back to article Apple rides fanbois to popularity crown (again)

Apple trounced all competition in a recent Forrester Research customer-satisfaction survey. And in other news, dog bites man. The Cupertinians have been rated as most-loved for years - but this time their margin of affection is embarrassing. According to Forrester's survey of 4,564 Americans, Apple scored a full 14 percentage …


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  1. Ian Tunnacliffe

    Well Duh...

    You build a superior product, you support it better than most and you price it at a small premium to the competition. You'd hope to do well in consumer surveys then wouldn't you?

  2. fontaine
    Gates Halo


    My impression is that Vista puts the bar very low. I can explain OSX to my father (85), but I am too old to learn the new tricks Vista imposes on me.

    Bill, as Bill knew better :)

  3. jai
    Jobs Halo

    "more intuitive and pleasurable to use"

    not just for the average Joe and Jane, as you put it, but also those of us who know what we're doing with a computer seem to prefer them too

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The reason:

    Stock PCs are crap. Build your own, you save money, get eactly the hardware you want, get something looking a lot nice than any stock PC or MAC, get the OS you want (do any stock PC manufacturers sell Linux PCs at all? I doubt it) and without it being full of preinstalled crap like M$ office, Adobe Bloatware, Norton Virus, or the manufacturer's rubbish.

  5. Macka
    Jobs Halo

    Hey Rik

    Envy is such a terrible thing !!

  6. Rob Welsh

    Or maybe it's Vista!?

    Fuck Vista, Fuck Microsoft, Fuck Steve Balmer. Users want software that works, not the virus infested shit that the Redmond tossers keep pumping out. Not only that but fair pricing for education, CAL's my arse, £15000 worth of bollock all every fucking year the thieving bastards.

    Ok, rant over.... I'll get my coat.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Apple Mac's

    If only they were not so boring.

  8. Hardcastle

    Crapple's high satisfaction...

    Well Hades, even a rotten apple will look all shiny when compared to Winhole Shitsta. For the premium Crapertino charges punters to score their products, their support best be top-notch. As for the major OEMs, a typical box obtained from them tends to be crap. For instance, there's an eMachines box here (aka Gateway) that came with cut-corner parts that loves to give me grief, whether I'm laying XPee to it or some Linux. On the other hand, the HP business laptop I have has actually performed well since August 2005, and runs Ubuntu *almost* flawlessly. I would much rather gather the parts and build my own machine and build in the quality needed for proper customer satisfaction... that would be me, in this case. In this vein, it would be nice to see some build-your-own laptop/nettop kits out there that would free the tinkerer from having to get a tailor-made lappy from the OEMs (OCZ is a step in the right direction). For instance, I would love to build a lappy with an Atom 330 dual-core on board, and not be limited to the single-core Atoms in present laptots.

    Mine's the one with the Hackintosh steampunk stashed inside...

  9. pjnola

    An even bigger margin!

    Apple scores even better in the customer self-satisfaction survey!

  10. Lindsay Silver badge

    Re: Well Duh...

    Are we thinking about the same Apple?

  11. Jeff

    No surprises

    So a company that has a small range of premium products scores higher than companies that sell cut down budget models as well.

    If we converted to a satisfaction index per dollar model, I wager the results would be hugely different.

    What's the word for "I paid lots of money for this, of course I have to love it" self-justification. I bet there's a word in German for it.

  12. Travis

    German Word


    "I bet there's a word in German for it."

    There is.


  13. Tom Cooke


    Trouble with a satisfaction index per dollar model is that chocolate would win every time (just kidding!)

  14. Craig

    @Jeff - No suprises

    "I bet there's a word in German for it."

    Yes, Skoda.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Skewed sample possibly?

    The thing is that in any type of survey you only get the extreme views, love or hate, and nothing in the middle.

    So, given that Apple Mac ownership is pretty much universally a personal choice (as is linux to an even greater degree) yet PCs / Windows are what we are forced to use at work, with cost being a major factor in hardware selection, it is inherent that the majority of Mac users are going to be positive whereas the majority of the PC / Windows users who elect to answer surveys of this type will be those with an axe to grind.

