Shopping around for a new computer can feel like learning a new language. You have so many options to choose from, so how can you make sure you’re making the right decision?
Among the masses, you’ll have two options: Apple’s Mac and MacBook lines or PCs, which often come with Microsoft’s Windows operating system.
Microsoft currently owns an impressive 77.61% of the market share, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s your best bet.
Before you go shopping, make sure you read below to learn the difference between Mac and PC.
When you’re looking to buy a computer, you’re looking for the best deal possible. You can find Apple and Microsoft products in almost every big box store these days, but before you commit to a purchase, prepare yourself for some serious sticker shock.
Let’s address the elephant in the room: yes, Macs are a great deal more expensive than your standard PC. Unless you’re looking to custom-build a gaming PC or build an ultra-fast editing suite, you could probably buy two Windows PCs for the price of one Mac.
Buying a Mac is like buying a name brand handbag or a fancy sports car. Do you need it? Not always, but boy does it look nice.
For what it’s worth, Macs also tend to have a longer shelf life than PCs. So while you’re paying more upfront, you won’t have to worry about replacing your computer in two or three years.
PCs are a budget-friendly option, with lower-end models going for a few hundred dollars.
If you don’t need anything fancy, you shouldn’t have a problem securing a decent PC for around $400. Just remember that not all towers come with a monitor, so you may need to spend extra on a display.
Frustrating interfaces and slow boot times can be a nightmare. Whether you’re tech-savvy or you’re looking to improve, you’ll need to carefully consider what you’re looking for in terms of usability.
Here’s what you can expect from the two industry giants.
The Mac OS interface is a breath of fresh air. You don’t have to deal with busy backgrounds or confusing submenus. Everything is laid out in front of you.
And if you can’t find it for some reason, the Finder tool should be able to help.
For that reason, we think Macs are among the most user-friendly computers out there, especially if you’d rather not worry about tinkering with settings. While they certainly cost a pretty penny more than PCs, it’s nice to not have to worry about accidentally hitting the Windows key and bringing up files by accident.
Plus, you can still access most first-party Microsoft software on a Mac. You can download Internet Explorer for Mac or even replace Apple Pages with Microsoft Word!
If this is your first computer upgrade in a while, Windows 10 can seem like a confusing mess. Everything in Windows 7 (and to a lesser extent, Windows 8) was laid out in such a way that you’d have to dig for it, but it was still easy enough to access.
While Windows 10’s search functionality is handy, moving between the desktop and Start Menu is more than a little frustrating. You can get past Windows 10’s learning curve if you stick with it, but don’t expect the user-friendly interfaces of an Apple device anytime soon.
All work and no play makes for one boring day. When you’re ready to call it quits, you’ll no doubt want to unwind with some entertainment.
Gaming is one of the fastest-growing entertainment mediums across the globe, with video games expected to generate $152.1 billion this year. Let’s unpack what both manufacturers offer and see what gamers can expect from Macs and PCs.
Apple’s darling has always been the black sheep of the gaming industry. Because PCs take up such a large part of the market, developers find it more profitable to create games for Windows, leaving Macs as an afterthought.
It also doesn’t help matters that Microsoft has a vested interest in the gaming industry through the Xbox One.
It isn’t all doom and gloom, though. Apple recently launched an exciting new service called Apple Arcade.
For $5 per month, users can access around one hundred complete games. Though there are a few stand-out hits like “Sayonara Wild Hearts” and “What the Golf?” most titles so far seem to be mobile ports.
You can also purchase and download digital games through Steam, although Steam’s list of Mac-compatible games is rather slim, if not outright disappointing.
Some gamers view PC gaming as the créme de la créme of gaming. PCs tend to be more powerful than the latest consoles, even at launch, meaning you’ll get better performance from your favorite games including sharper graphics and a smoother framerate.
Manufacturers like Alienware and HP also offer custom and pre-built PCs specifically designed for gaming, though gaming PCs can easily set you back more than a new Mac.
As for the PC’s selection? Let’s just say you won’t run out of things to play anytime soon.
Steam is built with PCs in mind, meaning you’ll have access to almost the entire Steam catalog.
As if that wasn’t enough, Microsoft’s Game Pass PC and Game Pass Ultimate subscriptions allow you to download and play titles like “Halo: The Master Chief Collection” or “State of Decay.”
But we’re not done. You can also stream games from your Xbox to your PC, so if you can’t find anything to play on Game Pass, you can still access your Xbox games on PC.
And if you’re a fan of virtual reality, PC is your only option as of now. While you can technically finagle your Mac to recognize an Oculus, it’s more trouble than its worth as the performance you’ll get is choppy.
Meanwhile, both the Oculus Rift and the Vive are optimized specifically for PCs.
Cybercrime is a serious concern for many people. As such, you’ll want to choose a computer that respects your privacy and can keep your information safe.
Keep reading to find out how Apple and Microsoft are trying to keep your computer secure.
It’s often said that Macs are less prone to viruses than PCs. And, to an extent, that’s true. However, there’s more to the story than what’s on the surface.
It isn’t that Macs are a more secure operating system. Instead, it would appear that cybercriminals just aren’t as interested in developing virus protocols for Apple hardware.
Macs are far from virus-proof. But you’re indeed less likely to catch a virus on a Mac.
As for built-in security options, Apple’s Firewall is robust enough that you won’t have to worry about rogue software, and you can get complete info on security risks with a few clicks of your mouse.
The downside to PC’s massive library of software is that it’s easy to mimic. As such, that copy of Photoshop you just downloaded might be a trojan that’s about to wreak havoc on your files.
Of course, the other side of the coin is that antivirus software exists. While Windows PCs come with Security Essentials, you’ll want to consider upgrading to something stronger like Kaspersky Anti-Virus or McAfee, which also works with Mac computers.
Whether you’re buying a Mac or a Windows PC, odds are you’re going to need to transfer data at some point, whether it’s through an SD card, USB stick, or the cloud. Since modern computing is an entire ecosystem, it’s important to look at interactivity with other devices.
Let’s take a look at the difference between mac and pc’s device compatibility and see who offers the friendliest options:
From a hardware standpoint, this is one of Apple’s greatest failings. They’re notorious for updating their Mac lineup with sleeker-looking devices while quietly removing important features like headphone jacks and standard USB ports.
You can still use your USB devices on a Mac, you’ll just need to invest in an adapter.
Macs also come with Bluetooth compatibility right out of the box, so you can hook up wireless keyboards, headphones, and more. Things do get a little tricky when you’re trying to use multiple Bluetooth devices, though.
But the true strength of Apple’s strategy comes from iCloud. While they weren’t the first company to utilize cloud computing in a public-facing manner, they certainly did wonders to popularize it.
Users can set up an iCloud account in minutes, allowing instant data transfers between their iPads, iPhones, and other Mac computers.
If you want everything to work right out of the box, PC is your best bet.
Whether you’re buying a laptop or a desktop, most modern PCs come with multiple USB ports, SD slots, and the occasional HDMI output so you can connect extra displays.
Since these slots and ports are built into the hardware, you won’t have to spend any money on additional adapters, which only further adds to the PC’s budget-friendly nature.
Like Macs, you can expect your PC to offer Bluetooth, as well, so neither company has a strict advantage in this regard.
The Difference Between Mac and PC: Who Wins?
We could spend a whole day examining the difference between Mac and PC. To ensure you’re getting the best deal, your decision should account for all the factors above.
Interested in learning more? Make sure to check back with our blog!