07:11 PM

The Complete, Unvarnished, Slightly Biased Apple Buyers' Guide

CMP Information Week
InformationWeek Daily - Thursday, Sep 13, 2007

Editor's Note

The Newb's Guide To Apple

As I wrote our Apple buyers' guide, I was directed by a single question: What do I wish I'd known when I bought my first Mac, back in February? Since then, I've had an intense self-guided study in Apple products and services. Alas, I can't put all that knowledge in a time machine and send it back to myself. But I can pass it on to you.

The result is a package of articles, an image gallery, and a chart that'll give the first-time Apple buyer the information they need to make informed decisions. And experts will find some useful information in there too.

I started with Macs. Once you've committed to buying a Mac, which Mac or MacBook should you get? Find out which Mac is right for you in our overview of the Mac product line. This comprehensive Mac comparison chart gives you a side-by-side view of the specs and pricing of all the different Macs and MacBooks, so you can compare their features and capabilities and decide which one you like best.

Next, find out where to buy your Mac and where to get support.

Learn why I'm recommending against buying an iPhone, even though I'm happy with mine.

Get the lowdown on which iPod is right for you, and the benefits and pitfalls of using iTunes.

Explore four different ways to run Windows on your Mac.

Load up your Mac with these 14 free and cheap Mac apps. This list describes great software for instant messaging, writing, password management, and more. Ten of them are free, one is donationware, and the other three are priced under $30. Also, find out why you should think twice about Microsoft Office -- it's expensive, and there are less expensive and free alternatives.

Learn about the .Mac online storage and information sharing service.

Take a look at an image gallery of Apple's products and third-party software.

Finally we scrutinize Apple in the workplace. Contributor John Welch asks: Is Apple still interested in the enterprise?

Do you use Apple for business computing? Take our poll and leave a message on the InformationWeek Blog and let us know.

Mitch Wagner

Quote of The Day

"You gotta get on the Net. That's where there's all the best conspiracy theories. Did you know that Hezbollah owns Little Dolly Snack Cakes? This stuff will rock your world." -- Homer Simpson

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