As Tom Cruise reminded us in Jerry Maguire, we live in a cynical world. With technology, we could add that we live in a throwaway, easily bored, I-want-a new-one world as well. Unless you’re a BlackBerry owner.
According to an article last Friday in ZDNet (which in turn was based on research from Kantar WorldPanel), U.S. BlackBerry users hang on to their smartphones the longest of any device owners: an average of 32 months. That’s 2.7 – almost three! – years, a lifetime in mobile tech. By comparison, other smartphone owners go through their devices like paper towels: iPhone users upgrade every 25 months, it’s 18 months for Samsung owners, and just 16 months for Nokia/Microsoft Lumia users (literally half the time of BlackBerry owners).
Overall, the average U.S. smartphone user keeps their device for just 22 months before replacing it with a newer model. So why do BlackBerry users keep their devices almost a year (45%) longer than the average? It’s not for lack of models from which to choose. BlackBerry has released a slew of all-touch and keyboard-equipped smartphones in the last two-and-a-half years, starting with the Z10 and Q10 in January 2013 and most recently with the BlackBerry Leap in March.
Upgrade costs are not prohibitive. (And if you’re a new BlackBerry user, by the way, introductory costs are very appealing: $199 for an unlocked BlackBerry Leap, comparable in specs to Apple’s $449.99 5S, ranging up to our high-powered top-of-the-line Passport, $499, compared with $649.99 for the iPhone 6 Plus.)
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