Mac OS X beats Windows XP in 'death match'

Mac OS X beats Windows XP in 'death match'

CNET Software held a new operating system "death match" pitting Mac OS X 10.1 against Windows XP. And the winner is ... Mac OS X.

When it comes to installation, CNET Networks Inc. says that the Mac offers up its traditionally simple, hands-free installation, while XP requires a lengthy CD key and product activation. Regarding the user interface, CNET likes Windows XP better. They write: "Sure, we're impressed that the Mac has come up to speed with features such as full keyboard support, a column or Web view for its folders, support for the right-click and a customizable interface. But Windows has had all or most of those tools for years. We also find XP's new, task-oriented interface much more intuitive and powerful than Aqua's baffling directory scheme and clunky, annoying Dock."

As for software compatibility, Mac OS X is declared the winner. CNET says that XP does carry a "slight edge because of the sheer mass of available titles," but Mac OS X's future looks bright due to its support for old and new apps, plus Unix and Linux apps, and a development environment "that sheds its proprietary roots with a vengeance."

However, Windows XP gets CNET's nod for hardware compatibility. Despite OS X's seamless integration with its proprietary hardware, the hardware is, in fact, "proprietary, and the peripherals tend to be few and far between compared to the sheer mass available to XP," CNET says. Plus, Apple Computer Inc.'s operating system suffers from a lack of native drivers and software for popular devices.

When it comes to Internet support, XP and OS X 10.1 are given a tie. CNET says that "each OS is jammed with Net tools, and we simply couldn't pick a winner."

But when all is said and done, Mac OS X 10.1 won the death match. Despite Apple's "expensive, proprietary hardware," OS X triumphs pricewise, thanks to Windows XP's "high overall cost and stingy licensing scheme," CNET concludes. Plus, OS X has "promising software compatibility and powerful, attractive Internet tools without all of XP's marketing and coercion."

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