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Mac Musings

Congratulations Gateway, HP

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- 24 June 1998 - Tip Jar

For years the loyalty of Mac users was the envy of the PC industry. Report after report showed that when Mac owners bought another computer, it was almost always an Apple Macintosh.

Things changed.

According to the latest customer loyalty study, both Gateway and Hewlett Packard surpassed Apple in customer loyalty in 1987.

Rather than bemoan the fact, I offer my hearty congratulations to both companies for doing something neither Compaq nor IBM have. Gaining name brand recognition and customer loyalty in the clone-eat-clone Wintel world is no easy thing.

Brand defection is a way of life for PC makers.

But for the first time Apple wasn't the only brand supporting the Mac OS. Remember the rumors that Maclones had 30% of the Mac market? How much would you bet that more Apple defectors bought Maclones than Wintel machines?

That 30% of the Mac OS market was more likely to come from Mac users (probably most of them also Mac owners) than from any other platform.

And remember that the survey only counted purchasers who owned a computer and bought a new one. No new users. No users who didn't buy new in 1997. Just us old timers upgrading.

I would expect the next survey to also show Apple below #1 in owner loyalty - not because we're disloyal, but because of the incredible bargains on Umax, Motorola, Power Computing, and other clones.

But the survey after that will probably have Apple at #1 again.

Mac users are an incredibly loyal bunch.

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Dan Knight has been using Macs since 1986, sold Macs for several years, supported them for many more years, and has been publishing Low End Mac since April 1997. If you find Dan's articles helpful, please consider making a donation to his tip jar.

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