Many people question (before they experience ComputerWorks) should I get an Apple\Mac?

Let me preface with, I do work on Macs own many Apple products, this is just my opinion of them based on a plethora of facts.

First watch this youtube, really old, goofy, funny video but still so true (caution some mild language so keep your volume in check for those that may find it offensive)....

Probably the biggest misnomer is Apple/Macs GET VIRUSES TOO!!! This is not new news. More like swept under the rug!

I have proved thousands of times over, the PC that people thought was slow and problematic was nothing more than in need of a tune-up. If you drove a car 100k miles and never changed the oil, plugs, etc, it may not even move. The same goes for a computer. The average computer users PC is about 3 to 4 years old has been upgraded from a prior version of windows (usually improperly) missing drivers and updates. Usually an antiquated antivirus, firewall disabled, viruses, spyware and malware, etc.

All this reminded me of the longest lived lie about "the safest car on the road" for over 40 years you could ask just about anyone, "what do you think is the safest car on the road?" 99% of the time people said "Volvo" (to this day)and it was not only wrong, it started because of a tv commercial in the '70's where they had a monster truck drive over a dozen different make cars and the only one to not be crushed was a Volvo. Nobody knew until a lawsuit years later that the Volvo used was a steel reinforced prop car just for the tv commercial. The lie lived on despite the lawsuit that people didn't hear about.  

There are not many Mac users compared to PC) An estimated 8% of the worlds population use mac compared to the pc. My point is we are using our computers for all their worth and then some, and expect them to be like the day they were new years later without any maintenence. Macs have problems too, you just don't hear of them as much because they have a much smaller audience. The other points I'd like to make is a Mac is a Mac, it's pricey, they are not offered by great companies in the computer industry like HP, Asus, Lenovo, Toshiba, Dell, Sony to create competition for a better price point. If you want a new Mac you are going to pay. The PC however you can own brand new as little as $199.00 to as high as thousands. Software for the PC can fill a computer store where for the Mac can fill a shelf. Support for PC is plentiful and reasonable where a Mac is scarce and the price for support you can buy a PC. They are good looking though as all apple products are. As a matter of fact, because of the "looks" of their products, they have always captured my interest. They pushed the rest of the industry to "shiney up"!

Apple's (NasdaqGS: AAPL - News) tablet computer is this year's hottest adult toy.

And for you stock holders, listen, I'm no Warren Buffett, but, knowing Microsoft spent the past 2+ decades securing the Windows operating system, while Apple bragged about not getting viruses, then why do we find viruses everyday on apple products. It's only a matter of when, not if, "the Apple falls from the tree, and that misnomer becomes common knowledge".

When Steve Jobs (may he RIP) unveiled the second iPhone in 2008 he actually made fun of the slow first model—the same product that he had hailed a year earlier as the eighth wonder of the world. The audience yukked it up. I'm not a big fan of buying a product for $700 from a company who's going to deride it a few months later.

This isn't a technology company. It's a luxury brand, like Tiffany. And it's wooed customers so they will pay almost anything for its products. Last Christmas, Apple's gross margins were 41%. That's incredible. It's good for Apple, good for stockholders—but not so good for shoppers. Me, I don't want to support someone else's 70% markups with my own dollars. 

Competitors Are here Right now as well as many serious rivals already here that blow it away in its low price and function, ie, the Microsoft Slate, Samsung Galaxy Tab and tons of others.  These will give you a much wider choice of size, style and operating system. And when these companies duke it out for market share, you know you'll be able to get a deal. So why buy apple?

No Flash Do you want to watch video clips on the Web? On a boring old laptop or PC, you can do that for free. On the amazing new iPad? Only sometimes. Most Web video runs on Adobe Flash, and the iPad can't—or rather, won't—handle Flash. So there are plenty of video clips you won't be able to watch. And plenty of others you will have to pay to watch, either by renting them from Apple's iTunes, or by paying for a subscription service like Hulu Plus. Mr. Jobs had a very public bust-up with Adobe over Flash this year. I have sympathy for his position, as Flash can be unstable. But it's still the software most Web video clips use, and I want that choice.

The Cost of the Add-Ons The iPad starts at $499 plus tax. That's nearly twice as much as a netbook. And I know if I get the cheapest iPad I'll regret it. It has only 16 gigabytes' storage. And it can only go online when you are in a WiFi hotspot, like at home or in Starbucks. A lot of the iPad's best features need an Internet connection. So if I want to use them wherever I go, I'll want the model with a 3G data plan that works everywhere. And those start at $629, plus at least $15 a month. Total cost: at least $809, plus tax, in the first year, and $989 over two years. This I don't need.

