Whenever someone argues their reluctance to buy a Mac I seem to hear the same reasons over and over again. In an attempt to never have to repeat me again, here’s some food for thought on those same old, same old arguments.
1. All my friends have PC’s and I need to be able to share files with them.
Ok… This is one of the most-often repeated reasons, and of course, it’s complete hogwash
.mp3 .doc .pdf .wmv .wma .mpg .mov .txt .rar .zip .psd .jpg .gif .ai .eps .torrent .bmp .xls .csv .rtf .ppt .pps .wav .tif mid .mp4 and just about any other file you would ever get from your PC-friends is cross-platform compatible and you will have no problems whatsoever.
You can’t open .exe files (unless you install Windows as well as OS X, which is easily done) of course, but why on earth would you?
2. I only know how to run Windows. I’m afraid I wouldn’t understand / like Macs.
Google “Switch to Mac”. Have a look at the results. Now google “Switch to Windows”. The first page turns up only negative stories (“Why I can never Switch to Vista”) and a couple of stories unrelated to people changing their operating system.
So maybe that’s unfair since Apple used the exact phrase “Switch to Mac” as an ad, and therefore it’s more likely to be used, and in turn searchable. Try “from Mac to Windows” and “from Windows to Mac” then.
Alright. So that didn’t really prove anything, but the story repeats itself every time. Switchers love their Mac experience. It’s just less painful. That’s it. Keep in mind if you click those links by the way; There are about 5% percent Macs against 94% Windows machines out there, and still, there are more Mac-lovers than Windows-lovers.
3. There’s so much more software available for PCs.
That might be in terms of quantity, but most of that is crappy versions of the same functionality. In terms of quality; as in software needs fulfilled I have yet to be unable to find an app for whatever I want to be accomplished. And generally speaking; it looks and feels better than the PC equivalent. Check iusethis.com for an excellent overview of apps for the Mac.
4. But I don’t need a Mac. I only use my computer to surf the web and check my email.
Then why do it on the machine that gets viruses (Or is that virii? Vira? Not nice anyway.)
The Mac platform isn’t something you have to justify by being “Power user” or “pro” or anything like that. It makes the simple stuff simpler. The slightly harder stuff simpler and the dangerous stuff safer.
5. Macs are more expensive. I get more for my money if I buy a PC.
Are they now? It seems that may not be true.
Anyway; the marginal difference in price between the two doesn’t take into account neither the value of a yummy Licious user experience nor what you’ll save on Virus Protection Software.
6. Macs are just for creatives. I need to do real work.
Alright. Let’s talk “real work” (although of course, I would generally be talking in terms of not doing it, I’ll make an exception). If you don’t need spreadsheets, you’ll do fine with I work + iCal + Mail. (Oh and rumors say the spreadsheet thing will be taken care of in about a week.) Not good enough, even though I work exports to and imports from your usual Office formats? Alright. Be that way. Go buy Microsoft Office and sully your Mac if you must. So with all that; why not go for the work machine that makes your spare time fun?
7. I don’t want to be locked into using just Apple hardware. That “Mighty Mouse” looks sucky.
The Mighty Mouse does look sucky. Personally, I use a Logitech MX Revolution. I also occasionally use a Wacom Tablet, and I’ve got my EPSON printer, canon scanner, and Nikon Camera hooked right up. Oh, and with my Sony Ericsson telephone, I sync between my Outlook calendar at work and my iCal calendar at home.
There not being drivers for OSX is a complete and utter myth.
8. A Mac is just some sort of gimmicky product that turns people into complete zealots.
Even though this is sort of a throwback to the reasoning I had on #2; Why do you think that is? Do you really believe that all those Mac users that keep on saying that working on OSX is wonderful compared to Windows first fell in love with the company and then try to defend that position out of some blind loyalty to Steve Jobs?
Consider this; Of all the people you know on Windows, how many of them argue that it’s a fantastic experience and that they could never ever switch back to a Mac? Remember that most Mac users have worked a lot on PCs while most Windows users have never tried a Mac, so isn’t it pretty obvious that those who choose a Mac make an informed decision? I’ll happily admit to being a Mac zealot, and the reasonI’m a Mac zealot is that I spend huge amounts of time working at the computer, and therefore I’ve tested and chosen among the operating systems, and I find OSX wildly preferable to Windows. (Although I do sort of like Linux).
9. Macs are just for toying around. I have no use for ease-to-use life or glossy GUIs. I’m a power user and I need a serious platform.
Alright. Let’s talk nerdy. My Mac came, out of the box, with a UNIX core, an Apache Server and Ruby On Rails pre-installed. The best text editor for coders I’ve ever used, bar none, including EMACS is the Mac only app TextMate. (On windows I’ll make do with Notepad++). I have installed several Linux distributions on my spare partition and…
Ok… So I’m posting. I’m a nerd, but I really don’t know the way of the hacker, or what you really use a UNIX for, so don’t take my word for it. Listen to a real nerd, and of course, John Gruber has several posts on the topic.