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Old Oct 9th, 2007, 07:58 PM   #1
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Good article on why switch

Quote:
8 Reasons Windows Users DO Switch to Mac

by Steven Leigh
Oct 09, 2007

If you made it through my first article, entitled ď8 Reasons Windows Users Donít Switch,Ē you may be a little annoyed with me by now. I admit the article certainly had a negative tone, and that was the focus. But now, we can focus on what IS working to get Windows users to switch to Mac.

As I mentioned before, I am a new ďswitcher,Ē having been a Windows user all my computing life, and had very negative opinions of the Mac. Experiences with earlier models (pre-OS X) had given me a very bad impression, and I had not tried a Mac in many years. The good news is that if Apple and its fans converted me, they can likely convert anyone. So without further ado, letís get to the reasons Windows users are switching.

1. iPod/iPhone
The statistics tell us that the majority of iPod users are Windows users, and with 90% market share for Windows, this isnít surprising. There is often mention of the ďhalo effectĒ of the iPod, and I used to scoff at the idea, but now I think there is a lot of truth to it. I bought an iPod over a year ago because it was the best music player out there. At the time, I didnít want to use iTunes because I didnít like it, and I tried numerous other options until I came to the conclusion that nothing integrates as well with the iPod as iTunes. I reluctantly gave in to iTunes and started using it full time. After a while, I started to get used to the way it worked. In fact, I started to LOVE the way it worked. I started to wonder why more programs didnít work this way. It took me a while to realize that most programs on a Mac do work this way, and by that point, there was no turning back, it was inevitable. Now that the tech world is going nuts over the iPhone, we can only expect more and more Windows users to come to the same conclusion I did.

2. Apple Stores
I started visiting the Apple store in my city looking for iPod accessories. I didnít like Apple, and I didnít like Macs, but I was already in the mall, so why not go look around, right? Of course, occasional visits turned into frequent visits, and before long I was in the store to check my email, do some web surfing, or just kill time while my wife was shopping. Even though I was resisting it, I was impressed by how fast and easy to use the Macs were. The stores are extremely inviting, and the employees seem to strike that perfect balance between giving you your space and helping when needed. When combined with the support, the classes, and even the childrenís activities, itís hard not to be won over by these wonderful stores, even if you start out as a cranky Windows know-it-all like I did.

3. The Ads
I know, I complained about the ďGet A MacĒ ads in my other article, and I still think some of the ads have a negative effect on savvy Windows users. But most of the ads are very well done, and extol the virtues of the Mac experience perfectly. John Hodgman (the PC guy) is such a talented actor that he manages to be lovable while at the same time a little creepy, making you want to disassociate yourself with him. Even though I complained about these ads, they played a major part in my switch to Macs. At one point, I remember watching all of them back to back on the Apple site, and by the end, I was having a hard time remembering why I loved Windows so much. These arenít the only ads that work, of course. Apple has always had a lot of style, and that style extends to their advertising campaigns. No one can create that feeling of ďgear lustĒ the way Apple can.

4. Mac Users
Yes, Mac users appear on both my lists. While some Mac users drive Windows users away in droves with their zealotry, the smart ones are slowly and quietly converting their family, their friends, and everyone they meet to Macs. There is no magical formula but what works best is leading by example. Donít ramble on and on to someone about how great iLife is, write them a song in Garageband, or print a photobook for them as a gift. Donít criticize their choice of Windows, but instead show them how much quicker and easier you can accomplish the same tasks they do every day. As I stated before, one of my big reasons for switching is that I got to play with a friendís Macbook quietly on my own, while he patiently answered any questions I asked. This is often the experience at an Apple store as well. If you have questions, they get answered, and if you would rather explore on your own, they donít push.

5. Macbooks and Macbook Pros
Statistics are showing that Macs comprise about 5% of the overall computer market share, while they comprise about 17% of laptos sold. Why, you may ask? I mentioned in my previous article that the inability to upgrade Macs is often an issue with Windows users, but with laptops, we have a unique situation. When replacing a laptop there are no parts to re-use, and even Windows users are forced to buy a whole new system. In addition, Macbooks and Macbook Pros are very competitively priced right now, and in many cases, are cheaper than a similarly equipped PC laptop. Combined with the fact that Macs can now run Windows, there is almost no reason NOT to buy a Macbook or Macbook Pro if youíre in the market for a laptop. After all, you get the best of both worlds. You get one of the best-looking, best-performing laptops in the marketplace, with the ability to run virtually any operating system you wish (including Linux). You have everything to gain and nothing to lose.

