The greatest trick Apple ever pulled was making you think it’s YOUR fault


As we (Soluto) move into the Mac world, it became clear to me that I, a proud PC guy, have to become a Mac user for a while in order to be able to get inside the heads of Mac users. So at the risk of letting my soul get sucked into the fanboi dark side, I bought the cheapest MacBook Pro and started working with it as my main machine. There are things I like and there are things I don’t, but the purpose of this post is not to provide a pros/cons chart. It’s to tell a short tale that goes much deeper.


You see, a little while after I started using my new MacBook Pro (as in a few hours after I unboxed it and started using it), its fan started working. And it was loud. Not a clicky-ti-click-somehing’s-stuck-there noisy, but just a higher volume than what I’m used to with my $599 Asus laptop. A day later, when one of our designers sat with me in my very quiet office, the fan went on, she noticed it, and looked at me puzzled. I told her “yeah, apparently MacBooks have a loud fan”. She said “it can’t be right, there must be something wrong with this specific machine. Did you get it tested?” I said “No, I just think it has a loud fan, some machines just do.”


This raised a flag in my brain, so I went to a couple more smart people and told them off-hand that my MacBook has a surprisingly loud fan. The first reacted with “Did you put it in a very warm place? Directly under sunlight?” (the answer: no). The second asked me “what type of heavy analysis did you run on it to make it so loud?” (the answer: I worked on a Google spreadsheet in Safari and nothing else was open).


What’s so amazing about this story is that when people are confronted with a problem in an Apple product, in most cases they assume it’s the user’s fault. Don’t get me wrong, Apple makes the best consumer electronics, it’s a huge innovative force in the world, and in general the guys and gals working there are good for humankind. But their products are not perfect. Almost nothing is. The only perfect product in the history of technology was Microsoft Bob, and it was deprecated  back in the 90s.


I hear many people criticizing Android’s responsiveness etc, but no one criticizing iPhone 3GS’s horrible sluggishness since iOS 4.0. And it is horrible. Sometimes I benchmark my iPhone, to discover that opening the settings app takes 13 seconds. But it’s so unpopular to talk about it, that people who encounter a negative experience with an Apple product just suffer in silence, often assuming it’s their own fault (“I must be running too many apps”, or maybe “I’m holding it wrong“).


Beyond being a peculiar cultural phenomenon, it may be the greatest branding achievement of all time: convincing the world your products are perfect, and whatever’s wrong cannot be your products’ fault.


So to sum up, and to paraphrase on one of my favorite movies, the greatest trick Apple ever pulled was making you think it’s YOUR fault.


This entry was posted in Product Management, Soluto, User Experience. Bookmark the permalink.
  • Joel Fagin

    Ah, but is it a trick? Or a reputation?

  • Phillip

    lol @ windows bob. And yes my experience is the same with mac products. I mention to someone I am having a problem and usually the first thing that comes out of someones mouth is something to like, ” Oh, you must have done something wrong.”

  • Matic Bitenc

    I think you’re attributing this to wrong causes. It’s not that Mac users automatically assume it’s their fault. It’s just that Macs are not supposed to make that much noise and usually don’t. So when they are loud, we look for the reasons outside the usual operation. If you’re willing to accept the noise so quickly, you just might have low standards due to years in PC land. ;)

    • Brad Hubbard

      But don’t you see Matic, that’s the point of the entire article.

      You believe that PCs are inherrently inferior. Thus a loud fan (despite being built in the same factory by the same people) in a Mac is a rarity and unfathomable, but in a PC should be expected.

      As someone who owns a loud 2011 MBP with 8 gigs of ram, they happen. But I don’t lie to myself or try to play it off as a sign that my previous computers were inferior.

      I bet if you ask the average Jaguar driver how long they let the check engine light go unchecked, you find the same behavior.

      “It must be something I did”
      Last words of an apologist

      • Roee Adler

        Now you, sir, understand my point.

        • LinkTree

          The simple problem is that the Mac users whom you talked to are the ones that don’t understand much.

          Yes them Macs are build in the same factories as them pcs (at least to good once) and both should not be loud.

          The fact that you accepted that fact and even worse that you let not so smart people suggest that it’s your fault is something to think about..

          Why do you have such low expectations out of hardware?
          Why do you have people who works at your company who even suggest that a user problem is his problem?

          The beauty of this is that anything related to apple will be popular and generate traffic and like the old poet once said, there isn’t good or bad publicity as long as they spell your name right.. Apple :)

          • Gerald

            |The simple problem is that the Mac users whom you talked to are the ones that don’t understand much.

            |not so smart people suggest that it’s your fault is something to think about.

            Jumping to conclusions much? Maybe you should re-read the article and consider your own perspective on this.

          • Ryan

            He specifically said he went to smart people to ask. Why do you assume he went to not smart people?

            The beauty of this is that anything related to apple will be popular

            Apple has had tons of failures. Apple TV, Their original USB mouse, etc.

            like the old poet once said, there isn’t good or bad publicity as long as they spell your name right.. Apple :)

            Paul Christoforo says hello.

          • Matt

            The simple problem is that the Mac users whom you talked to are the ones that don’t understand much.

            You’re “no true Scotsman”-ing.

        • Alex Satrapa

          Your point is only that you have spent so long using PCs with low build quality, where the first step in solving any problem is “reboot it”, that when you encounter people who have faith in the ability of the vendor to repeatably deliver a quality product, your first assumption is that they’ve been brainwashed.

          The hardware may be manufactured in the same factory, but it is not designed the same way, doesn’t run the same operating system, and is going to be used by people whose first response to something going wrong is, “reboot it!”

          I have watched with amazement as a PC tech support person tried to diagnose a problem computer by restarting it, replacing the power supply, replacing the RAM, reinstalling Windows: only to find that the problem was due to peanut butter and honey jamming up the keyboard (he found this the first time he touched the keyboard while reinstalling Windows). This support guy had been so accustomed to the world of “PC is not working as expected, must be the PC’s fault” that he didn’t stop to think about whether the user might be at fault. He replaced the keyboard and the computer started behaving perfectly again. The user was of course given instructions to eat in the kitchen, not at the computer.

          Given the same machine, built to the same specification, that behaves differently in your hands as opposed to mine, the low hanging fruit in the trouble shooting list is, “how are you using it differently to me?” Attempting to diagnose a hardware problem is second on the list after ruling out different usage style.

          Did you check the processor load? Did you open Activity Monitor and look at disk I/O? Did you observe the output of “top -u”? A common occurrence on brand new Macs is the processor load and disk I/O peaking at about the twenty minute mark due to the initial run of Spotlight. These are all causes that lead to the observed effect of the fans spinning quite loudly. Cause and effect: it’s truth accepted by scientists, Unix system administrators, and Apple fanboys.

          Apple has set their fan controllers to spin up only when the chips get particularly hot: around 70C or so. Running at full speed, the fans on the MacBook Pro sound like a miniature jet engine at full throttle. The design priority for Apple’s laptop range is to be quiet, even if they get quite hot to touch.

          “I wonder if it’s something I did” is a valid assumption for the troubleshooter diagnosing a problem that affects their machine but not the other similar machines.

          This approach of troubleshooting before rebooting is the way Unix system administrators have approached troubleshooting for decades, it is not unique to brainwashed Apple zombies. As a user of inferior operating systems you have been brainwashed into thinking there is no need for troubleshooting, no need to diagnose why a system is behaving contrary to expectations, no need to determine whether the software is faulty: just reboot and it’ll be fine. What a sad state the world is in, 40 years since the invention of Unix.

          Interestingly enough, this approach of troubleshooting is also par for the course in medical circles: if you develop a rash, the doctor will first attempt to determine if you are doing something to cause the rash (dumped on sand while surfing? rolling in stinging nettles?) before attempting to treat with drugs or perform surgery. Perhaps doctors have been brainwashed by Apple too?

          Troubleshooting: it’s more than just rebooting.

          Nice link bait though.

          • Matt

            What you are pointing out is called poor tech support. Not really something to do with the reputation of a system (AND I have personally experienced several doctors who prescribe meds without a definitive diagnoses in the hope that it will clear it up when they don’t know what to do). The tech obviously didn’t do their job and were guessing, I have seen the same thing happen at Apple Stores and iCare centers on college campuses.

