When in need of a new notebook, it can become a real chore to decide not only which model to go with, but which vendor. Things might become a little bit easier if you’re already familiar with a particular vendor and have been pleased with them in the past, but for the inexperienced, or those who’ve been burned, things can be challenging.
Even for someone experienced, though, recommending a vendor to someone can be a little tough. I’m often asked for recommendations, and I simply mention ASUS based on personal experiences and the experiences of close friends.
Over at Lifehacker, a new approach to choosing a notebook is presented: Take a look at statistics. Statistics such as return rates due to hardware failure. According to a 2012 study, ASUS, Toshiba, Sony, and Apple sat in between 15.6% and 17.4%, while Lenovo, Acer, Gateway, and HP hovered between 21.5% and 25.6%. I admit I’m a little surprised at Lenovo having an above-20% issue rate, but as for the others, I’m not.
What about tech support? According to another study, Apple reigns supreme there, with an 86% satisfaction rating. Despite the higher issue rate, Lenovo comes in second at 63%, while ASUS sits in third with 62%.
Based on this information, it goes without saying that Apple’s showing is damned impressive. ASUS’ tech support rating might not be something to write home about, but overall, it appears to be a great choice on the PC side (something I can attest to, as mentioned above).
The article does give a warning, though: Sometimes, statistics don’t paint a full picture. With companies like Acer, which sells a lot of budget offerings, it’s almost no surprise that its technical issue rate is high. Countering that, Apple’s higher-cost products and well-thought-out designs prevent a high number of issues.
In the end, it’s impossible to name one vendor that’s perfect for you based on a given price-range, but statistics can still offer some assistance nonetheless.
Thanks to Daniel Wisenbaker for passing along Lifehacker’s article.