Owner loyalty for the iPhone has declined for the first time ever, according to a study.

In the United States, 88 per cent of iPhone owners plan to buy another Apple handset, while in Western Europe the number stands at 75 per cent, says the study by Strategy Analytics.

That's down on 12 months ago. Last year, 93 per cent of Apple's US iPhone owners said they'd opt for the same handset. In Western Europe, the figure was 88 per cent.

But Apple's loyalty is still far higher than the competition. A study by UBS Investment Research last year put HTC second to Apple, with just 39 per cent of the Taiwanese firm's customers planning on staying loyal.

A lack of innovation?

Experts say Apple is still flying high, but put the drop in loyalty down to its lack of breakthroughs of late. Or the fact it's not been seen to be doing much new, anyway.

"There is no doubt that Apple is continuing its success in retaining its existing user base while attracting new customers," said Paul Brown, director of Strategy Analytics' User Experience Practice.

"However, negative press prompted by a perceived lack of recent innovation by Apple has meant we are starting to see some growth in the number of previously highly loyal customers who are now reconsidering whether or not they will purchase a new iPhone for their next device."

The debacle surrounding Apple Maps could have something to do with it too.

Samsung has also raised its game in the last year, with its Galaxy S3 handset hitting 30 million sales.

Via IntoMobile