It’s funny Arthur, I was just thinking about this after
reading some strange tech reviews. I'll tell the story as it's a good example of what you are talking about.
The latest windows commercials mentioning
how PC’s are much cheaper for the same thing I guess struck home and has
changed a bit people’s perception of the PC-Mac divide. The Mac crowd is running
scared and has moved towards simply strange reviews, where the passion for, and
adoration of, the Mac has moved them beyond their senses. Here are two examples
from major tech journals, which will help explain my point. I should add though
first that I’m no fan of Windows. Actually, needing lately to install windows anew
– it is simply ridiculous how bad windows is. (You need to do like a 100
updates, and many restarts, if you install vista now. There aren’t enough
people doing that for Micro$oft to make one cumulative update??? They don’t
have the workforce???) Anyhow:
1. A journalist tries to convince that actually Mac’s aren’t
that more expensive if you consider that people who buy PC’s would need to buy
firewall and Microsoft’s Word. He notes that there are free alternatives, but “just
for the peace of mind” people would pay for them.
To mention the obvious - How does this not apply to Mac?
2. Probably the main tech review site in France reviews the
Mac mini. A small desktop, which I think was original in its day of offering a
cheap small computer, but since then the PC has obviously surpassed it in small
form factors being cheap. So the guy is reviewing it and what can he do – it’s
a very weak computer that, he says (I have no idea whatsoever, I’m just responding
to his review), is only for simple bureaucratic work. He compares its strength only
to other Mac’s (perhaps because of the specific program he uses – but then why
use that, and besides, there are the real world tests). Feeling he should
somewhat compares it also to a PC he says that comparing the real world (adobe) test to
the pc, the mac was a bit faster.
I go look at the PC he compared it to – an ultraportable! A
tiny 13 inch laptop. To remind you the mac mini is a desktop, so he could, he
should, have compared it to mini desktops. Problem is, tiny weak ones can be found for $200-300, and others
can be quite strong.
Now I don’t know anything of the strength of the mac mini,
but simply based on what he says, it doesn’t sound so appealing, while he decided
of course to give it 5 stars (the highest rating).
What’s my point – their strange devotion has thrown them out
of their minds. These people know their tech, probably, but the passion, oh the
passion – they just can’t think straight.
I’m not here to say what’s better, as I already said I dislike
windows, so there are reasons to buy a mac, but these guys are simply
As a side note I will say that the simple fact is that you
are paying a heavy premium for the apple brand. The easiest way to see it is in
looking through computer hardware sites. You will see again and again the exact
same product being much more expensive when sold for mac users (mostly colored
white). No other difference. Why do they buy that one and not the regular one,
I haven’t a clue. But I guess the people who seel them assume the mac crowd doesn't mind paying more if it has the word mac in the title, and that it actually works or they wouldn’t raise the price
for precisely the same item.
I can't speak to the reviews you've mentioned but I can speak to the Mac vs Windows debate. Over the past 20 years I've worked with both, it was part of my office job when working with software. It's obviously true that you can buy a Windows based machine for less money but like a car you have other expenses. For many years I used only Window based computers at home. Countless times I lost an afternoon cleaning a machine due to a virus. Add children to the mix and it compounds the problem with all the web surfing and game playing. So 6 years ago I switched to Macintosh. The Mac is unix based and as most Mac users know OS X comes with software called Boot Camp which allows you to run Windows. But..... there are even more elegant ways to handle Windows on a Mac computer. Software called 'Parallels' allows you to run Windows while still running the Mac operating system. That's right.... you can just tab over into Windows and then tab right back into OS X.
So when you buy a Mac you will spend a little more money but you get to have both operating systems if you so desire. And there's something else you'll find, it's easier to install Windows on a Mac than on a PC.
Yes I know, all you Mac users are thinking why would you ever do such a thing and I agree that the Mac OS is a more elegant and user friendly system, but on occasion when I need an application and it's only available on Windows, I can still easily get to it.
So in my opinion a Macintosh computer actually does cost less over the long haul.