Another Award for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)


The past two weeks have revolved around Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), first the remarkable launch of iPhones, then the huge amount of pre-orders and now eventually the latest results of the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) will take Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) to new heights. ACSI is considered the gold standard as it’s research techniques are excellent. This year the customer preference award goes to Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) for being the best quality personal computer manufacturer. The actual contribution of Mac is often overshadowed by all the iPhone sales, but this research reveals that the Mac plays a big role is creating Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s image outside of the iPhone craze. It labels Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) as a premier manufacturer of electronics.

Other big names produced pretty average results with Hewlett Packard (NYSE:HPQ) at the very bottom. Just above it was Toshiba (TYO:6502), Dell(NASDAQ:DELL) and Acer (TPE:2353). Each was ranked below the standard average. The ACSI team commented that since 2004, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has held a steady positionod leader. Regardless of a 3 percent decrease this year, it still secured the top position with an 84 percent. Its competitors, even though with much smaller market share stood close by. These included names like Samsung (KRX:005930), Lenovo (HKG:0992) and Asus (TPE:2357), in the 82 percent bracket. Whereas the large window names like Dell (NASDAQ:DELL), Toshiba (TYO:6502) and Hewlett Packard (NYSE:HPQ) didn’t do so well. Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) and Acer (TPE:2353) set a tie of 76, Toshiba (TYO:6502) was down to 75 and Hewlett Packard (NYSE:HPQ) fell by 8 percent and landed at 74.

The research also concluded that the popularity of laptops, tablets and smartphones have had a huge impact on the sales of desktop PCs. Consumers seemed to place preference on tablets as compared to desktops, but time has shown that the tablets didn’t really reach the desired popularity level. As the demand fell it left a gap for desktop PC manufacturers to provide an innovative experience and lure consumers. Only a few smaller manufacturers have measured up to this opportunity while the bigger players seem to be stalling.

ACSI’s founder and chairman Claes Fornell, describes the situation as follows – Either the desktop PCs are making a full comeback by giving full customer satisfaction; or that simply the unsatisfied customers have moved on to different products making the average satisfaction level to go up, leaving the bad score out of the counting. There always stands the huge possibility that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) maintained its position merely because of its name and the perceived perception customers hold for the brand.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index follows a certain procedure to arrive at its results. Its an economic indicator that determines the quality of the products and services people use in their daily lives in the United States. Surveys are conducted including 70,000 customers on a yearly basis. These surveys are designed to analyze customer satisfaction for over 230 companies within 43 industries and 10 economic sectors; they include about a 100 services, programs and government agency web sites.