Morgan Stanley has completed a survey of current iPhone owners and recorded an impressive 92% intent to make their next purchase another iPhone. With the anniversary iPhone likely to drive unprecedented numbers of upgrades Apple could be soon be back on top of the market as a result.
That 92% loyalty figure has a longer term impact too. Users who move to iPhone mostly never go back. The end result will be a market that swings toward Apple. With smartphone ownership certain to drive consumer technology purchases in other areas, that promises even more opportunities for Apple.
At this point I don't even think a way exists for other smartphone OEMs to break the grip Apple has on its customers. More technology, more features or more gimmicks won't do the job. And if any turn out to be useful or popular, well they all end up on the iPhone eventually.