    If Apple products were that good they would be the market leader, like they are in the iPod arena and are getting there in the iPhone arena, however in the personal computer arena Apple products are well behind, which is far more telling than any satisfaction survey can ever be.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Re: Well Duh...

    >superior product

    >support it better than most

    >small premium

    Haha, oh wow.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    for the love of god...

    vista is not that bad FFS. If your going to beat on it, actually have a reason. It runs perfectly fine, perfectly speedy and there are only 2 reasons it has got beaten on so much, 1 is the idiot pc makers who installed it on machines it wasn't designed for and that a bunch of internet idiots who jsut hate ms decided to hate on it.

    Seriously i thought article writers would know better, as well as it professionals, actually wait, half the people who post here arn't it professionals at all so maybe thats why.

  18. Simon
    Thumb Up

    Well thats what you are paying for!

    Apples customer support is excellent, ulike other companies where you feel like you are speaking to some bored employee in India.

    The Apple staff know their stuff and they all seem to enjoy their job.

    My iMac had a DVD shatter in it a few months ago and I had to take it to an Apple store to get the drive replaced. Lucky for me it was under warranty (Bit of advice, the Apple extended warranty is really worth it) They even put on a new front case for me as the old one "Had a small crack in it" without any questions.

    I mentioned taking it into the store, but when I first phoned up Apple they also offered to pick it up for free with a courier service, but insisted on doing it in a week when I was unavailable.

    Fan boy, whattever, I don't care, but I always rate a company well that has good after sales service and they do look after you.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Its idiots defending themselves

    When you are stupid enough to fall for the cult of fruit you will defend it to all comers.

    I know if I was such a complete and total twit that I paid at least 300% what I need to for a pc then I would try and get everyone else to do the same. At least then I look like a fashionable leader rather than a moron.

  20. N


    Its well thought out & logical - my wifes words after about 30 minutes using her new MacBook, she used to swear at her PC, but since using a Mac, its stopped...


  21. Bod

    @Ian Tunnacliffe

    "and you price it at a small premium"

    Other (very debatable) points aside, this one fails utterly. In no way is it a "small" premium.

    However, what value is a survey anyway that places Apple along sides the likes of HP/Compaq! ?

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    "" What's the word for "I paid lots of money for this, of course I have to love it" self-justification. I bet there's a word in German for it. ""

    There is. The word is "BMW".

  23. DZ-Jay

    Re: No surprises


    Jeff, you seem to miss the fact that, along with the cheap crap, there are some very expensive high-end machines offered by PC manufacturers too, yet some of those boutiques didn't even make it to the top 5 on the list.

    But I get it, when people complain about PCs or Microsoft crap products, it cannot possibly be a reflection on quality; it must be because they are such large companies that they are bound to have their minority detractors. And when the masses praise Apple, again, it cannot be a reflection on the quality of their products; it must be some strange statistical anomaly.

    So, I ask you sincerely, what exactly would constitute an actual rating of the quality? What criteria is valid?


  24. Daniel

    RE: Well Duh...

    As someone has pointed out... you appear to be wearing your rose tinted glasses today, either that or sarcasm doesn't quite work through text?

    Apple do make very nice products, and when it comes to their laptops they aren't that expensive considering what you get. You do pay for the design of the machine, the laptop design is something quite special. However, the build quality is nothing amazing. They're made from the same bits other laptops are made from and go wrong in exactly the same ways.

    If you want proof, the last series of macbook (pre metal case) would crack its own casing just from closing the lid... now tell me, is that good build quality?

    The support is pretty standard in my experience, if breaks you send it away, they fix, send back. Unless your talking about the applecare warranty which you pay extra for... which I have to say is a great service... BUT YOU HAVE PAID FOR IT.

    Sorry to resort to capital letters, its just so the fanbois can understand.

