When I reflect upon myself honestly, I believe that I will always be a Windows user or to put it more bluntly, I don’t think that I will ever purchase an Apple computer. Here is my rationale. I am curious whether others might feel the same way.
1) Frugal. First off, I should tell you that I am very frugal. Like over the top frugal. I don’t like purchasing designer clothes, fancy jewelry and other ostentatious things. I am a business guy, and I know that the gross margins on these products are inflated because it plays to a person’s sense of self, and I avoid products like these as a rule because I always feel like I am overpaying. Just a quick scan of prices between PC’s and Apple show that Apples are consistently more expensive than its Windows counter parts.
2) Productivity. I have had a lot of computers in my life, and I imagine I will purchase many more in the future. The #1 reason by far why I own a computer is to make myself more productive. I can absorb large amounts of information quickly on a computer, and it is a fantastic tool for my creativity. When I am in front of a computer, I feel like there are no bounds to what I can dream of. So here’s a criticism of some Apple users. Not all Apple users, but at least some of them.
One day, I was in the airport in Rio de Janeiro waiting for my flight. It was April 2010, and the iPad had just been launched. There was a guy on the same flight as me, and suddenly he got on his feet in a dramatic sort of way. It was obvious he was trying to draw attention to himself. Slowly, and emphatically, he opened up his bag and pulled out his brand new iPad. He pulled it out and raised it well above his head while analyzing his new prized possession. I felt like at some point, he was be like a model on the runway showing off his latest designer glasses. BTW, he also had designer glasses.
I am picking on an iPad user but this behaviour is also common with Mac users. So back to my point. For me, my computer is about my productivity. For this guy, it was more an accessory to go with his pink scarf and goofy white shoes.
3) Standards. I am a main stream guy and I absolutely adore the adherence to standards in the computer space. Having been an executive at Gateway, we helped many of the standards on which the computer is built today. However in Apple’s world, they pick and choose the standards in an almost arbitrary fashion. There are two that irk me most.
Why in the h*ll can’t Apple use a standard mini USB connector for an iPod? After all, USB is internationally recognized and adopted standard. Would it be so much to ask that I can use the same mini USB cable that I use for my camera and Kindle also worked with my iPod?
Next, the iPad still to this day does not support Flash. I have started to use Flash on my personal web site, and PC Pitstop uses Flash for many of our broadband tests. Are all the Flash developers in the world supposed to look for jobs now that Apple decided that Flash was somehow sub par?
This is not so much a criticism about Macs themselves but the company that makes them. Best I can tell, Macs support the USB standard despite Apple’s prior support of the Firewire standard. I would venture to guess that if all Macs only supported Firewire that they would be far less popular.
4) Batteries. Some Mac laptops have non removable batteries. This is really bad news. For better or worse, battery technology has moved to Lithium Ion and has stuck there for the last decade. Lithium Ion is now found in all of our devices such as cell phones, wireless phones, e-readers, and off course laptops. Although Lithium Ion has certain advantages it has one huge disadvantage. Lithium Ion batteries have a set battery life. From the moment that the battery is manufactured, the clock begins ticking and it will ultimately die in a defined period of time. Historically and from personal experience, it seems that the life is about 2 years.
There is a myth out there that battery life is a function of use. That is not true, you can use the battery all you want or not at all and the battery life is about 2 years.
So here’s my beef with Apple. When I buy a new laptop, I know that it will last a little less than 2 years. After all, if the laptop has been sitting on the shelf for 6 months, then the battery only has about 18 months left. My problem is that after the battery dies, I want the option to put a new battery in the thing. Quite often, I hand down my old computers to other members of my family. I want that option, and now Apple has removed the option. Once the battery dies on certain Apple models, the machine just becomes useless.
Conclusion At the heart of the issue, is the old time tested question of form versus function. Or style versus substance. I know me, and I always have choosed substance over style and that goes for my computer too.