Apple machines are less reliable

Iphone3gs

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 10, 2009
492
0
http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/1562733/apple-machines-reliable

Apple machines are less reliable
So much for you get what you pay for
By Nick Farrell

Thursday, 19 November 2009, 10:34

DESPITE BEING MORE EXPENSIVE, Apple machines are actually less reliable than cheaper machines made by Asus, Toshiba and Sony.

A report by Squaretrade looked at records on more than 30,000 individual laptops in terms of reliability.

While kool-aid drinking Mac fans are brainwashed into believing that the extra money they spend on their toys buys them superior hardware, what the figures actually show is that their machines are less reliable than gear made by Asus, Toshiba and Sony.

At least they can be reassured that they are more reliable than machines from HP, but since they make most of their comparisons with kit from Dell, Apple fans will be disappointed that the two vendors are about the same in terms of reliability.

Laptops from Toshiba and Sony were nearly 40 per cent more reliable than those from HP.

"Acer, Gateway and HP had failure rates significantly higher than the average," the report said.

It seems that the figures show that, despite the hype, what Apple sells is nothing more than an average PC. You get charged an arm and a leg for one of Apple's sleek looking toys, but you would be better off with a machine from Asus, Toshiba or Sony, in terms of reliability.

Apparently a third of all laptops will fail within three years, which seems to suggest that all laptop punters are being sold lemons at a rate that would be unacceptable anywhere else in the electronics industry.

Fewer than five per cent of the laptops surveyed failed in the first year, while eight per cent more failed in subsequent years. Two-thirds of the reported failures were from hardware malfunctions and the remainder were reported as accidental damage.

Netbooks costing less than $400 were the most likely to fail with 5.8 per cent reportedly malfunctioning over a one-year period. They were 20 per cent more likely to fail than entry level laptops.

You can read the full report at Squaretrade
 

johnnj

macrumors 6502a
Dec 11, 2008
598
0
Not here
If you say so.

Statistically a Honda Civic is probably more reliable than my Z4, but that doesn't mean I'd rather be driving one.
 

xpovos

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2007
512
0
Tennessee
As much as I hate to say it, it doesn't surprise me at all, at least where Apple's laptops are concerned. Based solely on my experience and that of friends, family and coworkers, I've seen a lot of evidence over the last few years of inferior quality control and reliability in Apple's products. Right now all my Apple gear is fine, but whenever it's time to buy a new Apple product, I feel a mix of excitement and dread because I've had to return so many of their products for defects right out of the box.
 

cluthz

macrumors 68040
Jun 15, 2004
3,118
3
Norway
I wonder if the plagued 8600M GTs brings down the statistics.
For almost two years apple supplied all MacBook Pros with those chips and a lot failed and I guess MacBook Pros are more than 50% of the laptops apple sells.
In my experience Apple handled that pretty professional with extending warranty and replaced probably thousands of logic boards.
 

mrsir2009

macrumors 604
Sep 17, 2009
7,505
156
Melbourne, Australia
I've owned Macs all my life and they have never failed me:

MacBook Pro: lasted 5 years and still going great
iMac: Lasted 3 years and still going great
iMac G3: Lasted 15 years and still going great
Mac Classic: Lasted 20 years and still going great
Macintosh Performa: 15 years and still going great

And none of these have had any problems, apart from a minor Superdrive issue with the iMac. Anyway, I think I'll stick with Apple:D
 

J DILLA

macrumors member
Mar 6, 2009
41
0
I work in computer reliability research; So I am really getting a kick out of most of these replies. Some of you guys are very good at making it sound like you know what you are talking about. But trust me.... You don't. I think you just want to make yourself sound smart, when in reality you don't know what you are talking about. This is how bad info gets passed around. If you dont know about the topic....Dont make yourself sound like you do. Cos some people believe anything they hear.
 

mrsir2009

macrumors 604
Sep 17, 2009
7,505
156
Melbourne, Australia
I wonder if the plagued 8600M GTs brings down the statistics.
For almost two years apple supplied all MacBook Pros with those chips and a lot failed and I guess MacBook Pros are more than 50% of the laptops apple sells.
In my experience Apple handled that pretty professional with extending warranty and replaced probably thousands of logic boards.
Actually, MacBook Pros are 50% of all their laptop sales:eek:
 

dukebound85

macrumors P6
Jul 17, 2005
18,149
1,500
5045 feet above sea level
I've owned Macs all my life and they have never failed me:

MacBook Pro: lasted 5 years and still going great
iMac: Lasted 3 years and still going great
iMac G3: Lasted 15 years and still going great
Mac Classic: Lasted 20 years and still going great
Macintosh Performa: 15 years and still going great

