The Mac vs. PC debate is one of the most controversial and exciting topics when it comes to computers and operating systems, especially when it comes to choosing a computer for yourself or business, the debate still rages on to this day regarding what is better Windows or Mac, PC or Apple.
No doubt I'll get a lot of disgruntled comments, emails, and tweets about which one you think is better than the other, but hear me out. There are people on both sides of the computer war who is reasonably speaking just aren’t informed of what the other side has to offer. Both Mac and PC have their strengths and weaknesses, making them both viable options in my opinion.
It comes down to what you are going to use your computer for, whether you’re using it for business or personal use, and what will be your primary purpose of using it be, gaming, design, accounting or just browsing the web. To come across as unbiased and transparent as possible, I feel that I need to let you know that I primarily am a Windows PC user much like 80 percent of the desktop and laptop users worldwide, with that being said I still use Apple Mac's both laptops and desktops for several different reasons.
To break this down as naturally as possible, I'm going to work my way through the following and comparing Microsoft and Apple’s offerings along the way.
Customization and upgrades
Keep in mind this article is intended to give you a comparison between Apple Mac and Windows PC. I'm looking to help users who are interested in buying a new computer, not dictating which brand is the "best." so with all that being said, here’s a comprehensive breakdown of the two operating systems and machines feature by feature, specification by specification for you to decide which one suits your needs better. Feel free to contribute your thoughts in the comment section at the end of this article, whether you're a PC Windows or a Mac OS fan. Let us know why.
Generally speaking, MacBooks and iMacs have much nicer designs than Windows PCs and laptops. That’s not to say all of them; there’s a broad range of Windows machines readily available from various manufacturers with different designs, shapes, and sizes. Windows PC machines often have more responsive keyboards and mouses with multiple functional buttons for different purposes. Nonetheless, the sleek design of the Mac has become somewhat of an iconic feature of their computers with the majority of consumers preferring the simplicity and aesthetic that Mac has to offer.
Macs have some excellent exclusive software, such as GarageBand, Spaces, and Aperture but Windows PC has the advantage when it comes to software, practically every popular software online is readily available for Windows, while not all are optimized and available for Macs. You can use Windows software on a Mac by using software such as Boot Camp and vice versa on the Mac with similar software. With that being said the software will always work much better on the machine it’s optimized for, and Windows PC takes the lead there.
Generally speaking, Macs are lightyears ahead of Windows PC machines when it comes to cybersecurity. Although the gap has become smaller over the years, with Windows slowly improving its own security features while several vulnerabilities have been found in the Mac operating system in recent years, you’re a lot less likely to face security problems on Macs. When it comes to cybersecurity, most hackers will solely focus their efforts on Windows machines as they’re easier to exploit and more widespread throughout large corporate businesses. Windows machines are a lot more susceptible to malware attacks, but with a good antivirus and basic security knowledge, you’re less likely to face this issue.
When it comes to high-performance computer activities like gaming, Windows is the only way to go. Support for modern games severely lacks on Apple machines. You can find a lot of Windows PCs and laptops with quality Nvidia and AMD graphics cards already built in. Unfortunately the same can’t be said for Macs, don't get me wrong you can still game on the Mac, even some popular games like Fortnite and Apex Legends can be played on MacBooks and iMacs. However, for high-quality intensive gaming, Windows wins every time.
Windows machines come from various manufacturers with different customer support ratings, generally speaking, Apple beats all of them. Apple is renowned for its outstanding customer service, and If you happen to have any problems with your Mac, you can just take it straight into your local Apple store to get the problem fixed. On the other hand, Windows is notorious for having various hard-to-fix errors. Plus getting your Windows machine fixed often requires sending it back to the orginal manufacturer which can take weeks until you finally get it back or replaced if it under warranty.
Both Windows laptops and computers are available at a much lower price than Macs. When placing the same priced machines head to head in terms of specifications, you’ll get more quality components like graphics cards, ram, and processors in Windows computers; you get more bang for your buck. However, Mac prices can be justified, in any case. They’re built-to-last and have excellent customer support, meaning a $2,000 MacBook can last you for years on end. With Windows, it comes down to the orginal manufacturer.
