Survey: Apple brand loyalty at an all-time high of 92% as Android brands plummet

Following a decline in the first three quarters due to the response to COVID-19, smartphone shipments saw a positive rebound in Q4 thanks to heavy demand for Apple’s iPhone 12, 12 Pro, and 12 Pro Max models. SellCell has conducted a survey to gauge the brand loyalty of five major smartphone brands, determine the preferred brand of choice for switchers, discover factors affecting brand loyalty and brand switching, and find the most- and least-popular flagship smartphones. The survey included more than 5000 US-based smartphone users, aged 18 years or older, with any of the five major smartphone brands, including Apple, Samsung, Google, LG, and Motorola.

Apple's flagship iPhone 12 Pro Max features the largest display ever on an iPhone, a pro camera system with the new sensor-shift OIS on the Wide camera and longer focal length Telephoto camera, a LiDAR Scanner, A14 Bionic, and much more.
Apple’s flagship iPhone 12 Pro Max features the largest display ever on an iPhone, a pro camera system with the new sensor-shift OIS on the Wide camera and longer focal length Telephoto camera, a LiDAR Scanner, A14 Bionic, and much more.

Smartphone Brand Loyalty Survey Highlights

• The brand loyalty for Apple is at an all-time high of nearly 92% (up from 90.5% in 2019)
• Meanwhile, Samsung loyalty has dropped 11.7% from 85.7% in 2019 to 74% in 2021
• Apple users are nearly 18% more loyal to their brand than Samsung users
• 26% of Samsung users will jump ship to another brand next time they upgrade
• Of the Samsung defectors, a majority (53%) will switch to an iPhone the next time they upgrade, with most (31.5%) indicating privacy concerns as the main reason for the switch
• At over 25%, value for money also seems to be a significant rationale for switching away from Samsung
• Much like Samsung, brand loyalty among Google Pixel users has dropped 18.8% from 84% in 2019 to 65.2% in 2021
• Motorola and LG users are the most disloyal bunch, with circa 71% and 62.6%, respectively, of existing users stating that they will be looking to move when they upgrade
• 46.6% of respondents think the new iPhone 12 range is the best range vs. 30.4% who think the S21 range is their favorite

Apple’s iPhone 12 Tops Most Popular Smartphones List

1. Apple iPhone 12 — 17%
2. Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max — 12.7%
3. Samsung Galaxy S21 — 11.4%
4. Apple iPhone 12 Pro — 10.6%
5. Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra — 10%
6. Samsung Galaxy S21+ — 9%
7. Google Pixel 5 — 8.1%
8. Apple iPhone 12 Mini — 6.3%
9. Other — 5%
10. Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 5G — 3.1%
11. Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G — 2.5%
12. LG Wing 5G — 2.3%
13. Motorola Razr 5G — 1.2%
14. Motorola Edge S — 0.8%

MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, based on this smartphone brand loyalty survey, with 31.5% of Samsung defectors indicating privacy concerns as the main reason for their upgrade to a real iPhone, Apple’s commitment to user privacy is finally turning from handicap to selling point!


  1. Good news. This shows that millionaires in Congress will have a difficult time extracting more payoffs from Apple by lumping it into the same group as FB, Google, and Amazon in their attempt to break them up.

  2. I got mad at Samsung two weeks ago, lying bastards which they are. They advertised esim for three models now, and when my Note 8 still doesn’t have it, I decided to stop being silly and get an iPhone again (since the 3GS). I wanted to carry a flagship dual sim phone. Since Samsung “Appled” the S21, which still has no esim, I figured what the heck.

    So I bought an unlocked, carrier free 12 Pro Max with 256 gigs on the net, picked it up near at an Apple Store my office. Was immediately reminded why I left Apple at the Store (just use you old charger, do you really not have an existing iPhone?). They offered to sell me a charger, I told the. I will take care of that elsewhere.

    On my way home, a wave of buyer’s remorse hit me. All the “club BS”. Returned it to the Apple Store, unopened, near my house. Total time of ownership… about an hour.

    Loyalty is for fools.

  3. All companies are being Wall Streeted. Not including charger for enviro reasons is complete BS.

    Customer service, or other “doing good” practices (like enviro) are all linked to bottom line. It always has been and are inseparable, but we’ve entered into another realm and it doesn’t taste so great.

  4. The Stats as reported are a bit convoluted for the question of “iOS vs Android”.

    To that end, here’s some clarifiation:

    92% loyal to Apple (iOS) –> implies 8% defection rate (to Android)

    74% loyal to Samsung –> implies 26% defection rate (to non-Samsung Android & to iOS)

    Breakdown of 26% defectors: 53% to iOS, 26% to other Android, and 21% unaccounted for.

    53% of 26% = 14% of Samsung defecting to Apple / iOS
    26% of 26% = 7% of Samsung defecting to other Android Makes
    21% of 26% = 5% unaccounted for (probably includes dropping entirely)

    Thus, the breakdown for Samsung is:
    76% Stay w/Samsung
    14% go to iOS
    7% go to other Android

    5% unaccounted for

    102% (not 100% because of rounding errors)

    So in the big picture on iOS vs Android “churn”, the KISS summary is:

    iOS: 8% loss to competition (all Android brands)

    Android (as per Samsung only data): 14% loss to competition (iOS)

    Delta: +6 percentage points

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