            I had a MBP that got sent back to Apple 3 times due to hardware issues (HDD, then two times for a Mobo issue). Needless to say this combined with working a tech support job through college was where I had my realization that the ‘reputation’ of Apple’s superiority was all just PR and that users just ignore some of the issues with Apple due to this reputation.

            A high end PC is built just as well as a low end Mac, PC just has offerings that don’t break the bank.

          • rodstar

            Perfect, Satrapa… and the same happens here in Brazil. So, your point of view works at this hemisphere too!

          • Gerald

            |person tried to diagnose a problem computer by restarting it, replacing the power supply, replacing the RAM,

            But if this happened at an Apple store and they solved the problem (failures do happen to mac products, a friend of mine had every components of their MBP replaced except for the case after numerous HDD failures and a battery burnt out killing the screen and the keyboard) then you would be screaming that the genius at the mac store knows more than any other computer tech support and they should rewarded.

          • Technohead

            My father has a problem with his iphone. He’s taken it a couple of times to the Apple genius bar. And what is the first thing (and only thing) they do?

            Hard reset it.

            Seems like they believe in rebooting to fix problems too.

          • aldebaran

            “brainwashed Apple zombies” – you have no idea how right you are…

          • aldebaran

            “…the best company on the world…”; “genius” named simple tech support… that guys are not egocentrics right? yeah

          • Simon Delancey

            What a sad state the world is in, 40 years since the invention of Unix.

            What a sad state the world is in – 40 years and Unix is the best operating system around :(

          • Reeves

            Wow, first off I read nothing about brain washing, I read something about good marketing, not quite the same thing. He’s saying that Apple has made themselves a brand of such quality some of the less tech savvy people, instead of wondering and looking to see if it’s a problem with them OR their mac, assume it was something they did to break it. They don’t check it or do any tests on it, they just think they broke it, cause it’s an Apple, so they had to have been the one to break it. That’s just the consumer’s trust they have for the company they support. While it’s a bit of a blind and somewhat, naive, trust, I have seen it in action myself. I’ve seen it with other things as well, and at times they were right they did screw it up, other times they didn’t do anything wrong at all.

            The point however is that the first route they took in finding the cause of the problem was to think they were the cause, not the fact that Mac’s, like any other product, can come with a flaw. (Note I say CAN not DO this is not me bashing, simply stating that it is not possible to make something perfect)

    • peppe

      yeah but you know, not anyone has 2000 euros to spend on a computer, so what apple is doing is basically selecting people which can use a mac and people which can’t. instead, you can find good pc laptop for just 300 E and do the same things you do with a mac, if you are willing to lose some time to understand and learn things.
      also, i think that a skilled user can install osx core (which is being relased with an open source license) on a pc and use an open source gui and have a fully functional mac osx system.

      • aldebaran

        “instead, you can find good pc laptop for just 300 E and do the same things you do with a mac” – yeah but then how you can proudly say – i have a mac and i’m so cool? :-D and i dont think that any sklled user will install mac os instead of install linux that will work much better…

  • Daniele

    Yes, i don’t get the point. Your Mac do too noise, so something is wrong, mac broken? unusual operations? something like that. Same thing for the 3gs, i used iOS 4.x from the first day on my 3gs, and Settings never started over 5-6 sec, also with 5Mb free ram. So try to reinstall the firmware and if possible don’t use backup….

  • Andrew

    First, with -any brand tech-, experienced people have learned to first eliminate user error from the equation. Since a macbook is know to not be a noisy product, people initially wonder “how was the product being used?” This would be the same with any product that is perceived to be ‘quality’. This does not prove a de facto mac culture bias.

  • Prasad Naik

    Apple products usually work great. If at times they don’t, then it usually is a fault with that specific product, like the fan on the MBP in your case. But people are used to seeing other Apple products work great so when they see theirs not doing the same they might assume they are doing something wrong.

    The trick Apple pulled here is making great products. If someone thinks that their Apple product not working properly is their fault, that is a trick played by their mind, not Apple.

    • Aaron Sevivas

      Simple answer is usually right.

      Apple people are used to things working. Its a symptom of a platform that simply works.

      Im a PC guy/.NET programmer.

    • dumbledore

      Do Apple products usually work great, or is it thats what they would have you believe ? You can look at the forums and find plenty of complaints. Would they be known for their outstanding customer service with hardware, if things usually work great ? Is it really great, or have you convinced yourself its great because you paid a premium and in order to soothe your ego that the premium is worth it you tell everyone else how great it is ?

      • alphaguy

        Due to the fact that the writer here didn’t really go into detail into the whole thing, he’s merely hitting the tip of the iceberg. I feel that its due to the fact that its such an expensive machine, and so highly praised by the public and oh-so-vocal mac fanboys that people begin to deny the truth that this really expensive piece of technology might actually have faults in it. I see what the author’s trying to get at, but I think he’s really trying his best not to start an all out flame war against the apple fans. He did good in that sense I guess.

      • aldebaran


  • Tomek

    I believe that any laptop of any brand sets off fans when it becomes hot (for whatever reason – CPU load or ambient temperature).

    I have (or had) MacBook pro and $1800 HP laptop – all of them are quiet during normal operation. Fans go loud when there is really a reason. So as it was mentioned you probably are used to low standards :)

  • Joseph

    It’s so funny to see so many of the people, described in the article, keep responding to your problem with the same answer that people give in the article.

    • Roee Adler

      Brilliant observation

      • Ekin Koc

        Well, it’s natural. I have a Macbook Pro and I honestly think that the fan noise is generally unnoticeable. So, if you came out and said that yours was loud, I would try to find a user error :)

        I mean, I expect it to be quiet because mine is quiet, not because Apple told me so. Is this weird?

        • Carolina

          It may have been a year since this post but I think a better example would be If you were to buy a PC product then people said their fan was noisy the people would assume that it was not a user error and more of a PC issue.

          • NopeTownUSA

            It may have been another year since this post, and its HILARIOUS because it is already too late for those that do not already know.

  • lanzz

    It is quite possible that you have an unusually loud fan, but also it is not very common to have it spin up at all. I usually notice the fan when the machine (macbook pro) heats over 70°C, which is a somewhat high sustained load (usually happens at over 70% CPU load for more than half a minute). The fan is audible (you can hear it without putting your ear to the machine, probably the airflow more than the actual fan itself), but can’t say it’s unusually loud. In normal operation the fan keeps at 2000rpm, which is completely inaudible.

    That said, in most daily-usage cases (i.e. not doing anything heavy that I know will load the machine) when the fan spins up, it happens either due to a heavy flash in pages, or a runaway javascript somewhere. Both cases are easy to overlook and just think “my machine is just loud”.

    The mac hangs from time to time. There are background processes that sometimes do not behave politely and make the machine unusable for some time (beachball everywhere, nothing usable, not just a single hung application). This happens rarely, and usually resolves itself in a minute, but sometimes I just reboot it. The platform is far from perfect and flawless. But still if you just tell me that your machine is “just loud”, I would suspect that it is something you did — possibly unknowingly, as I described above — could be you’ve just opened a page that loads the CPU.

    If your fan is truly louder than usual when you compare it with another macbook pro under similar load (not similar usage), then the case really might be that you just have an unusally loud fan. But in this case I would exercise my warranty and ask that the fan is replaced. It is not a question of fanboy attitude, it is just a customer demanding the high quality expected from an expensive product.

  • Anuraag

    Roee Adler, the fanboi’s are out in a swarm looking for you.
    But dont let that stop you. You are right about the whole thing. Apple’s products usually work better than everyone else’s may be the truth. But they too have flaws. And they are expensive. The fanbois dont want to admit all that. Their universe starts shaking.

    • Roee Adler

      I’ll watch my back, thanks :)

  • Aen Tan

    The fans on a Mac are hard workers. It is true they are rarely loud and in the rare occasion they are it’s usually due to high CPU activity. In my day-to-day experience, legitimate sources of high CPU activity are intense Photoshop work and watching high-resolution videos. Once I had mine at max RPM and checking Activity Monitor reveals a Safari process consuming 99% CPU. I found the offending tab left open for too long with a Flash video player. If you do a lot of web browsing, loud fans are usually caused by Flash in websites. Not just the obvious ones like video but also the obscure ones like banner ads.

