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PC chains slammed by buyers, says Which? survey

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Retailers and helplines have come in for some harsh criticism from Which? magazine after it collected the experiences of UK home computer users. The survey found that 20 per cent of new buyers have major problems settuing up their PC purchases, and 40 per cent experience diffulties during their first year of ownership. And customers seeking help were often directed to support desks at the end of premium rate phone numbers, ensuring they could easily end up paying £30 per hour. Retailers fared little better. Black marks were awarded to Dixons, Currys, Comet and PC World -- most surveyed users said they would not buy computer equipment from these stores again. Only John Lewis and independent retailers won much in the way of positive feedback. Instead, the clear result of the survey was users generally have a better experience buying Direct. Manufacturers Dan, Dell, Gateway and Apple were all highly rated by users for reliability -- most users of these companies' machines said they would recommend them to other buyers. ® Click for more stories

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