Pc vs Mac for techies: the ultimate battle
There are some conflicts (Israel/Palestine, PSG/Marseille, Right/Left Wing) which are never-ending. Mac vs Windows is one of them.
Geek and poor, I grew up with the Windows system. I was quite happy because I could play video games and crack 90% of software.
At the university, all rich kids had a MacBook. Nowadays, I realize many cool entrepreneurs, digital nomads, developers work on a Mac.
➡ I have got a strange feeling that I miss something… FOMO.
➡ You will not find any affiliate links in this article. All photos come from the merchants. I do not have any rights on them.
Time to compare and buy
My Acer 2-in-1 Switch 5 (Intel i7, 8GB RAM & 512 GB SSD) is slowly dying. It is time for me to buy another laptop. I prefer a laptop than a home-made station. I move too often to invest in a static office.
→ Which one to choose in May 2020?
I will use this article to make my final decision. As a previous Microsoft fanboy, I might be biased. I will do my best to give a personal but neutral comparison.
What?! No hybrid in the Apple ecosystem?
Ok, you can laugh when we read a book in the metro with our laptop. But let’s be honest, there is no sense to have:
- One iPad and,
- One laptop and,
- One drawing pad,
if you can have all together…
I tried for 3 years a 2-in-1 laptop and seriously, it’s hard to come back to a traditional laptop with no touch screen. Imagine you are used to a smartphone and you need to come back to an old Blackberry. It is frustrating.
The 2-in-1 laptops evolution has just begun. Some companies build already war machines on a tablet. Look at the specs below.
ROG Mothership – Intel i10, 64 GB ROM, 1,5 TB, 3 graphic cards, 17 inches. It’s the most powerful tablet/laptop I know. All geeks should bow down in front of this 6k € monster.
In 2020, Apple decided not to incorporate hybrid laptops in its ecosystem. Why? It’s more interesting to sell one MacBook Pro for 1400€ and one iPad Pro for 1000€ then an all-in-one laptop for 1500€.
It is something that I hate about Apple. All their products are built to earn the most. EarPods, different plugs, no SSD cards. When everyone still uses the traditional USB, Apple arrives with only one thunderbolt port. Then they will sell you adaptors for 120€. They sell iPad without the keyboard and the pen!
à Unfortunately now, Microsoft follows their path 😕.
Innovation and new features
This is my personal impression, but the teams at Apple do not come up with crazy products those last years…
- The first MacBook Pro 2006,
- MacBook Pro 2010,
- MacBook Pro 2019
- MacBook Pro 2020,
Look at bit at Asus,
- Asus 2006,
- Asus 2010,
- Asus ZenBook 2018,
Taiwanese don’t play the same game as Americans…
Same feeling with the latest MacBook Air and Pro 2020. No touch screen, no facial recognition, nothing new except the old magic keyboard. They just fix their butterfly keyboard that everyone hated. Well done team!
-→ Windows wins. Apple is strong to create a timeless design, but technologies aren’t timeless. Who will buy a MacBook Pro from 2010? I regret that Apple doesn’t come up with newer features 😕.
The futuristic design of Apple
We should all admit Apple products are good-looking. Now, other brands copy the tech giant and all laptops look the same.
→ For certain people, MacBook has still a cool/rich image. It might be important for you. Apple, in general, is better in marketing.
Price price price
- I’m really price sensitive. It’s a huge argument when I take a decision. My budget is around 700€ & 1600€ (without VAT).
- My minimum specs requirements: Intel i5 (generation 8), 8GB Ram, 256 GB.
- The Microsoft Surface Book 3 (2020) is not available yet. The new MacBook Pro and Air 2020 have just been released recently.
Those are the laptops I would be interested in
The prices shown come from centralpoint. It is in euros and without VAT.
I bought my Switch5 for 879€ (I don’t know why it’s 1118€ now).
➡ To find the best prices, go to Amazon, Rakuten, Bol or Coolblue. You can go directly to the brand’s website, but the delivery costs are not interesting.
→ MacBook isn’t cheap but you can see that other companies (especially the Microsoft Surface) ask for a premium price as well.
I was disappointed with my Acer battery. Honestly, it survives 3 hours without charger (regular use: Chrome, Word, Excel).
Apple pretends their computers have better batteries.