Just an expensive shiny toy, where other pc based products simply blow it away and now make even better looking products than Apple. 

It'll Get Boring This year's totem is next year's meh. Economists call this "the hedonic treadmill." Human beings quickly get bored of each new item. We always want the buzz from something newer, better, bigger, faster or fancier. But the treadmill never stops. Think of how amazing the first Palm Pilots seemed back in the 1990s. Look at them now. The iPad may look like the eighth wonder of the world today. Soon it will seem so old.

The Whole Apple Cult is Starting to Creep Me Out, I already knew about the fans. Last summer, three-quarters of the people standing in line so they could buy the new iPhone the moment it went on sale already owned an iPhone. But now it's the company, too. And think of that news coverage of the iPhone troubled aerial had been "blown so out of proportion that it's incredible. Hmmm, out-of-proportion media coverage—you sure you want to go there Apple? This is from the guy who marketed a new telephone under the slogan "This changes everything. Again." Maybe this stuff shouldn't matter to me, but I have to confess it's turning me off.

I do understand the music and ad industries use of Apple and I will Never give anyone grief for owning one as I do as well, it's just my opinion and I do repair, sell, own and work on them, I just don't love them like I do PC's. And there's plenty I can bash with the PC trust me I do. Especially the past year of Internet Explorer. Lets face it, technology is an ever changing fast paced world and in its infancy compared to where it's going.

Why get Windows 7?

A better desktop. Windows 7 gets you around your PC faster than ever. The taskbar has bigger buttons and full-sized previews—and you can pin programs to it for one-click access. Jump Lists provide shortcuts to files, folders, and websites. And Snap, Peek, and Shake give you easy (and fun) new ways to juggle all those open windows.

Smarter search. Type in the Start menu search box, and you'll see results instantly, grouped by category—documents, pictures, music, e‑mail, and programs. Search in a folder or library, and you can fine-tune your search with filters like date or file type—and use the preview pane to peek at the contents of your results.

Easy sharing with HomeGroup. Sharing files and printers on your home network should be simple. With HomeGroup, it finally is. Connect two or more PCs running Windows 7, and with a minimum of fuss you can start sharing music, pictures, videos, and documents with other people in your home.

Built for speed. Windows 7 has key performance improvements to take up less memory and run background services only when you need them. It's designed to run your programs faster and to sleep, resume, and reconnect to wireless networks quicker. And with 64-bit support, you can take full advantage of the latest in powerful 64-bit PCs.

Better wireless networking. Connecting to wireless networks on your laptop—formerly a bit of a hassle—now takes just a couple of clicks. Choose from the list of available networks in the taskbar, click one, and then connect. Once you've connected to a network, Windows will remember it so you can connect again later automatically.

Windows Touch. Use your fingers to browse the web, flip through photos, and open files and folders on a touchscreen PC—for the first time, Windows includes true multitouch technology. With gestures for zooming, rotating, and even right-clicking, it's a whole new way to work with your PC.

Plays well with devices. Device Stage, a new feature in Windows 7, works like a home page for things like portable music players, smartphones, and printers. When you plug a compatible device into your PC, you'll see a menu with information and popular tasks like battery life, how many photos are ready to be downloaded, and printing options.

Watch, listen, and stream.‌ Internet TV, part of Windows Media Center, gathers programming from sites all over the Internet—shows, sports highlights, video podcasts, and more. Add a TV tuner, and your PC becomes a digital video recorder you can use to watch, pause, and record live TV. And with new features in Windows Media Player 12, you can enjoy your media library around the house—or around town.

Internet Explorer 9 and Windows Live.‌ Windows 7 unleashes the full power of Internet Explorer 9, from its stunning hardware-accelerated graphics to the ability to launch favorite websites right from your taskbar. You'll also get the many possibilities of Windows Live, free: create photo albums and movies, chat in HD, and share your stuff anytime, anywhere.

Note* Since this was written over 2 years ago, Apple stock has tanked!

Why get Windows 8?

Let me preface by saying everyone hated Windows XP coming off or Windows 98, the same people ended up loving XP! The same goes for Windows 8, it’s just peoples voices are louder now with the power of the internet (with the help of Microsoft)! Give it time... I’ve been a beta tester for years and this is the OS we were waiting for.

First of all, it’s ahead of its time, your phone, tablet, office and home computer will look and feel identical with Windows 8! No more learning each device. You can go deep into Windows just like you always have been able to (unlike Apple), just a tad trickier to get there because most people don’t want to and the ones that do would just mess things up, so let’s hide it a bit.

