recently said the majority of new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus buyers have switched from Android, but “it appears that Apple enjoyed a much higher rate of Android switching outside the U.S. than in the more mature U.S. market,” Levin said.

In the past 10 quarters, CIRP found that among U.S. iPhone buyers, 16 percent to 26 percent switched from an Android phone.

“Over time, the share of iPhone buyers that come from the Android operating system has varied seasonally, yet remained relatively consistent,” said partner Josh Lowitz. In fact, he said, an increasing share of iPhone buyers are repeat iPhone buyers. For the quarter ending December 2014, 70 percent of iPhone buyers already owned an iPhone, up from the year-ago 60 percent and up from less than 50 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012.

“We have seen a gradual decline in the share [of iPhone buyers] coming from Blackberry and basic phones as the base of Blackberry users shrinks, and there are fewer first-time smartphone buyers left in the U.S.,” he said. “So, as the iPhone market matures, an increasing share of buyers are repeat iPhone buyers.”

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