Why Vista isn't as good as the Mac

Yesterday Guy Kawasaki tried to give Steve Ballmer heck about Windows Vista, but he didn’t manage to really nail Ballmer with something specific.

I have one. Dell a few weeks ago sent me a new Tablet PC to use for a month. I have been using it exclusively for a couple of weeks now, and it is the only machine I’ve taken to Mix and SXSW. If you’re at SXSW please do ask to see it, if you need a Windows machine, it’s certainly one of the ones I’d choose. Why? You can put an extra battery onto it which will give you more than five hours of battery life. This is HUGE. I forgot how much I missed long battery life on the Mac (I only get two hours on my Mac).

The machine is well built, well designed, and fun to use.

So, why do I still like my Mac better?

One simple little thing: the Mac starts up and shuts down properly every single time.

My Dell? It doesn’t always startup right. Just now, I opened it up, which doesn’t turn it on, like the Mac does. But that’s a nit, which just requires hitting the power button.

Today when I did that it promptly blue screened. My Mac has only done that once and it turned out I had a bad set of RAM. This isn’t the first time the Dell has given errors or problems on boot, either.

Once it starts up, by the way, I like Vista just fine and it even has some things I like better than the Mac (the fonts on Windows are more readable, for instance and things do seem snappier on my Dell, plus that darn battery life is just wonderful, especially when I’m flying across the US like I’m about to).

It’s a real bummer, too. Because I want to love Windows and most of the tools to build great Silverlight experiences will be on Windows and not on the Mac. Not to mention that killer WorldWide Telescope.

I checked with my friends who run Vista on laptops and they noticed the same thing, that they have had problems with sleep and wakeup on their laptops. What could be causing this? I’ll show it to Dell on Sunday and see if we can figure it out.