According to a consumer survey conducted by Usurv immediately after news of the product was released on Monday, 31 percent of existing UK iPhone users say they want the new Apple iPhone 5S. The survey results indicate a drop in enthusiasm for the Apple phone brand since last year, when a similar survey (conducted after the iPhone 5 launch) showed that 44% of iPhone users were willing to upgrade straight away.

A similar decrease in interest for the iPhone was revealed among all smartphone users in the sample with only 11 percent saying they wanted to upgrade to the new iPhone 5S without needing any further information about the product. Last year’s survey found that 20 percent were ready to switch to the iPhone 5 model immediately after launch.

Users of the iPhone’s main competitor - the Samsung Galaxy - are mostly staying loyal. In an online poll of 1,000 UK adults, conducted by rapid online survey company Usurv, only 6 percent said they want to switch to the iPhone 5S. Interestingly, 13 percent of Blackberry users are ready to switch to the iPhone 5S, more than for any other competing brand.

The research found that Apple may be on track with the other new phone announced yesterday: the less pricey, iPhone 5C ‘budget’ model, available for £469, sim-free. High prices for previous Apple devices appear to have been an obstacle for many UK phone-buyers, with 42 percent of the sample revealing that although they had wanted an iPhone in the past, they were put off because it was too expensive. This trend was highest amongst Nokia owners, with 59 percent of them not buying an iPhone in the past due to cost.

According to the research, the most popular feature on the iPhone 5S is likely to be its fingerprint reader - which provides user authentication for unlocking the phone. The feature is highlighted as most appealing by 30 percent of respondents. Most of the other new features provoked little interest, and 40% of the sample said that none of the new features appealed to them.

Guy Potter, director and market researcher at Usurv, says, “We ran research to gauge people’s instant reactions to the new phone in the same way as we did after the iPhone 5 launch last year. Interestingly, while 31 percent of iPhone users wanting to have the new iPhone 5S can hardly be called a failure, the desire for the phone does seem muted, with fewer people immediately excited by the device than for last year’s model. Of the new features, only the fingerprint reader seems to have caught people’s attention. The brand is under pressure to deliver excitement and innovation at every launch and this time the initial mood indicates that in that sense it has failed.

“The fact that a significant slice of people had been put off buying an iPhone in the past could suggest that Apple might be able to tap in to a wider market with the lower priced iPhone 5C. However it’s difficult to say whether the price is actually low enough and how operators will price it in their contracts.”

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