Consumer satisfaction with PCs on the rise

According to the American Customer Satisfaction Index, consumers are happier with their computers than ever before. The latest numbers from the group give PCs 78 out of a possible 100 points—an increase of three points over last year. Acer, Dell, and HP all scored 77, while Apple did much better with a score of 86.

This page on ACSI’s website describes the group’s methodology, which factors in perceived quality and value in addition to customer complaints, expectations, and loyalty. Customer loyalty is named a “critical component” of the assessment model, and I suspect its prominence helped Apple to score so highly. PC users can easily switch brands without migrating to a different operating system or losing applications. Parting ways with Apple is considerably more difficult if you want to keep running OS X.

ACSI’s historical data goes back more than 10 years, and it nicely illustrates a dip in customer satisfaction during Vista’s tenure. Windows 7 is credited with fueling the rebound, which seems like a fair assessment given that the OS is really the biggest change we’ve seen on the PC in the last year.

Comments closed
    • albundy
    • 9 years ago

    is that a sign that milking of whatever is out there has already begun?

    • crabjokeman
    • 9 years ago

    Yeah, these are probably people that got stuck with VIA/SiS/nForce chipsets or overheating Prescotts the last time they bought a computer. Wow, we’ve made so much progress!

    • blacksteel
    • 9 years ago

    Apple does so well in customer satisfaction because of the various stores around that help answer questions and fix any problems quicker. The current OEM’s just don’t have that except for mom and pop computer stores. I’m actually happy that MS is taking some initiative it opening it’s own stores so people can come in with questions or help fix problems instead of people having to deal with tech support roulette.

    • anotherengineer
    • 9 years ago

    Hey Geoff

    “Windows 7………….that the OS is really the biggest change we’ve seen on the PC in the last year.”

    I would probly say that win 7 has been the biggest change on the PC since Vista almost 4 yrs ago 🙂

    • jackbomb
    • 9 years ago

    Didn’t Asus beat Apple recently?

      • sweatshopking
      • 9 years ago

      they get all lumped together. remember there’s 2 brands. Pc’s which suck. and Mac’s which are super.

      i’m not sure why they lump them that way. i would like to know which pc brand got the best reviews, as hp, dell, acer, all sell more pc’s than apple. I think that information would be more important.

        • PeterD
        • 9 years ago

        And they didn’t count Linux flavours?

    • wibeasley
    • 9 years ago

    It seems like their model says that CustomerLoyalty is a function of CustomerComplaints. I’d like to see them fit a model witha few arrows pointed the other direction -for instance CustomerComplaints is a function of CustomerLoyalty.

    I wonder if that model would fit better, and that would change several of their interpretations. I bet a feedback model is also possible.

    • jstern
    • 9 years ago

    If you go to an Apple website, you realize that the Mac is always going to get a really high score. Steve Jobs could sell them a Mac filled with feces and now way in hell will they criticize it. That’s why I don’t trust the “Superior Customer Service” thing that Mac users are always bragging about.

      • StashTheVampede
      • 9 years ago

      There are several things Apple does really well than almost no other PC maker can compete with: a (near) one stop shop for your computing needs.

      Buy new machine? Go to Apple store.
      Buy new trinket? Go to Apple store.

      Call Apple users sheep (I have both Macs and PC) for this mentality, but it really works for a lot of people. You go to Apple because you know you can go back to Apple if/when you have problems.

      Where is the HP store? How about the local Dell/Asus/Acer/Lenovo store?

        • Corrado
        • 9 years ago

        Don’t forget that with Apple, if you have questions, you can bring your computer to the store, and they’ll show you how to do something. While I was in the Apple Store a few weeks ago, a man in his 70’s or so came in with his laptop, said he had a bunch of photos from his recent trip to south america and he wanted to put a slideshow on a CD/DVD. The guy set up his laptop for him, and showed him how to do it.

        Sure, theres a slight premium with an Apple computer, but to get that kind of service from a PC vendor is almost unheard of without paying extra money.

          • Ricardo Dawkins
          • 9 years ago

          Strange such elder man didn’t have any nephew that could help him

            • Skrying
            • 9 years ago

            His grandchild is probably a “computer enthusiast” and refuses to use a Mac.

          • paulWTAMU
          • 9 years ago

          If you live near an apple store. That excludes a large part of the country

        • jstern
        • 9 years ago

        That’s good, but doesn’t take away from the fact that a lot of Mac users will always give a high score even if it didn’t deserve it. If you really think about it, most people use their computer, get their work done, doesn’t matter that it’s a dell or HP, and there’s no reason to become a fanboy, the PC is on top. But when you have a minority, it’s a different story. The user is so aware that Macs are not the main player, many Mac users will tend to get an us against them mentality. As a minority they want to see the Mac succeed, so they become more brand conscious, more wanting to promote it, see it succeed. As a PC user (who also had a Mac) I couldn’t care less that I had a Sony, and then a Dell, and Sony again, or no brand because I built a PC. What’s important are the specs. With many Mac users, the brand becomes very important, because they’re the underdogs.

        Also, a company like Apple also attracts certain types of people, who want to be part of a community that not everyone is part of. They want to feel special. And those are probably the absolute worst type of Mac users, because they’re just very weak individuals. Apple promotes their Apple community as being something special, that only a few people belong to, so it would be no surprise if they attracted a lot of weak people who want to feel, I don’t know.

        Again, not all Mac users.

        • BobbinThreadbare
        • 9 years ago

        They also have higher build quality than most windows based PC companies. If the thing doesn’t break in the first place, you’re going to be happy right?

          • jstern
          • 9 years ago

          That’s BS that Apple fans like to say. I’ve been following Mac news ever since I got my MacBook in 2007, and Apple is not immune at all to hardware problems, AT ALL. Especially that white Mac Book that I had. I defy you to go eBay and find someone selling the regular white MacBook that doesn’t have cracks, or had their keyboard replace to fix the crack. That didn’t have a swollen battery that made it difficult to type, and impossible to use the track pad. What about the 27” iMac fiasco earlier this year. Macs are expensive, and many Mac users like to feel that their getting better built quality for the price. Mac’s are design with looks in mind 1st, the rest can fall into place.

    • StuG
    • 9 years ago

    I rate my own computer as a 100%, where is my chunk of the survey!

    • SonicSilicon
    • 9 years ago

    I wonder if this reflects lowered expectations.

      • OneArmedScissor
      • 9 years ago

      I have to wonder how it reflects anything at all. So many computers now are pretty much the same damn thing and the stores like Best Buy try to control what they’re selling you rather than giving you options. Do most people even have any expectations beyond how much they want to spend? Probably not.

      • PeterD
      • 9 years ago

      Yeah, I’ve asked myself the same question.
      After Vista, it could only go up.

    • Vasilyfav
    • 9 years ago

    So, the combined effort by MS and Apple in idiot-proofing every feature worked!

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