Both Mac OS and Windows PC are clean, fast, highly capable operating systems. It comes down to personal preference and the user's specific needs. Windows is put onto PCs by multiple manufacturers, most of which add some form of bloatware. That being said, bloatware is removable. Either way that doesn't mean that Windows 10 is an inferior operating system. Mac users have the option to use Boot Camp to run Windows on their computer. PC users can also install Linux on their computer and use it in conjunction with Windows or as an alternative to Windows.
The number of software applications for Mac has grown over the years. However, Windows dominates the computer software market share, and developers are more likely to create software for PCs because of the potential in getting a good return on their investment. Furthermore, there are hundreds of free programs available for PC that are not available to Mac owners.
Mac - Newer models of Mac computers and laptops are known for their exceptional quality across their entire line. Mac's offer a very compact profile regardless of form factor and are aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
PC - PCs have always been highly customizable, from cases to internal components, to monitors. There are many different levels of build quality. Therefore, while you can get very high-quality components for a PC, you can also get those that are poor quality while the quality of PC components can be just as high if we are to rate quality across the board.
Apple machines can be customized with several options, usually, with Apple only parts and accessories, you can still find some third-party manufacturers, but it is getting increasingly difficult. All of their computers come pre-built and are only manufactured by Apple. PCs, however, have more pre-built options, due to a higher number of manufacturers. Furthermore, for those who like to build their computers, the possibilities for customization are exponentially higher with many components to choose from.
Traditionally, Macs have been faster to boot up than PCs. However, with the advent of Window 10, PC boot times have decreased dramatically. In some cases, Windows 10 performs faster than the Mac OS. That being said, these differences are negligible when compared to hardware. The single most significant component in reducing boot time is the type of hard drive a computer has. Both Macs and PCs have SSDs available to them, but those who build PCs have much faster options available at their fingertips.
In the past, Mac users certainly had the advantage here because Apple was the sole manufacturer of these computers. Consequently, Apple only had to create one set of drivers. PC, on the other hand, not only has many different pre-built manufacturers but many interchangeable components as well, which required numerous drivers. However, in recent years all devices are plug-and-play in Windows and no longer need the user to install drivers.
Apple strives to make its Mac product line as sleek and compact as possible. To do so, they continue to integrate their parts further. Thus, when their desktop computers need to be repaired, they usually require more than one part to be replaced. Most PCs, on the other hand, have easy access to any part of the computer by removing a side panel. Laptop repair costs between the two platforms would be more similar, but Mac is still more expensive.
When it comes to desktop and laptop computers, Mac offers no touch screen capability and only offers the Touch Bar on some of the newer MacBook models, unlike Windows PC's which have several models with touch capability readily available.
Not all PC's are the same - As we stated before, there are dozens of PC manufacturers, and thousands of models of computers, which means not all of the information above may apply to your PC, or a PC you want to buy. My Apple can run Windows - Microsoft Windows can be run on Apple computers using Boot Camp, which means not everything above may apply to your Mac. In the case of gaming, you may be able to run the latest games on your Mac using Boot Camp. However, Boot Camp is not perfect, and it does not mean every game will be able to run on your computer since PC games are not developed with Apple hardware in mind. It is also not unlikely to encounter problems and have performance issues. Windows XP is not Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10 - Windows XP is over 15 years old. Comparing a Windows XP computer to a new MacBook with OS is like comparing a Ford Pinto to a Ferrari. If you are trying to decide between purchasing a PC or a Mac, make sure you are comparing the latest models and that they have similar hardware components.
Sleek Design: Like mentioned earlier, the Cupertino Company has won users over the years because of the sleek and visually appealing design it gives its devices. That is something that Apple has maintained across all of its devices including the MacBook, iMac, iPads, iPhones, and iPods. Traditionally speaking Windows PC could not match with Macs in the design department, though these days there are some sleek designed PCs as well.
Pre-loaded Software: You will hardly hear of a Mac user having trouble with licenses since Apple ships its computers complete with the OS and some additional software already installed. A Mac typically comes with Pages, which is used for documents preparations, Numbers, used in conjunction with spreadsheets, Keynote, used with presentations like PowerPoint and software for some basic Photo Editing and Video Production. With Windows PC which generally comes with nothing else other than the BIOS. The end user will then have to purchase the Windows license alongside other productivity software like Office Suite.
User-Friendly: The majority of people who have used a Mac in the past before moving on to use a Windows PC swear that the former is less complicated, easy to use, and can troubleshoot much quickly compared to Windows Computers.
