I’ve switched from using a PC as my main machine to an Apple. Here’s why.

About 2 years ago I bought an iMac DV when Mac OS X came out in beta. I just had to see what Apple was up to with their new operating system that had been in the works for so long. I had heard it was basically Unix and should be usable as a Unix workstation. Plus, it happened to have some cool tools for manipulating movies, etc. so I thought I would try it out.

That machine has gotten a lot of use as an internet terminal and ad hoc movie editor, but I didn’t really switch to the Mac until I bought a Powerbook G4 in July 2002. I totally moved all my work stuff to that machine including email, WebLogic server development, and Office documents. Basically, the thing will run Linux apps, Apple apps, Microsoft apps, and Java apps. There really isn’t much else out there in terms of quality software. Some people will complain that their particular little app isn’t ported to it, but its only a matter of time because it is very easy to develop software for Mac OS X compared to the old Mac OS. Its also possible to use VirtualPC to run that one program that you absolutely have to have that isn’t ported, although I am not a big fan of that. Although it works for most things, its still too slow on a laptop for most applications.

So what is so great about Mac OS X that would convince me to give up the Windows environment? 

1) Rarely crashes and when it does it is clear what caused it.
2) Application install/uninstall doesn’t involve a global registry and is usually a file copy.
3) The interface is beautiful, elegant, intuitive, and fast.
4) All the work software that I want to use runs on it.
5) The Apple apps themselves are excellent (Mail, iTunes, iMovie, etc)
6) The hardware is amazing. Small, long battery life, and feature rich.

1) The game I play isn’t out for it yet.
2) Java 1.4.1 just went final so it generally is a little behind.
3) No MS Outlook.

Who should switch to a Mac? I think there are three main camps at this point. Developers, Application users (movie editing, graphics, etc) and Novices. Someone just trying to get on the internet, take their office work home and play games should probably go with a lower-end PC.