With more and more horror stories about Windows Vista and the ever increasing amount of viruses, malware, adware and inexplicable Blue Screens of Death, many people are considering making the jump to an Apple computer. I was a longtime Windows user, but have recently made the switch. As I see it, here is a quick summary of some of the advantages and disadvantages of owning a Mac.
Advantages of Apple Computers
Security. Apple computers are much more secure than Windows PCs. Viruses, adware and malware designed for a Windows-based processor simply will not run on a Mac. The main reason for this is simply that there are much fewer Macs in use. People who make malicious software want to have it spread to as many people as possible and designing a virus for a Mac simply will not accomplish this.
Reliability. The people who make Mac software are the same people who make the Mac hardware. While Windows programmers have to take into account nearly infinite variations in hardware, Mac OS is designed to be used on a very limited amount of computers: those built by Apple. The software is designed specifically to run on the hardware. This means that the operating system is much more stable.
Macs are convenient. Do you own an iPod? An iPhone? Do you listen to music with iTunes? Do you appreciate how simple, elegant and easy to use these products are? Apple applies all of the things you like about these products to their computers. Yes, there will be a time of adjustment to using Mac OS, but once you are used to it, you will love it.
Advanced technology. The current generation of Macbook Pros feature LED monitors, multi-touch mouse trackpad and a CNC machined aluminum case. Desktop Mac Pros feature up to 8 core processors (yes, eight) and up to 4 TB of storage (TB=Terabyte). Thats four thousand (4000) GB.
A good overview of the Macbook Pro is available here.
A Mac can do anything a Windows PC can. With Apple computers now using Intel processors, they are able to run Windows. With programs like Bootcamp or software emulation, you are able to install and run Windows on your Mac and switch between the two OSs easily. Macs come with a Mail utility with the same functionality as Microsoft Outlook. The iWork line of software comes with Pages, Keynote and Numbers which can function as replacements for Word, Powerpoint and Excel. Each of these programs can export files in a format that can be used in Windows software. Or, if you donÃƒÂ‚Ã‚Â’t want to try iWork, Microsoft offers a Mac-compatible version of Office.
Disadvantages of Mac Computers.
TheyÃƒÂ‚Ã‚Â’re only more secure because fewer people use them. If everybody used Macs, there would be a lot more viruses and malware for them. If Apple computers became more popular, they would become less secure.
Cannot be upgraded/customized. There are upgrade options when you buy a Mac, but unlike a Windows PC, you cannot mix and match components. The easiest way to upgrade a Mac is to buy a new one.
Price. Macs are very expensive. Even the cheapest laptop costs $999.99. Windows machines cost as little as $500.
Playing games requires Windows. There are very few games available for the Mac. If you are a gamer, a Mac is probably not the best choice. You could run Bootcamp, but if you are going to spend most of your time on a Mac running Windows, you have to ask yourself if it is worth it. Another option (and the one I have taken) is to play games on a video game console, such as a PS3 or Wii, and simply use your computer for computing.
It requires adjustment. ItÃƒÂ‚Ã‚Â’s a Windows-based world. Most people are used to using Windows. Changing to a Mac requires that you get used to a number of differences. Some people are simply not willing to make that change.