While many of you Tom's Hardware readers are usually savvy enough to troubleshoot problems on your own, even if it's store-bought computer, many consumers out there heavily factor into their purchases in the quality of tech support.
Most research into tech support quality finds that the large computer makers Dell and HP rank near the bottom, while Apple consistently scores at the top. Laptop Magazine today published its report after conducting its independent tests on Acer, Apple, Asus, Dell, Fujitsu, Gateway, HP, Lenovo, Sony and Toshiba.
Laptop Magazine tested the computer makers by making two phone calls to each company's tech support lines, both times asking how to alter power management schemes and how to enable an external monitor.
Apple scored top marks with its North American-based tech support workers, well put-together website and availability of the Genius Bar. Lenovo, Sony and Toshiba also did well with knowledgeable phone support.
The worst of the bunch were Acer, Dell and HP, which was plagued with long hold times and/or tech help that wasn't very helpful at all.