  • Carlo Alberto Degli Atti

    maybe you’re going to think I was brainwashed, but my fan (mac book pro 15″ 2010) turns on very very rarely and is not at all noisy. I sincerely believe that you have a specific problem on your Mac. (for your peace of mind I also use linux from ’96 and I don’t have apple shares! Believe it or not!)

  • Aen Tan

    In your case. A javascript heavy application like Google Spreadsheets can get wonky when all the scripts are not downloaded into the browser due to crappy network, for example. Apple cannot websites from behaving wrongly nor can they ensure the quality of your network. Lots of other factors outside of Apple’s control can cause something to go wrong in a Mac.

  • Nimmit

    I really don’t understand why you think this is a Mac-specific problem. Whether you’re troubleshooting a Mac or a PC, the first thing to do is rule out user error. It’s not an accusation so much as a question, because who wants to take a product in for service only to be told they were using it wrong? It’s just plain logical to make sure you’re using any given product right before running back to the manufacturer crying about defects.

  • zack bynun

    This article is foolish. If you had written about being a mac fan boy from the start and being convinced to go to the darkside of PC; then told how your new (insert pc manufacture) laptop has a suspiciously loud fan; people would ask the same idiosyncratic questions, “did you leave it in the sun?”,”are you running a lot of apps?”. Your “deep” observation is nothing but an ill-conceived fart.

  • Win Koz

    It’s not the Apple user’s fault. It’s *your* fault. Yes, you. Whenever my macs have had problems I’ve gone back to Apple to make doubly sure they fixed it. If you’re brainwashed by lord Jobs (R.I.P.) that easily, you’re weak.

  • Tony Theodore

    If it happened only in the first few hours, I’d say that was simply Spotlight doing it’s initial indexing (look for mds and mdworker processes).

    Since it seems to have continued and there doesn’t seem to be any reason for it, grab smcFanControl ( and turn up the minimum fan speeds until it gets to be loud. Take it to the Genius Bar and let them listen to it – if it’s hardware related, they’ll replace it on the spot (at least that’s been my experience with faulty hard drives).

    You could also try the old fashioned phone call to Apple support directly. You may have been turned away from this in the PC world, but give it a try in the Apple world.

  • Stu

    Perhaps there is another explanation for mac users to seemingly be willing to tolerate some bad aspects of their products. Perhaps if the overall experience is great, the ‘bad’ things just don’t seem so bad.

    It reminds me of a story about the first elevators in skyscrapers. In the early days there was a great deal of frustration waiting for them to arrive (this being a relatively new thing to have to get used to). There was no obvious solution until someone suggested putting mirrors next to the elevator doors on each floor. Now, while people waited they had something to do/look at – something to distract them. The wait no longer seemed so bad. It was the perceived time passing that was important, not the actual time.

    Maybe something similar happens when Mac users tolerate long waits for some apps to load or similar…the overall experience has been so great and the product looks so darn fine that you just don’t notice the lags so much….you are in a more receptive frame of mind and you just don’t perceive the odd bump in the experience to be so bad. Whereas with Windows machines perhaps the overall experience is so uninspiring and frustrating that any little frustration seems yet another bad thing to deal with leading to heightened levels of anger/frustration/swearing…

    Just a thought,

    • Ben

      Uninspiring? It’s a piece of software, man. Only a mac fanboy would describe over saturated background images and a swoopy taskbar as inspiring.

      Computers are tools to get productive work done, Windows machines are better at that. Macs are great for making pretty pictures and surfing the internet and making people feel like spending twice as much as they should have to look at porn is justified.

      • College_League

        What a dick head. The personal preference is not the same for everyone. Some like mac, some like hp, others don’t care. Its your opinion that pc gets work done but don’t act like you’re spiting out facts. I have a macbook pro and I get plenty of work done, and so does my roommate with his mac. I have complete control over my mac and it is customized for me.

        • TryAgainSir

          The fact that you even choose to put the words complete and control in one sentence over your moms IP worries me.

          • College_League

            The fact that you even choose to pick where I live shows me that you are the best kind of keyboard warrior. The one that doesn’t know shit but uses the words that he thinks fits. Have a good day buddy.

    • Polarbreeze

      Stu, yes, I think that’s pretty much the dynamics that are at work here.

    • ihavenoname

      I agree Stu your bang on in my opinion. I have a Macbook pro late 2013 model purchased in February 2014 and it is amazing. It is much better than the Windows machines I have owned over the years. I say that as a guy who is tech neutral and not a fanboy. Though I must admit there are some slight bumps in the road as it were but I put up with them because the Macbook is so much better overall than I have been used to with Windows. I was one of the few people who loved Windows 8 and yet due to no fault of my own I kept getting BSOD’s. I had all the drivers up to date, hardly any software installed. All settings where as they should be etc. Even when I reinstalled Windows 8 and set everything to default it still had BSOD. I used to be a computer engineer so I know what I am doing. It was the fault of Windows 8 pure and simple but due to the overall mass of faults with Windows 8 I was less tolerant and please people before some of you jump up and down to say how Windows 8 is great and how I am an Apple fan boy please read the start because I am no Fanboy and second I could be here all day listing problems with Windows 8 and it’s design process.
      I therefore totally agree with you Stu
      Next I had a slight problem at one point with fan noise on my Macbook Pro but I soon figured out it was because I had put a setting on and forgot that it would cause issues for the machine. It was therefore my fault. Since then it has been so quiet the only thing quieter is a church mouse who has lost his voice.

  • Wouter Van den Bosch

    Although I like the premise of your post, I do have an issue with your claim that no one dares to complain publicly about the sluggishness of older model iPhones running newer versions of iOS.

    One needs only to Google for that particular issue and you’ll see many, many posts and rants about this (and other) issues.

    Moreover, as a Mac/PC/Android user (I’m a developer) I would indeed ask someone whether they put their laptops in a warm environment or whether they were running processor intensive software on it, when they’d mention a possible issue with the volume of their fans to me.

    But I think the difference between me looking for a possible issue with the user as opposed to the hardware would not so much depend on the brand, rather than the price-range of the machine.

    A Mac costs a lot. High end Sony’s cost a lot. In my view, such machines shouldn’t have silly issues like a noisy fan. I’d expect high-end performance for that high-end price. I could understand (but still regret) a noisy fan in a more budget-friendly machine. I’d understand that the maker would have to compromise somehow for the lower price. Hence I’d more easily put down the issue to the machine itself.

    But I’d have same ‘maybe-you’re-doing-it-wrong’ focus on a Mac related issue as I’d have from any machine in that price-range. When I pay 1k or more for a laptop, my expectations are that the hardware, build and user comfort are of a higher level. Exactly the same for a 600€ iPhone vs. a 300€ Android phone.

    Of course, those expectations are often squashed when the problem does indeed appear to be related to the device itself. This also explains the outrage in media when a flaw in such machines actually is made apparent. “I paid that much money and I still have bad reception? Arrrr!”

    Anyway. Just saying. In mybview it’s a thing more generally related to price class expectations than brand-specific expectations. Apple’s product range is just, mostly, high-priced.

  • Tim

    – High CPU usage (and thus loud fan) can be caused by a few things, eg. Mail jumps to 100% CPU sometimes, while spotlight indexing, finder has thousands of files in one window, or something hangs.

    – I reckon it’s really simple. PCs come in a huge variety. Yes they can use almost identical components to macs, or better components. But often they are made out of the cheapest components as possible. So no wonder average people, who are attracted by the cheap prices, have bad experiences with PCs. Half the time it’s just a shitty mouse that makes a PC horrible to use. Macs on the other hand usually (not always) use better quality components, come with a nice mouse and keyboard, and the systems are more carefully designed so all the bits work together better.

