What Actually Makes Apple’s Macs So Good

If you’ve ever shopped for a computer — and who hasn’t? — you may have noticed that Macs tend to be more expensive than Windows machines. Even when you look at computers with comparable hardware, Macs simply cost more than machines from the likes of Dell and Samsung. The price can be a hard pill to swallow for anyone tempted by the Mac side of the world, but if you can swing it, you may find that it’s worth the expense. Macs are great machines. Here are some of the reasons why.

Hardware and software complement each other

MacBook Pro with Touch Bar from above

You may be tempted by the new MacBook Pro’s capabilities | Apple

For decades now, Apple has made both the hardware and software for its computers. That kind of control over the entire product has many advantages that give Apple a leg up in competition against most PCs. Apple’s software tends to run well, since the machines were designed explicitly to run those programs. This also helps Apple make certain things feel just right, like how the cursor moves in response to trackpad input.

In recent years, Microsoft has also begun making its own hardware with machines like the Surface Pro, Surface Book, and Surface Studio. While these machines are getting better over time, most reviewers agree they’re not quite up to Apple’s level of quality. And despite Microsoft’s new focus on hardware, most Windows machines are still made by third-party companies.

Build quality

iMac computers side by side

Apple’s build quality is unmatched | Apple.com

If you haven’t tried using a Mac, give it a shot next time you get a chance. Apple computers feel expensive. As the company is so fond of touting during press events, its computers are made with high-quality materials and are assembled using ultra-precise processes — processes that are often invented just to create the hardware.

Every nook and cranny of a Mac seems carefully considered. You get the impression that Apple purposefully crafted every inch of the experience of using one, from how it feels to open a MacBook to the kick of the trackpad when you press it down. Some other computer manufacturers are starting to up their build quality game in response, but none have matched Apple yet.


13.3-inch MacBook Pro

You know you’re getting high-quality software when you’re going with an Apple product | Apple.com

In general, more Mac developers seem to embrace Apple’s taste for beauty and high-quality software than on the Windows side of things. Mac apps like Tweetbot, iA Writer, and Fantastical are a joy to use — and you won’t find them on Windows.

Better yet, while many PCs ship with tons of bloatware and adware pre-installed, Macs have none of that. Instead, Apple includes useful first-party apps like GarageBand, Pages, iMovie, and Photos, all of which are powerful and relatively easy to use and come free of charge with your Mac.


Blue screen of death on Windows

Apple’s computers are less likely to be affected by viruses | Microsoft

Both Apple and Microsoft are vigilant about eliminating the threat of computer viruses, but it’s impossible for either side to be 100% thorough. That said, Apple machines get far fewer viruses than PCs. One reason why is because they’re a smaller target for virus-makers. If you want to distribute a virus as widely as possible, you’re probably going to make it affect the most popular operating system, which happens to be Windows. So if you don’t like having an antivirus app running constantly in the background, a Mac is your best bet. That said, don’t assume Apple devices are immune to viruses.

iPhone and iPad compatibility

iPhone 7 Plus

Apple’s products are compatible with one another, making life a little bit easier | Apple.com

If you have an iPhone or iPad, you’ll already know how to use many of the apps that come with every Mac. And thanks to iCloud, many of those apps let you pick up right where you left off on the other device. Jot down a list in the Notes app on your iPhone, for instance, and it appears in the Notes app on your Mac automatically. You can also access any Safari tabs you have open on any device, making it easy to pick up your web browsing right where you left off. And thanks to Messages on Mac, you can even receive and reply to your text messages right from your computer.

Satisfied customers

Customers who had pre-ordered the Apple iPhone 7 wait to purchase it

Apple offers great customer service, too | Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Even if none of the other items on the list sway you to believe Macs are great machines, just listen to the customers. Apple consistently tops customer satisfaction surveys, and for good reason: Apple makes great products and offers excellent customer service. If something goes wrong with your machine, Apple is more than happy to help you fix it.

Are Macs pricy computers? Certainly. But that doesn’t mean they’re not worth the money.