May 18, 2010

Cell Phone Subscribers More Satisfied

According to a survey published Tuesday, consumers are more satisfied than ever with their cell phone service.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index for cell phone service scored a 72 on a 100-point scale in the first quarter this year.  That is a three-point rise compared to last year and is the highest grade since the survey started looking at wireless in 2004.

The financial reports of the major wireless carriers say the number of subscribers canceling service each month has declined as well.

Sprint Nextel Corp. was the only major carrier that demonstrated a big improvement from last year's survey.  The company has made big efforts to improve customer service after it has seen subscribers flee its service for several years.  Those efforts have shown success with its score rising from 63 to 70.  It posted another seven-point increase the year before.  Sprint's subscriber losses have also slowed during the last six months.

Sprint's customer satisfaction score is now above AT&T's 69.  Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile USA are at 70, but the differences between the big four nationwide carriers are now within the margin of error for an individual company, at plus or minus three points.

The margin of error for the industry-wide index is plus or minus a point.

The University of Michigan developed the survey, but a private company known as ACSI LLC now runs it.  The surveyed involved about 11,000 households for the first-quarter report.


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