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I bought a MacBook Air!

I just purchased a MacBook Air, sight unseen. Why?! Because I’m just so excited I can’t contain myself and I need to get my hands on one immediately. It’s funny, I’m not usually an “early adopter.” I still haven’t bought an iPhone because I don’t like AT&T’s service and I’m waiting for more product functionality. But I’ve been waiting for a new Mac laptop since June. I was wishing and hoping and dreaming and praying that the ultra-slim notebook would be announced today so that I can finally move on from my first-generation Powerbook G4, which I purchased before grad school in the spring of 2004. I’m really ready for an upgrade, and I just couldn’t wait a second longer.

Before I bit the bullet, I clicked on the Chat Now button at the top of the check out page. I had a few questions about which options to choose, and I was curious to see if a live chat rep would be of any help, especially since the product was just released today.

I’ve pasted the full transcript of my chat here. This artifact exemplifies first-class customer service; the experience reminded me why I’ve been an Apple customer for 14 years. Even as a technologist, I wholeheartedly believe that human-human interaction is far more effective than human-computer interaction could ever be. In this case, technology enabled a human connection that is rarely available online and further underscored what differentiates the brand. Read below.

  • You are chatting with Brad E, an Apple Expert
  • Hi, my name is Brad E. Welcome to Apple!
  • You: hi Brad
  • Brad E: Good afternoon.
  • You: i want to buy the MacBook Air, but i want the upgraded version
  • Brad E: How may I help you today?
  • Brad E: Terrific!
  • You: 64GB drive
  • Brad E: That is a great option for the hard drives.
  • You: so I’m wondering, with that drive plus the 1.8 GHz processor increase the weight of the laptop?
  • Brad E: Good question. That machine would still weigh in at the 3.0 pound mark.
  • You: what’s the real benefit of the SSD?
  • You: i’ll be using the machine both for work and personal
  • Brad E: The SSD is much faster than a traditional hard drive would be. Also they are more stable and less prone to failures due to the fact there are no moving parts in them.
  • You: and is there a considerable difference between the 1.6 GHz and 1.8 GHz processor?
  • Brad E: That would not affect speed as much as the SSD vs HDD would.
  • You: hmmm
  • You: what’s the value of it then?
  • Brad E: The new SSD drives are extremely fast.
  • You: well you’ve sold me on that
  • You: now i’m considering the extra processing power
  • Brad E: For people who want to do a fair amount of video work with the new machines, the faster processor allows them to render their video much faster.
  • Brad E: What types of applications are you looking to run with the new machine?
  • You: i’m a web designer, so mostly dreamweaver, photoshop/fireworks
  • You: plus email, itunes, maybe some widgets, Fetch
  • You: and a browser obviously
  • Brad E: Do you run multiple windows as well?
  • You: what do you mean?
  • Brad E: And run multiple I am referring to running a number of programs or browser windows simultaneously.
  • You: definitely lots of browser windows/tabs
  • You: all of the apps i mentioned would be open simultaneously
  • Brad E: Okay. The faster processor might be something to really look into.
  • You: i won’t be doing any video editing
  • You: what’s the price difference?
  • Brad E: It is a $300 difference for the price of that.
  • You: alright i’ll have to consider it
  • You: anything else I should be away of before buying?
  • Brad E: Have you looked at getting the USB disc drive as well?
  • You: the superdrive? yeah i’m gonna get it
  • You: can I use Time Machine with that?
  • Brad E: Yes you can. Or you can use pretty much any external hard drive as well.
  • You: I think I heard in the keynote that it’s a wireless utility. Or is that just with Time Capsule and the Airport Extreme base station?
  • Brad E: That is a function that would only be available with the new Time Capsule product.
  • You: ok got it
  • Brad E: Personally, I have one of these new MacBook Air machines ordered up. Pretty much the same set up you have going.
  • You: I’ve got a first generation Powerbook G4 now. Will i be able to do that wireless migration to my new machine?
  • Brad E: You could use the PowerBook as a disc drive, but to migrate from one machine to another would require a FireWire cable.
  • You: oh.. i thought i saw this wireless migration thing on here: http://www.apple.com/macbookair/wireless.html
  • You: But i wasn’t sure if I could do that with such an old machine. i got it in 04
  • Brad E: Oh cool, I never saw taht.
  • You: hehe
  • You: so I guess as long as both machines have wireless…
  • Brad E: That would work then.
  • You: ok great
  • You: Well Brad, thanks so much for your time
  • Brad E: You’re welcome.
  • Brad E: Were you looking to get that set up for you today?
  • You: yeah i’ve pretty much got it set over here. Just have to hit Continue
  • Brad E: Sounds like a plan.
  • Brad E: Would you like me to keep the chat open? I can remain online while you order in case you have other questions.
  • You: that would be great. i’ll be back in a bit
  • Brad E: No problem. I will be right here if you have any questions.
  • You: I did it!!
  • Brad E: Congratulations on the new machine!~
  • You: I’m so excited
  • You: I’ve been waiting since June for the announcement of a new notebook
  • You: Gosh I’m a dork
  • You: anyway, thanks Brad for all of your help. This is great customer service
  • You: and being a user experience designer, I sure do appreciate it!
  • Brad E: No problem. We embrace that here.
  • You: Yes, that’s why I’m a lifelong MacAddict
  • Brad E: Glad I could help you with all your questions today and that you like the chat service.
  • You: where are you located?
  • Brad E: We are in Sacramento California.
  • You: hope the weather’s nice
  • You: have a great day!
  • Brad E: Very foggy today.
  • You: same here in NY
  • Brad E: Got it.
  • Brad E: Is there anything else that I can help you with today?
  • You: Nope, you were great
  • You: thanks again and have a good day
  • Brad E: Thank you and take care!
  • You: Bye bye
  • Brad E: Thank you for visiting the Apple Store. We appreciate your business.
  • Thank you for contacting the Apple Store. If you require further assistance, please call 1-800-MY-APPLE.

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  1. […] ordered a MacBook Air the day of the Steve Jobs keynote at MacWorld Expo, and today the package arrived, four days ahead […]

  2. […] so I decided to say yes. I had used Apple’s Live Chat feature when purchasing my MacBook Air (wrote about it here), and I loved the experience. Both are powered by LivePerson, so I figured this could prove helpful […]

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