updated 08:00 pm EDT, Wed July 3, 2013
First iPhone, then iPad continues to rank high in customer satisfaction
Following on from an earlier report that found the iPhone beating both Samsung and other Android-based smartphones in Samsung's home court of South Korea, the National Consumer Satisfaction Index has also revealed that the iPad has also beaten Korean companies Samsung and LG in customer satisfaction for the third year running. The tablet survey was drawn from a sample of only 278 people rather than the more than 40,000 from the smartphone sample, and reflects Korea's small --but slowly growing -- tablet market.
The NCSI has ranked tablets since 2010, and the iPad has achieved the highest tablet scores for customer satisfaction ever since. It improved its ranking this year by 1.4 percent, hitting 74 percent satisfaction. The Betanews report credited the introduction of the iPad mini to the market, as well as the iPad's natural advantages such as the bevy of tablet-native apps, the ability to run iPhone apps through smooth upscaling. Also cited was the quality of iPad construction and the "rich user touch experience."
The repeated top ranking for the iPad in Korea reflects similar awards won by Apple in North America. The iPad has been the top-ranked tablet for the last two years with JD Power and Associates, which has also given the iPhone the semi-annual top smartphone award nine times. Already the top-selling brand of tablet and smartphone in the US, both of Apple's main iOS devices are also growing market share in North America in the face of increased competition from Samsung in particular.
Thanks to the focus on measuring "customer sat" by Apple CEO Tim Cook, the statistics on how much customers actually like the product after they have bought and used it for a while, has attracted more attention from industry analysts trying to work out why the "defection rate" between Android and iOS mostly goes in just one direction. While experts often cite the "stickiness" of Apple's integrated app stores and services eco-system, along with the company's integrated approach to cloud syncing, the company has done well against the overall onslaught of more than 400 competitors that have emerged over the last year despite usually being at the more expensive and older end of competing products.
It could be that positive word of mouth, high levels of user engagement and obvious customer enjoyment of Apple's efforts may play more of a role in the company's fortunes than most pundits give it credit for. While some companies focus on the "short attention span" segment of the market with a dizzying array of new products, Apple has stuck for the most part to a philosophy outlined by former CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs: do a few things well.
Please note that the chart below reflects rankings for a wide variety of products, not just tablets.