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Who Offers the Best Tech Support for Laptops?

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.

The presence of good tech support is even more important for laptops, which are harder to crack open and troubleshoot – especially if you want to hang on to that warranty. With the back-to-school laptop buying season heating up, it seems like a good time to see what sort of tech support you'll get from each major laptop maker.

Laptop Magazine has given various computer companies the annual secret test of laptop tech support, both over the web and over phone, at various times of the day.

As with other years, 'A' is for Apple as the company once again posts top marks. For Windows-based machines, the premium brands of Lenovo and Sony do fairly well both over the phone and online, but if you grab an Asus, be sure to call in.

Laptop Magazine describes its processes and experiences in great detail for each company, so hit up the full article for more.

  • maigo
    Apple is great, they're giving out free rubber bands to iphone owners
    Reply
  • Tamz_msc
    Apple with grade A? Are you kidding?A few months ago I visited their store and inquired about the macbooks.I asked them about the screen sizes available-they told me that 13, 15 and 17 inches were available.Then I asked about the resolution, and all of them gave me a blank look.I kept on asking every one of their representatives and in the end they handed over a catalog which is essentially the same as the tech specs on their website.So, I decided that I had enough of apple.
    Reply
  • Godhatesusall
    Apple is great,theyre charging 2x what they should charge, in every product.

    Reply
  • eddieroolz
    Apple given an A? More like customers are simply deceived and blindly believe that they are receiving awesome tech support when in reality, they are not.
    Reply
  • jeraldjunkmail
    Asus and Lenovo as the only other companies to get an A in one or the other of the categories? Who paid for this study?
    Reply
  • enewmen
    Acer is really much better outside the U.S. Acer stores are common in Asia where you can drop off a broken notebook and have it fixed under warranty within 1-2 days. Then pick it up when it's ready. Also getting support with a live person right in front of you is no problem - just a 15 min wait.

    But yes I agree, Acer sucks in the States. I had to ship mine to Texas and pay for shipping when I had trouble in California. A complete system check was also just impossible.

    Dell was awesome in the late Nineties.
    Reply
  • gayanx86
    Apple knows their fans are utter n00bs, so they give a top notch Tech Support :P
    Reply
  • I needed servicing for two of my laptops this year. My mom's HP had a keyboard problem and spent 10 days at HP, before it was ready. My personal DELL studio had a CPU+MB broken last Wednesday. I received the computer in Friday (43 hours after leaving it for servicing) I have no idea how can you give HP such a grade. + it took me an hour to negotiate with HP on the phone before they admitted it should be a HW problem. Dell were much more friendly (of we can use that word) and only 10 after I called they asked me to send the computer for servicing. As a conclusion from my 2010 experience - good job for dell (and much better, compared to 2-3 years ago)
    Reply
  • abcdeasdfasdf
    Ha... the good point is which machine is "foolproof", my laptop, being a budget business class off-lease, with printer/SP2/3/Bluetooth/Ethernet/Wi-Fi/chipset/Intel GMA driver, took better half of a day to brings up to speed from a pristine Windows XP to the loaded drive I bought initially; most laptops are already built strong. BTW it is HP.

    Apple's machines are all foolproof.
    Reply
  • I needed servicing for two of my laptops this year. My mom's HP had a keyboard problem and spent 10 days at HP, before it was ready. My personal DELL studio had a CPU+MB broken last Wednesday. I received the computer in Friday (43 hours after leaving it for servicing) I have no idea how can you give HP such a grade. + it took me an hour to negotiate with HP on the phone before they admitted it should be a HW problem. Dell were much more friendly (of we can use that word) and only 10 after I called they asked me to send the computer for servicing. As a conclusion from my 2010 experience - good job for dell (and much better, compared to 2-3 years ago)
    Reply