MacBook in Demand

by Janet Meyer Aug 25, 2006

If you’ve recently placed an order for a MacBook, you might have to wait awhile to receive it. Apple has recently sent apology letters to MacBook customers and informed them that their orders will be delayed.

Apple’s notebook computers have been selling well this year. Its share of the US notebook market doubled to 12 percent in the six-month period ending in June. Apple shipped 800,000 notebooks in that time frame, a record for the company. At that time the backlog had already begun.

Customers who ordered more memory and/or larger hard drives can expect a delay. In checking other sources, it is unclear whether those who order units with default specifications will have any problems getting their notebooks.

Apple Insider states that some believe Apple Computer could sell in the neighborhood of one million notebooks during the holiday quarter this winter. In order to resolve the current backlog and to prepare for the future, the company is seeking a third manufacturing partner. Current partners are Asustek and Quanta.

It will be interesting to see if delays make a difference to customer satisfaction.

Apple usually performs well in customer satisfaction surveys and again leads the University of Michigan survey in this area. The University of Michigan’s annual American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) is a measurement of American household consumer satisfaction. 70,000 Americans are interviewed by telephone for this survey. Consumer response is measured in the areas of customer expectations, perceived quality, perceived value, customer complaints and customer loyalty.

Apple and all the other PC makers in the survey made gains in the ratings over the previous year. This sounds good initially, but TechNewsWorld suggests that computer companies still have a long way to go. Historically, this has been a field where customer service ranks consistently low, even with this year’s improvement.

This matches the annual Consumer Reports survey. CNET reports that once again Apple came out on top for customer satisfaction. That’s the good news. The bad news is that Apple’s score was 74 out of 100. A score of 80 or more indicates a high degree of satisfaction, something that I hope Apple strives for.

For those interested, Dell declined from 64 points to 62 points. Gateway scored 61, Hewlett-Packard came in at 54, and Compaq was at 51. Apple clearly led the pack, but none of them were overly impressive.

Apple fared much better on PC Magazine’s 19th annual Reader Satisfaction Survey. Its overall score was 9.1 out of 10, though technical support scores fell slightly from last year. This was a web-based survey detailing consumer experiences with almost 20,000 notebooks and desktops.

Is the wait for a MacBook going to change these numbers next year? Some think that Apple planned this to make MacBooks look like a hot item. Others point to the very real increase in numbers and suggest that Apple needs to work it out for the future. Either way, students who count on using their newly-ordered Apple for school might find this more than a little frustrating.

Apple states that it should be at a place where supply and demand meet by the end of September. Then it just has to work out how to get through the holiday season.






  • This is primarily due to Intel’s inability to keep up with demand. No part on Apple for creating the best computers in the world and surging demand for the CPU’s… :>)

    Sit tight, be pateint, it’s worth it.

    xwiredtva had this to say on Aug 25, 2006 Posts: 172
  • Getting a taste of the MacBooks (any flava will do) is worth the time and patience my friends…

    Robomac had this to say on Aug 25, 2006 Posts: 846
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