Another survey seems to confirm Apple products are immune from the general economic malaise hurting consumer spending. Consumers planned to buy more Mac laptops and desktops for the back-to-school period as well as over the next 90 days, according to a a survey by ChangeWave released Monday. This compares to the No. 1 PC maker, which consumers said they would buy fewer.
Also, the August survey found the release of Apple’s iPhone 3G is having a “halo” affect on other products. ChangeWave found 17 percent of consumers said the new iPhone made them more apt to buy a Mac.
Eight percent of the 4,416 mostly-U.S. consumers said during the critical back-to-school season they would buy an Apple product online compared to four percent who said they would buy less from Apple’s Web site, for a four percent overall gain for the Cupertino, Calif. company.
Consumers said, in general, they planned to spend less on electronics over the next three months. ChangeWave found 34 percent of consumers said they would spend less on electronics, compared to 15 percent that indicated they would spend more on electronics. The findings are 13 percent lower than a year ago.
Confidence in Apple products differs from overall PC buying plans. Desire to buy an Apple laptop rose two points (34 percent) with plans for an Apple desktop rising by three points to 30 percent. This contrasts with a decline in plans to buy a PC.
When it came to the top two PC sellers – HP and Dell – the retail reticence was pronounced. Plans to buy a Dell laptop within the next 90 days fell 4 points while future desktops rose by 3 points. U.S. consumers said they would buy fewer HP laptops and desktops, compared to July.
It should be noted that much of HP sales are coming from outside the United States. On Friday, Gartner analyst Alfonso Velso told Cult of Mac that Apple was particularly susceptible to any economic downturn that affected consumer spending. However, only recently had the research firm detected rumblings of any blowback from the economy. Gartner placed Apple as the sixth-largest PC maker. MetaFacts had earlier said Apple ranked fourth in laptop sales.