Apple is eating HP’s laptop lunch

“Hewlett-Packard Tuesday night reported a 12% decline in the ‘consumer’ portion of its personal systems group,” Anton Wahlman reports for TheStreet. “That’s mostly laptops. With this news fresh in mind, I decided to visit 15 of the cafes located closest to the HP headquarters, mostly within a 2-mile radius, to see what the people closest to HP were using in terms of laptops.The survey took me about 90 minutes to conduct, and is, of course, of limited statistical significance. But still, out of the 100 laptops and tablets observed in 15 of the cafes closest to the HP headquarters:

Apple MacBook: 45
Lenovo: 14
Dell: 14
Apple iPad: 9
Sony 6
HP 4
Toshiba 3
Acer 2
Asus 2
Samsung 1

Wahlman reports, “Aside from its statistical limitations, one can, of course, criticize this kind of quick survey from other angles, such as enterprise-vs.-consumer, HP employees or owners don’t visit cafes, or don’t visit cafes located down the street from HP, or whatever. That said, based on the kind of publicly reported market shares, in which Apple normally scores not too far from 10% and is in a similar category to HP, this kind of quick survey looks like a nasty leading indicator for HP in the laptop sales department.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple makes a vastly superior product and offers a vastly superior user experience. The hoi polloi are finally, blessedly, waking up to those facts. Macintosh. You get what you pay for.

43 Comments

    1. It was specified that it was not a formal survey. But it does help to just use good old common sense and look around. What’s in people’s hands. These types of observations in conjunction with proper studies offer a more comprehensive view of what’s happening in the market.

      1. Yes, and public presence tends to result in even more purchases. I was at Panera the other day and it seemed like there was a huge disparity of Macs over PCs. No doubt others see that too, and are influenced by those images at their next purchase.

    2. Yes, it anecdotal, but much can be inferred from anecdotal evidence. I pay attention to laptops in use at airports, and while I haven’t done counts as TH did, I have noticed that Mac laptops are appearing in greater numbers than they did 3, or even 2 years ago.

      Apple’s focus is mobility, and it shows in its MacBooks (especially the Air) and the iPad. Its what consumers and the enterprise want, so naturally you’re going to see more of them than you have in the past.

    3. …”The survey took me about 90 minutes to conduct, and is, of course, of limited statistical significance. (…) Aside from its statistical limitations, one can, of course, criticize this kind of quick survey from other angles, such as enterprise-vs.-consumer, HP employees or owners don’t visit cafes, or don’t visit cafes located down the street from HP, or whatever.”

      How much more was he supposed to say to make it clear that his 90-minute survey was NOT to be taken as credible market research?

  1. My wife feels that she might like to get a “real job,” and realized that she’d probably need to know how to work a Windows machine. So I picked up an HP laptop at Staples (classic PC buying decision: it was the cheapest thing I could find). “It functions” is about the most glowing thing I can say about it. Cheap plastic crap and the worst display I’ve seen in ten years. And you get to put up with the continual “updates” being shoved in your face both by Microsoft and HP. You do indeed get what you pay for.

    1. A client of mine, a Fortune 500 energy company has hulking Dells sitting on most desks. I asked the receptionist why she also had her hands on a MBP. She said, “it’s so I can actually get some work done.” Throughout the company I see the same thing on many desks. On the trading floor, and the graphics department there are vast rooms full of Macs. The days of needing a windows machine to get a “real job” are fading fast.

  2. I think this is statistically accurate for the coffee shop hanging around sub-segment of the laptop market.

    I used to hang out at various coffee shops all day as I didn’t have a real office to go to for around 6 months last year. Apple hardware was always in the 50% range. A few times I actually counted all the visible laptops for the heck of it and it was usually around half. Definitely far more than their “10% Market Share” says I should see.

