Apple vs. Microsoft, OS X vs. Windows -- these are comparisons that pit fanboys from each side against each other with little middle ground. The two sides have bickered for years with Windows fans bragging about lower prices and larger market share, while OS X backers cite high quality, reliable machines and the lack of significant malware penetration.
Today, however, an Israeli PC management firm has added a slight twist in the age-old Mac vs. PC debate. Between January 1st, 2013 and April 1st, 2013, Soluto monitored 150,000 notebook computers running Windows and analyzed the data from:
- 224,144 crashes
- 250,791 hangs
- 84,251 BSoDs
- 1,346,000 boot cycles
- 62,476 hours spent on boot
After analyzing the above data and giving each machine a "Soluto Score", the results of the study were quite surprising. The results showed that the most reliable "PC" was the 13" MacBook Pro (mid-2012 model) running Boot Camp.
Soluto attributes this victory to the fact that a MacBook Pro running a copy of Windows via Boot Camp is free of the typical bloatware that comes with a brand new Windows machine. To this point, Soluto opines, "PC makers should look at this data and aspire to ship PCs that perform just as well as a cleanly installed MacBook Pro."
To those that say that a clean install of Windows on a MacBook Pro isn't a fair comparison, Soluto offers this consolation, "One could argue that we should not compare a cleanly installed MacBook Pro with an OEM-imaged PC from Acer or Dell… But – for this first report we simply compared the real PCs in the field, some with original images and some reinstalled by their users. We believe it’s more representative of reality."
Rounding out the top five entries were the Acer Aspire E1-571, Dell XPS 13, Dell Vostro 3560, and the Acer Aspire V3-771. The 15” Retina MacBook Pro, three more Dells, and a single Lenovo entry fleshed out the top 10. Notebooks from ASUS, Samsung, Toshiba, and Samsung were nowhere to be found on the list.
ZDNET's Ed Bott reckons that the reason for the strong showings by Acer and Dell in the study is the companies’ relatively bloat-free installs, with very few third-party utilities to muck with users' computers. On the other hand, Samsung, which didn't make the list, is notorious for filling machines with needless third-party software junk.