Apple has about 250 stores worldwide. With the popularity of Macs, iPods, and iPhones, the stores are usually crowded with shoppers.
The son of notorious techno pundit hit whore John Dvorak switched from a Windows PC and bought a MacBook Pro at an Apple Store. Dvorak said the buying experience was like a car dealership in the 1970s with salespeople trying to screw the customer.
What’s been your Apple Store experience? Are the Apple associates too aggressive? Do they try to push specific products? Or, are they genuinely helpful? Your experience may vary, of course.
John Dvorak has been a popular tech writer for a few decades, once even writing for MacUser magazine. His perspectives, once unique and fresh, have tumbled into that of an itinerant whiner, especially so with anything to do with Apple.
Recently, Dvorak’s son bought a MacBook Pro, nixing the purchase of a $675 Gateway notebook at one third less than Apple’s popular notebook. Dvorak said if he were to buy a machine right now he would get a MacBook Pro, too.
Is Dvorak changing his spots? Nope. In the very next paragraph he complains about the Apple Store experience, which he says“ is evolving into a place where you have to endure structured sales. It’s like a car dealership in the ‘70s, with layers of various salespeople, each trying to screw you.”
He goes on to say, despite continued growth in Apple Store sales, and growing crowds, that “Apple Stores are barriers to sales.” That means that if Apple closed the stores the company would sell more Macs, iPods, and iPhones.
He’s never been too good at math. Regardless, he brings up an interesting issue. What’s been your Apple Store experience?
I’ve had the pleasure of shopping at 18 different Apple Stores from London, UK to Honolulu, and plenty in between. We are fortunate to have three Apple Stores within a few miles from where I live.
The Apple Store buying experience? It’s been very good, and quite similar at every store.
Store associates (they don’t like to call them salespeople) are more eager to please than knowledgeable, but always willing to escalate questions or problems they cannot handle.
Through a few dozen Macs, three iPhones, numerous iPods, and half a dozen Genius Bar service visits, the overall experience has been nothing short of excellent; a far cry better than Best Buy, CompUSA, Fry’s or other locations where Apple products may await a buyer.
That’s my experience. What’s yours? Are Apple Stores degrading into a used car lot of the 1970s, as Dvorak says?