Apple Mac desktops, notebooks top PC Magazine’s Annual Reader Satisfaction survey – again

“The similarities are almost eerie. This year, readers gave us the lowdown on over 13,000 desktop PCs—enough data to rate eight of the country’s leading brands. And the final tally looks an awful lot like last year’s survey results,” Cade Metz reports for PC Magazine on “The 19th Annual Reader Satisfaction Survey.”

Metz reports, “This year, you diehard PC Mag readers detailed your experiences with nearly 20,000 PCs (notebooks and desktops) and more than 6,500 printers (from mono lasers to color ink jet all-in-ones). And what you say about the leading manufacturers isn’t always what we’d expect. No big name is above criticism. (Well, maybe one is, but we’re inclined to believe that’s due to more than just spiked apple juice.) If you’re in the market for a new desktop, notebook, or printer, this report is a must-read.”

“Look no further than Apple, the leader of the pack, whose overall score holds steady at 9.1. Last year, Apple’s score on units needing repair was an impressive 11 percent—well below that of any other company in the survey. But according to readers, the company has managed to cut repair rates even further over the past 12 months. This year, Apple’s score on units needing repair drops to 8 percent. Among first-year systems, it’s only 5 percent. That’s nothing less than astonishing,” Metz reports.

Metz reports, “As we’ve said in the past, Mac owners are unusually passionate about their machines, and this may have had an effect on the company’s unusually high Service and Reliability scores. But the score for percentage needing repair is less subjective than others. Either Apple is doing something right when it comes to quality control, or its restrictive warranty makes people less likely to have their systems repaired.”

“Just how satisfied are Mac owners? That 9.1 overall score is significantly better than the average for Windows PCs. And the same can be said of the company’s scores for reliability and the likelihood of recommending. It should be noted, however, that Apple’s score on technical support is down this year (from 8.4 to 8.1),” Metz reports, “Is that a reflection of Apple’s standard warranty, which allows only 90 days of telephone support for software issues? Probably not. Readers say that, among first-year Apple systems, 88 percent of tech support issues are covered by warranty (either Apple’s or a third party’s)—the highest rate among leading vendors.”

Metz reports, “[In notebooks], once again, Apple is at the top. Its overall score, 9.1, is significantly better than the average for Windows notebooks—and a full seven-tenths of a point better than Lenovo’s overall score, 8.4. Its scores for reliability (9.2), tech support (8.5), and likelihood of recommending (9.4) are also significantly better than average. Yes, its score on percentage needing repair is merely average, but at 16 percent, it’s the lowest of the survey (alongside Sony’s 16 percent).”

“Is this a function of that unique passion Apple users have for the company’s products? Perhaps. But, again, it’s hard to question the number of units needing repair. Among first-year systems, only 7 percent needed repair—2 points better than Sony,” Metz reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Why does Cade Metz come across as incredulous even though this is at least Apple’s 4th consecutive year at the top of the survey? They really fight hard against the obvious truth, don’t they? Or is Metz just trying to protect his audience’s self-esteem?

Windows PC users really should ask themselves why, from their point of view, “Mac owners are unusually passionate about their machines.” We ask ourselves all the time, “Why are Windows users unusually ambivalent (or outright hostile) about their PCs? Why do they keep using Windows? Why don’t they try something better?”

Metz writes, “If you’re in the market for a new desktop, notebook, or printer, this report is a must-read.” Don’t just read it this year, Windows-only users. Life’s too short: Get a Mac.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Apple Mac desktops, portables top PC Magazine’s 2005 Reader Satisfaction survey – August 24, 2005
Apple Computer products top PC Magazine’s annual ‘Best of the Year’ survey – December 16, 2004
Apple Macs top PC Magazine’s ’17th Annual Reader Satisfaction Survey’ – August 10, 2004
Apple leads PC Magazine’s 16th annual Service and Reliability Survey – July 10, 2003

Defending Windows over Mac a sign of mental illness – December 20, 2003


  1. I don’t get it! If Mac owners are “unusually passionate about their machines” wouldn’t that be BECAUSE of the service and reliability? Why do so many reporters start with the assumption that Mac owners love Apple so they give good scores, instead of deducing that they love the quality so they give Apple good scores?

  2. i find it interesting that the writer almost accuses the respondents who own apple h/w of lying, but hints that it really may be this good by quoting more objective assessments.

    the thing that makes me smile is that it really is that good on this side of the fence.

    MW : nuclear – hmm something to do with iran?

  3. Yeah, I don’t think there would be very many passionate Apple lovers if their machines were as reliable as Dell’s are. As a matter of fact, Mac users tend to be far MORE critical of the flaws that Apple actually does have than anyone else.

    So it is truly stupid for anyone to say Apple scores highly in surveys like this only because of their passionate users.

  4. “Human beings are slightly smarter than monkeys.”

    Yes. And for all those monkeys, there’s always Windows.

    “Greetings to intelligent life-forms everywhere! And to everyone else out there, the secret is to bang the rocks together guys.” –“The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy” by Douglas Adams–

  5. I dropped a large glass of fizzy drink into the guts of my Powerbook G4 last month. Poor thing, it seemed to be a goner as it tried to restart over and over again, and then the keyboard froze solid.

    Lo and behold, after a couple weeks more drying time, it’s come back from the dead. Just crossing fingers that the sugars in the drink don’t attack the circuits.

    I guess things like this are what earn Apple good points, especially as the AppleCentre people were so helpful.

    Meantime, my emergency buy of a MacBook Pro has me smiling benignly at all…

  6. Why are Windows users unusually ambivalent (or outright hostile) about their PCs?

    Because, for most of the poor bastards, someone else made a decision that they have to live with. Do you remember what it was like when your mother used to choose your wardrobe? Now fast forward 20-40 years. And now someone (to whom you’re not even related) actually makes decisions which are even more frustrating.

    Why do they keep using Windows?

    Because people are basically conservative and lazy. When all of these corporates chose Microsoft, they also – for reasons passing understanding – went for the whole MSFT monoculture. Now the dumb fscks are locked into ASP, .NET, ActiveX, SharePoint and God knows what other proprietary technology.

    And because most of them are intellectually sub-normal, they claim that Mac OS X is proprietary because that’s what their MSFT account manager at Ingram, CDW or whoever told them.

    Why don’t they try something better?

    See the previous two answers.

  7. “Yes, its score on percentage needing repair is merely average, but at 16 percent, it’s the lowest of the survey (alongside Sony’s 16 percent).”

    Does anyone else see the problem with this sentence? How can the score be “merely average” but is tied for the lowest of the survey? Hello?!?! Math 101.

  8. How can everything be so obviously biased against macs but when we point out the lies/omissions somehow we are smug? So, we spout the truths but somehow we are made to be the bad guys. I get so tired of windows people being so smug and not getting any crap for it. Now when mac users talk about things somehow we are putting people down. How is that fair?

  9. IIci, Performa, 8500/150,G-4 Sawtooth 400mhz, 14″ Power Book: one new drive on the G-4 (OWC backup with CCC). That is the only hardware malfunction in 17+ years on a Mac.

    I buy Apple products because they just work! If that causes one to become smug, so be it!!!!!!

  10. I just talked my brother-in-law into switching. He emailed me within a few minutes of taking his new MacBook home to express his amazement at how easy it was to set up and get online. His Dell notebook had taken him nearly a day to set everything up so it worked, and even then it was flakey.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.