    The reason other brands tend to get a worse response is from the retailer, not the manufacturer. If you were to buy from dixons for example, they deal with your laptop repair, not the manufacturer. So it's a moot point in the UK, not sure how this works in the US.

    Ah well completely random pointless rambling rant over

  25. Paul

    I realy dont understand

    the anger at Vista. It works fine, and my PC (Which runs everything I need at home) cost me £180 brand new (sans moniter). Not a "small amount" less than an Apple, but about 1/4 the price, or less.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture


    how the most badly-written articles have Ratings turned off.

  27. Grant
    Thumb Up


    scha⋅den⋅freu⋅de [shahd-n-froi-duh]

    –noun satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else's misfortune.


    1890–95; < G, equiv. to Schaden harm + Freude joy


    written from MacBook Pro, I switch to mac when Vista came out. I am a professional programmer (Not a professional fiddler with my OS al the time to keep it running) and OS X rocks.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    Go on the Bod,

    YAWN!!! Well done Apple. Perhaps if the rest of the IT retail world was to follow suit (ie honour warranties without question - I'm looking at you PC World...) then the Windows platform would fair better. That is ALL this survey shows us. This seems to have really pissed you shills off.

    @ Travis, re Schadenfreude. Good one! I rarely feel pleasure at the expense of others misfortune, however when you read some of the stuff here (which is nothing but sour grapes!) it's hard not to.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    To those defending Vista...

    ...I've been using it for some months now.

    When I beta tested it I actually found the experience quite positive, which is why I decided to go for Home Premium once the price had come down a bit (and luckily before they pushed it back up again)

    But I must say it's the suckiest load of suck that ever sucked, it just plain sucks.

    First it decided it didn't like nVidia's drivers for the SATA controller. That's a pretty basic component, and when it doesn't work properly your PC is pretty screwed, as mine was.

    Once I fixed that (after wondering why my PC would freeze every 30 seconds) I found problems with my printers, causing any app I try to print from to crash. Come on, an Epson DX6000 isn't an old printer. They even have Vista drivers - supposedly.

    Also my TV tuner doesn't work at all, it did with ubuntu (without any tweaks or mods). Think about that one for a minute.

    And the whole way in which Vista seems to handle files is utterly terrible. The explorer is just useless. Finding anything seems to be such a mission now, as it fills every window with 50 thousand links to useless default folders I don't want. Then, heaven forbid you actually find your files, it'll probably crash when you try to move them around.

    The control panel and in particular the settings with regards to networking are atrocious. There seems to be no easy way to access a list of my network hardware. What was a 1, maybe 2 click job in XP seems to take 3 or 4 clicks in Vista. Why?

    Then there's the fact that Vista seems to be trying to kill my hard drive 10 years before the MTBF. It'll thrash and thrash and trash until you wanna yank the SATA cable out just to get it to stop (which I did once - when the SATA controller wasn't working properly)

    Then as a slap in the face they announce Windows 7, aka Windows Vista Working Edition is only a year or so round the corner.

    All in all it has potential but they've lost sight of how an OS should handle the kind of tasks people actually need to do on a daily basis.


  30. Shakje


    You're missing the point. Most people who want high-end PCs are quite happy to build their own at a fraction of the cost, and to a more tailored spec. If your average Joe walks into PC World and sees a PC that's "Vista-capable" and has big bold letters saying how fast things are, he's not going to look at the 1500 quid PCs, he'll buy the 900 quid PC with the stupidly big monitor and terrible components. An actual rating of quality would be to do a street survey of a few hundred individuals. Ask them what brand (if any) their home computer is, what OS is on it, and if they have tried any other OS in the last year, why they switched (if they did), and what ratings they would give each OS, possibly also ask them how much they care. Then you could work out the man in the street's idea of what a good operating system is, and possibly why.

    But seriously, if I overpaid that much for a computer I'd expect bloody amazing support too.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    @Evil Graham

    Excellent, now i can put Apple users in the same cart as BMW drivers

    Another fine reason for not buying any Apple product

  32. Dave


    No, schadenfreude is rather different - it is the enjoyment of other peoples misfortune.

