For more than 25 years now, computer users have been arguing over which one is better in the never-ending iMac vs PC fight. The iMac is the flagship Apple desktop along with the Mac Pro, but the latter has a higher price tag and therefore I decided to use the more accessible iMac for this article. If you’re interested in how the latest 2012 model feels and works, you should be reading our iMac 27 review.
We’ll look into several important categories and see who’s winning. Depending on what you are looking for, it might help you make a decision in the ongoing iMac vs PC battle.
1). Operating System
While Windows far more popular, owning around 90% of the market, OS X is best known for its ease of use. Both Bill Gates and Steve Jobs did an amazing job at giving birth to what are today two of the most powerful operating systems on Earth.
Normally I would call this a tie, since both OSX and Windows have their strengths and weaknesses. However, given the mess that Windows 8 is right now, the award goes to the Macintosh. Although both are aiming at a multitouch, mobile future, only one strategy seems to work for now; and it’s not coming from Redmond.
Because the market share for Windows is this huge, when you compare PC to Mac you’ll see a huge difference. Almost all games are Windows exclusive, so for the hardcore gamer, choosing the right computer should be a no-brainer. Although mac computers have started to gain traction on that field as well, with the introduction of Steam games for Mac, it’s still a long way behind.
However, on the productivity software side, it’s pretty tied. Apple has their own iWork productivity bundle that is similar to Office, as well as Office for Mac. Adobe’s Photoshop and other similar products work on both operating systems as well.
A big plus for the iMac is Apple’s iLife that comes bundled with every iMac purchase. iMovie is amazing for video editing, and very simple to use. While casual Windows users that want to quickly edit a video have to use how-to guides, for the iMac it’s simple and intuitive. And so is Garageband, Apple’s solution for editing and compiling audio files.
To sum it up, Windows still has bigger collection of applications, and it wins at this chapter mainly because it supports all the new games.
Although there have been recent outbursts of viruses on the Mac as well, they are easily handled with software patches by Apple. For the casual iMac user, there is usually no need for an antivirus.
Microsoft’s Windows, on the other hand, seems to be targeted by every computer virus out there. When you compare Mac to PC on this point alone, you shouldn’t even think twice – if you’re somebody that values security and hates computer viruses, the iMac vs PC fight is senseless. Just read our iMac 27 review and buy it already!
Winner: Tie game
Although there are plenty of computers way cheaper than the iMac, it’s really hard for somebody who is not so tech-savvy to assemble a similar powerhouse without exceeding its price. Just look at the gorgeous display the 27″ model has. In comparison, Dell’s similar offer costs $1000 for the display alone.
However, given the circumstances, I would say this is a tie. Admittedly, Windows-based machines can be nowhere as expensive, but it would be illogical to compare a $400 machine with a $2000 one.
PCworld has attempted to build a powerful Windows machine under $1000. If we couple it with the $1000 display, it’s comparable to Apple’s top of the line iMac both in price and specs.
Although PC manufacturers have been putting out sleek, sexy ultrabooks and All-In-One PCs, Apple is famous for the time it spends on every design feature. If you want a computer that is absolutely incredible to look at all day, and if you want to impress people coming to your house, the iMac is a no-brainer.
iMac vs PC – Winner: the iMac
It’s 3-1 for the iMac not counting the tie game we had on the price factor. But you should think really hard about what you need the machine for before deciding on which of these gadgets you should buy.
And remember, you still have to choose from a number of models once you decide which side you prefer on the on-going iMac vs PC battle.