Is it time for your business to consider Apple Macintosh?

“While Apple Computer has been working hard to gain a competitive edge, Microsoft has appeared slow to react. For instance, both Windows XP and the first version of Mac OS X were released in 2001. Since then, Apple has released four major updates to Mac OS X with each providing a variety of new features. During the same time, Microsoft has only released two ‘Service Packs’ to Windows XP which were primarily bug fixes and mostly devoid of new features. The next true enhancement to Microsoft Windows (Windows Vista) isn’t scheduled for release until the end of this year and will likely require many current Windows users to upgrade their PC hardware to run the new OS,” Justin Powell writes for

“Apple has also recently shifted its Macintosh platform to utilize Intel chips and a similar hardware specification to that found in Windows-based PCs,” Powell writes. “This brings with it two main benefits to Apple and it’s customers: performance parity with Windows-based PCs and a new level of compatibility with the Windows operating system. So is it time for your business to consider using Apple Macintosh computers?”

In his rather comprehensive article, Powell covers his list of Macintosh Myths (many of which are still in use by the “IT Guy” today):

• Macs are not compatible with Windows
• Macs cannot run Windows
• Macs cannot run Windows applications
• Macs cannot read Windows files
• Macs cannot read Windows discs
• Macs cannot network with Windows PCs
• Macs are not as powerful as Windows PCs
• Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows are exactly the same
• Macs cost more

Powell also covers security when he writes, “I’ll be succinct: There are no viruses or related security threats affecting Mac OS X. There are not trojan horses or spyware applications on Mac OS X, either. Compare that to 100s of thousands of viruses and related security threats that affect Microsoft Windows. There may be a day when Mac OS X has a virus, but on that day the Mac will still have a minute fraction of those that affect Windows. If your firm has spent any time patching Windows, lost any data due to a security issue, or spent money on anti-virus software, then you may want to consider a Macintosh. In addition, Mac OS X has built-in security features that arguably make the overall platform safer than Windows. For instance, if you start to download something from the Internet that contains an application, Mac OS X will notify you and ask if you want to continue. This feature is designed to prevent spyware and other security threats from being downloaded to your system without your knowledge. And whenever you install a program, you must enter your user ID and password – another barrier to illegitimate software getting loaded secretly.”

Full article here.

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  1. If I could roll out the same brain dead locked feature can-t copy anything desktops for OS X that I need to for windows, I’d really push hard for switching the offices I support to OS X macs.

    Seems whatever I do my users can override the security and load up their PC’s with worms and viruses. Not an issue on the Mac.

  2. This is ironic, since the National Institutes of Health has decided not to support Macs. I am an NIH-funded scientist, upset because this year the NIH is implementing a new electronic grant submission process. However, they have chosen to use a system that only works with PCs, not Macs. Unfortunately, a large number of NIH-funded scientists are Mac users. So the NIH is switching to a system that leaves many of its users without any means of applying for grant support.

    Furthermore, NIH is adopting this PC-only system, whereas other government agencies, including both the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Department of Defense (DOD) have implemented web-based electronic grant application submission systems that work with any type of computer, and have had those systems in place for years. Nearly every major scientific journal has electronic on-line submission that works with either Macs or PCs. Why did NIH develop its own system that excludes Macs?

    Wait – it gets even better.

    The company that is providing the electronic submission software for NIH is PureEdge, who promised to have a Mac-compatible version of its software ready by November, 2006, when R01 grants – the major form of grants that support scientists around the U.S. – go to electronic submission. But that promise was made before the PureEdge company was purchased by IBM a few months ago. Since the IBM purchase, there have been no more promises that the software will be ready. So, the fate of Mac-using scientists is in the hands of the company that was just “dumped” by Apple. The combination of NIH adopting PC-only PureEdge software and then trusting them to produce a Mac-compatible solution, along with the changing business goals of PureEdge, now a part of IBM, leaves Mac-using scientists out in the cold.

    I contacted representatives at Apple, and learned that they know about this problem… supposedly even Steve Jobs has been informed. But what can Apple do if NIH doesn’t come through with a Mac-compatible solution?

    More information about the NIH electronic grant application submission system is available here:

  3. Performance parity. Whatever. Any potential hit in actual benchmark performance between the Intel chips and IBM chips was more than made up for by productivity gained by using the Mac platform vs Windows.

    You can talk benchmarks all you want but I’ll put my daily productivity on a Mac against anyone’s on the PC anytime.

    The bottom line is the switch to Intel is more for a software compatibility strategy than processor performance.

  4. Joe Tak-

    Not True! Have you looked at Mac OS X Server? With OS X Server you can manage as much or as little of your client desktops as you choose. You can give them “guidance” to best case setups with each and every preference/application/GUI look & feel that you want… OR you can take COMPLETE CONTROL of their machines so they can’t change a damn thing. You can force them to use only the grunt applications that you choose to let them use.

    It’s up to you…and it’s INCREDIBLY customizable. You want to force the dock to the right side with only these 6 icons in it…then that will be done. If you want to allow another user a little more flexibility then you can do that too… 10.4’s Server has really come into its own. It’s time for OS X in mainstream (read: gruntwork) businesses.

  5. Furthermore he contradicts his own argument that by switching to Intel Macs can now run Windows. The thing is he’s talking about Virtual PC which will NOT run on Intel-Macs until MS rewrites it. So that argument is actually false now that they have switch whereas ironicaly it was correct before they switched.

    The parts about PC Disks, PC files and networking is right on though. Oh how long have we had this ability, like at least 5 years or more?

  6. Mac scientist

    One point i think you need to be clear about in your story:
    The choice isnt between Macs and PC’s, its between MacOS and Windows.

    Theres this misguided belief of choice among the non-Mac using world that they have choice if they use a PC. They don’t. No matter waht crappy box they buy, they are still using Windows. The box doesnt matter mong PC users they end up with the same crappy user epxerience. This is a point that needs to be made to all people when making Mac vs PC arguments.

    They have it backward. They should buy the OS for their experience, not the box. All boxes could be the same.

  7. The world is surely at a turning point that’s critical for the future of the planet…

    Either continue investing in Windows and its vast costs and perpetual threat of armegeddon…

    OR.. switching NOW, before its too late, to something that will give huge benefits, complete security and massive cost savings to all of us – not least in the taxes we pay..


    MDN MW = JOB..Yep, its hundreds of thousands of jobs for the Microsoft Windows patch ecenomy, or go Jobs, Apple Mac jobs… Decide soon..

  8. The macs cost more one really pisses me off. Of course they cost more than some windows machines but then those machines are just crap. Shockingly, Higher end windows machine cost more than low end windows machines.

  9. It’s funny that Windows doesn’t really help much in reading Mac disks. It’s actually a huge pain in the ass when transferring files – you need a network which is slower than a direct connection. I remember it being helpful when Macs had the ability to read PC floppy disks (back in the mid ’90s) – it certainly made things a lot easier anyway.

    I wonder what would happen if it was the other way around i.e. Apple held 90% of the computer market. I wonder if Mac OS would read Windows disks (of course, one would argue, why’d you use Windows anyway, but I digress.)

  10. Mac scientist, I remember that a few years ago that a lot of people at NASA were all upset because that the government was going to replace their Macs with PCs. I never knew how that turned out. But I do know that the FBI and the NSA, NRO and DIA use Macs, but I don’t know how many or how new the machines are.

    Can anyone shed some light on how the NASA situation turned out?

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