We didn’t include Best Buy’s Apple optimization services in our investigation, but Heidi N. Moore of Slate.com took a look at the service and as she tells Consumerist in an email, “unscientifically came to the same conclusion.”
As even a computer novice might expect, “Mac optimization” is useless. One supposed benefit is putting the user’s name on the computer, according to Best Buy representatives I spoke to. Presumably, anyone who is buying a computer knows how to type in his or her own name, or follow the prompts to do it. Another supposed benefit: checking the Mac’s network connection. This has no value because it is done in the store, while the buyer will use the Mac with a different network at home. Yet a third step involves loading the Geek Squad’s own proprietary software on the computer to scan drives—drives that have never been used and so don’t need to be scanned for trouble. An anti-virus program is also part of the mix, which is an insult to the virus resistance of Macs. “There’s nothing of that sort that any brand-new PC needs, and Macs less so,” Gottheil said. “Apple requires far less configuration.” Best Buy’s hard sell on “optimization” is like peddling mythic unicorns based on the value of their horsepower.
Heidi says that her mother was sold on the service by a salesperson who “openly said that her Mac would not work without optimization.”
Best Buy: No Way To Sell Apples [Slate]