Survey: iOS 6 User Satisfaction is Down for First Time

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User satisfaction of Apple’s new iOS 6 mobile operating system is down slightly from that of iOS 5, according to a new poll conducted by mobile research firm On Device and revealed by TechCrunch Wednesday. The drop in satisfaction is small but notable as it represents the first time that iOS user satisfaction has decreased upon the launch of a new version.

iOS 6 Customer Satisfaction

Polling approximately 16,000 iOS 6 users on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being “very satisfied,” the survey revealed that the average score for iOS 6 was 7.65, compared to 7.75 for iOS 5. Apple’s two most recent operating systems both scored higher than iOS 4, with an average rating of 6.93.

“We have always seen an increase in device satisfaction as consumers upgrade their mobile operating system from one version to another,” On Device CEO Alistair Hill told TechCrunch. Mr. Hill further explained that nearly all mobile operating systems, including Android, score higher in customer satisfaction than their predecessors.

Android User Satisfaction

Frustration over Apple’s new Maps application, which replaced Google Maps for the first time in iOS 6, confusion over new apps like Passbook, and criticism of Apple’s App Store redesign all contribute to iOS 6’s lower score.

The iOS 6 rating revealed by the On Device survey may also be lower than reported. The survey only polled users currently running iOS 6 on their devices, but we have heard from many users who have delayed upgrading, primarily due to reliance on Google Maps in iOS 5. The evaluation of iOS 6 by these users is not considered by the survey.

Apple’s iPhone overall is known for receiving customer satisfaction ratings higher than its Android, Blackberry, and Windows Phone-based competitors, a reputation that was reaffirmed in early September when Cupertino’s flagship product topped the J.D. Power and Associates Wireless Smartphone Satisfaction Study for the eighth consecutive time.

As that study was conducted before the release of iOS 6 on September 19, it remains to be seen if lower user satisfaction with Apple's latest mobile operating system carriers over to customer impressions of the iPhone as a whole.

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Journalism Should Question

Look at the polls.  So their polls are showing IOS 6 vs. IOS 5, but Android 2 vs. Android 4?  Why not Android 4.2 vs 4.1 since they’re entirely different versions, or the “bazillions” of 2.x iterations?  This is the most biased poll to support android ever.  Why is MacObserver not questioning the results, and looking into clarity as to the polling method?  If you compare IOS 6 to IOS 4, the results are better than Android 4 vs Android 2.  Let’s use our heads and quit the propagation of Google hate against Apple.

Lee Dronick

I have some issues with iOS 6

The Map App is okay, but of course it could be better. The map certainly zooms quickly and is gorgeous, but lacks walkways, bike paths, driveways in campuses and such.

Find iPhone seems to be a step or two backwards, like it was designed by someone who worked at Facebook. It used to a have refresh button on the screen, but now it is hidden and you need to click on the location icon info and then choose refresh. If the device moved off the screen the app no longer recenters the map on the location, you need to zoom out to find it.

I have a bug in Safari where URL shortcuts no longer work using the nickname. I need to enter the beginning of the URL address; for example instead typing “Joy” in the address bar to get to the Joy of Tech comic I need to type “geek” and then it returns

There are others, and I may come back later to share them, but right now I need to get back on a task.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@Lee: The massive Safari fail in iOS 6 is the next scandal. Basically, they butchered a whole class of interactive web apps with this release. A lot of corporate developers and IT guys are super pissed. They can use Chrome on iOS, but are stuck with slow rendering and JavaScript from the built in HTML control, since Apple doesn’t allow third party browser apps to use third party browser code.

Contrast, on Android, if Google ever screws up Chrome for web apps, users can install the real Firefox and keep going. Not that it would happen in the first place.


Maps is OK but clearly a step back.
GameCenter is even more annoying than before
AppStore crashes regularly
Passbook is useless
Many of the other improvements require new hardware
Sure as John M. pointed out there are extensive security upgrades which is good. The visible part is either not as good as before, does not work because the infrastructure is not there, or requires a new device.

While Journalism Should Question brings up some interesting points, the reported result does not surprise me.


