New laptop replacement

posted by Jeff | Friday, August 10, 2012, 11:30 PM | comments: 0

I was very surprised to see, after a few weeks, that my new laptop's screen was having an image persistence problem. That's when you see the image of what you're looking at "ghost" in a new image. For example, if you have a dark gray desktop background, and you've had a Web page up for awhile, you'll still see a ghost of the browser page on the background. It eventually fades, but it's jarring when you go from one app to the next, and still see the first one.

So I took it to the Apple store, they saw it, and if it was the stock model, would have replaced it right then and there. Since it's a custom model with more memory, and there isn't an upgradeable part on these new MacBook Pros, I'll have to call it in and get a replacement that way. Apparently they'll overnight me a box and I'll send it back.

This is one of the reasons I've been generally satisfied with Apple products. It's rare to have issues, but when you do, it's pretty low friction to deal with it. My first laptop from them had a logic board go bad after two years. I didn't have the extended warranty, but it was a flat repair fee that was all of $20 more than the warranty would have been. That one was used for two more years after that. Lots of great stories from iPhone and iPad users out there.

The interesting thing about this generally good support experience is that their business strategy makes it easy for them to afford it. They don't really sell anything that's low-end or commodity crap (like Dell, HP and such). That's not some Kool-Aid drinking nonsense, it's generally an observation. The computers cost more, but they're all spec'd higher and wrapped in better industrial design. Competing on price would be a poor strategy. The win is that their margins are so high that it makes this no-nonsense support affordable for them.

I'm disappointed with the defect, but the remedy is simple enough that I'm not all that troubled by it. Reading the support forums, it sounds like replacements have generally been fine.


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