    • beenman

      i just actually wonder if you think apple doesn’t use the cheapest components either, lets be honest i offer you a mars bar for 50c and then someone else offers 45c, both show you the factory it was made in, and they are the same. you honestly think apple goes to the 50c…

  • Ian Gent

    I don’t think it’s my fault. My MBP very quickly developed a loud fan about two years ago. Sent back … Collect and deliver so you are out a mac for a week. They said there was no fault and they lubricated it. About a week later loud fan was back. On macs at least apple have bad build quality and bad repair service.

  • George Birbilιs

    standard troubleshooting procedure what they were asking, you check the easiest/cheapest workarrounds first and then explore the more doomy scenaria of what is wrong

  • Steve

    System Preferences –>
    Energy Saver –>
    Set Graphics radio button to: Better Battery Life

    Also, dump Flash. It turns my Macbook Pro into a leafblower.

    • Nicnacnic

      Ancient article but it comes up in certain searches. I’ll add to this, if you (not you but the Mac novice) installed something hoping to download movies or TV shows or applications illegally. Or you ran a flash or java or silverlight update based on a popup, you have malware and it is taxing your CPU.

  • Steve Massey

    I’d get the machine looked at. I work on large spreadsheets on my aging MacBook Pro frequently, and I never even heard the fan before. Admittedly, I’m using Excel rather than Google, but still.

  • Dan Hibiki

    Macs are just more solid computers and they are more reliable than PCs. That’s why organizations like NASA use Macs to operate important navigation and tracking software, and why almost any large company solely uses Macs to run their important business operations. PCs are just not reliable enough to be tasked with any real responsibility, so they’re basically only used by people who want to check their Facebook account and browse Reddit at Starbucks.

    • aldebaran

      Yeah right – from that comment i assume that 99% of people in the world check their facebook or browse some websites… did you really believe that NASA uses bunch of mac’s to send mission to mars??? are you serious???

    • Rob Stuart

      “PCs are just not reliable enough to be tasked with any real responsibility”

      Ah yes, that’s why PCs are so dominant for CAD software in engineering (Solidworks, Inventor, AutoCAD). Just try to find enterprise quality CAD software that runs on a Mac: Yeah that’s what I mean.

      Because we all know in engineering reliability isn’t important.

  • Bern Sull

    You can actually expand your trick to “making it someone else’s fault”. A few years ago, I attended a conference in Atlanta Ga at the Marriott, and in the conference rooms located in the bowels of the hotel, iPhones simply couldn’t place or receive calls or access data. There was much grousing about how lousy AT&T service was [it is lousy, so there is some fire to go with this smoke] but my phone, made by HTC was perfectly able to do both- and ran on the AT&T network. When confronted with this realty, denial was still in place, and I was told that I must be mistaken- I couldn’t be running on the same AT&T network. This scenario repeated itself several times over the course of 4 days.

    • eric

      Apple engineered that response too.. by falsely representing stronger than reality signal strenth on iphones from 2007-2010 when they finally had to admit what they were doing.

      If a phone shows perfect reception but cant place calls.. the natural response is to assume network problems. If a phone always has one or two bars youre going to assume its the phones fault.

  • Tom Buckner

    I’m reading this on an Apple right now, bought to do music on. I paid a premium for this machine because Appls Never Crash. But this one crashes as much as any PC I ever had.

    • Roee Adler

      Most people would tell you it’s because of the music software you’re using, not because of Apple. Which *may* be true, but they won’t even consider the alternative.

      • aldebaran

        course its music software… or graphic software… or moon phases… ot solar eclipses… all but apple’s fault i know!

  • Avro

    A silly story. Not in touch with reality.

    When my Sony DVD drive broke on my Mac Pro, I blamed Sony and when my Fuji HD broke on my MacBook I blamed Fuji. When my MacBook case warped slightly, I took it into Apple and they admitted it was a problem and replaced it while I shopped. The MacBook was 2.5 years old.

  • Big_D

    I had the same problem with the 3GS settings. I was told that I had messed up the phone and I should try a factory reset. I was very unpopular, when I said that was on 2 different phones and both had had factory resets!

    The same goes for my 24″ iMac, it takes several minutes to boot under Lion and starting Safari or DVD Player takes an age. Running Safari and DVD Player at the same time grinds the machine to a halt, if there is any Flash content on the page Safari is showing.

    When I mention that, I’m told I’ve got something running in the background or I am lying. The iMac has iLife, Apeture and MS Office installed, nothing special, but it can’t be running slow, it must be my fault, “I’ve” done something.

  • Chris

    The issue with the fan isn’t so much “it’s the user’s fault” as “that’s odd — it shouldn’t be that loud because Steve Jobs hated fans”. Apple machines have a long history of being quiet as a mouse and — as a result — overheating like crazy when they do need to cool down.

    I own an iPad 2 and a Macbook Air (which I run in Windows 7 continually — damn 3rd parties still haven’t made decent ultrabooks that compete yet). The iPad flat out won’t work when you leave it in the sun too long. It says “iPad needs to cool down”. Thing has no fan so you’re stuck. The Macbook Air holds up considerably better, but if I do heavy work on it — again, leaving it in the sunlight — the fan kicks in and whirs for an hour. It’s quiet, but it’s obvious it’s not doing a great job because it runs so long.

    Point is: the fact that the fan *is* loud is odd, and it’s why people are asking you if stupid questions about what you were doing with the machine. I would take it in to an Apple Store, have them replace the fan and you should be good.

    • Polarbreeze

      Re “replace the fan” – no, not really. There’s nothing wrong with the fan, what’s wrong is something making the computer overwork, thus requiring that the fan leap into action. Replacing the fan will not sole that.

  • Joe

    I have been using computers since 1981 – cp/m, dos, os/2, windows, linux, mac, etc. I’ve programmed in many languages. But I cannot get my head round iTunes (not a big issue as I don’t have an iPhone or iPod). Yet even my friends who have had those devices for years cannot work out how to use iTunes. One of them has actually stopped using his iPod and gone back to playing cds on a portable cd player. Some things Apple does really suck (although I love my Macbook Air).

    • eric

      itunes is a horrible bloated mess and barely fit for buying/listening to music, let alone managing electronics

  • JimmyFal

    Add to the list of great illusions the list of Grandkids who tell Grandma to switch to a Mac after just getting used to her Windows machine for the last 10 years. And then dropping it in her lap for Xmas and then going back to where ever they came from to leave Grandma all confused. Then when I show Grandma that you still have to click an icon to launch mail, click another one to create a new message and click the send button to send it, she says to me… How do I make those pictures stop jumping up and down?

  • Randall Lind

    Is it me or has Apple falling apart since Steve died? iphone 4 s has issue etc etc. Maybe now Steve is gone people aren’t afraid to say they have issues.

    Just a PC user take. Remember your Apple product will never be fix until you admit it has a issue. :P

  • crucialfelix

    So anyway there really is a problem with MBP and its fan control. I’ve got horrible problems with it and AFAICT its a hardware defect and not fixable. Its possible there is something that is broken/replaceable, but I haven’t figured it out yet. Get SMC Fan Control just so you see what the temp and fan speed is. Even without CPU usage and with temp below 60C I sometimes get the fan up at 6k

    You can reset your PRAM and this will reset the fan/temp thing for a while, but it will come back. I have discovered that if I pull the battery out then the fan goes down to normal ! with the battery in it goes back to high. This is not correlated to temp which is under 60C, and its nothing to do with energy settings because with battery in or out you are still using power adapter.

    • Polarbreeze

      Yes, there is actually a problem with MacBook fan overworking itself. I have the same thing on my MacBook Air. Sometimes there’s a process goes wild and loads the CPU – and it doesn’t show in Activity Monitor. Must be something I did :)

  • Oded

    That’s weird, my macbook pro has a very quiet fan (In contrast to my noisy HP laptop)

  • Eryll

    There is a double standard out there for sure. Problems with a PC = blame Windows. Problems with a Mac = blame user. Invariably when I look at that problem PC I find two basic areas of responsibility: a) OEM installed bloatware, and b) system configurations, file organization, and software installs that stem directly from user practices and/or ignorance. How many times have you heard someone say their brand new Windows machine worked great for the first couple months then slowed down to a crawl after that – but they take no personal responsibility for why it may be doing that? Then you go troubleshoot it and find 3-4 browser toolbars running, 2-3 antivirus programs running (with at least one doing a complete scan at any given time), 3-4 utility programs running at startup, the hard disk has not been defragmented in months, the temporary internet files are at 4+ GB in size, the desktop has 15-20 shortcuts on it with more appearing each time the user hastily installs some new peripheral or program, PLUS they save most of their documents on the desktop as well because they don’t know how to save them anywhere else!! Add to that are the 15 extra OEM installed bloatware programs (I’m looking at you HP and Sony) that run at startup too! Then when you point this out the user says “I don’t know how all those things got there!” (Let’s not even get into what happens because of all the bit torrent and porn sites they visit) So all this is the fault of Windows?! I doubt it.

