Apple iPhone owners are the most loyal smartphone buyers

RIM shot by wavering BlackBerry owners

Apple iPhone 4 pre-order

iPhone owners are more loyal to their chosen handset than Android fans are to theirs.

So says GfK, a market watcher, after interviewing 4,500 folk across Europe, the US, Brazil, China and Japan.

It found that 84 per cent of iPhone users will buy another Apple handset when they upgrade, the company told Reuters.

Only 60 per cent of Android smartphone owners would make the same commitment to their current operating system.

RIM won't be happy to learn that only 48 per cent of BlackBerry owners said they will stick with the brand when they come to get a new phone.

Vendors, then, still have plenty of scope to win punters from rival platforms. Apple, though, needs to work less hard than other vendors, though it can't afford to take its fans' loyalty for granted.

And tricks like this, from Samsung, only serve to help Apple.

What most appeals to smartphone owners about specific handset-OS combos? GfK said that more than 70 per cent of consumers indicated the reason they would stick with their current phone brand was because of the handset's seamless integration of features and access to content. ®

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