Survey: iOS 6 Leads To Decrease In Device Satisfaction Among iPhone Users

Apple’s iOS 6 doesn’t appear to be doing the company any favors when it comes to user satisfaction, according to a new poll conducted by mobile customer research firm On Device. The survey of just under 16,000 iPhone owners in the U.S. found that compared to iOS 5, those with iOS 6 were slightly less satisfied with their devices. The drop is small, but still noteworthy because On Device says this is the first time it’s seeing a drop in satisfaction.

“We have always seen an increase in device satisfaction as consumer upgrade their mobile operating system from one version to another,” On Device CEO Alistair Hill explained in an emailed statement, adding that that’s also traditionally been the case among Android OS versions. The company notes that especially compared to the jump between iOS 4 and iOS 5, which shows strong improvements, the drop from iOS 5 to iOS 6 seems especially unusual.

Consumers have not responded well to the replacement of Google Maps with Apple’s own mobile maps offering, which seems to be the primary source of a lot of frustration. That’s likely the problem that’s led to much of the dissatisfaction seen in the On Device survey, since aside from some issues with how the App Store now displays search results, I’ve seen few other complaints.

It’s also worth noting that despite a slight decrease in satisfaction vs. iOS 5, generally, satisfaction is still very high overall, and Apple still seems to have a significant lead on Android devices, according to a recent study by J.D. Power. In other words, while iOS 6 may have some disappointing features, judging by these results it looks unlikely to have a material effect on iOS device sales going forward.