Analyst: Apple Customers Think the Sun Shines Out Its Apps

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) customers responded to a survey regarding their purchasing intentions in such a way that Raymond James’s Tavis McCourt says demonstrates higher loyalty toward the company than even Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) more popular Android operating system has been able to muster.

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The survey, conducted online from March 14-26, had 250 people taking part, answering a series of questions that McCourt composed. From their responses, McCourt concluded that users of Apple’s iPhone are willing to upgrade more frequently than users of other platforms, and are more willing to stick with Apple products than customers of other platforms.

However, McCourt’s survey also found areas in which the iPhone maker could improve, namely in pricing. According to his survey, a reduction in price is a principal factor that would bring in new buyers. A larger screen on the iPhone might also prompt existing customers to upgrade, he found.

The survey found that 47 percent of respondents had plans to upgrade their smartphones in 2013. However, 53 percent of the iPhone owners responding to the survey said they expect to upgrade this year, whereas 43 percent of non-iPhone owners signaled their intentions to do so.

Furthermore, iPhone users seemed more content with their user experience, and are thus more committed to the Apple brand than are users of other platforms, which should ease some concern that customers are switching from the iPhone to Android-based smartphones. “Of all iPhone owners, 70% in our survey indicated they would stay with iPhone and are very pleased with the experience,” McCourt wrote. Only 14 percent of respondents signaled their intention to switch to Android, and even fewer — 12 percent — said they were not pleased with their iPhone user experience, but will stick with the phone regardless, citing the app ecosystem as their reason for not switching to Android.

Of existing Android users, only 57 percent said they “would likely purchase another Android smartphone (mostly Samsung, only 12% Google-branded, and 6% other), while 43% were not sure (i.e., next purchase is to be determined).”

“This compares to 22% of iPhone users being unsure about their next purchase or committed to move away from iPhone.”

McCourt’s survey also asked people what would make them more likely to purchase an iPhone. Thirty-seven percent mentioned a lower price, while only 6 percent responded that a larger screen size would be the biggest draw.

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Similar questions were asked of Android and BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) users. Thirty-one percent of respondents said that “nothing” would make them purchase an Android smartphone, while 71 percent felt this way about BlackBerry. Only 20 percent of users said nothing would tempt them to purchase an iPhone.

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