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American Customer Satisfaction Index ACSI

Customer Care

ACSI: Customer Satisfaction With PCs Drops as Tablets Fall Out of Favor

TV and DVD players decline as major appliances edge up

Published: Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 13:47

Customer satisfaction with personal computers is down for a third straight year, according to new data from the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). The ACSI Household Appliance and Electronics Report 2015 includes desktops, laptops, and tablet computers, as well as household appliances, televisions, and video players.

Customer satisfaction with personal computers fell 1.3 percent to 77 on ACSI’s 100-point scale; desktop computers have the highest score (81) and tablets (-6% to 75) have lost the edge over laptops (-1% to 75).

“Weaker customer satisfaction and slowing sales growth suggest that early enthusiasm for tablets has worn off,” says Claes Fornell, ACSI chairman and founder. “As large-screen smartphones become more popular, they’ve made tablets somewhat redundant—caught in between the mobility of a smartphone and the power and functionality of a desktop.”

Apple continues its ACSI dominance in PCs with a score of 84, well ahead of the rest of the industry. High customer satisfaction across all of its product lines may be attracting new customers to its PCs. Apple’s lead is even larger for tablets.

“Though Apple no longer accounts for the majority of all tablets sold, the iPad continues to set the bar for the industry,” says David VanAmburg, ACSI director. “Apple’s new tablet and its partnerships with IBM and Cisco may show that the company recognizes a shift in the tablet market toward business customers.”

Non-iPad tablets are well below Apple in customer satisfaction. New tablet ACSI entrants Amazon and Samsung debut with identical ACSI scores of 78. Meanwhile, Dell is the only PC maker to improve, gaining three percent to 78 and thereby earning a share of second place.

ASUS is also covered for the first time this year, coming in at the industry average (77). Meanwhile, smaller manufacturers as a group deteriorated 7 percent to 76. Lenovo posted its first ACSI score of 74, followed by Toshiba (-3%) and Hewlett-Packard (-1%), both at 73. At the bottom of the category, Acer drops 8% to 70.

Major household appliances saw a 1.3-percent improvement in their customer satisfaction, checking in at a score of 81. General Electric gained the most, advancing 6 percent to tie new entrant LG for the lead at 82. Samsung, which was also included in the ACSI for the first time in this category, follow close behind at 81, a figure matched by Electrolux (+3%). A 1-percent slip for Whirlpool is enough to take it from first place to second-to-last—marking the first time the company has ever scored below the industry average. Meanwhile, Bosch debuted at the bottom of the category at 79, as its premium pricing seemed to put pressure on expectations.

Customer satisfaction with televisions, and Blu-ray and DVD players, fell 4.7 percent to an ACSI score of 82. A year ago, “smart” technology lifted customer satisfaction with TVs to a record high, but most consumers have already upgraded to flat panel televisions and, at this time, don’t show much appetite for further upgrades. With prices already very low and market saturation high, the demand for newer technologies is not strong.

The ACSI report, which is based on 2,946 customer surveys collected in the second quarter of 2015, is available for free download here.


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American Customer Satisfaction Index ACSI

The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), founded at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and produced by ACSI LLC, is a national economic indicator of customer evaluations of the quality of products and services available to household consumers in the United States. The national index is updated each quarter and scores on a zero-to-100 scale at the national level. The ACSI produces indexes for 10 economic sectors, 47 industries, more than 225 companies, and more than 200 federal or local government services.