updated 10:35 am EDT, Thu April 30, 2009
iPhone Tops JD Power Ranks
JD Power on Thursday gave Apple's iPhone the highest score on its consumer satisfaction study for cellphones in early 2009. The touchscreen device earned a score of 791 out of 1,000 and beat out both those in its own smartphone category as well as traditional phones. The owners commenting on the phone gave it especially high marks for ease of use, the quality of the operating system, the feature set and the hardware design.
LG and Samsung were the only two smartphone makers to rise above the industry's average score of 751, earning scores of 772 and 759 respectively. Those below the average were primarily companies making Windows Mobile devices, with HTC, Palm and Motorola earning scores of 744, 736 and 659 each. BlackBerries also fared significantly lower than Apple with a 739 score.
In traditional phones, only LG and Sony Ericsson were above the 707-point average with marks of 733 and 712. Motorola, Sanyo, Nokia and Kyocera were close to each other but all below 700 points.
JD Power attributes the differences between smartphones and conventional phones to the improved experience for mobile Internet access as well as media playback. Those that score highest are reported as the ones that make their features the most intuitive.
The research also notes that smartphone users do use the more advanced features of their phone in practice and are more likely to ask for more. About 82 percent use calendars and contacts on a regular basis and receive approximately 17 e-mail messages per day. A full 40 percent rely solely on their smartphones as replacements for landlines where only 28 percent of traditional phone owners do the same. Smartphone customers typically pay $111 more for their phones and about $28 more per month thanks to data plans.