the Tech-edge E-zine staff 1/21/03
Annual Buyers Good, Bad and the Ugly of the Tech World
time of the year that all sorts of surveys have been done and collated
into some interesting and relevant data for prospective buyers. Some
of these surveys are from owner feedback, some are reader surveys and
probably the most accurate are by professional rating services. We also
conducted our own consumer survey and personal experience results to
add to the outside data. Tech-edge E-zine is not responsible for
the information derived from reader surveys. You should always judge
providers on your own experiences.
We took information
from all of them, tossed the inconsequential fluff and generated our
own Annual Buyers Good, Bad and the Ugly of the Tech World.
It included Computers, Accessory hardware like printers, digital cameras,
PDA’s, Networking, Customer Support and Warranty, Online Merchants,
Walk-in stores, Web Hosting services and ISP’s (Internet - Independent
2002 was again a
bad year for much of the Tech industry, only a few market segments had
increases in sales while the majority that didn’t further slide
down hill were fortunate to recover to at least a flat income. Chapter
11 and Chapter 7 bankruptcy of tech manufacturers and online retailers
were up again.
in order of best to worst within categories.
Best to Good – Sony, Apple, with Dell
and Gateway in a tie.
Worst to even Worse – Compaq, IBM, HP, eMachines,
ABS, SysteMax, Computer Show Specials
Best to Good – Apple, IBM,
Sony, Gateway, HP (brand), Dell, Toshiba
Worst to even Worse – Compaq, NPower, Acer/NEC
to Good – AMD
Athlon XP 2600+, AMD Athlon XP 2400+, Intel P-4 desktop processor.
Worst to even Worse – AMD Athlon
XP 2200+, any Intel Mobility P-4 (for over-rated performance) and
excessive heat generation)
Best – Apple Mac OS X (10.1.5
and 10.2 Jaguar); for being bullet proof in the real world.
OK – Microsoft XP Professional; still crashes applications
and itself, not upgrade friendly for older hardware.
Worst – Linux Desktop (any flavor); you still
have to be a nerd to install it, there are still no major applications.
to Good – Apple, IBM, Toshiba, Gateway, Dell*, ABS, HP
Worst to even Worse – eMachines**, MicronPC, Sony,
Compaq, SysteMax, NEC/Acer, PC Club***
* Poor telephone tech support. Dell is reported to be only giving
2 weeks of training to new Tech Support staff and has opened a support
center in Bangalore India. ** eMachines had improved from the basement
position. *** PC Club farms out their phone tech support to a service
with the absolute worst reputation.
Best – HP, Epson, Brother
Worst – Lexmark*, Canon, Samsung
* Lexmark had terrible tech support and the most expensive replacement
Best to Good – ATI Radeon 9700
Pro, ATI Radeon 9700 and 9500, All-in-Wonder Edition,
ATI Mobility Radeon 9000
Good to OK - NVIDIA GeForce4 Ti4600, NVIDIA GeForceFX.
Worst - Any NVIDIA GeForce “off-brand” cards
(driver problems galore, poor performance)