Apple has bought many new technologies to market but such innovations are not the most important factors to IT buyers, according to an Information Week poll.

The poll indicates that just 15 per cent of business-technology professionals believe advanced technology is the most important criterion for choosing a PC vendor.

The most important factor in choosing a PC vendor is cost, chosen by 83 per cent of respondents, and Information Week notes: "Macs always cost more than PCs."

But the report does accede that Apple products are not always the most expensive, praising Mac OS X Server and explaining that Microsoft's Small Business Server 2003 "can cost three times as much".

Other important factors in choosing a PC vendor are customer service, reliability, quality, proven technology, vendor and product reputation, and performance. The least important factors are service agreements, ease of administration, and advanced technologies.

Dell received top ranking in overall customer satisfaction for both desktop PCs and notebooks, followed by IBM and HP. Apple was not included in the poll.