American Consumer Satisfaction Index Says Smartphone Owners Love Apple Most, T-Mobile Tied With AT&T For Satisfaction

The American Consumer Satisfaction Index (ASCI) released their latest findings yesterday, revealing consumer satisfaction scores for cellphone manufacturers and wireless carriers. So who were the top two victors in their respective field? The first may not surprise you  one definitely will as Apple and Sprint take top honors. ASCI collects data from more than 70,000 customers from more than 225 companies in 47 industries and 10 economic factors.

This is the first year ASCI included Apple, RIM, HTC and LG in this particular survey. Apple’s scores topped out 83 (out of 100), ranking 9 points higher than the industry average of 74 and 8 points higher than runner-ups HTC, LG and Nokia. That’s got to be hard to swallow for Motorola, Samsung and RIM, especially for Samsung who took home a score of 71, especially in wake of their industry success with the Galaxy series. The report does include feature phones, which could partly explain Nokia’s successful entry. RIM, for its own industry failings scored a 69, 14 points behind Apple and five total points below the industry average.

As for the wireless carriers, surprise surprise as Sprint customers are generally the most satisfied with the service with a score of 71. That’s hard to imagine considering the pitiful speeds Sprint puts up on their 3G/4G network. Sprint was trailed by Verizon with a score of 70, followed by T-Mobile and AT&T tied at 69. Overall, the wireless carriers saw a drop in satisfaction, except for AT&T, which enjoyed a four-point bump.

So what did we learn? People love their iPhone’s, hate RIM, and nobody really likes their wireless carrier.

Wired via ASCI

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  • I actually really do like my carrier, Tmobile.  I know, that’s why I follow this site, but after their slightly less than satisfactory level of service while the AT&T acquisition was pending, I think they’re back to their old model of service and value.  I recently switched to the value plan and couldn’t be happier that my family plan with 1000 minutes and unlimited texts and 2gb of data/line is $80/month.  I also recently had to return my wife’s One S because the power button got stuck.  It was 2 days past the 14 day return period, so I technically should’ve had to send the phone in for a warranty replacement. The guy at the store said, “don’t worry, I’ll take care of you” and swapped it out for me.  I was in and out of the store in 5 minutes.  

    • jessejames111981

      i thought you had a 30 day warranty in store on a new phone? you couldn’t return it but since it was defective you just got a new one you didn’t return it. 

      • The actual return period was bumped up to 20 days in January.

        • Ryan

          Its 20 days if you order it online. Still 14 in Michigan.

        • Phershey128

          The important thing is, he was taken care of with no hassel.

        • Crybabies

          No, return period in store is 14 days unless you live in California than it is 30 days.  You do get 20 days if you buy it online or from customer service.  

      • I really think that might vary state-to-state.  In IL, the return
        period is 14 days.  In fact, I think it’s a blanket 14 day return policy
        unless the state (like California) has extended the return period to 30

        I bought mine in-store, so I have 14 days.  However, reading this over,
        maybe because I’m on a value plan and technically pay full price for the
        phone (though I chose to let them add it to my bill over 20 months),
        then I do get 30 days.

        Regardless, the guy at the store made it all hassle free and did everything very quickly.  Their service is on its way back to being top-notch again.

  • carl444

    of course people loves their iPhones it is a state of mind! No more choices. People with RIM and android or others have so many choices and colors that they always want more or else. and that Sprint got best score when everyone knows it has a horrible service compared to everyone else proved that this survey has issues whit demographics to me it is unreliable.

    • lolzerzzz

      The most annoying thing about Android fanboys?
      The fact that they keep yelling out stupid buzzwords like CHOICE, yet want to belittle people who made a different CHOICE than they did.SHUT THE HELL UP. IT ISN’T YOUR PHONE. WHY DO YOU EVEN CARE?

      • Xavier

        um…what about the apple fanboy buzzworld….SIMPLE.

        • Voluvias

          Um…what about it? Dumbest.Post.Today.
          But dont worry, someone else will come along and save you by saying something dumber.

