When trying to pick a new computer, the major choice for many consumers seems to be whether to go with Apple's Mac line, or choose a Windows-based option like Dell. Here's how the battle is shaping up:
Most often, the choice between a Mac and a machine like the Dell is in the operating system. Apple has its own proprietary system, called Mac OS X, while PCs predominantly use Microsoft Windows, in its newest version, Vista. Although the two operating systems
share some similarities in terms of navigation, they're definitely unique, and have fans on both sides.
One important consideration when choosing a Mac or a Windows-based machine is whether you or another user will want to play games on the computer. Although there are many more games for Macs than there used to be, there are still far more games for PCs because game developers can market them to a wider audience. Also, Dell features desktops that are specifically geared toward gaming, with their Alienware line.
Photos, Videos, and Music
Windows may trounce Mac when it comes to games, but when the conversation comes to photo and video editing, music creation, and other creative endeavors, Mac has been reigning supreme for some time. With applications like iPhoto and Garage Band, Apple has gained a reputation for its multimedia features. But Microsoft Vista also offers some newer multimedia features, so PC users who crave digital editing capabilities aren't completely left in the cold.
When choosing Mac vs. PC, portability is no longer the concern that it once was. Even just a few years ago, laptops were heavy enough to require some serious shoulder massaging if a trip required touting a laptop bag for hours. But advanced in technology have them better than ever, and bult-in wireless cards let telecommuters click into networks from anywhere. Those who like PCs should also consider building their own configuration, which is a snap with a machine like the Dell Studio 15, which costs more than a comparable PC version like the Dell, but only by a small margin depending on rebates and special deals. The MacBook doesn't have the level of customization as the Studio 15, but there are a range of laptops available, with different amounts of memory, processing speed, and hard drive capacity.
Look and Feel
For some people, once they went Mac, they vowed never to go back. For those who use Windows, learning how to use OS X is a task they'd rather not take on. And actually, both sides are right. Sometimes, it just comes down to comfort level with the operating system, whether the navigation suits your style, and even if the machine is as snazzy or durable as you like.
In general, both are winners. The choice between buying a PC and a Mac will ultimately come down to personal preference. If you enjoy using Windows and need to synch your business data with your home system, a PC like a Dell might be the best option. If you revel in the Mac OS, though, and like to explore your creative side as well as synch to your iPhone, an Apple may be your next machine.