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Study: iPhone loyalty will give Apple the marketshare edge over Android by 2015

Study finds that iPhone loyalty will give Apple the marketshare edge over Android by 2015All Things D directs us to a new survey conducted by the Yankee Group which offers a compelling look into current smartphone ownership trends in the US and what the smartphone landscape may look like down the line.

Over the past 12 months, the Yankee Group surveyed 16,000 consumers and asked them about their smartphones and their plans for smartphone purchases in the future.

Not surprisingly, the study found that the smartphone landscape is currently dominated by the iPhone and a slew of Android devices. What's more, there doesn't seem to be any indication that's going to change anytime in the near future, despite the best efforts of Microsoft and RIM.

One of the more interesting aspects of the study centered on smartphone loyalty, and in that regard the iPhone has Android beat.

Whereas 91 percent of surveyed iPhone owners plan to purchase another iPhone, only 76 percent of Android users intend to purchase another Android device. And while 6 percent of iPhone owners indicated an intention to defect to Android, the bulk of Android defectors will be heading towards the iPhone, 18 percent to be exact.

Indeed, the Yankee Group writes that customer loyalty will be why the iPhone's share of the smartphone market will eclipse Android's come 2015.

Study finds that iPhone loyalty will give Apple the marketshare edge over Android by 2015

The Yankee Group writes:

Think of the Apple and Android ecosystems as two buckets of water. New smartphone buyers -- mostly upgrading feature phone owners -- fall like rain into the two big buckets about equally, with a smaller number falling into Windows Phone and BlackBerry buckets. However, the Android bucket leaks badly, losing about one in five of all the owners put into it. The Apple bucket leaks only about 7 percent of its contents, so it retains more of the customers that fall into it. The Apple bucket will fill up faster and higher than the Android one, regardless of the fact that the Apple bucket may have had fewer owners in it to begin with.

It's undoubtedly an interesting theory, and while there's no way to really know in which direction smartphone marketshare will tilt, one thing that does seem clear is that the smartphone market at this point is a two-player race.

On a slightly different note, Apple is still the top dog when it comes to smartphone profit share. Last year we noted how Apple's share of global profits in the smartphone industry checked in at an astonishing 75 percent.

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