BERLIN: Loyalty levels to smartphone brands are particularly high in Germany, yielding a mixture of opportunities and challenges for manufacturers in the category.

As part of a multimarket survey of 4,257 smartphone subscribers, GfK, the research firm, found 35% of Germans did not want to change handset as they were loyal to their current brand, versus an international average of 18%.

Nearly a third of the panel in Germany were reticent to switch as it would require transferring data like films, books and apps, compared with a norm of 28% worldwide.

Losing settings such as log-ins for Facebook or email services dissuaded over a quarter of consumers from changing device.

A further 10% of smartphone users in Europe's biggest economy agreed it would be "very difficult" to switch between smartphone providers, standing at 11% for bank brands and 12% for insurance companies.

More broadly, the analysis revealed that loyalty rose as customers utilised a higher number of apps. When individuals regularly employed at least seven of these appliances, affiliation levels reached 45% in Germany.

Easy-to-understand navigation systems and simplified ways of finding applications were important for 83% of participants. The "seamless" combination of various tools and services scored 77% here.

Elsewhere, 64% of interviewees wanted to access the same content on different devices – like smartphones, tablets and PCs – although this was below the global total of 72%.

Data sourced from GfK; additional content by Warc staff