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Monday, February 16, 2009

Once you go Mac...

I love PCs. Okay, well, no. In terms of interface and usability, no matter what set-up I’ve used at whatever agency I’ve been, I’ve wasted more time with either IT or tech support than anything I’ve ever used or bought.

That’s one thing I don’t even think about with Apple’s customer service. It’s been so good for so long, either over the phone or in their retail stores, that they ruin it for you when it comes to other brands.

That screen is one of the few you don’t want to see on your Macbook Pro by the way. (This one is bad, and there’s one other that’s even worse. It’s as rare as the Bruce Lee invisible one-inch heart death punch. It has six icons on a black screen and one of them is giving you the finger. You could safely say that yes, that = REALLY bad. (I’ve only had it once on another machine.)

My Macbook Pro had battery issues ever since the last time I was in there, lasting maybe 15 minutes before dying, but I also knew it was out of warranty. Went back to the store and lucked out, getting the same person I’ve had two other times. Even though she knew the machine’s history, any of the Apple techs could’ve helped.

A minute later after running a quick test, I get the screen above. Now I’m waiting to hear how much I have to drop.

Zero. Nothing. “Yes, it’s out of warranty, and the battery is showing less than half its life used, but I’m going to give you a new one, no charge.”

That’s like finding a parking space at the front of the mall during Christmas season. That’s like the trooper catching the guy who just flew by you in the third lane. That’s like finding without drunk celebrities.

Just doesn’t happen. So getting back to blogging over the weekend without being tethered to an outlet, I saw the story of how Microsoft is going to open retail stores. I’d heard it last week when someone riffed on it, but thought it was a joke. Nope. It’s real.

All I could think of though was how taping your eyelids open would be more comfortable than going into an MS store. Apple works because they’ve got an intuitiveness wired into their brand that nobody else has. MS? Not even close.

They’re customer service will not suddenly translate into retail nirvana. No brand’s does, at least not a brand who has problems elsewhere in the food chain.

Can you imagine MS ‘Gurus™’, (their answer to Apple’s Geniuses), having the patience to sit there and instruct someone on how to use a PC? Apple people have nothing to worry about because the last thing they think about is the Mac failing in the middle of a session. Regardless, they’re some of the most patient people I’ve seen train the non-believers.

I guarantee by the end of the first session, both customer and Guru™ will be tearing their hair out, crying. The Guru™ reduced to a huddled mass on the floor in the corner while trying to phone MS tech support, then having to wait 20 minutes. As phone flies out into the mall, the customer runs off, her life in tatters.

Oh, I’m bringing a video camera to THAT store opening.


Cynthia said...

It's "Once you go Mac. You'll never go back."

Anonymous said...

I was pleasantly surprised to get a brand new free battery for my MacBook Pro yesterday at the Apple store. I was not only out of warranty, I didn't even buy my Mac at an Apple store, I got it from Best Buy. Good people, I'll never go back.

Angela Natividad said...

Heh. Tatters.

Sean Dailey said...

woah, what os are you using in that screenshot? it looks like 7.5.

Anonymous said...

@SD - 10.5.5 That’s the tech’s system analysis off her laptop.

chicago web design said...

I recently got my MacBook Pro, I was a long time PC user but I don't think I'll be going back :P I need to invest in that 3-year applecare warranty they have. It's really reassuring to hear your battery getting replaced for free even after warranty coverage is out.