- MacBook Pro 13 : 10h ➡ as I experienced with Amanda, we turn around 5 hours maximum.
- MacBook Air : 12h ➡ according to reviews, it’s around 8 hours.
- Microsoft Surface Book 3: 17h ➡ I don’t believe it 😅.
→ In all blogs, they advise the MacBook Air for its autonomy.
Apple is better for designing
According to my girlfriend who is a graphic designer,
The colors on a Windows suck.
The image quality is so bad on your computer.
I need to admit you can see a difference in colors… My computer has a smaller screen size, a smaller resolution, and a smaller price (872€ against 1450€). So, the image quality will depend on the price you are ready to pay. 15 inches MacBook Pro is better than 13 inches.
Why so many designers use a Mac then?
In my opinion, it’s a historical reason.
- Adobe Photoshop is born on Mac
- Digital Typography is born on Mac
→ Nowadays it’s totally possible to do amazing graphic design jobs on both computer types.
- There was a time Adobe was only for Mac.
- There was a time SEO software were available only on Windows.
Mac users complain a lot that they miss specific software and compatibilities.
This was true some years ago, but today 90% of our applications are online in the Cloud or available for both computer types.
→ No differences.
If you are a gamer…
There was a time gaming was a privilege of Windows. It’s still the truth today for the hard gamers. Today, Apple has a smaller library of games. Moreover, if you need more storage, memory, or faster GPU, it’s more interesting to build your own computer than to buy a top-level MacBook.
I don’t know any pro-gamers, streamers who work on Mac.
If you are a casual gamer and love to play on famous games (WoW, Fortnite, SC2, LoL), MacBook Pro is still a viable option.
→ Windows wins.
If you are a developer…
I’ve met a lot of developers who work on Mac. Mac has XCode as the main development tool.
On Windows, it’s the Visual Studio. The Windows software seems to have more features and tools available for free, but I’m not a developer. I can’t say if that is really useful.
→ No huge differences.
If you are a tech-entrepreneur…
It’s all about reliability.
You don’t want a computer which can crash during an important project.
The product longevity debate between Macs and PCs exists for years. Personally, I had 4 Pcs in 10 years. Amanda had only 2 MacBook’s.
MacBook is expensive and people take care of it. E.g., it’s common to see people who use a keyboard protector.
Today MacBook’s are less likely to get computer viruses. It’s just that hackers prefer to develop virus on Windows because the audience is larger. This trend changes.
- For the maintenance, Apple support is reliable worldwide but expensive. You can repair your laptop wherever you are. It was a true struggle to find an Acer charger in Latin America…
→ Mac wins if you have a lot of money.
90% of the market against 10%
According to Net MarketShare, Windows is the most common operating system around the world.
In the commercial and public sector, Windows is everywhere. So, when you work with a client, you have 9 chances on 10 that he can’t open your Page/Numbers files. Think about it .
If you are not tech…
Not tech-savvy users consistently described Macs as easy to use.
Windows has released new versions of Windows 10. It’s more elegant and easier to understand than the past editions.
→ Both are equal nowadays.
So, if ask me which Pc or Mac you should buy, I will answer: “What do you need it for?”.
Only a few persons need a powerful machine (video editors, graphic designers, data scientists, etc.). You might save a lot of money if you stick to your needs.
My final decision
- As a digital marketer working 100% online, I’m sensitive to design and to the latest technologies.
- My regular marketing tools don’t request much (Google Analytics, Excel, WordPress, Facebook Ads etc.), but I often need to multi-task. My computer should handle at least 5 different software and 20 tabs opened at the same time.
- Even if I code a bit of HTML, CSS, Js, SQL and recently Python, I don’t need a complicated developer ecosystem. It happens I build websites for fun, but I do it with tools. Linux is not an option then.
- Nowadays, I don’t play a lot of video games (except during the COVID-19).
Impossible to replace Excel, Word, PowerPoint with the Apple alternatives…
→ I will choose to buy the MacBook Pro 13 inches with high performance (2020) or the new Surface Book 3 13,5 inches. I’ll pay around 100€ more if I choose the Surface Book 3, but
- There are a touchscreen and detachable tablet,
- 10th generation core processors and a graphic card,
- CPU, GPU, connectivity, speakers are better.
Those two laptops exceed my budget… Now I hesitate to repair my Acer for 550€ and wait another year.
→ What do you think?