    As for the Vista effect, it can't be that, as no one actually runs it.

  33. andy gibson

    Is this the same Apple....

    As the one which produced a computer and OS which for no reason at all would stop, show a pop up with a little bomb and the words "Sorry a system error occurred" and gave you no options other than click the restart button?

    I don't mind Apple. I just don't like fanbois who think they're bullet proof.

    Incidentally, I've been using MS products since DOS 4, never had a virus or hack attack. Take PCs away from the plebs and the problem is solved.

  34. Ian Tunnacliffe

    And on and on and on and on....

    Naturally this debate will go on as long as there are computers and people who want to argue about them. But here are a few observations from a happy Mac user.

    1. Macs are not perfect, especially the hardware. My last Macbook Pro was definitely a Friday afternoon model. I had endless problems with its sleep function and eventually the screen just died on me.

    2. BUT when I took it in to an Apple Store they took it off my hands and fixed it for free, even though it was out of warranty.

    3 BUT I was buying a new Macbook Pro at the time so they probably had an incentive to be nice to me.

    4. OSX is so far superior to anything from Microsoft that the debate is hardly worth having any more. Any Windows die-hards out there who disagree, please just use it for a month. Interesting thing is that most Mac users have long-term experience of using Windows every day. Not sure the same is true in reverse.

    5. I agree that using a Mac is far more likely to be a personal choice than using Windows and so people have more invested in the choice.

    6. I know that Mac's market share is small - around 7% I believe. I suspect (but cannot prove) that if corporate IT departments allowed users a free choice the Mac's share would increase enormously. There is no reason that this could not happen. The extra cost of supporting two platforms would be offset by the reduced costs of security management and user bafflement. Possibly by more than 100%, but that's just a guess. Since my small company decided to go Mac two years ago we have had only one compatibility issue with our Windows-centric clients. And we spend a lot of time in their offices working on their networks.

    7. The one issue is with the way Powerpoint handles images - oh and that's Microsoft software that's incompatible between the two platform versions.

    8. And the price premium - for similarly specced machines - really is quite modest, in the laptop space at least. Maybe you can get a Windows desktop machine for nuxpence - I did once (from a major Japanese manufaturer). It exploded - quite literally. Now that was extreme but you get my point?

    9. And finally, if in doubt cite your mother. My mum had a Windows machine that she could only ever use to play a bridge game. Anything else, including email, was simply too baffling. A year ago I got her an iMac and now you can't get away from the emailed photographs from her digital camera - and she books her rail tickets online.

  35. Kevin

    umm about Vista

    It IS a pile of shit.

    My ex boss built a custom quad core with 4 gigs of ram, and 2 of the most expensive Geforce's made at the time (forgot which model) when he first installed Vista the machine booted in seconds and blew XP away in performance and after 3 months it ran like shit. My sister bought a laptop same exact experience Vista ran fine (2Ghz Dual core 2 gigs or ram) and was faster than XP and after a few months it got bogged down to taking so long to boot you could go make a cup of ramen in the mean time.

    Hell dealing with Vista converted my one programmer friend into what I call a loyal Appleite that acts like I'm making fun of his religion when I make fun of Apple products (He now owns 4-5 Ipods, a Iphone, and a 2nd mac...).

    Just hoping Windows 7 does not suffer from the ever expanding boot times issue that Vista has, if it doesn't I might upgrade my Win 2k box to it instead of joining the ranks of the penguin army.

  36. Anonymous Coward

    @AC, 11:47 GMT

    Thanks for the vote, although I must confess to owning an Apple computer (although not a BMW).

    The smugness factor is about the same, the main difference being that I don't come belting down the 3rd lane at 110mph in my Apple, even though the lane is closed due to roadworks and sensible people have been moving over for the last 3 miles, then stamp on the brakes and cut in in front of you at the last moment, almost wiping out you and your family because I'm a tosspot hyper-competitive junior manager who has to be in front of everyone.

    See - everyone has their prejudices.

