Sprint tops J.D. Power’s ranking for phone shopping experience

Sprint smartphones available for purchase.
Sprint smartphones available for purchase. Star file photo

Phone shopping? Sprint satisfies best, says a survey of customers conducted by J.D. Power & Associates.

Sprint ranked first among the four largest wireless carriers in the survey focused on cell phone purchases at retail stores, over-the-phone and online.

Consumers who had bought a phone in the previous six months were asked about their experiences with their wireless company’s sale representative, website, phone representative, store, offerings and promotions and cost of service.

Sprint Nextel Corp., which is based in Overland Park, ranked highest with a score of 775. The four averaged 764, with Verizon scoring 763, AT&T 761 and T-Mobile 752, according to J.D. Power. It was Sprint’s third consecutive top finish in the rankings that are done every six months.

J.D. Power’s announcement said Sprint did particularly well in the “offerings and promotions” and the “cost of service” comparisons, which were weighted the least in calculating the overall rankings.

Satisfaction ratings were lower at other retailers that offer phones, which included Apple, Best Buy, Costco, RadioShack and Wal-Mart, scoring an average of 760.

Satisfaction ratings also were lower from customers seeking phones with service on a month-to-month basis rather than a two-year contract. In this category, TracFone topped rankings at 763, ahead of Sprint’s Boost Mobile at 758 and MetroPCS’s 758.

The survey showed phone shoppers should expect to spend some time at the store. The average wait to speak with a salesperson is 7.5 minutes and the average total time to complete a sales transaction in retail stores was 54 minutes.

| Mark Davis,