iPhone 7 Plus Jet Black

In a new report from IDC aiming to determine the impact of Samsung’s recall of its defective Galaxy Note 7, a survey shows around half of those affected plan to switch to an iPhone.

Half of the 24 Note 7 owners polled said they have or will choose an Apple iPhone to replace their recalled phone, while 17% said they would choose another Samsung. Most said they will return their phone through a carrier’s physical store.

While the report from IDC concludes that Apple is at least in some way benefiting from the exploding recalled device, Apple said during its recent Q4 earnings call that it currently wasn’t a factor as it’s already shipping as many phones as it can make. The company did, however, once again mention a record number of Android switchers during Q4, which paints a different picture for a possible long-term benefit from the Note 7 recall.

IDC surveyed 1,082 U.S. consumers through an online survey on October 17th and 18th, four days after Samsung decided to halt production on the Note 7. The survey focused on three groups of consumers: current Samsung smartphone owners (507), past Samsung smartphone owners (347), and smartphone owners who have never owned the Samsung brand (228). Due to the limited installed base, just 24 Note 7 users were captured in the survey; as such, data in those questions should be viewed as directional only.

Apple reported sales of 45.5 million iPhones during the quarter, down from 48 million iPhones in same quarter a year ago. When asked if the iPhone supply would catch up with demand by the end of the year, CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the iPhone 7 Plus model would but not the iPhone 7 should.

At least one report following the Note 7 recall pointed to evidence that the defects with the device causing explosions and fires were a result of Samsung’s rush to market to beat iPhone 7.


A previous estimate from analysts at KGI predicted Apple could benefit from around 5-7 million users switching to iPhone 7 following the Note 7 recall. That number lines up with the survey from IDC today, with the 5-7 million switchers representing around half of the approximately 12 million Note 7 orders.

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About the Author

Jordan Kahn

Jordan writes about all things Apple as Senior Editor of 9to5Mac, & contributes to 9to5Google, 9to5Toys, & Electrek.co. He also co-authors 9to5Mac’s Logic Pros series.