  37. P. Lee

    It starts with a first look

    Take a stroll into your local PC retail shop and down the laptop isle.

    Its enough to make you want to poke your eyes out! The stuff is just hideously ugly. Faux metallic paint or shiny plastic that shows every smear, tiny trackpads still almost universally with only two "mouse" buttons and those horrible up/down, left/right scroll areas.

    And it isn't just a question of money. Sony's high-end vaios are slightly better than average but still look chunky/clunky and don't come close to the simple elegance of a mac laptop. And they cost rather a lot too. I spend a lot of time looking at and touching my laptop. Both look and feel are important parts of the user interface and how you'll feel about the product.

    All this and we still haven't really touched on vista. Intangibles do count for something. If every time I look at my pc I think, "its expending quite a bit of resource spying on me" I'm always going to be a bit unhappy, regardless of whether it is fast enough for me or not, or even whether its true or not!

    The issue isn't whether vista is incompetent at being an OS. Its that the Mac (ilife/iwork) applications are so cheap and the integration with the OS and each other so well done that users see them all as one thing. iphoto-iweb and iphoto-facebook (don't laugh -lots of people use facebook) integration is rather good, printing a calendar for grandma's christmas present is easy. It isn't that you can't do this with vista or linux, it just isn't as smoothly integrated - it feels rather rough around the edges and there is greater differentiation between the OS and the applications. If you listen to how Mac users talk, its all about "what they can do with their Mac" whether its Apple's iPhoto or Adobe's Photoshop isn't relevant. Cost isn't so much of an issue, what's important is getting the job done, which is the real issue behind "it just works," and the reason you buy a computer to start with.

  38. Aaron
    Jobs Halo

    Got my parents back...

    It used to be that when my parents called, it was almost always a troubleshooting call for their PCs, never just a "how are you doing" call.

    Now they both have Macs and love them, and when they call me, I know it's just to say "hello".

    Thanks, Apple, for giving me my parents back.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @Ian T

    Well Ian, I for one have been trying a Mac for a few months, and I am not at all

    convinced. I have had more crashes, the touchpad scolling is abomnible, and

    some things are markedly inferior to Windows.

    I wont be buying another.

    Totally overrated

  40. vincent himpe

    @Ian Tunnacliffe

    on your item number 4 : the question is what do you use ? do you use the operating system or do you use the applications ? And that is where apple is lacking seriously. Every year or so i walk into an apple store and have the same question, and every time i leave empty handed.

    There is no serious software for Apple. Only this year is Adobe Premiere and Photoshop returning natively to Apple. Wanna run games ? install windows... Wanna run any other business software ? install windows. Wanna run any kind of serious cad software ( solidworks, rhino , 3dstudio , renderman, cadence , mentor , altium ) install windows. wanna run electronics or mechanical engineering tools ? run windows ....

    Of all the software i use on a day to day basis only a webbrowser (Opera) and MS Office is available on Mac. And that is maybe 5% ... none of my CAD stuff runs on apple , none of my Photo or Video editing stuff runs on Apple. None of my code writing tools run on apple (cross compilers for ARM. Devtools for Altera and Xilinx)

    So why would i buy overpriced kit to shell out another 299$ to install XP Pro on it ...

    If my dad wants a computer to surf the internet and write the odd letter i will buy him a Mac.

    If you want to do any serious workj.. tough luck. That does not mean they are bad machines or OSx is a bad operating system. Macs are simply limited in what you can do with them (without installing a different os, whete winduws , one of the 5 bajillion flavours of 'nerd'-ix).

    If someone would make a Solaris laptop ...

  41. Ian Tunnacliffe

    Fair Points


    If you have tried it and don't get on with it then fair enough. I am perplexed by how that would have happened but you and I are different people and so I must accept that it has.


    Yes, there are some apps that are only available for Windows. Games in particular. However my experience in the corporate world is that 99% of users need no more than an office suite and a browser plus access to the corporate back-end apps - to do serious work. If you are in the 1% then you may have to grit your teeth and run Windows. Good luck to you,

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