Customer service is second to none particularly when a product fails
I have been an unapologetic Apple Fanboy since the early 1980s and now there is one more reason why I love Apple. Apple has the most loyal installed customer base of any company on the planet. Don’t misunderstand. There are lots of companies with loyal customers. However, when it comes to customer satisfaction and loyalty, there is Apple and then there is everybody else.
It all starts with making the best products possible. When you succeed in doing that, you will dominate the only real “share” that matters. And I’m not talking about market share. That’s for the bottom feeders. I’m talking about profit share. In every product category that Apple competes, the company dominates by a wide margin the share of the tire segment’s profits.
Start with personal computers. Macintosh holds 7.5% global market share. Yet Macintosh sales account for 60% of all the profits generated in annual sales of PCs. Now, let’s consider tablets. If one only read the tilted reporting that focuses on channel stuffing shipments that rarely sell, one might think Apple has exited the tablet market. The truth of the matter is Apple continues to enjoy robust sales compared to every other manufacturer of tablets. In fiscal 2015, Apple sold 54.84 million iPads. As a result, iPad commanded 90% of total profits in the entire sector.
Apple generates nearly 65% of its total profits from the sales of iPhones. At the same time, iPhone enjoys less than 20% global market share. But it is clearly the best 20%. You see, iPhone captures more than 94% of all profits generated by the global sale of smartphones.
Apple dominates so completely for two very compelling reasons. The iMaker produces the best products in every segment the company competes. The company then backs up that quality with the finest level of customer service imaginable. Here’s an example of what I’m talking about.
Last spring, I purchased my 42mm Stainless Steel Apple Watch complete with the Milanese Loop bracelet. The price tag was $749. Fortunately, I had acquired $400 in numerous Apple Gift cards for various occasions such as Christmas, Birthday and Father’s Day. My net out of pocket cost was $349.
On Monday, the watch ceased working. I had been using it daily with not a single issue for a little over one year. I felt a light tap on my wrist followed by an audible “Bluetooth” chirp from my iPhone. Thinking I had received a message, I raised my watch to see who the messenger might be. The screen was completely dark. No watch face, no nothing. I thought perhaps I had misaligned the charging unit overnight and simply ran out of juice. Unfortunately, that was not the case. My Apple Watch was dead.
I decided to make an appointment at an Apple Store Genius Bar. There were no openings at my location up at the Willowbrook mall in Wayne New Jersey until Friday. So, I made a reservation for the Apple Store at the Short Hills Mall.
When I arrived, the concierge log me in and took me to a seat at the bar. In a few minutes the Apple genius arrived, introduced himself and asked what was the problem with the watch. I explained the issue and gave him the watch. He first had me erase the watch remotely from the watch app on my iPhone. Then he removed the bracelet from the watch.
After logging in the serial number, he informed me that the watch would have to be sent to Apple for replacement. He also told me since the watch was out of warranty by a little more than a month it might be a good idea to call Apple customer service. He told me to explain the situation, highlighting how recently the warranty expired. He told me there was a good chance Apple might waive the repair charge.
And immediately called Apple customer service when I got to the car. I explain the situation to the representative and gave him the serial number to the watch so he could examine the service order record. After waiting a minute or two on hold, the representative came back and told me the authorization code has been approved and the watch would be replaced for free!
I called the Apple Store at the Short Hills Mall immediately. The technician immediately changed the work order and advise me they would be sending the watch back to Apple with the next FedEx shipment. He then told me to expect the replacement watch within 5 to 7 business days.
I have never been disappointed with the level of service I have received from Apple on any product I have ever purchased. The company goes far beyond what anyone would reasonably expect a company to do. This is just one more reason reinforcing my absolute loyalty to Apple and its products.
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