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Verizon Wireless Captures Top Rank In Customer Survey

Researchers note that even though customer satisfaction has improved overall, the rate at which wireless customers say they are satisfied has slowed.
Verizon Wireless is ranked first among all U.S. wireless companies, according to the results of customer survey American Customer Satisfaction Index (ADSI), which was released Tuesday.

The independent survey was conducted at the Stephen M. Ross Business School at the University of Michigan with the American Society for Quality and international consulting firm CFI Group.

In announcing the survey results, Verizon Wireless noted that it recently posted an industry-low 1.1% churn rate in its first quarter results; the firm also said that it has posted the lowest churn rate among the largest mobile phone carriers over the past 10 consecutive quarters.

Researchers also noted that even though customer satisfaction has improved overall, since the survey first started, the rate at which wireless customers say they are satisfied has slowed and many individual companies measured this quarter are falling behind.

the ACSI said it saw more drops than gains in customer satisfaction out of the companies it measured in the first quarter of 2007.

"Companies don't have much pricing power unless there is shrinking supply or higher customer satisfaction," Professor Claes Fornell, director of the University of Michigan's National Quality Research Center, said in the report. "There are no signs of the former in most industries, so the latter becomes more critical. Companies may begin to see narrowing profit margins unless there is further improvement in customer satisfaction."

Wireless customer satisfaction has been a hot topic of late with the service troubles of Research In Motion's BlackBerry outage as well as debate over what some are calling cell phone tyranny.

On Saturday, InformationWeek published a list of common complaints after an extensive survey of the business practices of cellular service providers.