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Galaxy Note 5 voted America’s best smartphone

I have had the pleasure of talking with international tech enthusiasts every day over at SamMobile, and many of them can’t help but always throw around “Apple” and “the iPhone” in their discussions. When it comes to the US, Americans are quite nationalistic and extremely proud of Apple, with a strong nationalistic fervor that, since the iPhone’s inception, has given the proverbial crown to Apple and the iPhone each year. This has led to some international customers questioning whether or not Americans can make good buying decisions at all. Unfortunately for Apple, and fortunately for Samsung, that has now changed with the latest Galaxy Note 5 survey.

The survey, conducted by The American Customer Satisfaction Index (or ACSI, for short), shows that in the US, Apple took a slight win over Samsung when it comes to overall customer satisfaction, scoring 81 points to Samsung’s 80 points. Samsung’s customer satisfaction rating from 2015 remained unchanged, which is a good sign for the Korean giant that its 2015 smartphones are a move in the right direction.

The tipped hat in customer satisfaction is good news for Cupertino (Apple), but it’s also good news for Seoul (Samsung) as well: while it didn’t take the crown in customer satisfaction, Samsung did wrestle the crown from Apple when it comes to America’s most satisfying device: yes, the most satisfying device in 2015 was not the iPhone 6s Plus or the iPhone 6s, but the Samsung Galaxy Note 5. The Note 5 scored 86 out of 100 points, besting the iPhone 6s Plus by 1 point. The iPhone 6s Plus scored 85 points which is still impressive nonetheless.

Samsung took not only the top spot in the ACSI survey, but it also saw 5 other smartphones place in the top 10: Galaxy S6 edge+ (tied for 3rd place with the Galaxy Note 4; 84 points), Galaxy Note 4 (84 points), Galaxy S6 active (tied for 5th place with the iPhone 6 Plus with 82 points), Galaxy S6 edge (tied for 6th place with the Moto G), and the Galaxy S6 (tied for 7th place with the Galaxy S3, 80 points). To be brief, all of Samsung’s 2015 smartphone lineup made it in the top 10, which is nothing short of a winner-take-all year for the Korean giant.

The Galaxy Note 5 has much to commend it as the most satisfying device with customers in the US, with Samsung’s in-built wireless charging, Samsung Pay access, S Pen and new features such as Off Screen Memo and Write On PDFs, octa-core, Samsung homegrown Exynos 7420 processor, Samsung Theme Store access, and glass and metal design. With features like these, it is hard to recommend the iPhone 6s Plus which, while providing a quality performance for customers, provides more in the way of iteration than innovation with its long-held metal build quality and features such as a 5MP front camera, 12MP back camera, and 4K video recording that are playing “catch-up” more than anything else. Additionally, Apple still has Full HD resolution reserved for its “Plus” model, which means that iPhone 6s customers are still getting 750p screen resolution (some HD TVs probably rival it with a better screen resolution and brightness performance).

As can be seen by the results, though, America’s still prefer Apple’s customer service to anyone else’s (and that’s unlikely to change), but the tables are turning for Samsung in the US. Finally, the Korean giant is getting noticed with a performance record that’s been shattering its rivals since the company announced the Galaxy S3 four years ago.

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Deidre Richardson (dual B.A., History and Music, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) stumbled upon tech a little later in life than expected. After picking up her first smartphone (the Galaxy S3), the rest is history. She currently writes for SamMobile, the largest Samsung fan site worldwide, as well as smartwatch site smartwatch.me.

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