Software Update Issues: If you have ever had to wait over half an hour for Windows Updates to install, then you would come to appreciate the seamless nature updates rolls into the macOS. Software updates on Macs are usually consistent, effortless, and less troublesome than its Windows counterpart.
Less likely to get Viruses and Malware: It may be because the Mac OS has a smaller user base compared to Windows, so there is a less hacker community creating harmful software targeting the Mac operating system.
Excellent Customer Services and higher Customer Satisfaction levels: Compared to Windows, Apple products rank much higher with regards to quality and customer satisfaction due to the vast number of Apple stores across the world offering support.
Better sync with Apple products: If you own an iPhone, iPad, or iPod. You can never find a computer that syncs better with your iDevices than a MacBook, using Itunes in conjunction with your iPhone is a breeze.
Expensive: Macs are perhaps too expensive than their hardware worth. Though some Windows PC is increasingly outdoing Mac in the price departments.
Most productivity software on Mac is primarily designed for Windows: Most of the software you will need to get some work done like Microsoft Office Suite, Timberline, Accounting software, Primavera, and AutoCAD were initially designed for Windows then converted to Mac afterward.
They merely are not gaming computers: Even the most advanced Mac doesn't have the processing power, Graphics, and RAM to play most high-end games of this generation.
Using a Mac seems complicated at first: Users who have a history of using Windows computer will struggle to navigate their way around the Mac OS at first. You will need some patience to get familiar with how to use a Mac as a first timer.
Available at various price ranges: One of the best things about Windows PCs is that they come in all shapes, sizes, and designs; more importantly at different price ranges. That is because they come from multiple manufacturers meaning there is competition. As a result end consumers (you) will be spoilt for choice in terms of functionality and different price points, unlike a Mac which comes in limited models and at fixed price points.
Gaming Rigs: If your gamer and tend to play on computers rather then a console then as you already know a Mac will generally not give you the processing power, RAM space, storage, ports, and displays among other things needed to meet the demand of high-end gaming.
Different Shapes and Sizes: Windows PC's are available in various configurations; processors, RAM, storage, displays, graphics cards and ports among many other things.
Superior Hardware at Competitive Prices: When you critically think about it, Mac users are paying way higher cost for a comparatively lower specs hardware. Windows PCs often come with superior equipment at very competitive prices.
Accessories Are Easier To Find: If you own a Windows PC, you can literally walk into your nearest computer repair shop and have all the accessories you might need all under one roof. If it is a Mac, you might only have the option of taking it to an Apple Store.
Easy to Upgrade, Reconfigure, and Refurbish: Tech-savvy users who like tinkering with their equipment have the option of upgrading, reconfiguring, and refurbishing their own computer which makes Windows PC much more appealing than a Mac.
More Software Options: More software programs are being produced for Windows PCs compared to Macs.
Better Backward Compatibility: It is not uncommon to get a 10-year-old, or 15-year-old PC running the latest version of Windows without significant problems.
The Price Is Increasing: These days there are Windows PC with price tags that easily outrun those of high-end Macs. Some consumers now decide to go for Mac Mini or MacBook Air instead of the costly Windows PCs.
Preinstalled Bloatware: Since Windows come from many OEMs, each manufacturer wants to try and get as much money as they can from the sale of one PC. They do this via bloatware, which is already preinstalled before the PC makes it to the retail shelves. This bloatware tends to eat into the machine’s resources, making it run slower, and could pose a security risk to personal data.
Initial Candidates for Cyber Attacks: Any would-be hacker generally targets Windows users as over 80% of computer users are using PC Windows, leaving around 20% of people using Mac OS or other operating systems like Linux. So when a hacker develops computer viruses like a Trojan, malware, adware, and all sorts of other malicious software, Windows is almost always the first casualty.
As you can see from reading the above, both machines have their own unique positives and negatives. Macs are famed for their security, stylish design, a simple user interface, and excellent customer support. However, Windows PC machines are much more affordable, great for high-performance gaming, and have more software available to them, giving you a lot of flexibility. At the end of the day, both make great choices either for personal or business use. Many businesses use Windows, as it’s cheaper to buy Windows computers in bulk to supply an entire office rather than forking out tens of thousands on a handful of Macs. However, Mac is also a good choice for cybersecurity reasons as well as for design purposes, given the majority of people tend to use Mac for applications such as Adobe.