5 Reasons Why I’m Disgruntled With The Apple Store Reps

9 06 2007

I am in the market for a new notebook. As any technology aficionado I like to do my research so I can get the most bang for my buck. I visited the Apple store this weekend, with an open-mind but came out an irritated customer:

1. Holier than thou mentality

I have specific needs. I need to run Windows, OS X, and Linux. The Apple reps repeatedly tell me that I don’t need any OS aside from OS X. Then they start to get into a pitch about how Apple’s operating system is the greatest software known to mankind. I just wanted to know if I could run all three on the same machine – I didn’t want to be evangalized.

2. Incompetence

As an Intel employee, I have the insider scoop about processor technology. I wanted to know which family of Core 2 Duo processors are in the Macbook, and they simply told me it was the Intel Core 2 Duo. The reps seem to only know what they are told from their God Steve Jobs. I even visited the Apple site and nowhere does it tell me the exact processor I will be receiving in my new hardware. After being passed around to multiple sales reps, someone at the Genius Bar told me exactly what I needed to know, however it was on a need to know basis. I came to the realization that Apple treats their customers as idiots.

3. More Incompetence

I asked about the new Santa Rosa platform that were in the Macbook Pro refresh. I wanted to know about Intel Turbo Memory which is 1GB of solid state flash, speeding up data retrieval that is in the cache. The reps didn’t know what I was talking about, and told me that if it is there that would be “cool.” Instead they tried to console me by saying that the refresh is “brand spanking new.” Wow, thats really going to get me to buy your product.

4. Incompetence^3

Back to my needs of running multiple operating systems, the reps realized that OS X wasn’t going to just cut it for me. I asked them if I could do a dual or triple boot with Boot Camp, Apple’s beta software allowing you to run multiple OS’s natively on seperate partitions. They told me it was beta software, and I should run Parallels which runs the OS’s in a virtual environment instead. Due to RAM restrictions, I don’t want to do that, and would like to do a dual-boot as I do on my laptop right now. The rep’s seem to think a “virtual environment” is not emulation. I thought these guys who work behind the Genius Bar were geniuses?

5. Fail to realize that the customer is always right

I have a specific budget I want to stay within. I want the Macbook, but no matter what, the rep’s are always trying to sell up to the higher model. This is fine the first time around, but to continously sell up to a consumer who does not want to is flat-out bad sales.

Apple has great design, hardware and innovative software (by innovative I mean, taking open-source software and branding it as their own) , but the Apple representatives are misinformed elitists. Maybe it was just this one bad experience, but in the sales and marketing world, everything is based on your first impression.


I have a response to the comments left on my blog.





24 responses

10 06 2007

apple sucks

10 06 2007

You come across as a bit arrogant –

10 06 2007

Don’t hide. Just say you’re a Windows guy. It’s not terrible, exactly. You were never in the market for a Mac computer, were you? No. You were in the market for trash, yes? Of course you were. ‘Cept, you left the labels on all the trash. The label? Windows Dork.

10 06 2007
Brad Winner

Gee, there weren’t any hardware engineers available at the Apple Store, imagine that. For someone who claims to like to do their research, why didn’t you actually do some, instead of going into a retail store and asking questions?

10 06 2007
Brad Winner


Gee in 5 seconds with a Google search, I seemed to find the answer to your question. Maybe if you tried, you could find out a lot more, if you spent a few minutes looking, instead of crying about your mistreatment at the Apple store.

10 06 2007

God you are a jerk. Go buy a pee cee and stay the hell out of apple stores.

10 06 2007

wow, so you, as an intel employee knew more than someone who works in retail, never saw that coming. Just do your own research if you need that level of minute detail on the system. And please, stay out of the Apple Store, we don’t need you.

10 06 2007

I’m not disagreeing with you but I think your level of questioning is pretty far from that of the average customer. As you discovered someone at the genius bar should be able to help. Even then, I think you’d need to keep checking to find a better than average genius.

We spoke with a new recruit for a genius position and I think he said they get something six weeks training. That is enough to be able to take care of systems that don’t boot or that have problems recognizing peripherals or iPods that need to be reset. It is not in depth enough to answer questions like yours.

You might try the developer site. Also, look at the genius section of http://forums.appleinsider.com

Good luck.

10 06 2007

Macbook is now overpriced, old technology. I suggest you go with the a Thinkpad T61.

MacBook price: $1099
MacBook size: 13.3″, 5.2lb
MacBook specs:
2GHz Core 2, 1GB RAM (667MHz), 80GB HD (5400rpm), DVD/CDRW, BT, Wifi

Thinkpad T61 price: $1075
Thinkpad size: 14.1″, 5lb.
Thinkpad specs:
SANTA ROSA, 2GHz Core 2, 1GB RAM (667MHz), 80GB HD (5400rpm), DVD/CDRW, BT, Wifi

Santa rosa is a major difference between the T61 and MacBook. With Intel’s release of the santa rosa chipset many new technologies become standard or available options:

1) X3100 graphics as part of the 965 chipset is a vast improvement over the old 950 chipset graphics as drivers continue to be developed.