Personally I’d give it an 8. Significantly better than iOS5 for my purposes. Still discovering more… The technology adoption curve is hardly a smooth line. Studies like this are like image smoothing, which necessarily eliminate valid (and sometimes wildly variable) data in favor of a clear, simple result, regardless of accuracy.

Lee Dronick

I discovered something about Find My iPhone that addresses my concerns.

What I am using it for is to track my wife home from work in part to route her around traffic problems and to have the meal ready when she gets home. She works across town and it is a good half hour or more commute. I usually track using my iPad.

Anyway by default Find my iPhone finds all devices that have Back to my Mac enabled, iPhones, iPads, Macs et al. When that is the case the map can be rather small scale so that it can display the icons for each device. Her MacBook Pro here in the northern part of San Diego and her iPhone down south in Coronado. What I have been doing is zooming in on her iPhone and when I would refresh the location the map would stay where it was, but her location is off the margin.

To solve this I found that instead of displaying all devices I should just chose her iPhone. Then the app autoupdates and centers a larger scale map on the location. Also the icon displays the refresh button and when pressed it updates the location of the iPhone and recenters the map on it. I am once again a happy stalker.

A big problem with this, and other iOS apps, is that the online help does not have a lot of info. All of the 3rd party iOS 6 guides that I have seen are also a bit lame.


Find My iPhone has all my iDevices in the paddock behind my place….

Close but not dead accurate

Lee Dronick

I just checked my devices.  All four of them have different locations and all of them are on the same WiFi and DSL service. Not that they are widely scattered, but the iPad and MacBook Pro are hundred feet or so from their actual location. The iPhone location looks to be very accurate. The iMac a bit less accurate, but still in my house. I wonder if the Find My Mac service uses the GPS in the iPhone even when I am WiFi, the iPad is WiFi only.


Anyone else dissatisfied with the actual update process? I had to do a restore of my wife’s phone and she was VERY unhappy at the downtime, and missing apps, and the 2+ hours the whole process took….

Not cool.




I feel jacked. No YouTube for iPad users. Thanks, Apple. Overall, not impressed with the upgrade.  But maybe I just don’t get the same thrill out of new stuff. I like my devices to work reliably and be able to do the same things today that they could do yesterday. When I tried to view an embedded YT video today while browsing the web and it didn’t go straight to the app, it was my first clue that something was amiss. Failure.


I am trying to upgrade my i phone 4s which currently has a IOS 5.1 and the Software upgrade shows me to update to ios 6 but it does not load even on wifi plz suggest me another alternative on doing so thanks would appreciate if direct barcode is sent for the upgrade.A much easier one


Some valid points but still a solid OS. I can see why satisfaction is down slightly but overall still gets the job done very well.
I think some improvements they need:
1) Find my iphone isn’t as good as the last one but still not bad
2) Maps could be better obviously but personally I have not had any problems. It will only get better.
3) Is it just me or do other people like the old look of the app store better? I don’t like the card style. Seems like a downgrade to me.
4) Guided access is very cool and lot’s of people don’t know about this. Check it out under accessibility. Awesome feature that gets no attention. One of the coolest features on iOS.
5) Passbook is a mess and is not ready for primetime.
6) Reply with a message is great feature when not wanting to take a phone call.

There are some great features on iOS and unfortunately people love to be negative and complain. Just the nature of people. Never really have anything good to say. It’s like they feel they are entitled to perfection.

Technology isn’t perfect.


I’d probably give it an 8.

(I’m going from an iPhone 4 to iPhone 5, my wife’s 4S has yet to be upgraded, so I don’t have any experience about upgrading. And it’s possible some of my feelings are based on features like Siri that I haven’t had until now).

I’ve not had any trouble with the maps. The only point off for me is lack of public transit directions (which I rarely use, but when I do, it’s a big feature). I think some of the maps complaints stem from the challenge in converting a flat satellite image to a 3D surface (if you go to Google Earth, it faces similar challenges).

Passbook is, as others have stated, useless. I’m waiting for CardStar to support it.

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