Consumer Reports writes Apple has the best tech support of the industry, their annual reliability survey found that Apple's support solved 81% of desktop problems and 83% of all laptop problems.
"Apple is again at the top of the heap with tech support," said Donna Tapellini, an associate editor at the magazine. The survey, conducted from September 2006 to January 2008, represents more than 10,000 desktops and laptops.
Those numbers are massively better than Apple's PC competitors. Dell was a distant number two for desktop problems with 56 percent satisfaction, followed closely by Gateway at 54 percent, and HP and its Compaq brand at 47 percent.
On the laptop side, the PC makers did better, with Lenovo following Apple with 66 percent satisfaction, followed by Dell at 60 percent, Toshiba at 55 percent, Gateway at 54 percent, Sony at 51 percent and HP at 48 percent.
Apple retail strategy appears to be a key factor in its customer satisfaction success. Apple's "Genius Bar," where employees provide walk-in support, resulted in satisfied customers 90 percent of the time, the survey found. Unlike many other companies' policies, where consumers can't even talk to tech support if they are out of warranty or they don't have an extended support plan, any Apple customer can bring a machine into the store and get a free diagnosis. Customers must, of course, pay for repairs if they haven't purchased the AppleCare extended warranty.