Yes, I’ve said bad things about Apple. I think that over the course of the last few years they’ve taken a turn towards becoming the next Microsoft. Hell, I’ve written many, many things (don’t be lazy, search it yourself) calling them all sorts of creative names and telling them, in detail, just where they can shove their smug attitude and their idea that the computing world should only work in accordance with the rules laid down in Cupertino (*cough* iPhone OS *cough*). I’ll probably say many more things along that line – as Steve Jobs starts to resemble Howard Hughes more and more – before I draw my last breath. But, the thing is: Macs are good.
I’ve gone through my fair share of PCs and laptops over the last decade or so. All of them ran Windows with varying degrees of stability. Overall I haven’t had too many complaints about the OS, or the machines, or debate as to whether or not they’ve served the purpose they’re intended to. Even with this latest acquisition, if I’d have found a machine running Windows, that met all the requirements I was looking for, then I would have bought it. This is NOT me becoming an Apple fanboy. This is a conscious decision about which computer will best serve my needs for the next two to three years.
This new laptop is to replace Amy, my 18 month old Samsung NC10 netbook; a machine that I’ve come to adore over that time. I bought Amy primarily to travel with, but also because I wanted a small, light laptop to keep near me so that I had access to a machine that I could watch movies on without destroying my eyesight.
(As an aside: no, I do not watch video on my iPhone. I know it’s more than capable of displaying it, but anything more than a “cat on a skateboard” YouTube clip and I can feel my eyes start to fall out of my head. It’s not pleasant and I have no idea how people manage to do it at all. Frankly, I’m a little envious.)
I wanted a machine that I could use pretty much anywhere and would have enough battery life for me to make it through most of the day without having to worry about also having the charger and some electricity nearby. Amy served this purpose brilliantly. She also provided a great device on which I’ve done most of my blogging (including this post).
What’s happened though is that the situation has changed and I’m finding that Amy isn’t capable of delivering the performance that I require. Loading her up with many university things sees a marked degradation in performance levels. Being 18 months old, her battery isn’t as long lasting as it used to be. Finally, I’m finding the screen to be too small; so small that it’s actually becoming a hindrance and counter-productive.
I decided that I needed a new computer. After a bit of deliberation, and solicitation of advice from my Twitter audience, I decided to purchase a MacBook Pro. The first Apple computer that I’ve never owned and only about the third or fourth that I’ve ever actually used.
The main reasons for picking an Apple over a PC were a combination of the screen size, hardware specs and the battery life. All of these were offered by Apple at a price that I deemed to be reasonable.
The tipping point, over a similar spec’d, slightly cheaper Windows PC was the battery life. Even my low-powered netbook barely lasts 6 hours and I can see on the battery meter on the MacBook is showing (from fully charged) over 9 hours of life left (depending, naturally, on what I intend to use it for).
I have to admit, this is a bit of shock, even for me. I’ve never held Mac’s in particularly high regard. The fanboys in particular leave quite a bitter taste in my mouth. In my opinion, it’s one thing to enjoy using a product. But it’s something entirely different to think that a multi-national corporation can do no wrong and that everyone who speaks out against them – in the least – is doing their best to being the company down. Let me say this: I may have bought an Apple computer and have owned an Apple iPhone for 2 years, but I do not think that this company is beyond reproach.
Every day it seems that Steve Jobs is becoming more and more this generations Howard Hughes. His idea of an open development environment is, to put it nicely, a complete contradiction to those words and I believe it’s only a matter of time before public opinion, and some proper competition, finally restore a bit of balance to the tech world.
But that didn’t stop me. I know what I’m getting myself into. I know it’s a completely different world. But I think I’m ready and I think I made a balanced informed decision about what computer would best serve my mobile needs for the next couple of years.
So yeah, I bought a Mac. What about it?