While the quality of smartphones increase, a report by J.D. Power says that overall satisfaction with the process of purchasing these devices has declined. Still, some companies are doing better than others.
Sprint was ranked as the best wireless service provider in terms of customer purchasing experience, leading the field by a wide margin with a five circle "Among the best" rating. Verizon Wireless came in second with a three circle "About average" rating, while AT&T and T-Mobile both received a two circle rating, putting them with "The rest".
Don't Buy a Phone on a Phone
The J.D. Power study found that, while 62% of customers indicated that their most recent purchase happened in a retail store, 19% said that they purchased their phones online. An additional 19% say that their most recent transaction happened over the phone.
Overall customer satisfaction for those purchasing a handset via a phone call had declined from 758 points in August 2011, to 735 in early 2012. Customers in 2012 were also on-hold waiting to speak with a representative for an average of 4.6 minutes, an increase of one full minute over last year.
Kirk Parsons, senior director of wireless service at J.D. Power and Associates, say that purchasing a phone through the phone is not the best idea.
“Customers who make purchases online and in retail stores have the opportunity to view all product offerings and see the pricing associated with each, which is not always possible over the phone,” Parson said. “In phone transactions, it is more challenging for sales representatives to describe a service or device and also complete the transaction in a timely manner.”
Numbers show that with other retailers such as Apple, Radio Shack, and Costco, the overall experience averages at 741 index points which is 19 points lower than stores owned by a full-service wireless carrier.
Source: J.D. Power and Associates
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