Even in the best of times, businesses don't like upgrading their PC operating systems. The process is expensive and time-consuming, and usually demands retraining a technically challenged workforce. And now Windows 8 threatens to make workplace system swaps even less attractive than before.

Between the removal of the familiar Start button and the addition of a decidedly non-intuitive tiled interface, Windows 8 has struck fear in the hearts of IT managers worldwide.

Nevertheless, if you’re in the market for new PCs or even an operating system upgrade, there are a number of reasons why your business may benefit from accepting Windows 8. Of course, adopting any new OS imposes a learning curve on users, but once your workforce gets comfortable with Windows 8, its benefits can outweigh its drawbacks.

1. Touchscreen interface

An obvious difference between Windows 8 and its predecessors is its completely revamped interface. The Modern UI (formerly known as “Metro”) is designed first and foremost with touch input in mind.

Windows 8's touchscreen interface lets you use the OS in some unique ways.

With a tablet or touchscreen desktop monitor Windows 8 supports cool options such as handwritten note-taking in OneNote and commenting on a Word document by hand using digital ink. Furthermore, once you get used to Windows 8's touch and swipe conventions, the touch-based controls enable you to navigate the OS very effectively. With a tap-and-drag gesture, you can use two apps simultaneously, for example, so you can check email and edit an Excel spreadsheet at the same time. (Here’s a closer look at Windows 8 gesture commands)

From a business perspective, though, the greatest appeal of the touchscreen interface is the new possibilities it opens for Windows 8 PCs. Functions for which many businesses may currently be considering iPad or Android tablets to accomplish could be performed from a Windows 8 tablet or from a PC equipped with a touchscreen monitor. Windows 8 can be used at interactive kiosks, or to enable a salesperson in the field to collect a customer’s signature directly on the display.

2. Networking

One of the most common headaches for Windows users—particularly mobile users trying to work from customer sites or remote locations—is finding and connecting to a network. Microsoft has made improvements in Windows 8 that make accomplishing this task easier and more intuitive.

 Windows 8 simplifies the task of connecting to networks.

First, whether you tap the network icon from the Settings charm on the Modern UI charms bar or click it in the System Tray in desktop mode, it pulls up a panel that fills the right quarter of the screen top to bottom. At the top is something familiar, but new to Windows—Airplane Mode. Enabling this option shuts down all wireless communications, which comes in handy when you're using a tablet or laptop on the road.

When you join a new network, you'll find that Microsoft has simplified the dialog boxes to guide you through choosing connections to a public or a private network, and enabling sharing of data or resources between your computer and the other devices on the network.

Because Windows 8 is designed for mobility, the operating system also includes better tools for connecting to, and managing, cellular networks. And Windows 8 can track and meter data usage for 3G/4G cellular networks so you don’t exceed monthly caps.

3. Flexible hardware options

Since their inception, PCs and laptops have maintained a fairly consistent approach to form and function. Sure, they’ve gotten smaller over the years, but a desktop remained a desktop, and a laptop a laptop, more or less—until now.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga is one unique hardware approach to Windows 8.

Windows 8 breaks the PC and laptop molds, encouraging unique approaches that take advantage of the touchscreen elements of Windows 8, or that bridge the gap between traditional hardware and mobile devices. For example, the Dell XPS 12 Convertible Touch Ultrabook has an innovative display that swivels so that the laptop can function as a tablet. The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 delivers similar hybrid functionality in the form of a display that the user can bend all the way to the back of the unit to employ as a tablet.

Then there are devices like Microsoft’s own Surface Pro tablet The Surface Pro is a pure tablet; but when joined with a Touch Cover or Type Cover it transforms into something resembling an Ultrabook. The diversity of the hardware allows businesses and individuals to choose the platform that works best for their needs instead of committing to one form at the expense of the other. It can also provide the benefits of a notebook and a tablet without requiring a business to invest in two pieces of hardware.

4. Faster boot time

Though the usual waiting period is only a matter of seconds, it can feel like an eternity as a computer wakes up from a complete shutdown and finally reaches the Windows login screen—especially if you're at a meeting, where every second counts.

In tests run on the same PC, with fresh installations of each operating system, Windows 8 booted up in less than half the time that Windows 7 took. Windows 8 averaged 17 seconds, compared to 38 seconds for Windows 7.

