My wife hates her Samsung Galaxy S 5, an oldie-but-goodie Android smartphone that still scores near the top of our Ratings. Oh, she’s grateful that her Galaxy’s battery, unlike the iPhone 5's can last a day on a single charge. And she appreciates that the relatively big display on the Samsung helps her squint less. But she’s still not an Android person. The gesture controls and widgets and other customizing options that define Android smartphones are lost on her.

She's not alone. Consumers are loyal to their smartphone operating system, according to a nationally representative survey on mobile devices by the Consumer Reports National Research Center.

The survey found that among those who purchased a new smartphone in the past six months and stayed with their previous operating system, 73 percent had been using that operating system for three or more years. But when people did switch operating systems, they migrated from Android to iOS more often than the other way around.

More from the survey:
  • Android phones are more popular than iPhones among shoppers. Of those who purchased a new smartphone in the past 6 months, 56 percent bought an Android device. Only 40 percent chose an Apple iPhone.
  • Among smartphone buyers who switched operating systems, the most common move was from a phone that is not an Apple iPhone or Android device to a new Android device (47 percent of those who switched). Those people include users switching from BlackBerry and Windows devices.
  • About a quarter (26 percent) of people who had bought a phone in the past six months and had switched providers had moved from an Android phone to an iPhone. Meanwhile, only 16 percent went in the other direction, changing to an Android device from an iPhone.
     

Editor's Note: The Consumer Reports National Research Center conducted a nationally representative phone survey to assess consumer loyalty regarding purchases of smartphones. Opinion Research Corporation of Princeton, New Jersey, administered the survey in October 2015 through its CARAVAN Omnibus Survey.