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SALT LAKE CITY -- Apple and Microsoft have been competitors for years. In the 21st century, the competition has heated up with new big players like Google and Facebook. Throughout the personal computer age, there has been an undercurrent of rivalry. Why is that?
The class war
Some people say that the haves and have-nots fight a war of words and rhetoric to support their side. People on the Microsoft side say Apple users are elitists, members of the "1 percent" or wannabes. They are snobbish, arrogant and puffed up, real hipsters who display their high incomes with their iPads and iPhones.
They say that Apple products are overpriced and unnecessarily expensive. They say they can get a PC for a much lower price.
My response here, if I am an example of this group, is that this argument is weak at best. I am by no means wealthy or even close. I love using technology and use my meager income to get what Apple technology I can. I am sure there are many others in the same boat.
When it comes to price, you get what you pay for. If you want high-quality, well-designed equivalent equipment, the price will be comparable. In a recent article titled "Why other PCs can’t beat Apple," I argued that Mac OS X is part of the competitive edge Apple has in the personal computer market. In this article, I explained that Apple's competitors are trying to imitate Apple by making thin, light, metal-bodied laptops called "Ultrabooks" that are similar to the MacBook Air. They are starting to realize that quality is more important than quantity, but by using Windows they lose the uniqueness that Apple offers.
The outdated argument
Some voices say that Apple products are outdated and not competitive. They say that because of this feature or that feature of their favorite gadget, Apple is clearly behind.
Apple does not generally make half-baked products. When the company releases a new product, it is designed from the ground up to work as intended. As detailed in my article "Apple's 90 percent business model," Apple management is trying to satisfy most people and believes that there is such a thing as too many features. The Apple philosophy is that simplicity and ease of use are the primary factors to consider when deciding whether or not to add a new feature.
The personal attack
When all else fails, the real trolls bring out their old friend, the ad hominem argument. Whether it is to get a rise or just for the "LOL"s, some people like to get under your skin and get you angry. They don't attack the message. They attack the messenger. This sort of tactic is called a logical fallacy by debate experts.
I try my best to ignore these people because this back and forth will go nowhere productive. It just makes the person being attacked look bad when he responds in kind.
Despite the fact that I have to stand up to these sort attacks and others because I am an unrepentant Apple supporter, I do it anyway because I love using Apple's products and I intend to make my living talking about them with anyone who will listen.
I would also like to note that Apple's stock (APPL) on January 9 reached an all-time high in intraday trading. Also, not only are iPhones and iPads selling in the millions per quarter, but the popularity of the Mac is growing too. This means that we can feel more comfortable as Apple users when people complain about the company because we are not such a minority as we used to be.
Apple authority Patrick Cassell is a blogger living in Utah. Read his views on many things related to Apple at iTechCrossroads.com.