IPhone More Dominant Than Ever, Though Samsung Makes Strides

Apple iPhone 4
The iPhone is by far the smartphone most in demand among 4,000 North American consumers surveyed by ChangeWave, but Apple's frequent court rival Samsung is coming on strong according to the research.

ChangeWave Research found that 54% of those surveyed in December said they plan to buy an iPhone in the next 90 days, indicating that the iPhone 4S demand is strong in spite of constant rumors regarding when an iPhone 5 might appear. "Apple has never dominated smart phone planned buying to this extent more than two months after a major new release," according to ChangeWave.

SCUTTLEBUTT: iPhone 5 rumor rollup for week ending Jan. 6

However, that number is down from 65% in September, and Samsung appears to have a lot to do with it. Samsung's share rose from 5% to 13%, while Motorola's grew from 5% to 7%.

Samsung, which has been embroiled in a series of nasty court battles with Apple regarding assorted patent disputes, has no doubt raised its profile with the recent introduction of the Galaxy Nexus, the first U.S. 4G phone running Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). Samsung offers a broad range of phones, including those running Microsoft Windows Phone software.

As for other manufacturers, RIM saw interest in its phones dip, as just 2% of those surveyed indicated they plans to buy a BlackBerry in the next 90 days. HTC's share fell from 6% to 3%.

Just 1 in 5 surveyed say they are very satisfied with their current BlackBerries, whereas 75% said they are very satisfied with their iPhones and 47% each said they are satisfied with their Samsung and HTC smartphones. One more indication of satisfaction in particular with Apple's iPhone 4S: Users are gobbling up data at unprecedented rates.

It should be interesting to see if the slew of phones, including Nokia's first Windows Phone devices for the U.S. market, unveiled at this week's CES 2012 show in Las Vegas will impact ChangeWave's next survey in a couple of months.

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