Real-world mileage can vary significantly depending on the hardware you use. My Samsung Series 7 Slate PC with Windows 8 Pro boots in just over 11 seconds. A faster boot time means that users can get down to business faster when they show up in the morning, or when they boot up an Ultrabook or tablet to share information with a customer.

5. Dual-monitor support

It’s not exactly mainstream in most fields of business, but using multiple monitors can greatly improve productivity, and Windows 8 comes with a number of enhancements to simplify managing and using such setups. Using multiple displays is like magnifying the productivity benefits of the Windows 7 Aero Snap feature. Instead of splitting the workspace in half on one display, you can extend your Windows desktop across more than one monitor.

When it comes to handling multiple displays, Windows 8 significantly improves on Windows 7's capabilities. You can configure the taskbar for each display to make it easier and more efficient to get to the applications you want on each display. Windows 8 also treats the corners and sides of each monitor as active hot zones for accessing things like the charms bar and the app switcher.

6. Better security

Windows 8 introduces some security tricks  to help protect data and let IT managers sleep at night. First, Microsoft takes advantage of the Secure Boot feature of UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) Secure Boot allows only software signed by authorized certificates to boot up, which prevents BIOS- or kernel-level malware from sneaking in.

With Windows 8, Microsoft has also incorporated the antimalware capabilities of Microsoft Security Essentials into Windows Defender, so Windows 8 provides more-comprehensive protection against malware right out of the box.

Microsoft has expanded the scope of its SmartScreen technology, too. Previous versions were limited to protecting Internet Explorer from malicious sites and rogue downloads. With Windows 8, SmartScreen applies to all network traffic, meaning that it provides the same security whether you’re using Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome—or if you’re just downloading files across the network.

7. Storage Spaces

Hard drives keep getting larger and cheaper, but newer hardware such as Ultrabooks and tablets tend to rely on smaller-capacity solid-state drives for storage. Windows 8's Storage Spaces feature lets you expand your storage without replacing your drive, and without having to add new drive letters and then try to manage which applications or data get stored on which drive.

Storage Spaces lets you create a pool of storage that can span internal and external drives, and combine storage using different interfaces so that the operating system views and treats everything as being on one large drive. Storage Spaces also uses data mirroring across the drives so that, even if one of the drives in the pool crashes, the data will remain available.

8. SkyDrive integration

As great as Storage Spaces can be, it works only if the various drives in the pool are connected to the Windows 8 PC When you’re on the go, using the cloud to expand your storage options makes more sense. Microsoft has woven access to its cloud storage service, SkyDrive, throughout Windows 8.

The SkyDrive app on the Windows 8 Start screen provides quick access to data stored in the cloud. You can easily add files to SkyDrive from the Share charm in the Windows 8 charms bar, and data stored in SkyDrive is available from virtually anywhere, over just about any Web-connected device.

Businesses that subscribe to Office 365 Small Business Premium get a more robust approach to cloud storage. The SkyDrive Pro app provides essentially the same benefits and functionality as SkyDrive, but it ties back to SharePoint and delivers more collaborative tools and better IT management for data than the personal SkyDrive account does.

9. New Task Manager

The Task Manager has always been a powerful but underused tool in Windows. In Windows 8, though, it receives a complete makeover that makes it both easier to use, and more valuable than ever.

The new Task Manager is more polished, presenting information in a more coherent and visually appealing way. Microsoft has enhanced familiar tabs such as Processes and Performance to include more detail—for instance, enabling you to drill down and see the resources in use for each separate tab or window for apps that have multiple instances. A new tab called Startup lets you view and manage applications that load automatically when Windows boots up.

10. Windows to Go

You’ll have to use Windows 8 Enterprise in order to take advantage of Windows to Go but for many businesses, that version of Windows is worth its higher price. Windows to Go lets you store an entire Windows 8 environment on a bootable USB thumb drive or other removable media.

Windows to Go lets you put an entire Windows 8 desktop environment on a bootable thumb drive.

Using Windows to Go has some tremendous benefits. IT admins or tech support personnel can carry their Windows 8 PC with them in their pocket. The feature also supports BYOD (bring your own device) scenarios: Users can boot to a managed Windows 8 environment via Windows to Go so that their work environment doesn’t interfere with their personal profile; and the business can protect itself from rogue, unpatched systems.

Bottom line

Windows 8 dramatically overhauls the aesthetics and interface—as well as the features and functionality—of the traditional Windows operating system. It's unlikely that all ten of these beneficial aspects of Windows 8 will apply to your business, but even if only a few do, they could yield a difference in efficiency or productivity for an edge over the competition.