2) New ICH8M southbridge = faster FSB (800MHz) with improved power savings

3) Intel’s 4965AGN wireless which supports 802.11n

4) Turbo Memory which will reduce time it takes to access data on the HD, save power, and increase reliability of the system overall with less HD access.

When you buy the T61 you also have the choice of adding many other optional components that are not available with the MacBook, not to mention easily being able to upgrade components later on if necessary.

The T61 is built rock solid and has received rave reviews from everyone. Looking at one of the most reputable notebook review sites notebookreview.com:

Thinkpad T61 ranked #1 notebook
MacBook (black mind you) is ranked #16

However, bottom line for someone like you should be the OS issue.

Option #1:

Use OS X, an OS that is ripped from the open source community almost entirely without fair recognition: http://tuxdeluxe.org/node/175

“It wasn’t until later, giving the same presentation at Linux World that I’d missed giving at the Apple show, that I realized that Apple were scared of the SuSE Linux desktop I was using. They didn’t want customers to see anything other than Apple-badged everything at their show. Especially if it was something better. They were scared of their customers even seeing a choice.”
-Jeremy Allison, Samba Developer

You also have the option to mess with beta software such as bootcamp to *try* to get Vista/XP/Linux working, or use parallels (not emulation? LMAO).

Despite what apple fanboys will tell you, as we linux users know, OSX DOES NOT do everything you need to do.

Option #2:

Install the OSes you want on the T61 without trouble i.e. Linux, Vista, XP and last but not least, even OSX.

10 06 2007

…in other words: They are exactly like every other retail computer sales team.

I imagine dealing with people with chips on their shoulders (like you) who take it as a personal attack that they DARE to have the word “genius” in their job title takes its toll on their attitude.

I hope the next retail establishment you go into will help you with your advanced insider knowledge of how to use the products they sell in undocumented and unintended ways in a manner that doesn’t offend your delicate sensibilities.

I bet every time you’ve ever had to call tech support, you’ve had a “moron” take your call, and any time you’ve had to call a repairman (plumber, electrician), they send an idiot.

10 06 2007

One more thing. I can’t for the life of me understand how these mac fanboys continue with their idiodic comments:

“God you are a jerk. Go buy a pee cee and stay the hell out of apple stores.”

Honestly, learn about the product you are preaching. A MAC IS NOW A PC. Your argument is as stupid as someone going around saying “You suck for not buying HP go back to your toshiba laptops.”

When will these people realize that Apple vs PC arguments are no longer valid? We are long past the days of Apple vs PC because Apple no longer uses the RISC PowerPC microprocessors, they are in fact using Intel CPUs which makes them PCs as well. There is nothing from a hardware feature standpoint that diffirentiates them from any other PC manufacturer. The same Apple fanboys that would start pointless arguments such as this in the past with the G4 and G5 claiming how much more powerfull Apples are compared to Macs were humbled when Steve Jobs went on stage and showed the world the benchmarks that illustrated in fact how much more powerful PC processors were and justified Apple’s switch to the PC architecture.

You need to realize that the one and only difference between Apples and other PCs is the operating system. Now the last piece of information that is key to making these fanboys realize how pointless their argument is lies within the operating system. Your operating system is a Unix based operating system. It can be run on any other PC. There are other operating systems, also Unix based, that have the same capabilities and more. Think of OSX as a Unix distribution with a big lock on it that apple controls the development of whereas the other distros have much more software availability and are unlocked allowing contributions from the community. No operating system is necessarily better, each serves different target audiences in different ways.

I think the main point to take away from this is that unless you are talking about an old Power Mac G4, stop talking all this talk about Apple vs PC, you are now a PC too.

10 06 2007

Regarding the lack of knowledge of the “Geniuses”, all traditional retail sales channels such as Best Buy, Circuit City, etc. allow technical sales representatives into their stores. This means that sales people are given the opportunity to learn about the latest technologies and products first hand from hardware manufacturers. For example, Intel sends technical sales representatives into these stores to train sales people as well as to assist customers. This is for the customer’s benefit because when people like Sheehan who go into stores to get the details about the product they want to buy, someone will typically have the answer to their questions. Apple has not embraced programs such as this. They do not allow technical sales reps to educate their employees or customers. Despite how much image matters, you can not argue that more information is not beneficial for consumers. It should not take a hardware engineer to answer simple processor technology related questions if a high school kid at Best Buy can figure out how to do it. The problem here is not incompetence on the Apple store staff’s part but rather Apple’s choice to not inform customers and employees on a higher level.

