Smartphone Prices Rival Features as Top Consumer Draw
While features are still the main draw for consumer smartphone purchases, lower price points are making a big impact.As wireless manufacturers have struggled to find ways to differentiate themselves with advanced features and technology since 2011, price has become an increasingly important driver in the device selection process, according to the first volume of J.D. Power's 2014 U.S. Wireless Smartphone Satisfaction Study. The study, based on experiences evaluated by 13,237 smartphone customers who have owned their current smartphone device less than one year and who are customers of the four Tier 1 carriers, measures customer satisfaction in four factors, including performance (31 percent), physical design (23 percent), features (23 percent) and ease of operation (23 percent). While smartphone owners continue to cite "features" as the primary reason for selecting their device (35 percent), the rate has declined significantly from the 2011 Vol. 2 study (57 percent). More than one-fifth (21 percent) of smartphone owners cited "price" as the main reason they chose their particular device, an increase from 13 percent in the 2011 study.
Overall satisfaction with smartphone devices is highest among AT&T customers (844), followed by Sprint (839), T-Mobile (835) and Verizon Wireless (829) customers. Overall satisfaction among smartphone owners is 837 out of a possible score of 1,000.