I use them daily. This includes the initial purchase cost, ongoing support costs, and software purchases. It does not include any personal time that you would need to devote to maintaining and managing the device, such as reinstalling the operating system, cleaning up unused applications, dealing with anti-virus software and configuration, and general troubleshooting tasks.
When purchasing the Dell, I had to configure it so it had specs equal to the Mac. The general specs include a 2. Total price for the MacBook Pro: What this generally means is that it comes pre-loaded with a whole bunch of useless trial software that expires in either 30, 60, or 90 days. See…told you I was giving favor to the PC! Why would this not be standard? We need this if we want to create spreadsheets, documents, or presentations.
There are a few things we could have done to even out the playing field a bit more. Keep in mind the Mac has a battery that gives us about 7 hours. The Mac will have Mail.
Total price for the Dell: The Software While these are each good machines, to get great things done requires software. Choose your own software stack, and see how it adds up. First, I want to purchase software that allows me to create some nice drawings. If I had purchased the professional version of each, the TCO at this point would be Next, I want some screen capture software so I can create some short training videos for online publication.
See a pattern developing here yet? A full license of Windows 7 Home Premium? Again, the pattern is developing. Additional Analysis At this point, the Mac is still slightly more expensive. Clearly, the stark difference in the initial price is quite different from TCO. I could easily keep going, purchasing software that I want and need, and each time find that the Mac edition of the software comes in priced far below the Windows version.
The cost of software for Windows is more expensive than corresponding software for the Mac, and throughout the lifetime of ownership, TCO for Windows will approach, if not exceed, that of the Mac. It just works. But it is significant. The Clear Winner Is… The winner…you decide! If you want a low end machine with a short lifespan, Dell and many other PC manufacturers using Windows offer this, including their line of netbooks.
But remember, you get what you pay for. And side-by-side, machines of equal horsepower and capability are going to result in similarly equal TCO. By the time you spec out the machines evenly, and factor in TCO, the price of a Mac is arguably equal too, if not less than, that of a Windows PC. Either way, I know what my choice is!
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