ACSI: Apple outranks competitors in consumer satisfaction

By on September 20, 2011, 9:00 AM

Consumers are no happier with their computers this year than they were last year, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index. In its annual report, the group found that consumer satisfaction with personal computers has remained stagnant at 78 out of 100. Continuing what is now an eight-year tradition, Apple ranked highest among computer manufacturers with a rating of 87 -- up one point from 2010 and well ahead of its nearest competitor.

As with last year, HP scored both the best and worst among Windows PCs. Its mainstream and premium "HP" brand maintained dominance with a satisfaction rating of 78, while its budget "Compaq" brand ranked last with 75. Both numbers increased point over 2010. Other major players, including Acer, Dell, Toshiba, Lenovo and Sony are sandwiched between the two HP brands with a ranking of 77 -- a figure that has remained unchanged since last year.

Echoing the same forecast we've heard from other analysts and research houses, the ACSI believes tablets are partly to blame for the weak PC demand. Apple's dominance in the outfit's ratings has been largely attributed to the company's attractive products and impeccable timing. Like the iPod and iPhone, the iPad has been extremely popular, effectively setting the bar for rival device makers who have been struggling to play catch-up since early 2010.

The ACSI notes that the iPad generated $9 billion in sales during the first half of 2011, which is 30% more than Dell earned from its entire consumer PC business. When comparing non-tablet PC sales, it's said that Apple's desktop and laptop shipments grew 16% on-year in the second quarter of 2011, while Dell's consumer products grew 1%. Apple's stock price has grown 50% in the past year, whereas Dell's shares were largely flat and HP's fell 20%.

User Comments: 21

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Guest said:

Yes, but they are apple consumers.

Guest said:

When your customers are used to being bent over and shafted, then saying thank you afterwards, it is not hard for their CS to get a good rating. In fact the apple EULA probably stated "By pressing accept to use this service, you agree that Apple CS are awesome, even after we shaft you again"

Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

Say what you will about their customers and devices... but talking to a person who actually speaks native English when you call Apple support makes all the difference.

MilwaukeeMike said:

Two stories come to mind.... 1) The news story about how Apple customers act very similar to religious zealots when talking about Apple. and 2) the firestorm that results every time they drop a price by $100 two weeks after release.

You're right Rick, that is nice... I can't compare because I don't remember ever calling Sprint for anything. But more and more companies understand how you feel. Last time I called United for a frequent flyer question and Directv I both times got very normal competent Americans to talk to.

Guest said:

just goes to show, how many stupid people there are in the US

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I have to admit, when ever I speak to BT technical support, its some random person in the middle east. Everytime I call HP technical support, same thing, everytime I call Dell, same thing, Call Toshiba, same thing.

Every time I call Apple? Well I always get someone in the UK. I like that alot.

Please note, I only have an iPhone, I actually hate Macs, but I like the iPhone so I'm no fan boy. Hell my laptop is HP, my computer is custom made and my screens are Samsung.

Reason I call these company's is because I work on a helpdesk myself. I've only ever had to call Apple twice in the last 2 years, as HP it seems to be every month, Toshiba twice a year and dell every Six months. Even so it is much friendlyer to speak to someone who speaks the same language.

Guest said:

New study links amount expended on a device with consumer satisfaction.

slh28 slh28, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Sure, talking to a native English person on the helpline is nice, but would you pay a 50-100% premium just for that? I've usually always got what I wanted when talking to support in India, yes it might be a bit frustrating but just make sure you speak slowly and clearly

Also I have never called Apple support since the day I mentioned that I was having problems with my unlocked iphone - they checked the serial number and told me that it was supposed to be locked to O2, then kept quizzing me as to how I managed to unlock it... I said I jailbroke it and then they refused to help

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

burty117 said:

Every time I call Apple? Well I always get someone in the UK. I like that alot.

Rest assured that you're paying for that privilege. Which is fine, but it's not as if Apple is providing better customer service for the same cost as other companies. They're spending more to provide better customer service, and they're passing that cost onto their consumers. Nothing shocking here.

If you pay enough money, you can probably get tech support from a professor at MIT or Caltech.

negroplasty negroplasty said:

LOL. It's all about the audience's intelligence, or lack of. That's all I'm gonna say.

Guest said:

Of course, Apple breeds vacuous Atomaton's, of course they are going to say whatever makes the master happy.. people like that insipid ' Ijustine' on youtube; hot, but Ohhh So stuck in Apples ****..

Guest said:

The quality of service is partly dependent on the expertise of the caller. If you are knowledgeable, you can side-step the usual scripted questions and go to the heart of the matter.

Guest said:

Lol, Apple consumers claiming that Apple can do no wrong? Wow, so hard to believe. That's like asking a Christian is God good.

RH00D RH00D said:

Regardless of how you feel about their devices and consumers, Apple provides the best customer support and customer service of ANY tech company I know of. Steve knew his customers were not extremely tech savvy so it was critical that they could get the absolute best service and support.

jetkami said:

For having such good techsupport I wonder what salary they pay the service reps. I used to work for Onstar and I can tell you many service reps could care less if that button worked when you pushed it.

Guest said:

I don't understand why so many of you posted about customer service/technical support. The article discusses consumer satisfaction, not customer service. Consumer satisfaction is related to a variety of factors: "feel good about your purchase" factor, do you find the product attractive, is the quality of construction good, does the device perform well (battery life, doesn't crash, runs fast), does it retain its resale value as well as its competitors (in case you like to sell your older tech), does it get as many compliments from your friends and family, does it have a good screen, does it do what you wanted it to do based on what was promised by the manufacturer, lack of glitches, etc. etc. etc.

In the overall satisfaction rating, consumers find Apple products the most satisfactory. That doesn't mean that Apple is winning solely based on customer service.

1977TA said:

I'm not surprised. Apple puts out great quality, easy to use products for the average pc user. I have a mac book pro in my arsenal, stupid pitbull crack the screen, other than that it works perfectly for my kids to use.

Not too fond of the iPhone/iPad/iEtc... but I don't ever hear too many complaints about them ( other then being expensive ).

Xclusiveitalian Xclusiveitalian said:

For what they charge for fixes there lowest in customer satisfaction for me. Although it's nice to talk to someone in English for a change..

doradhorror said:

Well it's sort of understandable. Most oem computers are bloated with trial and crap software. Also Mac OSX is slightly easier to use than Window. Personal built computers are the best.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Rick said:

Say what you will about their customers and devices... but talking to a person who actually speaks native English when you call Apple support makes all the difference.

+1 Rick, that is an excellent point. Recently I needed some help with regard to an issue on my HP DV6 notebook, so I contacted HP, and ended up talking with some Indian guy (in India) and the rest is history, anyway the long and the short of it, if you hire CS people from native regions the results will definitely be more positive.

Guest said:

@ Guest

on September 20, 2011

9:16 AM Yes, but they are apple consumers.

best comment i ever read XD brilliant and funny and some truth. =D love it XD well done well done :)

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