And none of these have had any problems, apart from a minor Superdrive issue with the iMac. Anyway, I think I'll stick with Apple:D
meanwhile lol ive had a mbp logic board die on me, a mb suffer from random shut downs, a bulging mb batt, an emac that wont turn its display on and an imac that has display issues

still like apple though

I work in computer reliability research; So I am really getting a kick out of most of these replies. Some of you guys are very good at making it sound like you know what you are talking about. But trust me.... You don't. I think you just want to make yourself sound smart, when in reality you don't know what you are talking about. This is how bad info gets passed around. If you dont know about the topic....Dont make yourself sound like you do. Cos some people believe anything they hear.
ah yes, no thread is complete without the resident expert who works in the specific field

good for you
 

OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
17,072
6,422
The Black Country, England
I work in computer reliability research; So I am really getting a kick out of most of these replies. Some of you guys are very good at making it sound like you know what you are talking about. But trust me.... You don't. I think you just want to make yourself sound smart, when in reality you don't know what you are talking about. This is how bad info gets passed around. If you dont know about the topic....Dont make yourself sound like you do. Cos some people believe anything they hear.
What are you trying to say?

Do you think the report is reliable or do you believe it is flawed in some way?

As far as I can tell, they took a sample of 3,000 laptops from each company and tracked their reliability over a three year period which seems fair.


I wonder if the plagued 8600M GTs brings down the statistics.
For almost two years apple supplied all MacBook Pros with those chips and a lot failed and I guess MacBook Pros are more than 50% of the laptops apple sells.
In my experience Apple handled that pretty professional with extending warranty and replaced probably thousands of logic boards.
I don't think it will include 8600M GT MacBook Pros because they are not old enough to qualify so that wont have any bearing on the results.
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
12,260
1,352
Asus = the most reliable laptop (according to this study)

Toshiba = .1% less reliable
Sony = 1.2% less reliable
Apple = 1.8% less reliable
Dell = 2.7% less reliable
Lenovo = 5.9% less reliable
Acer = 7.7% less reliable
Gateway = 7.9% less reliable
HP = 10% less reliable

My takeaway from this is that there isn't a huge difference in reliability between Asus, Toshiba, Sony, Apple and Dell.

IIRC, Apple's notebooks were cited as have a 21% failure rate as of a few years ago (vs. this survey's 17.4% rate).

I was surprised to see Lenovo rate almost 4% worse than Apple, the way some folks talk about Thinkpads around here.
 

Attachments

LouisBlack

macrumors 6502
Jun 21, 2007
313
0
Balham, London
I've owned Macs all my life and they have never failed me:

MacBook Pro: lasted 5 years and still going great
iMac: Lasted 3 years and still going great
iMac G3: Lasted 15 years and still going great
Mac Classic: Lasted 20 years and still going great
Macintosh Performa: 15 years and still going great

And none of these have had any problems, apart from a minor Superdrive issue with the iMac. Anyway, I think I'll stick with Apple:D
They had iMacs in 1994? And Macbook Pros in 2004?:p
 

thejadedmonkey

macrumors G3
May 28, 2005
8,122
1,000
Pennsylvania
Meh usually Apple's customer service is superior.
Except when you actually need something replaced... Dell can do it for me overnight, on site. Apple.... not so much.

I wonder if the plagued 8600M GTs brings down the statistics.
For almost two years apple supplied all MacBook Pros with those chips and a lot failed and I guess MacBook Pros are more than 50% of the laptops apple sells.
In my experience Apple handled that pretty professional with extending warranty and replaced probably thousands of logic boards.
I too thought of that, but then I realized it doesn't matter. Dell, HP, etc all used those cards too, so the repair numbers will be affected across the board.
 

cluthz

macrumors 68040
Jun 15, 2004
3,118
3
Norway
Except when you actually need something replaced... Dell can do it for me overnight, on site. Apple.... not so much.

I too thought of that, but then I realized it doesn't matter. Dell, HP, etc all used those cards too, so the repair numbers will be affected across the board.
Apple used that card is the vast majority of their laptops. HP, Dell, etc had that card in only a few models compared to Apple.
 

BenEndeem

macrumors 6502
Jul 25, 2008
301
0
England
Could they have made it anymore obvious that they were Apple bashing? Note how they gladly compare Apple's reliability down to Dell's (0.9% difference) rather than up to Sony's (0.6% difference).

