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Mac vs PC – Part 6 of 6 – Why Mac CRUSHES the Competition

by Robert Seth on May 18, 2011

Part 6 of this series continues the amazing Apple repair saga.  If you missed part 5 you might want to go back by clicking here and read that so you know what this part is all about

When I got to the Genius Bar, I explained the problems the computer was having.  I added one issue that I’ve not talked about before.  When the screen brightness buttons did work, if I brightened it up all the way, it would go completely black and I’d have to restart using the power button.

I was seriously impressed with Apple’s method of diagnosis.  The customer actually gets to sit there and talk to the tech while they work on diagnosing the problem.  It was also impressive to see how deep and technical this diagnosis got in just a few minutes.  In very short order, he had gotten into the computer’s log entries and found a pattern of USB faults each time I had needed to forcefully restart the computer.  From this he concluded that the keyboard and the trackpad, which are attached to the USB hub, both needed to be replaced.  These are all built into the top case so that part was ordered and I left my computer there to have the parts installed when they arrived.  I might mention that I was fortunate to have the computer actually malfunction for the technician right off.  He would have found the log entries anyway, but it was nice to have him see the problem immediately.

So in under 15 minutes, he had discovered the problem and I was on my way.  If this wasn’t impressive to you, what I’m going to tell you next most certainly will be.

A few days later I called to check on the repair.  I was informed that they had decided, after getting into the computer, to replace the motherboard too.  Apple calls this a logic board.  This all happened over the New Years’ Holiday and so the part did not get ordered until January 3rd which was the day I was talking to them.

Instead of talking to a clerk or a receptionist, I actually got to talk with the person doing the repair.  I was informed that they had found some other hardware problems (loose cables that should never be loose) which is why they decided to replace the logic board.

Since I wanted to make sure this repair fixed the problem, I suggested that since ram can sometimes be a cause of intermittent problems, maybe they should just replace that too.  To my amazement, they instantly agreed and added new ram to the repair list too.

Let me digress a moment in saying that when I purchased this computer, I mulled over the decision of whether or not to upgrade the ram to 8GB’s from 4GB’s.  So I asked if it would be possible to just replace it with 8GB’s and charge me for the difference.  They apologized and said they had no way of doing that.  I was about to leave it at this point when I happened to make a comment, which you can see from all this writing, I’m fond of doing.

I happened to mention how much I absolutely loved this computer and was really missing it while it was in the shop.  I had grown accustomed to using it for all my web blogs and maintenance and I was having to go back to my unpleasant Windows computers to perform this task while my Mac was out of commission.  If you recall from a previous post, I said I now always try to make up for my years of bashing Apple and honestly express how I feel about their products.  This was the main reason for the comment.  It was heartfelt and true.  I just wanted to say how enjoyable it was and that I really did miss it.

It must have sounded very heartfelt because suddenly the tech was not getting off the phone.  He thought for a second and said, “I tell you what: considering how long you’ve been waiting for this, how would you feel about just getting a new computer?”  After I picked myself up off the floor I said, “sure, when could I pick it up?”  It was about 3pm when this conversation took place and the store closed at 8pm.  They said I should be able to pick it up that day if they had time to transfer all my stuff over to the new computer.

This was not the end of this amazing story though.  Before I got off the phone, the tech asked me if I’d mind a faster processor.  Apparently they didn’t have a 2.66GHz in stock in my computer’s configuration so he offered me a 2.8GHz upgrade free of charge.  Also, since my charger was not in brand new condition, he let me keep that too.  And finally, as if all this was not enough, he said he would be able to upgrade the ram to 8GB’s if I wanted to do that.  I declined this offer after hearing how much it would cost but thanked him for his very kind offer.  This incidentally, will be the inspiration for another blog post about how you can save a great deal of money upgrading your own ram on you Mac.  More about that later…

So basically all I had to give back, besides the computer they already had, was my empty box.  They gave me a brand new computer with new software, new charger, and new box.  They also transferred all my information so when I opened my computer it was EXACTLY like the old one was.  Oh, and I forgot to mention one other thing.  They restarted my warranty on the day of the replacement.  They also did have the computer ready that night and I happily drove the 50 miles (we live way out!) to go and pick it up.

Honestly, in all the years I’ve been working with computers (since the first version of DOS) I have never, ever seen service like this.  Even when repairs are performed, or a new product is issued (very rare), I have never seen a warranty restarted.  I ended up with nearly an 18 month warranty and a new battery to boot!  I guess the other part I’ve never seen before is such a willingness and desire to make the customer happy.  Several times during my conversation with the tech, he told me how glad it made them to be able to make a customer happy like they had done for me.

Later when I was talking to my business contact at the store, he was delighted to hear that they had completely replaced the computer.  He also mentioned how happy it made them to be able to do that sort of thing.  Is it any wonder Mac users are so loyal?  We’ve barely talked about how great the product itself is and already Apple has won this customer over for life.