10 06 2007

You come over as one of those people that actually fully know what your getting into before you go to the shop but like to pretend that you know nothing so you can catch the store clerk out with your superior knowledge. You expect the average store clerk to know everything about the JUST released mac books and even though you got your answer from the Genuis bar you still werent happy! and then you feel its okay to be pissed that they advise you to go the Parallels route for your dual/tri boot solution as Bootcamp IS BETA!!!! Theres this thing called the internet trying doing a little research with it you’d be amazed at what you find out.

10 06 2007

You want to buy a MacBook; you ask a number of questions specific to the MacBook Pro (Santa Rosa, turbo flash, &c.); and you wonder why the salesmen try to sell up!

The salesmen tell you that Boot Camp is beta software, and you wonder why they don’t recommend it.

Your insider scoop should tell you which processors Intel sells Apple. Apple employees are not Intel insiders.

“Apple treats their customers as idiots.” Actually, only an idiot needs to know what’s inside a black box.

You have specific needs (triple boot) that don’t fit inside your budget. You expect the salesmen to recommend a system that fits your budget instead of your specific needs. Go to a WinTel store.

10 06 2007

I’m going to be honest with you, You seem to be a guy tha goes into stores to test the staff to feed your ego, remember that the majortiy of consumers that enter these stores do not know may things about technology and ask the product to make a solution, they don’t care about the type of processor they have in their mac and do not want to run three OSs on a machine. You have came across as an overly critical consumer who has been overly critical of the staff that do not want to lose their consumer in techno babble, if you are an “intel insider” why not ask your own company what chipset and processor they use?? Also, working for Intel you have no room to preach, they bamboozle the consumer in technospeak like “hyperthreading” and model numbers like Core 2 Duo T5500! Wow that means just about nothing to anyone! What Apple provide is a solution to a “normal” consumer who wants to show photos to his family….remember that the next time you thing you are better than everyones else because you know that the FSB of the Santa Rosa is 800 MHz….well done you!

10 06 2007
Top Posts « WordPress.com

[…] 5 Reasons Why I’m Disgruntled With The Apple Store Reps [image] I am in the market for a new notebook. As any technology aficionado I like to do my research so I can get the […] […]

11 06 2007

Wow, what a guy!

I really do like show offs. I get to learn a lot from them. Great man, just great.
Oh yeah, the Mohammed guy seems to know a lot too. Sure he’s not a pal of yours?
But really, I’d like to know Mohammed’s blog too; must be lots of info on it too.


11 06 2007

You’re an asshole. Plain and simple.

They were probably in a hurry to get rid of you because you were asking questions that no one else in the world gives a shit about.

11 06 2007
Apple Fanboyism « sheehantu

[…] seems I may have caused a stir amongst certain members of the Apple community in my last post 5 Reasons Why I’m Disgruntled With The Apple Store Reps. Based on the uncensored comments left on my blog I have made a few […]

12 06 2007

Haha, telling it like it is, right on.

9 07 2007

Not only are you a wanker and a dickhead, but you’re also stupid. You belive marketing bull like the Turbo Memory (it’s slower than all other forms of memory, including your hard disk!) and you don’t understand the nature of the jobs of the peole in the Apple store. You also believe Apple marketing hype. Do you think naming tech support staff “geniuses” means that they are smarter than others? You’re pretty dimwitted.

9 07 2007

moron – thanks for commenting. Intel Turbo memory currently is slower because Intel has not released stable drivers yet. Get back to me in a few months and you will notice that solid state devices are faster than mechanical ones, in fact solid state devices will replace mechanical devices in the near future.

18 08 2007

While I *want* to support you, over the years I’ve learned it’s unrealistic to expect anyone in a retail store to answer technical questions. If I’m in a retail store, it’s because I want instant gratification rather than waiting for an order to arrive at my doorstep. It’s better to go into the store on a well-informed pre-researched mission so that you can get out quickly and get home to play with your new toy. My last Apple Store experience was EXTREMELY positive, taking only 4 minutes total to purchase an iPhone. I never asked anything other than if they had it in stock. Even after I bought it, I still wanted some answers. I used Google.

Lastly, personal attacks are not a road to success in arguments. I see them happening on both sides here. Back each claim up with provable facts, please.

21 01 2008

as a personal attack that they DARE to have knowledge of how to use the products they sell in undocumented and unintended ways still werent happy! and then you feel its okay to be pissed that they advise you to go the Parallels route for your dual/tri boot solution as Bootcamp IS BETA!!!! Theres this thing called the internet trying doing a little research with it you’d be amazed

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