The iPhone 4 launched in late June and was initially heralded as one of the most successful product releases in Apple’s history. But within days the firestorm over reception and antenna issues unleashed an exceptional degree of critical commentary.
Despite this controversy, one of the biggest unknowns has been what actual iPhone 4 owners really think about their new smart phones. To find out, a July ChangeWave survey (http://www.changewave.com) has taken an in-depth look at the reactions and opinions of 213 Apple iPhone 4 owners.
The initial satisfaction ratings for the iPhone 4 show a high degree of customer approval — with 72% of owners saying they’re “Very Satisfied” and 21% “Somewhat Satisfied” with their new phone. Despite these good scores, the initial iPhone 4 ratings aren’t quite as extraordinary as the early iPhone 3GS satisfaction numbers seen in our August 2009 survey.
The issue of dropped calls
Historically, the ChangeWave surveys have focused on the issue of dropped calls exclusively among wireless service providers. The belief has been that differences in dropped call rates are largely the result of differences between wireless provider networks. However, in the current survey, the research group has taken a close-up look at the dropped call rating among iPhone 4 owners and compared it to the dropped call rating for iPhone 3GS owners from a June 2010 ChangeWave survey.
In a surprising finding, iPhone 4 owners reported a better dropped call rating (5.2%) than their 3GS counterparts (6.3%). In other words, despite the hoopla surrounding the antenna issue, in actuality iPhone 4 owners report experiencing slightly fewer dropped calls on the average than do iPhone 3GS owners.
Despite the waves of controversy that surrounded the iPhone 4 within days of its launch, the latest Apple release is outperforming almost every other smart phone in the industry in terms of overall customer satisfaction and meeting owners’ expectations, says ChangeWave.
What’s more, in reality, iPhone 4 owners report experiencing fewer dropped calls than do iPhone 3GS owners. That said, while the iPhone 4 has been very well received, its owner ratings aren’t as high as the numbers we saw at a similar point in time for the 3GS launch.
ChangeWave says this is likely attributable to the fact that one-in-five iPhone 4 owners appear to have been at least somewhat negatively affected by the phone’s reception and antenna issues and the ensuing drumbeat of controversy.