I have always been a "PC guy."
I never had anything against Mac products, it's just that I never really used them. One huge turn-off to the Mac for me was (and still kind of is) the "coolness" of them; we in the PC world refer to them as "Fanboys," people who MUST have a Mac or an iPod or an iPhone, not realizing that they have fallen hook, line, and sinker for Apple's genius marketing department. Not all Apple/Mac users are like this, but even they admit there is a segment of Apple product users who are gobbling Apple products up simply to be different (or because they are weak-minded towards simple ad campaigns), yet they don't realize they are being just like everyone else. I'm sure the "coolness" will wear off once these hip college students (who are trying to make a statement by owning a Mac) hit the corporate world where over 90% of the companies use PCs only.
However, I very much enjoy video editing and always give them the credit they deserved in the video realm, yet I still took sides on the PC field. Albeit, I am no fan of Microsoft and their way of treating customers like hostages, but I digress.
The company I work for has a 13" Macbook. No one really uses it. It was bought for one employee who insisted he have a Mac. I finally caved in, only to find out he quit four months later, leaving us with a $1,400 paper weight.
I tried to find another department to use it with little or no success. Finally it got passed around enough to someone who claimed they needed it as well. Months later they let me know (only when I asked them about it) that the Mac no longer worked.
I was sure the warranty had expired so like an idiot, I didn't even try to find out. I asked all my Mac-using friends about the problem this machine had. None had a clue. That's a gripe I have with you Apple users. Sure, you brag that your machine never breaks, yet when it does you stand in front of it like a primate watching ants carry food to their nest, scratching your head not knowing what to do. At least folks in the PC world have an idea as to how to fix a problem.
Nevertheless, I was unable to fix this on my own. On a whim one night, I decided to check Apple's support Web site to see if it was actually still under warranty. Was I wise enough to have gotten the three-year warranty when I bought this Macbook years ago? Yes, I was.
It still had about 9 months left on the warranty.
The support is different than what you may be used to. You don't call in and wait for someone to take your call, you schedule a call. Sometimes you can schedule Apple to call you immediately, other times you have to schedule them to call you the next day. Long story short, I got my call the next day at the exact time I asked to be called.
The tech support guy was really cool. He was not a stiff, boring, overly technical guy. He was not Indian. He was not Mexican. He was a red-blooded American who I have no doubt had a Yankees hat or a "Granny" still living on her own in a rural area of his state.
He used words like "Alright man" and "Hey guy" and "Awesome dude" which all may seem very plastic in an effort for Apple to keep their "cool" image, but it felt real to me. He was able to pick up immediately on the fact that I was not some moron as far as IT goes, but he was also able to pick up that I had no clue about anything related to Apple products. It was refreshing.
However, his support was kind of wrong. He sent me a new hard drive. I knew this would not fix the problem, but I was so enamoured by his coolness that I accepted his solution. It arrived two days later. The install was easy but the problem was not fixed. The box it was sent in had a peel-off FedEx overnight label on it so shipping back the old hard drive was a snap, and free.
After realizing the problem still existed, I called back (or rather scheduled a call). They were awesome about e-mail updates so I never had to worry about losing my dispatch or case numbers. This guy was just as cool and hip and the first guy. He went over a few easy steps with me and quickly realized that this problem could not be solved by me, the user. I will say that though Mac users brag that their machines break so seldom, there is little any individual user can do about it. This is about what the tech support conversation went like:
ME: "Hey, its broke."
MAC: "Did you try doing this?"
MAC: "Okay, we will send you out a box to send the Macbook to us in. Ship it back to us and we will fix it and ship it back to you overnight."
Sure enough, the next day there is an empty box waiting for me. I packed it up per their instructions, took it to FedEx, and got an e-mail this morning saying they had gotten it.
I have yet to get it back, but this article isn't about the fix-ability of a Mac, only about how cool and easy going their customer support is. May eventually convince me to use a Mac, who knows?