This doesn't really surprise me though, especially with second and third place being well known Japanese companies which almost always implies top notch reliability (at least in my experience). I can't really comment on Asus, but they certainly seem to top a lot of reliability polls.

In fact it surprises me that Apple's rates are so low given the problems with the MacBook and MacBook Pro models that are coming up to the 2/3 year age range; case cracks and video cards respectively, both of which are addressed by Apple.

Similarly, I'm quite shocked by HP's failure rates, as I've experienced less problems with HP machines than Apple machines (albeit three minor problems with my MacBook vs. one moderately bad problem with an HP).

One commenter on the article brings up an interesting point too; apparently the research was conducted by a company that sells extended hardware warranties and doesn't specify the number of machines in each category, which makes it hard to assess the data without a detailed breakdown.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
768
This is why the whole "fan boy" attitude is extremely immature, no matter which brand you're a fan of. The fact is, EVERY computer brand and model is likely to have failures. None are perfect. I didn't buy a Mac because of the hardware. I bought a Mac because of Mac OS X. The more important comparison would be performance / problems / ease of use between Windows and Mac OS X. Even then, Apple isn't perfect, just much better for my needs, compared to any Windows system.

One other thought: the results are skewed a bit because of market share. If Asus had the same market share that HP has, I'm sure their reliability numbers wouldn't be as good, because more people would be reporting problems.
 

iPhysicist

macrumors 65816
Nov 9, 2009
1,333
971
Dresden
Sorry but

Squaretrade itself seems not to be reliable. How will they know if their source is true? I cant imagine that they have paid analysts to come to this conclusion. The whole article is full of % but no information on the method they collected their data. They had "at least 1000 laptops of any brand"... this is not enough to name it a study.

My roommates have 600€ machines of Acer and they run 6 years without any problems. One laptop still runs its first installation of WIN XP (SP3 now) its whole life and never had significant problems. The Batteries died 3 years ago but with power adapter they get their work done just fine.
 

nikhsub1

macrumors 68020
Jun 19, 2007
2,077
915
mmmm... jessica.'s beer...
This is why the whole "fan boy" attitude is extremely immature, no matter which brand you're a fan of. The fact is, EVERY computer brand and model is likely to have failures. None are perfect. I didn't buy a Mac because of the hardware. I bought a Mac because of Mac OS X. The more important comparison would be performance / problems / ease of use between Windows and Mac OS X. Even then, Apple isn't perfect, just much better for my needs, compared to any Windows system.

One other thought: the results are skewed a bit because of market share. If Asus had the same market share that HP has, I'm sure their reliability numbers wouldn't be as good, because more people would be reporting problems.
So true. Plus that all manufacturers these days pretty much use all the same hardware - Apple too since they switched to Intel. Their laptop mobos are made by who? Foxconn? Intel chips? nVidia Chipsets and graphics? Same as Asus, HP, Dell etc, etc etc.
 

yargk

macrumors member
Feb 27, 2009
64
0
Asus = the most reliable laptop (according to this study)

Toshiba = .1% less reliable
Sony = 1.2% less reliable
Apple = 1.8% less reliable
Dell = 2.7% less reliable
Lenovo = 5.9% less reliable
Acer = 7.7% less reliable
Gateway = 7.9% less reliable
HP = 10% less reliable

My takeaway from this is that there isn't a huge difference in reliability between Asus, Toshiba, Sony, Apple and Dell.

IIRC, Apple's notebooks were cited as have a 21% failure rate as of a few years ago (vs. this survey's 17.4% rate).

I was surprised to see Lenovo rate almost 4% worse than Apple, the way some folks talk about Thinkpads around here.
Exactly.

Nick Farrell is obviously just trying to make a headline. If you look at the graph with such a small difference in reliability in the first 4, the big thing you notice is NOT, wow, Apple is less reliable than a couple other brands. (The difference isn't significant). You do notice, whoa HP sucks.
 

RealaT

macrumors regular
Jan 6, 2008
128
0
That was a pretty hateful article. Why did the guy who wrote it single out Apple for no reason other than spite?

Poor journalism. The guy obviously had an agenda when he wrote that piece.
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,212
14,702
If this involves a 3 year graph, would that still mean that the infamous 8800 issue is factored into this for Apple and any other manufacturers that used it?
 

kingrst

macrumors newbie
Aug 10, 2009
5
0
Lansing, MI, USA
This is a very interesting story. Although, I think that this is a very flawed report due to the lack of hard numbers. Due to the lower number of Apple products being used this can make it seem like they are less reliable when it may not be the case.

However, I must say that my interactions with support have proven that support personnel are not as trained as many would have you believe.
 
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