And here is my response to both.
Yes, welcome to the echo chamber.
Here are the reasons that I, a Windows and Linux user (and a former photographer – a potential Mac advocate), haven’t switched (in somewhat descending order of importance):
- There is no reason to switch: Can Mac do this or that better? Yes. Can Windows do this or that better. Yes. It’s a coin toss. I believe that – bottom line – Mac OS trumps Windows OS, but mainly in ways that don’t matter to the average user.
- Standards rock: As the internet has taught us, standards are everything. HTTP, TCP/IP, Ethernet… With ~90% of computers operating Windows, MS is a de-facto standard, like it or not. I still have Mac users at work forwarding Excel spreadsheets to me because they can’t open them on their Mac (yes, insert your own conspiracy theory). While the Mac interface may be easier to learn than the MS interface, people have already learned the MS interface. That’s huge.
- Speaking of work: Unless you’re doing graphics or some sort of publishing, the computer on your desk at work is a Windows machine. Makes using a Windows machine at home more reasonable.
- Apps: If someone (Apple) would give me – for free – replacements to all the apps I have on my Windows machine (HTML editors, Photoshop, Illustrator, QuarkXpress, CuteFTP and so on), I’d probably switch in a minute. But that’s not going to happen. And if it (sorta) did, it would be “we’ll give you equivalents….”. Hey, I’ve run a zillion FTP programs over the years; I like CuteFTP. Yeah, Fetch works just as well, but I don’t want to have to learn the idiosyncrasies of new programs when the old ones (on Windows) are well understood.
- People are creatures of habit: There must be a compelling reason to switch. Right now, beyond slick graphics and so on, there isn’t (if we were all forced to accept Vista, I think it would be compelling).
- Macs are still more expensive: There are a lot of ways to measure this, but all I can say is that every time I’ve priced out a Mac and a comparable Windows machine for myself, Mac always lost, and big time. Your mileage may vary… (Example: I just priced out a RAM update from 2G to 4G on a MacBookPro: $700. On a high-end Dell XPS laptop, same upgrade $375)
I’m not a die-hard MS fan – pretty much the opposite. But XP on a (relatively) cheap Dell box just works beautifully. It’s what I know; it delivers what I expect.
And I’m not bashing Apple at all – I love Macs. Owned in the past; worked on them at several workplaces.
I’d like to buy one right now.
But I just don’t need to get a new desktop/laptop.
And if I did – depending on my need – Apple would have to compete with both MS and Linux (with Linux scoring a lot of Apple points [secure; unix based] with a much lower acquisition cost). That said, if I did did need a laptop in the near future, it would probably be a battle between a MacBookPro and a Windows ThinkPad.
Bottom line: I have never “resisted” switching; there was just no compelling user case or cost savings that made switching a must. For both cases, staying with Windows made more sense, actually.
All that said, the next computer I buy will definitely have a Mac in the contender race. With OS X (and all its upgrades), the Mac is getting more mainstream.
Final Note – I’ve left the whole security issue out of this discussion. Yes, Mac trumps (big time) Windows. But Linux or AIX or (pick your Unix flavor) beats all.
Part of the issue is architecture – Unix architectures (including Linux and Mac OS X) were built as networked environments; Windows was built as stand-alone computer OS. Windows – now understanding the ‘net – still has a 90% installed base.
*Insert magic wand*
Linux/Mac has 90% of installed personal computer base over the last 10 years.
Linux/Mac will have 90%+ of security issues. Sorry, that’s a reality. The problems might well be less severe than we see today, but that’s where the Blackhats will focus their interest. Best bang for your buck…