Lastly, I told all the employees that were involved that I intended to write about this whole episode on my blog.  I wanted as many people as possible to know about this amazing adventure.  They then asked me to send them a link to it once I had it written.  Again, I have never had any employees be that interested in what I had to say about them.  So here is the fulfillment of that promise.  As soon as I’m done here I’m going to send them the link.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed the story.  I certainly enjoy telling it.  If you did enjoy it, please click the “like” button and leave a comment.  Also, join me on my Facebook page here or click on the like box in the upper left.

Thanks for visiting!

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Sharron Smith September 9, 2013 at 8:34 pm

Loved the article! Your story seems to mirror my own having owned at least 3 pc’s and was tech support for our office and family. Many books, manuals and reformats later, I decided to try the first Intel MacBook Pro in 2006. I was floored with the customer service. No question is too simple or unimportant for them to answer. Over time I have added other MAC products, set up home networks etc with ease. As a consequence of this, my family and friends have seen and heard this over time and have purchased MACS. I must say we are more than happy with the switch and I believe that others will discover that MACS make work fun again.

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Robert Seth September 24, 2013 at 4:24 pm

I’m glad you enjoyed it Sharron! Hopefully someday Microsoft will take a page out of the Apple playbook and figure out a way to provide that kind of service. In the meantime, it’s really nice that Apple stuff works so well and their service is so amazing!

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Joe November 10, 2011 at 9:07 pm

So this unnecessarily long story is basically about your experience with a faulty product that you were going to live with and, by chance, received 1 great customer experience from Apple. I find it interesting that you did all kinds of “research” before buying the Mac and yet, you were going to let some bothersome issues go without any kind of troubleshooting, placing the blame on your bad experiences with your past PCs. I was truly hoping for a level headed “why I should switch to a Mac” read, but instead got another mindless, unproven “Why Mac CRUSHES the Competition” crap that all the other Apple freaks keep preaching. What a waste of time.

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Robert Seth November 10, 2011 at 10:12 pm

Hey Joe,
Sorry you didn’t enjoy the series. Perhaps it needs a different title as it was never intended to convince anyone to switch to Mac or to tell they why they should. It was only to relate an interesting and unusual experience and to attempt to explain what it is that people that have already switched to Macs like so much about them. Thanks for visiting though and for your comment. Hopefully you will find something else enjoying to read on the site.

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Keith Lapp May 27, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Robert,
I really enjoy the entire 6 part story that you wrote here. I am looking at a new computer soon and will definitely look at a Mac. Thanks for the insight.
Keith

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Randi May 23, 2011 at 4:02 am

Gosh darn-it, I need a Mac!!!

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Robert Seth May 23, 2011 at 4:31 am

I love this comment Randi! I hope you can get one soon!

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Carol Giambri May 22, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Robert, I LOVE Mac so much that I want to be their poster child for the AARP generation. Their service is amazing. Their training rocks. I can’t brag enough about my own wonderful experience. I had a computer for a short time, a problem and they gave me a new one and also started warranty over. I am hooked for life too. I love the staff so much I often bring in food for them with a handwritten note reminding them how much I value each of them. It is my first Mac and also now own Ipod Touch fan always buying maximum warranties. Apple rocks.

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Robert Seth May 22, 2011 at 7:53 pm

Thanks for the comment Carol! I know exactly how you feel.

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Carla Jones May 19, 2011 at 10:59 pm

Dude, I had the same experience with my first iMac a couple of years ago. I had it about a month when it kept doing weird things. I was able to work with a guy online about it and got it fixed – I thought. Another month went by and problems started happening again. The online genius asked me to take it in to the local Apple Store for assistance.

It ended up being the hard drive was bad. They replaced it totally free of charge and when I picked it up I noticed some sweating on the screen. The genius checked it out and said from the temperature changes inside the store at that time there was some condensation behind the screen.

They ended up totally replacing the computer with an upgrade on everything including screen size – WHOOPEE!!

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Eno May 19, 2011 at 10:14 pm

Hi Robert, I’m actually down in the dumps right now as my HP PC seems to be in the process of a slow death. Still awaiting my IT guy. But I’m SOLD on replacing this continous torture of frozen screens, viruses, or printers that I can’t hook up thru my wireless network!! Headed to the Apple Store tomorrow to purchase a Mac Book Pro 13 inch. Any suggestions for me?

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Robert Seth May 20, 2011 at 2:12 am

My suggestion is that you get something bigger than the 13 inch. I would get 15 or 17. I think 13 is much too small to be doing the kind of stuff you trying to do. I would get more RAM too, but, that being said, I can show you how to do that and save a bunch of money. I’ve been considering a video blog post for quite awhile about this but have not been able to get the camera that I want. Let me know if you’re interested in being my test subject for this.

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Phil Holleman May 19, 2011 at 6:27 pm

One of my best friends had issues with his iMac, and after a couple of tries to fix it, Apple gave him a new replacement. He just had to send the old one back. I could be wrong, but I think Apple paid the return shipping.

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