AT&T ranks last in customer satisfaction, Sprint on the rise, survey says
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AT&T’s customer-satisfaction rating places the wireless giant in dead last among major carriers, and at its lowest point since shortly before the launch of the original iPhone in 2007, according to a survey.
In terms of making customers happy, Verizon and Sprint tied for the top spot among the most popular U.S. carriers, according to the report from the American Customer Satisfaction Index.
T-Mobile, which AT&T is in the process of buying, came in third, falling to a five-year low in the ACSI’s survey.
Verizon has been the nation’s leader in customer satisfaction for the last six years, but a dip of 1% in its ACSI score left it even with Sprint for the first time.
Sprint has been on an upward trend, ‘rising 3% following consecutive double-digit gains,’ the indexing group said.
‘In just three years, Sprint has emerged from 15 points below even the second worst in the category to claim a share of the industry lead,’ the ACSI said.
AT&T’s survey score fell 4% this year, ‘its worst score since 2006 -- the year before the launch of the iPhone,’ the ACSI said.
With AT&T buying T-Mobile -- a move that rival Sprint, some Times readers and a number of U.S. senators aren’t keen on -- it’s unclear how the combined companies would do in terms of customer satisfaction, said Claes Fornell, who founded the ACSI survey and is a professor at the University of Michigan.
‘It is common to find a reduction in customer satisfaction after mergers, but it is rare for customer satisfaction to drop ahead of a merger,’ Fornell said in a statement. ‘Assuming the deal is approved, it remains to be seen if a much larger AT&T can regain the strength of its customer relationships.’
-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles
Oct. 19, 2009. Credit: Lisa Poole/ Associated Press