    • Polarbreeze

      “Problems with a PC = blame Windows. Problems with a Mac = blame user.” It’s human nature to make assumptions based on the prevailing previous experience. That’s not good or bad, it’s just human nature.

  • PiisSerenity

    I must say people are not getting the main idea of the article. Brilliant experiment Rob, you sly pooch.

    High CPU usage should not be very common in Mac users it seems. I guess they only buy to it listen to music and durf the web, hence, low CPU usage no fan noise.

  • AK

    So If I bought a $599 ASUS and took it in for the same problem they won’t start with end user issues? SWEET! that’d be the first computer company to EVER do so! in the WORLD!!! I want their products now!

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  • Omar

    I have an iPad (the original, first one) and it worked fine, until update to iOS 5, which is slow, buggy and my Safari crashes occasionally – something that never happened on 4.x. Yes, any manufacturer can screw up from time to time, Apple is no exception.

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  • Eugene

    tl dr
    greatest trick apple ever pulled:
    loud fan on mac book pro, “what did you do to break your mac book?”
    loud fan on windows pc, “stupid windows pc is shitty, buy a mac”

  • Steve

    Well, not to pile on, but the 3GS is back to form with iOS 5 update. Have you tried?

    • Roee Adler

      Yes. It’s still horrible. Sorry.

  • notafanboy

    Obviously you have upset the fan boys. None of which seem to understand your point. Why so defensive? I could never understand why a simple act like suggesting a potential flaw draws such a call to arms. It just comes off as extremely bitter and pretentious. That is just like my opinion, man. I am bracing myself for the unending flaming to come. You are brave for publicly stating what may be perceived as a negative opinion about Apuhl (intentional error after reading post from another contributor) products.

  • John Dobber

    I think this article really belongs on Reddit. It seems a little like some of the thoughtless posts put on there when a user wants to put down another crowd of people (in this case, mac users). The main problem with this is generalization. You’re telling us that because we have macs, we all believe when something goes wrong its OUR faults. But the fact is, I’ve never thought that, and i’m sure A LOT of other mac users don’t feel that way.

    One part of this article that particularly struck me was the third paragraph. “I went to a couple more smart people […]” The author then goes on to say that these people basically blame him for the problems he has encountered. WELL, SMART PEOPLE, have told him this. Not Apple store employees at the genius bar.

    Every time I have been to the genius bar (twice in my 7 years of “fanboiness”), the very first thing they do is take the device , hook it up, and run a diagnostics test. Both times I’ve been (once for iphone, once for mac), they’ve taken the machine to replace it within a couple of days, or given me a new device (in the case of the iphone).

    Now, it really is obvious that the author of this post has harbored the disdain that so many other pc users have harbored for mac, but in this article, he does a poor job at getting his “apple trick you stupid mac users” point across.

    BTW, I have a mac, the fans not loud.

    • Roee Adler

      I think you’re taking some of the comments on Reddit and putting them in my mouth. I do not disrespect Mac users, I do not think all Mac users are blind to flaws in their devices, and I don’t think Apple make bad products. All I’m pointing out to is that it’s very difficult for many people to accept that Apple products can be flawed. You may not be such a person, and maybe no one around you is such a person, but i do know such people. And again, I consider it an amazing thing Apple did, partly by delivering superb products, partly by branding themselves the right way, and partly (in my opinion) by directly trying to create a perception of flawlessness. I hope that helps clarify my opinion.

    • guest

      I’ve had my own macbook for about 4 years now (likely one of the few people to own a macbook for longer than it takes for the newer one to be out, but I digress), and while there are things I like about it, there are also things I don’t like. But foremost, the one thing that made me decide that this macbook was my first and last one was when I had an issue with the battery. I found one day that the battery had swollen up, and was I was no longer able to close the battery door on the bottom of the macbook. Puzzled, I took it to the Apple Store.

      The first thing the ‘genius’ did was blame me. “you must have left the macbook in the car or some other hot place.”  No, the laptop stays at home comfortably on my coffee table–I rarely take it anywhere, and when I do, it’s safely in a bag, and I’ve never left it in a car. The next thing he did was say “Ok, well just buy a new macbook”. Excuse me? buy a new laptop because the BATTERY on an otherwise perfectly functional device has failed? That’s no solution. There are more things like that, but they get a bit nerdy–for example, their HUGELY false claim that OSX machines never need to be defragged or have their filesystems checked. (their solution, straight from the support page, is to backup the computer, wipe the drive, and restore. To defrag. Yes, really.)

      Don’t even get me started on the practice they’ve developed of soldering in the RAM so that it can’t be upgraded and using proprietary connectors for the hard drives to try to make users buy new machines instead of upgrading their existing ones. But again, I digress.

    • Systemofabink

      Mac fanboy you mad , but I cant hear you over your fan, explain?!

    • Polarbreeze

      John, relax, everything’s going to be OK.

    • 2bilingram

      I was in the first viability test run in 1983 for the Macintosh Personal Computer 0.97, or PC for short (so yes Macintosh’s (Mac’s)  are also PC’s.) The coolest part about them then was the rainbow colored ribbon that connected the monitor to the desk box. They would be integrated for commercial release. I have been using both Mac PC’s and Window based PC’s  ever since. They both have issues-one gets a viruses the other has system bombs. They both have their pluses but the differences are become fewer and fewer every day.

      But by far the worst thing about Mac or iStuff are the self loathing hipsters that;
      1) Think they are superior because the use a Mac
      2) Think they are more creative because they use a Mac
      3) Think the reason every one dislikes them so intently is because they are cool for   
            using a Mac and iStuff.

      A generalization of a concept is an extension of the concept to less specific criteria. It is a foundational element of logic and human reasoning. It is the posit existence of domain or set of elements, as well as one or more common characteristics shared by those elements. As such, it is the essential basis of all validdeuctive inferences. In other words there exist a patter that supports the concept for the generalization.

      • elnada

        Im a little drunk, but I love your schemata

    • sacre bleu

      In an effort to make your point, you just did everything you accused the author of the article of doing. You were, however, original in your all-caps business (just fyi, that reads weaker, not stronger), and in not understanding how the third paragraph supports his point.

      My macbook fan is loud, which is how I found this article.

    • College_League

      Im confused also, why is it that I have nothing against pc’s because I used to own one and would use them to this day if it wouldn’t have freaked out but you find more people trying to down a good operating system.

      BTW, I can’t even tell if I have a fan in my mac its so quiet.

    • lulzing

      Pro-tip: READ the article before hating. ‘when people are confronted with a problem in an Apple product, in most cases they assume it’s the user’s fault’.
      in most cases does not mean everybody. Author is just conveying and overall GENERAL attitude. And yes, generalizations can be accurate, but they don’t apply universally

  • adrenaline

    As and it admin I’ve seen many many issues with macs. They are NOT USED in large corporations as they are not easily adminstrated by AD.

    Dell optiplex and latitude laptops comw with 3 year Next buisnessday pro support. All their pro support techs are a+ certified and troubleshoot the hardware first.

    Quick support calls and knowledgable tech that show up on site.

    Macs have lot of issue but most mac users seem to ignore it our find it acceptable that in order to upgrade to newer os or cs5 u need to to buy new hardware.

    • hibob

      “As and it admin I’ve seen many many issues with macs. They are NOT USED in large corporations as they are not easily adminstrated by AD.”

      Yet major universities and research institutes don’t seem to have much trouble administrating thousands of them.

