Do people who pay $299 to $399 for a Linux notebook suffer greater levels of buyer’s remorse compared to those buying Windows machines?

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Created by Jimbob 11 years 2 days ago – Made popular 11 years 1 day ago
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3rdalbum's picture


11 years 1 day 16 hours 31 min ago


Marketing issue

It's a marketing and word-of-mouth problem that I observed first-hand. A friend of mine at my workplace (an electrical store) was looking to buy the first generation of EeePC for her son. She called the supplier to ask if they had stock of the EeePCs and the nice lady told her to wait until they came with Windows XP, "because it will be easier to use".

People are buying these netbooks and telling their friends, and their friends are saying "You shouldn't have got one with Linux, it's really hard to use". Even though the computer is sitting there in front of them and they had no trouble using it at the store, the customer will choose to believe their friend and they'll return it.

The other problem is that for somebody who's not computer-savvy, they could see the Linux model and think it's running Windows. It has a taskbar at the bottom of the screen and the window borders look like either Windows XP Luna or the XP Metal theme. They buy it, and then discover later that it's the Linux model that's been made up to look like Windows. That's one of the reasons why I like the Ubuntu Netbook interface; it's unmistakably Ubuntu.

You could also explain the return rate because the Linux machines are drawing in the people who just want to buy a computer based on price, more than the slightly more expensive Windows ones. They buy it and then realise that it doesn't have an optical drive or something. They return it and buy a full-sized laptop. Whereas the people who are willing to pay the extra for Windows XP probably already realise what the specifications are and what the machine can and cannot do.

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