Mobile Operating System Loyalty: Android Exceeds iOS

Operating System

The new Samsung Galaxy S9 may have shown that it hasn’t implemented the iPhone X ideas quite as well, like the Face ID-style system or its version on Augmented Reality Emojis. However, that doesn’t seem to matter to the owners of Samsung devices. And that’s not thanks to the Galaxy S9, but because apparently switching to iOS from Android just does not seem to happen as often as it did in previous years. Therefore, Android users are more loyal to their preferred OS and device than iOS users, according on CIRP’s (Consumer Intelligence Research Partners) report.

The company discovered that loyalty to the Android brand has been mostly the same since as early as 2016, and it keeps going strong.

Now, in 2018, Android has a 91% rate of loyalty, compared to iOS’ 86%. This was measured as the percentage of United States customers who stayed with their OS of choice when they upgraded their phone in 2017. From early 2016 to late 2017, Android loyalty increased to 91% from 89%, while iOS loyalty decreased from 88% to 85%.

The co-founder of CIRP, Mike Levin, explains this behaviour by saying that users have settled with one of the brands already: “With only two mobile operating systems at this point, it appears users now pick one, learn it, invest in apps and storage, and stick with it. Now, Apple and Google need to figure out how to sell products and services to these loyal customer bases.”

This would also be the reason why the two giant companies, Apple and Google, are focusing nowadays more and more on the services provided. In the case of Apple, that seems to be working fine, they are gaining record revenue from services like the App Store, iCloud, Apple Music, AppleCare and ApplePay. On the other hand, for Android, the higher loyalty to the brand could be thanks to its flexibility – that is, the ability to have the same operating system on a multitude of devices, which allows users to try new phones or new tablets without losing the apps they paid for, or even the time spent learning an Operating System.

One thing to be said, anyhow, is that Android has not always been the champion in this game. CIRP is not a new company; they have been doing this kind of research for years, and it seems like things were not always like this. For example, in 2013 iPhone users were more loyal to Apple than Android users were to Google. But that changed in 2014, and it’s been a bigger difference every year.

Another thing to note is that, as CIRP said, the total number of people who switched from one OS to another and the rate of switching are two different things: “We know Android has a larger base of users than iOS, and because of that larger base, the absolute number of users that switch to iOS from Android is as large or larger than the absolute number of users that switch to Android from iOS,” said Levin.” Looking at it from this perspective seems to tell us that in fact more Android users are switching to iOS than the reverse and the previously noted observations.

That being said, now we ask you: which OS are you loyal to and why? We’d like to hear your opinion in the comments! As always, stay tuned for more news regarding Android and/or iOS!