      The biggest problem I had administering macs was that they wouldn’t die. My old lab has equipment (HPLCs and mass spectrometers) that still run off of a Mac II and a Mac Quadra, which meant trying to network OS 5, 7, and X together. Software licenses and interface cards to replace the old Macs would have cost many times more than new PCs, so we just kept them.

  • Wael Al-Sallami

    Like many others, I don’t get your point, I once took a bricked iPhone 3GS to an Apple store, I’ve tried to jailbreak that device earlier, which was what bricked it, but the guy at the genius bar didn’t suggest that it was my fault, he just went to the back for a few minutes, and came back with a new one for me!

    But in general, this “you must’ve did something wrong behavior” is typical because of the high standard Apple has set for itself, for example, if you tell anyone that your iPhone 4’s screen is blurry then it MUST be something that you did, or at least a malfunction with your device as an isolated case, because the iPhone 4 has a Retina display that’s impossible to be described as blurry, that’s just a fact! this is not a “trick”, it’s making your users believe you’re perfect because you give them so many perfect (or at least almost perfect) products.

    • ljdelight

      “Like many others, I don’t get your point, I once took a bricked iPhone…”
      You don’t get his point?! Your entire second paragraph is in support of this article! You’re the exact type of person the author is mentioning. I bet you would say the T-type MagSafe is perfect.

  • Jim Strathmeyer

    You don’t realize the awesomeness of Apple’s marketing until you realize everyone in the office thinks you’re a “Mac guy” because you’re so into computers, and you must you them, because you’re so smart. I mean, they’re the place with the Genius Bar, right?

  • duggie

    All apple products are homogeneous. There is no variation. That makes the collective expectation homogeneous. If someone experiences a unique problem, its because of the unique individual.

    Kind of frightening actually.

    • Roee Adler

      Let’s imagine many people experience a problem, but something causes them to think it’s unique to them, and no one speaks about that. It is a unique problem? That’s the point of my post. Sometimes problems are just problems, and aren’t unique in any way. I don’t know if my fan problem is a good example, but what I do know is that with Apple products more people tend to assume the problem is “unique”.

  • Liat

    Maybe it’s a matter of your own self-esteem: when my new german Braun kettle made too much noise, I certainly didn’t consider filling it up with different or less water. I guess even german engineering isn’t always perfect.

  • Asher

    מה גודל המדגם אותו סקרת כדי להסיק את מסקנתך?

  • Sas

    Its okay to ask what you are doing? That is a prerequisite to start solving your problem. Its not related to apple or pc. Why do you assume its what you did WRONG question. Put mac/pc flames out of the equation and proceed to understanding the root cause of your issue without taking the apple or pc mind and life will be much easier. You will find out, that maybe safari is not the best browser for doing google docs or you have a loud fan….sorry the non loud ones were out of stock in the factory when they build yours…:)

  • Nilu Thunell

    There are two types of Apple users. Qualified users and unqualified users. Qualified users question Apples short comings and find a way to solve them quietly. The unqualified users are not qualified to question Apples short comings. If something doesn’t work they assume it is their own fault. Fortunately for Apple most of their users are unqualified.

  • Nir

    “I hear many people criticizing Android’s responsiveness etc, but no one criticizing iPhone 3GS’s horrible sluggishness since iOS 4.0. And it is horrible”

    – couldn’t say it louder and clearer. and I tried any configuration/trick/tip/restart etc. exist. nothing works.

  • Michel Krens

    Since a few weeks I started using a second-hand iMac next to my beloved Windows pc’s. I have build a few pc’s, and with good quality parts they can be really silent. My iMac’s fan is indeed quite noisy. It was fully cleaned, checked and reinstalled by an official Apple service centre and they did a great job, however the fan noise is by design. I love the Apple, it seems to need less maintenance regarding updates, upgrades, drivers and other soft. Open it up and you will see a lot of well known common pc parts. So: The experience is great, however it is only a computer.
    I see it this way: The design, fame and marketing are so specific and well done that people are very proud of their Apple and therefore tend to blame YOU instead of their beloved computer/phone/tablet. They feel a bit like you are talking about THEIR Apple…
    So: Not a trick, but an exemplary design and marketing achievement, which makes Apple synonym for quality in the heads of people. Apparently it is considered as something beautiful that they are proud to own, like a high quality car, handbag, watch or musical instrument. Things you only buy a few times in your life. I KNOW I can build a Windows pc with better specs, however nobody will look at it as something special, just another pc. It has no flair, it is not chic.

  • Not

    It is your fault.

  • brad w

    It’s strange that no one has mentioned the fact that Apple has been using Intel processors for the past few years. When I asked a “Genius” if I would be able to use a Dual-Core G5 (PowerPC 970) to run PhotoShop5 on the latest OSX, he said no problem it would run just as well as on any of the core i3 models. On a computer that came out ummm 9 years ago? Well-known for quiet operation. Did apple make a quality move or a quantity move, every company has a beginning to its end . . .

  • HotFrost

    Best computer to run Windows on is a Mac!

  • Kitch

    i guess nothing is perfect. i have a macbook pro and i love it. however, 4 months ago, the lower right corner of the screen got broken for no apparent reason. i researched about it online and i found out that this was a common occurrence  for the 2008 mbp’s so that there was a program to replace the screen for free. the people at apple didn’t know that, i had to be the one to tell them and send them the link. problem solved but they said they had to replace the trackpad. so ok, they did. when i got it back, it was working fine–with a 90-day warranty.
    after 2 months, the trackpad was going crazy. i sent it back knowing that it’s still covered by the warranty. and yes, the person who checked it said that maybe i pressed it too hard while using it. come on! the old trackpad i used for more than 2 years and yet this one that they replaced it with i used only for 2 months. i got the same fingers man!
    and then they said that there is a problem with the logic board, they need to replace it with a new one which will cost me around $800! i said, ‘i don’t think that’s my fault. can you check if there is a recall for that?’ the person said that if there was, they would have been advised by apple. i told her, “you didn’t now about the free screen replacement before, i was the one who informed you about it.” lo and behold, when i researched online for it, there is a recall. 
    now, i am asking myself if it is really worth it that i got this mbp. it is still with apple right now and i am using my brother’s acer laptop. and what’s with the apple ‘geniuses’ who are don’t know anything?!

    • camille

      Oh my god I almost just fainted. Are you serious, two “there hasn’t been a recall” responses? Wow, kudos for making it through to the other end. I would have gone completely insane at “you pressed too hard”. My computer would have been whacked repeatedly against a desk corner, and for what I would have said on the phone, I’d be forever blacklisted by Apple. Which, come to think of it, is probably not such a bad thing.

      I am so sorry for your troubles. But I have to tell you, that makes for a pretty funny read. You should grow it into a short story, no lie.

    • Dr.Goldsylver

      i got macbook pro 2008, and same trackpad has been changed twice and broke again, and my screen got a wide faulty band on the right side of the screen, have you still got the link for the recall, if i acn make it change for free, that will be amazing!

  • Alexandre Lago

    Seriously, I know what you are talking about…

    Have one Macbook air and it gets SO CRAZY HOT… ridiculous… I’ve had Vaio, Dell, and the any other that gets this HOT is HP, that it’s even hotter.

    We bought one Ipod Touch, it keep closing APPs, even the first time we turned it on and without any app started, only opening the safari, it did close by itself…

    Seriously? Apple have big issues… and they should start to come down from upstairs to see what users are suffering downstairs…. This issue with Ipod comes since the first ipod touch, and still they have same issues… to me, non-sense is to come up with new version of some product that still have same problems as the older ones had…

    Love Mac system, love mac design, love mac speed for processing things, but I’m not blind, deaf or cripple to ignore the shit problems that their products have.

  • FAN Boy

    The fan on my MacBook Pro is positively neurotic. As soon as a process heads towards 40-50% CPU it spins like its on crack, it’s like it wants to get out and live an independent life.

    I work in an open office that is fairly quiet so I have now taken to offloading the heavy lifting to my works Lenovo T400, a significantly lower spec machine but the fan barely gets above a whisper no matter what you throw at it. The i7, 8GB Mac sounds like a crashing spaceship if you so much as threaten it with work, it has now been relegated to word processing and mild web surfing.  With the caveat that site doesn’t have any Silverlight or Flash content, show the Mac video, of any nature, and it spins the fan like it’s churning butter, to the point where I can hear the fan spinning even if i am wearing headphones. That, is ridiculous.

