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The Inquirer: \"Apple build quality is poor\"

updated 11:00 am EDT, Mon April 19, 2004

\"Apple build quality poor\"

The Inquirer's Perry Longinotti , lamenting that while Apple compares its products with the likes of premium brands in other industries, it underdelivers on quality with often bug-riddled first generation systems (PowerBook 15" white spots and Power Mac G5 power issues) and sometimes larger issues (iBook logic boards). "Apple's reaction to its customer complaints about defective product seems to relate directly to the number of major News sites carrying the story," Longinotti remarks. On a somewhat related note, Apple's recent financial performance, which came in ahead of expectations, was partly attributed to a reduction in warranty claims.

by MacNN Staff




  1. das

    Joined: Dec 1969



    ...since Consumer Reports consistently ranks Apple #1 in lowest incidence of repair and best support among all computer manufacturers:

    Most recent Consumer Reports report available on their web site (June 2003):

    Most recent report, available to CR subscribers, referenced in article (March 2004):

    So if Apple's this bad, then I guess everyone else is a lot worse (especially since Dell, the next closest to Apple, got the middle rating on 3 out of 4 support categories, while Apple got the top rating in all categories).

  1. Outlyer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Sorry, I think he's righ

    I love OS X and the rest of the Apple software, and the hardware is typically well designed and elegant. However, I'm going to have to agree with the author of this editorial as far as the manufacturing process.

    I have a Powerbook G4, 550; an otherwise beautiful machine which suffers from the peeling paint problem. It's a "cosmetic" flaw, so it doesn't affect the functionality, and it's also not something that could be repaired. In spite of the fact that it's dubbed "just cosmetic," one of the reasons to choose a Mac is certainly the attention to aesthetics.

    Frankly, I think my next portable will end up being a cheap PC. It won't look as nice, but it'll be cheap enough that I won't care.

  1. inchhigh

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I agree with the article

    I don't think this is a bashing article. I have been a long time apple user and I agree with pretty much everything he has said. I am one of those people that chant the Don't buy Rev A apple products. Why would I say that? Well I've been burned before, and although the experience was not enough to make me move to wintel, it was more than enough to make me not want to evangelize apple products much anymore.
    it also made me realize that apple is not going to take care of the issues in Rev A products right away, they basically string you along hoping that it doesn't become big issue. They will be polite, and offer to service your brand new product (not replace), then they will take it in for repair and send yo back an item not fixed properly (at the early stage of Rev A product revisions apple seems blind-sided by these problems.) If the problem reaches a certain 'critical mass' then apple addresses it properly, but to me this is just making the authors point.

  1. geekstud

    Joined: Dec 1969


    iBook = paperweight

    It's hard for me to argue with the author's points, given that my 600 MHz iBook is gathering dust because of the logic board "problem". I've also been through numerous iBook power adaptors, which often break near the iBook connector plug.

    My iBook doesn't have a serial number within the "proper" range, and so far Apple hasn't felt motivated to extend the fix program to systems such as mine. Worse, people that have paid for the repair out of their own pocket have reported multiple failures of the replacement board. Apple could have done the Right Thing and had more devoted fans rather than at best, much more cautious advocates, and at worst, Apple haters.

  1. Eriamjh

    Joined: Dec 1969


    quality problem?

    I bought a 30GB ipod, refurb, and it was DOA.

  1. mbryda

    Joined: Dec 1969


    don't agree

    Bought a RevA product - G4 iMac, back in March, 02. Still working to this day with 0 errors. Stays up for 70+ days straight and just keeps chugging along.

    The wife's 800 Mhz iBook did need its logic board replaced last summer under warranty, but it, too has had 0 issues.

    No big deals here - Apple has been better than other vendors.

  1. macnn2

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I must say I totally agree with the author.

  1. ::maroma::

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I disagree with the author, only because I've had very little problems with my Apple products over the years. I had a Quadra 650 blow the logic board on me the day I got it, but Apple replaced it very promptly. And all of my dealings with Apple customer service have been great. YMMV of course.

  1. Durandal12



    vocal minority

    I have bought many rev A apple products, PB 5300, PB G3 180, B&W G3, PB G4 500, PM G5 2x2. The only one I ever had issues with was the PB 5300, all of the other ones have run like champs, I have had some "cosmetic issues" with my PB G4, but considering the amount of abuse that it has taken w/o having and functional failures, I don't think I can complain, it has been dropped more times then I care to remember, at yet it is only restarted for system updates, and the B&W G3, a very rev A machine, has been running almost continuously since I bought it, though now only as a music server for my tv/stereo. As for the G5, it's a radically new design in almost every way, and I have had no stability issues, and the machine is physically built like a tank, I feel like I could hide behind it in a gun fight, not something I would care to do w/a Dell, though I'm hoping I wont have a gun fight in my studio any time soon.

    Same thing goes for iPods, I have had 3 iPods, 5GB, 20GB, and 30GB, and all of them are still running fine, all still have full battery life, and all have been abused.

  1. frozenflat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    About time!

    I agree with the author ! I run a New Media Lab and we have bought 12 Apple computers over 3 years and every one of them has had major issues. Here is part list of the issues. Powerbook G4, Rev A: Overheated 1st week -> replaced. Then 3 logic boards later, 2 DVD drives, 1 Firewire port. 1 ibook DOA, 2 ibook clasp broke, 3 ibook screen came broken. Dual 800 PowerMac. Drives overheat and have to keep door open. Xserve harddrive failed 1st week! imac DV screen failed, new powerbook G4 powersupply DOA. Dual 500 Powermac crashed constantly , sent back and they fixed something. The list goes on and on. BMW not! And the thing is our Dell Desktop and PowerEdge Server keep going and going and going. :-( Come on Apple wake up!

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