    1. I believe market share is based on current sales, not installed base. It’s easy to measure current sales, and very hard to measure installed base. It’s even harder to measure how much of the installed base is actually in use. Because Mac users keep their Macs longer than PC users keep their PCs, Apple’s 10% market share in terms of sales could easily translate to a 50% share in terms of actual use.

    1. Windows likes to display status messages. Sometimes you get two of them saying the same thing, or a message telling you that updates are available while you are updating. Very confusing. I would not be surprised to see a message pop up in Windows telling the user that the computer is running.

      1. That’s the annoying thing about Windows. It’s forever trying to guess what you want to do and getting it wrong. When I want to cut and paste text I’ll highlight the characters I want and don’t give me more or less, thank you!

  3. Just so happens, I usually carry in my briefcase at any given time: 45 Apple MacBooks, 14 Lenovos, 14 Dells, 9 Apple iPads, 6 Sonys, 4 HPs, 3 Toshibas, 2 Acers, 2 Asus, and a partridge in a pear tree.

    Samsung 1
    so that I’m prepared for anything

  4. Not only is Apple eating HP’s lunch, they frigging bought the deli that was serving HP’s lunch.

    Fack me if that sample of 100 were statistically significant Apple is outselling HP 12:1 – I’m throwing the iPad in the mix since HP’s TouchPad will be, how did SJ put it? Yeah, DOA!!!

  5. A family relation bought an HP laptop for their high school student. I warned them, but they wanted “something cheap.”

    Right off the bat, it couldn’t hold on to a wifi signal. They tried to obtain tech support and that was a nightmare.

    Indeed: you get what you pay for.

  6. Try that survey in a university study hall or lunch room. I have heard it is 75% or more MacBooks. These are the future corporate and personal buyers that will be picking Apple.

    This game is over and Microsoft doesn’t see it yet. They will!

  7. I own and use Apple products because of their quality, reliability, and value, but I’ve been averse to using them publicly, because I have always detested elitism, and I don’t like to look like a self-indulgent snob or a fanboy. Now that Apple products are everywhere, I don’t have a problem whipping out my MacBook Pro or my iPad in public, because now it just makes me look like a sensible person.

  8. This is pure speculation, but I think first the ipod, then the iphone and now the ipad have finally swayed the general public what apple users have known all along – a vastly better computer exp. I have some family members who refuse to touch anything apple, but now some of my other family members all have iphones and are finally considering buying their first mac. As someone else said and something that I’ve said to my friends & family for years ‘you get what you pay for’

    1. I was going to the train station to pick up my niece the other day and my wife tossed me her iPhone, saying “She’ll call this phone if the train’s late.” Yep, it was late and she texted me about it. I’d never texted on an iPhone before, but what the heck, it looked easy enough, and it WAS! Completely intuitive! Everything just worked and was where I guessed it would be. I still can’t text on my $&^%$& Nokia company phone, even after going through it with the 90 page manual. That’s what sells Apple products.

    1. No, you wouldn’t. You’re forgetting to add in the iPad – nicely positioned in the fastest growing segment of the mobile market, a market that Microsoft isn’t ready for until at least 2012.

    2. @Trad, why did you throw Linux in there under the MS umbrella? That along with you ignoring iPad counts makes your assessment less accurate. If even one of those laptops was running Linux, that’s WORSE for MS, not better.

  9. “HP employees or owners don’t visit cafes, or don’t visit cafes located down the street from HP”

    True, if HP has an on campus cafe that employees like, that would explain the low number of HP laptops next to HP headquarters. BUT it doesn’t explain the – more than 50% – number of Apple devises.

    I always thought that Apple market share reports didn’t reflected what I was seeing in real life.

  10. Yes, I see a large population of MacBooks at cafes and hotspots in general. Knowing Apple sells fewer than HP or Dell, I have to reason why.
    Personally, perhaps using a Mac gives the least hassle on connections. I have noticed greater troubles with the menu of windows 7 choice with those I have been around. So, maybe it is the software.
    Fewer troubles equals greater confidence to roam the hotspots and cafes of the world.
    My reasoning.

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