    I think it’s quite telling that the new macs have newfangled fan-ness, this is definitely to combat the absolutely stupid fan situation on MacBooks. I have been emailing Apple for ages now to try and get some sort of fix after the guy in the Apple shop told me it was just a ‘feature’ of MacBooks, and yes, he did say feature.

    I have recently bought a Lenovo T420s, and it is BRILLIANT, much cheaper, faster and most importantly quieter than the MacBook. It is currently running Windows Server 2008 R2 with Hyper-V as a test lab, however, I am seriously considering ebaying the Mac and using the Lenovo as my full time client.

    Anyway, great article, as an iPhone, iPod, iPad, Macbook Pro 13″ (for the wife), Macbook Pro 15″ and iMac owner I wholeheartedly agree, MacBooks are not what they are cracked up to be. Love the iPad, love the iPhone, not so much the MacBook.

    Finally, I find it strange that criticising Apple is such a taboo. Some of their stuff is seriously cool, I mean the iPhone created a whole new apps market that never existed before, how cool was that. However, some of their stuff is not cool, but that’s not just Apple, that’s just life.

    • LastOneIPromise.

      I want to meet you in person sir, and Farady wouldnt know why but we would be thanking him haha.

  • E Rt

    My new mac book pro fan is ridiculously loud too. 

    • cmart

      Mine, too.  Mine’s only 1.5 years old, and I’m not such a tech head that I’ve got a zillion high-draining programs going at once, so it seems a bit premature.  It’s annoying.  I have yet to interact with Mac customer service, mostly because I know it will end in my needing to physically go to a Mac store.  No thanks.

  • Jennifer Kegley

    My favorite part of being a Mac user is the customer service that comes with it. If I have a problem (and I have had a few) they are quick to diagnose, walk me through a solution and get it done quickly and without any attitude. I do not blame issues on myself. However, I do take inventory of my own actions before assuming product error (as with any product from any manufacturer). I love Apple and I adore their customer service. They don’t make perfect products. There is not such thing. However, they do the next best thing. They fix what is wrong quickly and with minimal pain and suffering. Your post is a broad and faulty generalization.

  • 2bilingram

    Out of the 76 Mac’s and 825 Window’s units I have bought in the past 5 years the only machines I have ever sent back, exchanged, or returned were 15 Mac’s.
    This idea that Window’s based PC’s (remember Mac’s are Personal Computers too not a majic box) are poorly made and inferior quality and that is why they cost less is the reasoning of a snob in denial. If this were the case Macintosh’s would be the computer you would find in every office cubicle accross the globe. But you don’t. Why is that? Maybe because most Fortune 500 companies will not waste money on tools that don’t work or have a high price tag due to fancy packaging. 

  • JoeBobScruggs

    Good observation. I have toggled between both Macs (1988) and PCs (1984).  I really only started noticing the “You must NOT be doing as Steve Jobs intended…” meme in the last 10 years or so.

    There is a very real and scary contingent that seems to be hard-wired to think this way. And it seems to be growing. You would not believe the blowback I saw a few years ago when I was browsing for a solution to disable the friggin startup chime. 

    As the Japanese say: “The nail that sticks up gets hammered down.” Oh vey!

  • Omair SA

    When something of that sort happens, it’s an achievement of trust & reliability of the company, wherein people trust the brand so much that they usually think ‘Apple doesn’t usually go wrong. Must be my fault.” Unfortunately you cant say the same about PC manufacturers. 

    It’s a mere triumph of build quality and attention to detail, rather than manipulative marketing. 
    The latter never works for long.

    • cmart

      “…manipulative marketing…never works for long.”

      Marketing IS manipulation; that’s its very aim.

    • camille


      I just got a notice that some other comments were posted to this article, and when I came in to read them and then saw mine and also my response to you here, I realized that what I said makes no sense.

      I don’t agree with your point necessarily, that it’s solely a question of Apple=quality and PC=marketing trickery, but I did want to clarify that I’m not sure what I was thinking when I (mis)read your post, because what I said does not make sense.


      • camille

        Oh—it looks like since I didn’t specify that I wanted to comment with my username, it used my account name. But camille is the same person as cmart. Me.

  • Omair SA

    User interface and Experience is as important as computational prowess. You can’t have a fucking computer without a monitor and a keyboard.

    You can’t have people use command line to use your programs. You NEED a good interface and pleasant visuals along with your capability to process data. Otherwise we’d have ferraris, and jaguars looking like a box.

  • Applefanboi

    It is your fault dumbass. You’re probably making it all up as you clearly loathe the company and are wasting your life trying to talk them down. Retard. 

  • Scott

    I had a MacBook Pro 17″ for about three years. Near the end of the time I had it the computer would turn off (crash) instantly, if I “pushed” it too hard, so I had to decrease the screen brightness and not work it hard, but I could still use it. It did not charge the batteries though, which really sucked, so I was using it plugged in only for a few months. Luckily it was stolen out of a friend’s van, and my problem was solved. I had to get a new computer, but I didn’t have the money at the time, so I used an old 24″ iMac and was stuck at home more. That computer was truly amazing. In fact, I loved both. They were both much faster and better performers than the Windows machines I had used, and even the modern Windows machines that friends had seemed slow in comparison. I now have a 13″ MacBook Air, which I’ve had for about a year, and I love it, but recently I’ve been having problems with the keyboard. It seems like a software problem, because different keys seem to not work on occasion. I thought the problem was only with the S key, but today the F2 key (for screen brightness increase) did not work at first. Weird, huh? I was wondering if anyone else had such problems so I did a search. That’s how I came across this page. So what am I writing about? Well, first . . . my fan is NOT loud at all. In fact, I did not know that this computer even had a fan for a long time, and then one day I was exporting photos in .JPG format from raw files, and I felt hot air. I was surprised, and when I inspected the computer more closely I felt the air coming out and heard the fan/air. I was surprised, because this computer is so thin that I thought they had somehow figured out how to make these things with no fan, but when I discovered there is a fan in there I wondered how they could make such a small fan that would fit. Two . . . my experience with Macintosh computers has been an overall very good one. I had to replace the power supply on the 24″ iMac (and the “Super Drive” – which had not been working to burn DVD discs for years, even though it worked to read DVD and CD discs and to burn CD-R discs). I upgraded the iMac to 4 GB of RAM, even though it only addressed 3 GB of that. I can’t upgrade my MacBook Air, unfortunately, but 4 GB seems enough. The first Mac that I ever bought was a Mac Miini, and though that thing was a little slow, it worked great, and I never felt worried about browsing the Web or checking e-mail, because I felt safe from viruses and such. Now things are not so safe for Mac users, but I still prefer the Mac OS to anything from Microsoft. I built my own Windows machine a few years ago, before I got into Mac machines, and that thing was really good. It was SUPER stable, and pretty fast. That was before Windows Vista and Windows 7. I HATE the new versions of Windows, though I do realize they are more powerful and more capable. Maybe one day I’ll build another Windows machine. They definitely are cheaper, and I like the fact that so many programs work on them. MacBooks seem to be just better than other computers that are available though, and as powerful as notebook computers are, I really don’t see a need for desktop machines these days. If I was heavily into video editing, I’m sure I would disagree with that statement, but I’m not. One thing I do realize is how great the value is in some of the Windows machines. So be it. I still like the MacBooks better. They are lighter, feel like they are better quality, and I always seem to find all sorts of reasons why they are better. Maybe I’ve become a “fanboi” of the Apple world. So be it. I DON’T think that it is my fault that the keyboard is giving me problems on my MacBook Air. I also don’t think it was my fault that my 17″ MacBook Pro had a problem. It DEFINITELY was not anyone’s fault that the 24″ iMac had problems (though it was years old when those issues it had appeared). Do I go around telling eveyone that Macs suck? No, because Windows sucks worse than anything that has gone wrong with any Mac that I know of, and hurting the reputation of the underdog that is hopefully making Microsoft work harder is not the best idea. Maybe THAT is why Mac users don’t complain so much. Afterall, they are rooting for the underdog by buying Apple products. Of course, Apple is not so much the underdog these days, are they?