6. Vista
I said last time that Windows Vista is the best operating system Microsoft has ever developed, and itís trueóalmost. It has a great interface, fixes many major problems that have been around for years, and is generally a great upgrade. BUT when you factor in the viruses, the spyware, the fact that Microsoft wants to control everything you do, limited hardware support, and lack of (useful) bundled software, Vista doesnít look so spiffy. Even though I like it a lot, there is no question that Vista is a total flop, and though I would have liked to use it, the compatibility issues are still numerous, and drivers are not showing up. I get the impression that many users were waiting to see what Vista would be like before they decided to switch. Once they saw it was more of the same, there was a big surge in Mac sales. Even those who liked Vista initially have had to admit that itís not going to be usable anytime soon. (Stay tuned, I plan to write a thorough rundown of why I believe Vista failed in a future column.)

7. Design
I donít have to tell anyone how great Appleís designs are. Macbooks and Macbook Pros are a thing of beauty. iMacs are now better ooking than ever. Even the new iPod Nano, which looked stubby and ugly in early photos, turned out to be much better than anyone anticipated. Apple not only knows how to design their products, they know how to sell you on the design. When you walk into an Apple store, you donít see a bunch of beige and black computers stacked tightly next to each other. You see a spacious, open layout with some slick-looking computers inviting you to play around. The television ads are no different. They highlight the products themselves as much the software they run. I think Windows users are starting to realize that good design in hardware and software is worthwhile, and weíre setting aside our beige boxes for something a little more elegant.

8. Security
Macs donít get viruses. Now donít misquote me. I didnít say Macs CANíT get viruses, but so far, they just donít. I always love the looks I get when I say this to a Windows user who knows nothing about Macs. Their eyes glaze over as they imagine something unimaginable. Viruses, spyware, and all the other junk are such a way of life for Windows users that they assume itís just the nature of computers. This may change in the future as Macs gain more market share, making them more of a target for viruses and spyware, but for now, there is no need to run any additional security software on a Mac, and thatís just a good feeling.

Conclusion
Apple is doing a fantastic job of showing off its products and creating a welcoming community to draw in new Mac users. I can only see continued growth for Macs in the future. If Apple and its users can manage to draw a die-hard Windows user like myself out of his comfort zone, they have really accomplished something, and I have to say that Iím so glad they did. While there are always things that could be changed, I have to reiterate the fact that a Mac running OS X is the best computing system in the world right now, and I hope that Windows users give Macs an unbiased chance to show them what theyíve been missing.
Apple Matters | 8 Reasons Windows Users DO Switch to Mac

indeed.....;clap:
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Old Oct 9th, 2007, 09:58 PM   #2
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There was a time, not that long ago, when I would have zealously forwarded this article to all of my Windows-suffering friends and relatives.
But in all the years that I've been proselytizing, very few have switched. More surprising because the people I was trying to convince have the financial means and the critical intelligence to move easily to Apple.

I can now see that the author is correct when he says that nagging and berating Windows users won't get them to go Mac.

I think I was more panicky in the past, thinking that if not enough users switched, Apple would go out of business and I'd lose my beloved hardware and software.
Now that Apple's market share is increasing and Apple is financially very strong, I can relax and not worry that everyone I know is not switching immediately.

When a Windows sufferer now expresses an interest in Apple, I joke that I don't want them to switch because Apple users need more people to laugh at and look down on.

It's a comfortable position to be in.
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Old Oct 9th, 2007, 10:34 PM   #3
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The other half, Eight Reasons Windows Users Don't Switch, is worth reading as well:

Apple Matters | 8 Reasons Windows Users Don’t Switch
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Old Oct 9th, 2007, 11:25 PM   #4
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Reasons why I have not switched (I have an older mac as second but not as my main box).. I wont discuss windows because windows does not equal " PC". I'm just talking the box itself. There are things in Windows I like as well but the box is more critical for me so in no particular order:


1. Hardware flexability. I build my own computers and have done so since my first 386PC. I enjoy being able to decide what components and features I want. This is not for everyone of course but I enjoy it including doing the research for the components I want as well. I know exactly what I will end up with.

2. Cost - When building my computer, there is an opportunity to save huge $$ compared to prebuilt systems (Apple, Dell, HP..etc). This is not any company's fault as price increases are a result of R&D, support and other things. Since I'm my own R&D and support, I get to save. I generally dont have many issues and if I do, google solves it in a few minutes most of the time

3. Upgrade path and replacement parts - its just a lot easier to deal with a failed system board, processor or powersupply on the PC side. Lots of options for replacements and the cost is the fraction of what I'd assume it would be on the Mac side - again this ties into #1 and #2.

4. Games - Yes I know I dont need the latest and greatest hardware to play a game but I do enjoy the extra eye candy and I want smooth framerates. This means that from time to time (say every 1.5 years) I might buy a current video card and sell my old one. I generally keep my main computer for about 3 years so during the life of the computer, it may go through at least 1 upgrade. I cant really do that on a mac unless I have a Mac Pro (which is above my budget) and even then, I'm limited to what goes in unless I dont mind having dual video cards - one just for windows so that card will be usable (ie the 8800 series situation right now).

