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Survey: Samsung beats Apple in customer loyalty (Microsoft has little)

Technically Incorrect: SurveyMonkey poll suggests that where Apple wins is in customer service satisfaction, while Microsoft lags badly.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.

Will Samsung's new phones breed even more loyalty? CNET

I think of customer loyalty as akin to marriage stability.

Many claim it, fewer practice it.

So every time I see numbers attached to consumers' feelings, I approach them with several Siberian effigies of Lot's wife, just in case.

However, numbers tossed at me today offer me pause for thought. They suggest that Samsung enjoys markedly more customer loyalty than Apple.

These figures were lobbed over by SurveyMonkey, a company that hired all the primates from the CareerBuilder ads and forced them to perform surveys. (That statement may not be entirely accurate.)

SurveyMonkey likes to define industry benchmarks to help companies and human beings judge where brands stand. Samsung scored a 35 for customer loyalty, while Apple managed a 28. Both scores were above the industry benchmark of 19.

Where Apple did better, however, was in customer service satisfaction. There, it scored a 41 percent positive rating, while Samsung managed only 25. Both companies may still have much to do. The industry benchmark for customer service satisfaction is 75 percent.

Why might both lag? Is it that our phones and laptops are so important to us that they get so much use, thereby offering constant problems which no company could ever truly fix? Is it that while Apple has at least made some headway in providing Geniuses at customers' disposal, it's still not easy to talk to one and hear sense?

Or could it be that when people answer surveys their most capricious, malicious side pops out occasionally?

These numbers were generated in the fourth quarter of 2014. They represent more than 5,000 adults in SurveyMonkey's so-called Audience, which was polled to offer its views on certain brands.

One brand that doesn't come out of it at all well is Microsoft. For customer loyalty it scored a staggeringly hellish -8. That's the sort of score you might expect from Comcast and Time Warner. (Well, actually they both managed -50, against an telecoms industry benchmark of -17. Time Warner actually beat Comcast for customer satisfaction. The proof is below.)

Microsoft fared slightly better in customer service satisfaction. It managed a 19 percent score there.

Companies keep their own internal figures and are constantly fretting in a "they-love-me, they-love-me-not" manner.

These numbers may merely hint at how hard it is to please people, as well as how hard it is when you've forced people to use your products for far too long and suddenly discover that those people have moved on.

This doesn't look good for Microsoft. Survey Monkey
Time Warner and Comcast may merge. Will this improve things? SurveyMonkey