The battle continues for the top smartphone and a recent survey released on Monday shows that nearly half of consumers prefer Apple over Android, in terms of operating software and overall consumer satisfaction.

The research conducted by ChangeWave surveyed consumers planning to invest in a smartphone over the next thirty days. Primarily targeting the North American market, which comprised 89 percent of the 4,163 people surveyed, results show that 46 percent planned to purchase an iPhone while 32 percent eyed Android phones.

This divide marks the deepest gap in demand trends against Apple since the Motorola Droid was released in 2009, as reported in Electronista.

The same percentages represent the preferred operating systems of smart phones, with 46 percent preferring iOS phones over 32 percent for Android.

Blackberry OS Research in Motion (RIM) only acquired a 4 percent buyer preference, marking its lowest preference level ever, according to the survey.

Apple also presided in the customer satisfaction department with operating systems, reigning with 70 percent of customers claiming to be Very Satisfied compared to Android's 50 percent satisfaction rating. Only 27 percent were Very Satisfied with Windows OS and 26 percent with RIM.

The research also shows that the recent announcement of Apple's iCloud service available this fall, which allows users to access data on the go, has impacted the demand trends, with nearly 30 percent of current owners to remain loyal to Apple products.

Though Apple has not launched a new smart phone since the iPhone 4's release last summer, the ChangeWave survey shows Apple's ratings up 2 points since research was last conducted in March this year.