Pixel 3 and OnePlus 6T's biggest buyers are Samsung refugees

Google Pixel phones were able to achieve something no Nexus was able to do. While both offered a pure Android experience, only one achieved mainstream popularity that directly pit it against not just Apple's iPhones but even other Android brands as well. If that were the only measure of its success, then Google has enough reason so celebrate. Unfortunately, one research reveals that as far trying to get iPhone users to convert, the Pixel phones might be a flop.

Of course, that's not exactly the stated goal of the Pixel 3 but almost all OEMs, including the likes of OnePlus and even Samsung, always have iPhone users in their crosshairs. But according to the study done by Counterpoint Research, 51% of those who moved to a Google Pixel 3 in Q4 2018 came from Samsung. Similarly, 37% of users who migrated to a OnePlus 6T were also former Samsung Galaxy owners.

The research is sending some mixed messages. On the one hand, it definitely doesn't bode well for Samsung to see a massive exodus of users to Pixel and OnePlus phones. These could be due to a variety of reasons, from price in the case of the OnePlus 6T to fast updates and pristine software in the case of the Google Pixel 3.

At the same time, the numbers also don't reflect well on the Pixel's chances at pulling iPhone users towards Android. It also shows how Google may be starting to eat at its own partners' market share, something that Samsung may not take too kindly. Google, however, might not exactly be too worried about that.

Counterpoint's study doesn't exactly show numbers for completely new smartphone owner buying a Pixel 3 or OnePlus 6T as their very first phone. Then again, considering almost everyone has a smartphone these days, that number might nearly be negligible. That does imply, however, that neither the Pixel nor the OnePlus are considered "first-time" phones, making Samsung the brand of choice for new Android users.