        • 30014

          What about “it just works”? Apple fanboys are just as bad as any other fanboy. If any of you think differently then please gently remove your head from your anus.

        • lolzerzzz

          WTF does that have to do with ANYTHING I said??

        •  I think Android fanboys are worse

        • Fray26

           How about this. Android and iPhone faboys are both retarded. Now shut da hell up

        • Xavier

          they both are pretty bad…but apple fanboys don’t think..they just buy.

        • lolzerzzz

          good god, you are fucking stupid.




        • Xavier

           and as seen in the comments above, we swerved from that little point you were bringin up and talkin bout fanboys.

          look who’s 10 years old?!

        • Xavier

           and as seen in the comments above, we swerved from that little point you were bringin up and talkin bout fanboys.

          look who’s 10 years old?!

        • Xavier

          i don’t.  every product has “fanboy”-ism lol, it’s just lolerzz forgot to mention or acknowledge the apple buzzword and wait straight ahead tryin to make a statement against the so called android buzzword and tried to make a statement on it.

        • lolzerzzz

          WTF does that have to do with ANYTHING I said??

      • Tekkenman

         BINGO!!!  Right on point.  100% Correct

  • knightsray

    For 2 years I was a customer of T-Mobile even though they had only Edge(2g) in my county. For a month now we’ve finally had 3G/4G. I was satisfied and stuck with them because of their pricing which is very good and better than the other carriers. Now that I don’t have to rely on WiFi and have reliable and fast data I am more than satisfied and don’t see myself ever leaving them. They seem to be wanting to get the new phones now too. They have to play catch up after last year I guess so I hope they do. 


    Just goes to show that MOST people really don’t care about data speeds. That being said it is still amazing that Sprint got top honors. Puzzling really.

    • badbob001

      It’s hard to judge by the overall satisfaction rating. I wonder if there was a specific question on satisfaction with data speed quality.

    • dan

      Reliability in more places is big thing for me on at least 3g network. I don’t need 4g everywhere. 3g will be fine in some smaller areas. Being stuck on 2g sucks though.

      • fixxmyhead

        sprint 3g IS 2g

    •  Maybe people have different experience on Sprint have you consider that

  • Guest 2012

    Really? This study is quite interesting. Maybe they should have a poll where average customers from their respective carriers vote. They can vote on service, phone, and satisfaction. That should get a better idea instead of going through companies.

  • Larrrs

    Hey Dave have you heard about the email employees are getting this morning about changes coming up on the retail side?  Its the same email the call Centers got right before they announced the closings.. I am concerned as a retail Sales Rep that many will lose their jobs…Was wondering if you heard anything

    • I did, I have them…front line employees are all safe. Customer service reps as well, this is coming from the corporate side from what I can tell.

  • jessejames111981

    If i get 85 out of 100 Americans to say punching babies in the face is acceptable that doesn’t mean 85% of Americans think that sort of act is ok. 


    We learned how ignorant the American consumer can be.

    • Moises

      we been knowing that for a long time, why you think people keep on giving their money way to the two blood sucker that are Verizon and at&t.

  • fixxmyhead

    sprint?  its official people are freaking retarded

    • Magenta Man


    • Moises

      yea SPRINT just like you heard, i am super happy with them.

      • Fray26

        Who the hell is Sprint?

  • Xavier

    to bad it’s not a survery based on “non” biased consumers.  apple and sony will mostly always win “votes”..those two brands are too full of themselves.

  • Wilma Flintstone

    Note, price, release, Tmobile US, announce it.

  • In the last 5 years I have been on every major carrier except Verizon. Sprint (NY and CA) first, then AT&T (NY and CA), and finally T-Mobile. I never had any problems with Sprint, but I switched when the first iPhone came out. AT&T’s service was so crappy, I had to switch to T-Mobile and took my iPhone over there. This is before 3G was really popular and way before 4G was rolled out. 

    Overall, i’ve had a pretty good experience with T-Mobile. They provide a good balance between service and price.