5. SCSI - Support is quite poor in OSX and I would rather stop playing games before I give up my SCSI drives. Nothing has lasted as long and given me so much performance boost as my SCSI drives & controller. My current controller is an ultra160 which is ancient as far as hardware goes (came out in 2000 I think). I purchased it 4 years ago used for very cheap and its still a key component in my system. My boot drive is a 15,000 RPM 74GB drive and my swap or scratch disk is my older 36GB model. This combo makes for a very VERY responsive system. My dual core at work has a 10K Raptor which feels painful to use ... I do use SATA drives as well but only for slower data storage drives and not the startup or swap drives.


So these are things that are important to me. I'm sure this is definitly not what normal people think about when buying a computer but as a computer geek, they matter to me
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Old Oct 10th, 2007, 02:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Demosthenes X View Post
The other half, Eight Reasons Windows Users Don't Switch, is worth reading as well:

Apple Matters | 8 Reasons Windows Users Don’t Switch
In that article is "Vista is actually a good operating system." We have Vista on one of our machines in our office. It is NOT a good operating system.
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Old Oct 10th, 2007, 03:05 PM   #6
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And after vista on 2 notebooks and 6 desktops in the office and two machines at home, I beg to differ. Its been very stable and rock solid and compatability issues have been minor to none. Oh well to each their own.

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In that article is "Vista is actually a good operating system." We have Vista on one of our machines in our office. It is NOT a good operating system.
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Old Oct 10th, 2007, 10:05 PM   #7
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contoursvt, I have to admit that your reasons #1 and 3 for not switching are compelling to me. I have no interest in the size, power or expense of the Mac Pro systems and unfortunately, these are the only Macs with hardware flexibility. I have a Cube and it has been a joy to upgrade, but these are pretty limited no matter what you do to them. And I am unhappy with Apple for not giving many people what they really want, a midsize computer that can be easily upgraded. The other day I had to install a new PC in my lab, and I really appreciated being able to open it easily and install equipment into it. I'm sure that if you don't mind playing around, you can make a PC that has many of the qualities that make Macs great (quiet, small chassis). The one that seems hardest to obtain is an aesthestically pleasing PC. I don't know of any design equivalents to the Cube, the iMac or the Mini. There are imitations, but the PC makers just don't seem to achieve the styling. Many people don't care about this on a machine, but if I'm going to sit in front of it for the better part of the day, I want to make every aspect of it as pleasant as possible.
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Old Oct 10th, 2007, 10:14 PM   #8
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The other side of the hardware story is that Apple's virtually iron-clad control over the hardware is what allows their machines to work so well. Half the problems people have with Vista seem to be compatability - with an Apple, you never have to worry about that. And for the majority of the market, they're probably OK with not being able to upgrade.

So while I'm sure a mid-range tower would sell, I wonder if it would a) sell enough to be worthwhile, without b) cannibalizing Mac Pro sales.

I like to think Apple has done their research, and found a mid-range tower unfeasible. But I understand why it annoys that niche that wants to run OSX, but also wants upgradability without the price tag of a Mac Pro.
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Old Oct 10th, 2007, 11:51 PM   #9
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I will definitly give you that. PC makers or at least chassis makers just seem to churn out cheap crappy stuff most of the time. You can definitly get wonderfully built cases that are very functional, but its got nothing going for it for appearance. I'm happy with my current case however (Antec P180) but its not as well built as my last which was a tank of a case. Solid with great airflow and could probably survive a war, but it was definitly not a looker. It was a server case so pretty wasnt its thing.

I wish I could pay an extra $100 for a chassis and get one thats nice looking without bells and whistles or neon lights or stuff like that. The Mac Pro case is just a beautiful work of art and incredibly well built. If I could buy that case for say $300, I would.

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contoursvt, I have to admit that your reasons #1 and 3 for not switching are compelling to me. I have no interest in the size, power or expense of the Mac Pro systems and unfortunately, these are the only Macs with hardware flexibility. I have a Cube and it has been a joy to upgrade, but these are pretty limited no matter what you do to them. And I am unhappy with Apple for not giving many people what they really want, a midsize computer that can be easily upgraded. The other day I had to install a new PC in my lab, and I really appreciated being able to open it easily and install equipment into it. I'm sure that if you don't mind playing around, you can make a PC that has many of the qualities that make Macs great (quiet, small chassis). The one that seems hardest to obtain is an aesthestically pleasing PC. I don't know of any design equivalents to the Cube, the iMac or the Mini. There are imitations, but the PC makers just don't seem to achieve the styling. Many people don't care about this on a machine, but if I'm going to sit in front of it for the better part of the day, I want to make every aspect of it as pleasant as possible.
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