Balmy Ballmer of Microsoft recently made a comment only he is capable of. He said not many people would pay extra money in these times of recession for a logo. He was referring to the premium you have to pay for a Mac. Is it really only the logo?
(Btw, anyone who takes anything Steve Ballmer says seriously should check this and this!)
The whole experience in a Mac borders on the ethereal. The attention to detail is amazing. Let me just give you one example. There is a dock in Mac OS X on the desktop. This is a holder for commonly accessed applications and locations apart from the place your minimized windows temporarily reside in. Apart from the 3D look of the dock, the designers made it like a mirror. So that you can see a reflection of whatever is there above it. Not only do you see a reflection of the icons that are in the dock but you also see a reflection of other windows you bring close to the dock.
Now, this could have been easily been ignored. A reflection of the icons in the dock could have been good enough. But no, not on a Mac. This great attention to details pervades all aspects of the operating system.
The ease with which you can add a printer (if its on the network, your Mac does not need anything else to be done; it simply prints!), get on to a Wi-Fi network (nothing to be done except enter the password if it is secure, the network is found and joined automagically) and backup your files (I was blown away by the UI for Time Machine) is only to be experienced to be believed. The lack of viruses on the Mac, the much better stability (no crashes and hanging) really make the experience of using a Mac, a pleasure.
I will close with one last example of the difference between the Mac and things like Linux and Windows based PCs. After the recent terrorist attacks on Mumbai where it was discovered that terrorists had used unsecured wi-fi networks to send emails, I decided to secure my home wi-fi network. I went into the wi-fi routers configuration panel and set on the secure option and gave a password. I opened my MacBook Pro. Within a few seconds, I was asked to enter the password for the wi-fi network. I entered the password. Boom! I was online! I then opened my mother's laptop which was running XP. After half an hour of struggling to try to connect to the now secure wi-fi network, I still couldn't figure the damn thing out. And I am supposed to be a software guy!
I gave up and unsecured my network back. Terrorists, please spare me!