    • Fray26

       AT&T is doing a lot better now. It’s not like before.

  • Freak4Dell

    Sprint winning automatically discredits this survey. I can understand AT&T and T-Mobile not being at the top, but Sprint being the highest just tells me that they only surveyed one city…one of those few cities where Sprint service hasn’t gone down the toilet.

  • This survey stinks with foul play. How can Sprint be #1 when theiir best phone doesn’t have a radio Network to work on and it’s 3G speeds are around 100kps. That is just pathetic. I get over 10,000kps download and 4500kps upload speeds. Those are pretty darn good considering they are taken during peak hour in the middle of the day. T-Mobile is IMO the best Carrier in the USA, fastest HSPA+ speeds with the best prices and throw in their customer service which has gotten much better as of late. 
    PS  Had a problem in my area with the signal, I had a tech rep from T-Mobile call me 3 times during the day looking for some imfo to help fix the issue. I was floored by the service, that showed me I was with the right Carrier. 

    • Spanky

      Lucky you. My data speeds are unbearable, and T-Mobile has been promising to fix the issue since August 2011.

    • Fray26

      Probably in your area.

  • TrevorMadden

    LG was a runner up in satisfaction??? What has this country come to? I give them a -10!

  • redman12

    What did I learn from this article? I learned that without representative sample, it’s irrelevant. 70,000 people out of 300 million, that’s not enough

  • Fray26

    Sprint??? Who the hell is Sprint?

  • Mloudt

    i am a happy tmo monthly 4g customer. the reason i have tmo is because they are the only national carrier to offer 4g speeds with no contract. plus i buy any phone i wan’t off craigslist so it’s just like having a contract but better because i don’t have contract. my point is prior to tmo i had sprint in early 2010. this was before sprint had i-phone or 4g wimax. i only kept sprint for a few months not because the service was bad but for personal reasons i had to port my number to another  company in which   i purposely violated my contract. 
    what people don’t understand is that sprint was adding customers prior to them getting the i-phone and that is why sprint’s board of directors ultimately approved the deal with apple. the reason dt won’t approve a deal with tmo usa to carry the i-phone is because tmo is losing contract customers and doesn’t show growth only in the prepaid market which is not good enough to approve a deal with apple. 
    back to my point yea it’s a known fact that sprint’s wimax speeds are the most questionable “4g speeds” of the main four carriers but to the average consumer they don’t know which carrier is the fastest! most people don’t get on blog sites or tech sites like we do they don’t know sprint’s speeds are slower than the other carriers. a few months ago my friend who has the htc evo 4g we werr e watching youtube videos and it was fast had no lag and like i said to a normal person who has sprint or is thinking about signing a new contract with them it seems good enough. when i was with sprint the customer service was excellent. they would do follow up calls to make sure everything went smoothly if you had a problem with them. also i see a lot of people on this site complain that if they have to change their monthly tmo postpaid plan then they have to pay the 200 fee just like you would have to pay a etf fee. well with sprint you can change your plan monthly to any plan for free. i live in Houston, texas and it’s the 4th largest city in usa so depending on if your city is in a top market could depend on how fast or slow your speeds are.
    and David when tmo does something good like for example the other day when you posted the article  about them having the best 3g service with att having the best 4g service that is fine. but you sugar coated this article saying their tied with att for satisfaction but after reading the article it’s not in a good way because they are dead last. this is a negative way. my point is if your going to congratulate tmo for the good then make sure you give  them credit for the bad they do also especially since phonedog bought you out lol! besides that i like the site.

  • Kevin

    T-Mobile is ok as far as price. Coverage in Colorado is ok… some areas north of Denver don’t have 3G/4G and other carriers in the same area do. I have an account in my name for my dad and brother but I had to switch to Sprint because T-Mobile kept throttling my data. Sprint might be slower but it’s still fast enough to do what I need to do with my phone (Youtube, Facebook, and web browsing) without being throttled. T-Mobiles HSPA+ is great but what good is it when you’re getting throttled after a couple days into your bill cycle?