Apple Pulls a Hat Trick with Brand of the Year Status

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While many have questioned the post Steve Jobs fate of Apple the company continues to hold its spot as a top technology brand across three mainstream categories according to findings from the 2013 Harris Poll EquiTrend (EQ) study.

In its first full year under Tim Cook's stewardship, Apple took home repeat Brand of the Year distinctions in three categories - Computer, Tablet and Mobile Phone - in the annual study, which measures the perceptions of 38,500+ American consumers on more than 1,500 lifestyle, product and service brands across over 155 categories.

"Americans continue to give Apple brands strong ratings," says Manny Flores, Senior Vice President at Harris Interactive. "And while their Consumer Connection scores are strong within their respective categories, what really stands out is that in all three of the categories Apple brands are measured - Computer, Tablet and Mobile Phone - its Brand Momentum scores are in the top 30 of all 1,500 brands evaluated in the study, showing that consumers see this as a brand of the future." Consumer Connection measures a brand's Emotion, Fit, Trust and Performance; Brand Momentum is comprised of Energy, Ubiquity, Future Outlook, Leadership and Popularity.

Apple crunches three categories' worth of competition

Apple continues to hold the top spot among computer manufacturers, earning the 2013 Harris Poll EquiTrend Brand of the Year. Strong scores for all elements of Brand Equity (Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration) keep the brand at the top.

"Despite a drop in Apple's Quality score for this year, their Brand Momentum score increased, which was driven by increases in Ubiquity and Popularity scores," continues Flores.

Hewlett-Packard computers holds steady year-over-year behind Apple computers, but has been unable to match the peak its Brand Equity scores reached in 2011. Also finishing above the category average are Dell, with strong Familiarity and improving Purchase Consideration scores, as well as the style-focused Sony computer brand.

Tablets

In the world of tablets, Apple's iPad series, which expanded its offerings in 2012 with the iPad mini, receives the Tablet Brand of the Year distinction for the second consecutive year. Amazon's Kindle Fire series, which also expanded in 2012 with the addition of HD and larger offerings, follows. "While both the Apple iPad and Amazon Kindle Fire series of tablets show small gains in Brand Equity for 2013, they both receive strong increases for Purchase Consideration," says Flores. "These increases show how the relatively new Tablet technology has grown to meet the needs of both the sophisticated and first time tablet buyer."  Google's Nexus series, Samsung's Galaxy series and HP's Slate series tablets also out-perform the category average.

Another product category, another repeat Brand of the Year Brand of the Year title for Apple. For the second consecutive year, the iPhone earns the 2013 Mobile Phone Brand of the Year title. HTC, Samsung and LG, each with Android phones in their lineups, also outperform the category average.

Mobile Phone brands ranked above category average:

  1. Apple iPhone
  2. HTC Phone
  3. Samsung Phone
  4. LG Phone

Other Mobile Phone brands in study ranked below category average (alphabetically): Blackberry, Kyocera, Motorola, Nokia, Pantech, Sanyo, Sharp, Sony, T-Mobile.

Verizon clearly not phoning it in

Also scoring repeat Brand of the Year accolades in multiple categories, Verizon receives the top position in two mobile service categories:  the Pre-Paid Mobile Carrier Brand of the Year title (for the second consecutive year) and the Mobile Network Brand of the Year title (for the third year in a row). 

"Both Verizon brands receive strong scores straight across the board, including in the areas of Consumer Connection and Brand Momentum," comments Flores.

AT&T also scores ahead of the category average for both of these categories, while TracFone Wireless outperforms the Pre-Paid Mobile Carrier category average.

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