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WDSGlobal research finds mobile phone brand loyalty is weak


Tim Deluca-Smith
Vice President of Marketing, WDSGlobal 
T: +44 (0)1202 713725
E: tim.deluca.smith@wdsglobal.com
Louisa Benckendorff
Nelson Bostock Communications
T: +44 (0)207 792 7435
E: louisa.benckendorff@nelsonbostock.com



2010 handset design becoming homogenised
2010 handset design becoming homogenised
2005 handset design a key influence on purchasing decisions
2005 handset design a key influence on purchasing decisions
Tim Deluca-Smith, WDSGlobal
Tim Deluca-Smith, WDSGlobal

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Core Facts

  • Consumer purchasing decisions of mobile phones are overwhelmingly made on price, with 49% of consumers citing it as the most important factor; only 7% based their purchase on the phone brand

  • A combination of operator subsidies and the homogenisation of device design is having a negative impact on role of the OEM brand in the smartphone market. Only 10% of consumers chose a phone based on its design.

  • Smartphone hardware is becoming commoditized. Instead, the differentiator is increasingly seen as the data features, applications and functionality of smartphones, (34% of consumers cite this as most important when purchasing a handset)

  • Yet these features are still a major cause of consumer problems, in particular with the services used most on a day-to-day basis. Almost a third (24%) had problems setting up email, and 17% experience problems setting up the internet on their device

  • These issues frequently lead to service abandonment. 8% of consumers give up on a service without trying to find a resolution, and 29% do not think any of the support services available to them are effective. This lack of effective user experience in turn damages the both OEM and operator brand reputation

  • The key to improving brand equity lies in the control and delivery of the user experience. OEMs and operators need to focus on all touch-points that influence user experience; from the initial desire phase, to the retail experience, out-of-the-box set-up, accessibility of services and post-sale support

  • Only by optimising every stage of the customer lifecycle can OEMs and operators improve brand equity 


Tim Deluca-Smith, vice president of marketing at WDSGlobal

“Smartphones offer operators a number of new revenue channels, but as handset design homogenises and they become increasingly subsidised, consumers have trouble differentiating between brands. There is a clear opportunity for OEMs and operators to maximise the revenue opportunities smartphones can offer, by focusing on non-hardware services. This will help raise brand equity at the same time.”

“Any problems consumers have in setting up services on their phones will have a negative impact on the brand loyalty. Consumers prioritise convenience when looking for support, with one in ten not even trying to find a resolution. They are extremely likely to abandon both the OEM and operator without a second thought, until they receive the user experience that matches their expectations.”

Boilerplate Statements

WDSGlobal is the wireless industry's only provider of specialist managed services dedicated to improving the user experience across the entire consumer lifecycle. The company's portfolio of platform-enabled tools and services stretches across the wireless value chain to connect and optimize each stage of the consumer lifecycle.  With more than 15 years of experience and a global footprint, WDSGlobal is the partner of choice for wireless carriers, handset manufactures and service providers looking to transform their relationships with consumers. The company currently counts over 100 customers, including most of the world’s largest handset manufacturer and mobile operator brands, and is headquartered in Poole, UK.  


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