  • tim weir

    I have just bought a macbook pro, my fan is quite quiet.

  • John smith

    To be fair i found an app to speed my fan up – now sounds like a rocket lol

  • tim weir

    Lol i dont need an app to speed it up – all ready sounds like nasa has placed a rocket in mine

  • Steve Woody

    My Mac Air Fan was constantly running overtime, I installed a Fan tracker and clocked the RPM at 6500 where it should idle at 2000. I started to remove programs one by one and found that Google Drive was trying to sync and during that time it was killing my fan. As a result th efan was on constantly and I was getting battery life of approx 20 minutes. Apple told me I needed a new battery. Google Drive deleted and the battery is fine. Back to 3 hours normal use and silent fan. The only time its kicked in recently is during the 39 degree heatwave in the UK :)

  • Pingback: 4 Ways My MacBook Haunts Me | Patrick B Art()

  • whatido765

    well thats because it was naturally your fault. if you hold the power button in for longer than 15 second the mac will run in “unjam mode” or “heavy fan”. so with out you knowing you activated this feature. to unset it you can hard reset. hold the power button down for 5 seconds let go and turn back on. wall-ah! fans normal!

  • JusSayin

    i literally have no problems with my macbook and iv had it 3 years. Also had my iphone for over a year and have had 2 of the different IOS software updates that people complaied made their wifi or 3g or just system slow, I had no issues what so ever.
    if its not working right then take it to the apple store and tell em, they are most likely going to give you a replacement.

  • Anonymous

    I’ve noticed the same thing with people who are PC users, using Macs.

  • Anonymous

    This started out sounding like a hatchet piece by a Mac hater and then finishes off as reasonable and even generous.

    Well played, sir.

    As it turns out, loud fans were solved by firmware updates for many, and an unlucky handful have battery issues that Apple wouldn’t cop to. Other times, a downgrade to OS 10.7 Lion fixed it. (Red flag!)

    It’s not common, but Apple makes bad product sometimes and insistence on proper functioning from tech support (hopefully you live reasonably close to an apple store) is called for.
    They will make things right but the amount of effort could put off a computer owner if they are unlucky enough to have a true lemon and Apple forces them to jump through 6 sets of hoops. Often Apple does not even admit their hardware issues to their own techs. If the enthusiasts seem to think Macs are perfect, their techs are fed the same line so it’s a universal belief.

    The battery issue that made a lot of Mac OS 10.8 users miserable knocked Apple off of its pedestal for me. They’re awfully good, but not perfect and DO have room for improvement. A dash of humility might be a good start.

    Then again, the false aura of infallibility is what makes some institutions survive.

  • eatayayickday

    You clearly have no idea how many “problems” out there actually are user error. Even on Windows. …Thanks for writing a whole article based off of one experience and generalities. Hack.

  • Jony Ive

    Whenever Spotlight indexes your Mac (like after a major OS update, when you first set it up, or add a whole bunch of new files are added) the fan will kick in. Same if Spotlight indexes an attached drive. You can disable Spotlight, but you’d miss it if it wasn’t on.

  • Troy Haliwell

    My MacBook Pro (2009) rarely if ever engages it’s fans, even with heavy Photoshop usage. My iMac (2007) I don’t think has ever had to engage it’s fans. My PowerMac G5 does on occasion, but that is the nature of the G5 processor running so hot.

    So really, I think you got just one of those rare piss-poor ones that any human enterprise can let slip through.

  • Tom P.

    User problem: just because it’s a laptop doesn’t mean you can use it on your lap.

  • Rui Nelson Carneiro

    that’s stupid, i neve had a loud mac, never seen one. You can say what you want.

  • Anonymous

    My 6 year old MacBook pro has a loud fan because it’s got 6 years of dust inside of it. If your brand new MacBook pro has a loud fan, then something is probably wrong with your machine and you should have gotten it fixed. But then you are a PC guy, so you are probably used to stuff not working.

  • cfahey

    rofl my early 2008 macbook’s fan is so quite i have actually try to listen for it every so often and as for the android vs iOS non sense i started off with android and have bounced back and forth for years and over all every time i go back to the iPhone because i end up have far less visits to sprint to fix my phone (doubt anything could be as bad as palm) not once with my 4s or 5 have i had to have it replaced or even checked still run just as fast as day one

  • sven coolkayaker

    The original poster and the commenters are likely younger than I am, so you may not agree with what I am writing, but I’ll write it anyhow as advice from an old man: never, ever buy anything that has not been on the market for at least a year (two years, even better). Words like “refined”, “improved”, “new model”, and “upgraded” mean one of two things: buy the older version, or wait 12-24 months to buy the new version. Cars, computers, mouses, blue jeans–the product doesn’t matter. :-)

  • Rob

    Ok I would like to start by saying, the size and complexity of the OS being a MAC or Windows base is so complex, that its unlikely in this fast paced industry that you would be able to produce a flawless product before its superseded by the competitor, that leaves the job of debbuging to you the user. This is the unfortunate state of things and applies to all software to some extent.
    In critical systems such as those used in the aircraft industry most are very dated, this is because they are reliable not because they are bad and updating such systems takes a long time because new systems need to be tested to death before peoples lives are put at stake. This being said I would still be using windows XP if only Microsoft had not ended the support, sure it was buggy as hell when it was first released but in time in became better, and I’m not bashing apple, my main reason for liking XP was because I knew it back to front. This could apply for any persons “personal preference”. You know you own system well it will be productive for you. Another point I would like to make is that there is a significant (for my bank account balance) price difference between PCs and MACs, so I could never justify getting one.

  • NotAnonYet

    The only reason I know this article is completely true is because of this:

    I JUST NOW GOOGLED (Hello NSA, I see you and thank you for everything you do)

    Sorry, I just now googled “its so funny because my macbook runs at different speeds and they think i dont know.”

    and this page was the first link that popped up.

    Take everything you read on the internet with a Grain of Salt, but at the same time take it all with an entire salt mine.

    Except for this article.

    They are them, We are us.

    (Please type into google exactly what i typed the way I typed it, and you will see)

    HAHA. “I’d rather post as guest”

  • csbnet

    this reminds me (apple user) of the time i was talking to a co-worker (windows) about how I get frustrated with my work windows machine because I always had to reboot it. He said he never had to reboot his, I said Really? you don’t have to alt, Ctl, del to get your computer unstuck? Oh that, I do that all the time! They had thoroughly convinced this user that that was just part of using a computer.

  • Brian Donovan

    It’s as old as computers: it the priesthood of computing. At MIT we had the list of how to properly condescend to users.

    Don’t let em do it.

  • Emma Steward

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    watch or download the film, please you here
    there you can watch the film and you can download, thank you for it.bestmovie24
    already showed me a place where I can watch the film

    • Nicnacnic

      ^ That is exactly how you can make your MacBook fan go crazy ^

  • jennifer

    oh i have so much to say about apple and all the trick baggin bs they do. One of my favorite is when I got a new iphone 4s, except it wasn’t new… it was a refirbished 4… which came out early in the year… and then in october the iphone 4s was launched… and they weren’t really the brand new 4s… they don’t think the average jo is gonna take the whole thing apart.. and look up all the numbers found inside… well I did. and you’d be amazed at what I found.

  • Naaz Charania

    I do like my I pad , but when my husband first got it for me, I had problems galore. Apple fixed it so many times, now it is working o.k . Hopefully it will go for another few years.

  • Naaz Charania

    When I was first given an iPad as gift, I was really thrilled. The minute I started it was a real nightmare. The iPad would turn off by it self and I had problems with the icons. After several visits to the Apple Store, they finally fixed it. It must have taken me about ten visits. Then the nightmare began again, with the sane problem, I talked to a manager and he fixed the problem. They gave me a new iPad.

  • johannes b bols

    Just to add me tuppence… last week my google images were turning black. I knew I had to go into iphoto and do summink to the library. I called AppleCare and was on the phone for over an hour, silently nodding my head and saying yes yes yes. After the numbing rigmarole that was supposed to fix the images, need I tell you what happened? Sweet FA! I went into iphoto and fixed them myself.