Nearly a third of likely iPhone buyers own Samsung phones, according to a UBS survey of 4,000 phone owners in the US, UK, China, and Italy.
That’s about double the rate UBS has found in the past.
It says Apple’s large-screen iPhone 6 Plus has given people one less reasons to buy an Android phone.
The rising number of Android switchers — something Tim Cook likes to talk about — stems from two factors: Apple has much higher brand loyalty than its competitors, and it’s increasingly competitive on features smartphone users care about.
UBS found Apple has a higher retention rate than its competitors. Its survey pegs Apple’s retention rate at 84% and Samsung’s at 55%. People are much more likely to switch from Samsung to Apple and stick with the iPhone than the other way around.
Part of the reason people are finding the iPhone so attractive is that Apple controls the whole user experience.
Tim Cook tried to underscore that point at Apple’s developer conference last June while talking about Android switchers.
“Many of these customers were switchers from Android,” he said. “They had bought an Android phone, by mistake, and then sought a better experience. And a better life. And decided to check out iPhone and iOS.”
Apple has also learned how to compete and defeat the competition where it matters. People don’t care if Apple copies features from Android if it can improve them and create an all-around better experience.
UBS surveyed Samsung and iPhone users and found that the two smartphone makers were neck and neck on the feature people care most about in their smartphone, battery life.
In other areas like processing power (useful for gaming), operating system, and screen specs, Apple is pulling away from Samsung.
Apple Pay’s wild success has even led Samsung to buy another company to catch up.
The rise of companies like Xiaomi that can undercut Samsung on price has driven down its profits and hampered its ability to keep up with Apple. Unless it comes up with something that Apple can’t do, people will probably keep ditching Samsung for the iPhone.