Our Mystery Shopper this month went shopping for a new machine, but which one: Mac or PC? She wanted to organise photos, browse the web, listen to music, watch videos and do word processing. She had used both a PC and a Mac previously, so which would stores recommend??

Mystery Shopper April Part 2

John Lewis

I explained to a member of staff that I needed a laptop computer mainly for browsing the internet, viewing photos and watching the occasional video.

With no hesitation at all, he jumped at the Apple MacBook, priced £925 and boasting a 2GHz Super Drive. It had a 13.3- inch screen, which was large enough to watch my movies and view photographs. I was then shown the Sony Vaio FW11, priced £1,130. It had a 16.4-inch screen, Blu-ray drive and a large 250GB hard drive.

The Mac was more suitable for the style conscious customer, I was told, and was more affordable. However the Sony laptop had more technology, affecting the price. A demonstration of both followed, with the choice left down to me.

This was an efficient and very competent sale. The salesman didn’t beat about the bush and went straight to two models for a good comparison.
Score: 9/10


This store was one of the smallest that I had visited and didn’t have the widest selection available, but I was still hopeful in my search.

I explained that I was looking for a new machine and that I had used a Mac before, but wanted to consider alternatives. He said that if it was a Mac that I was used to, then it would probably make sense if I stuck to what I knew.

The Apple MacBook Air had a sleek and stylish design with 2GB of memory, 250GB hard drive and an adequately sized screen at 13.3-inch for £1,711.79. Okay – but what about other machines? Several strong hints later, nothing else was forthcoming. I directly asked him to explain other competitor products. “You should probably stick to what you know,” I was told.

Realising the end of our conversation and lack of enthusiasm towards the sale, I thanked him for his time and left the store.
Score: 5/10

Tec 7

It was a small and very empty store. Salesmen were clearly visible on the shop floor. I explained that I had used a Mac laptop in the past and that I was looking for a newer model or something completely different. The salesman proceeded to ask me to explain the tasks I needed to do.

I said that I browsed the internet, check emails, wanted to organise my photos and movies. He added that there wasn’t any stock of Macs in-store, but he could order one in. I asked him to give me some recommendations he may have for either Macs or Windows driven machines, trying to prompt him.

There wasn’t anything forthcoming. He pointed me towards the right hand side of the store and told me to have a look at what they had got and to ask if I needed any further help. Obligingly, I walked towards the wall with the laptops on it and out the door.
Score: 3/10

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