Once you taste Mac, there's no going back. But Windows offers so many features too. We've listed the challenges you'll face while switching from Mac to Windows.
Switching from a Macbook to a Windows PC can be a real pain, especially if you haven’t used a Windows device before. The operating system, the screen layout, default applications, and even hardware like the keyboard are all different. It might take some getting used to, so here’s a handy guide to help ease the transition.
Why even make the switch?
But, before we get started, why would someone make the jump to a Windows PC from a Macbook? For starters, they might not be willing to shell out quite a large sum of their money for a new laptop. The good thing about Windows PC is that there are a ton of brands that offer an enticing combination of options. You’re at the liberty to choose the kind of specifications you’d like to have in your new device and pay accordingly as opposed to Macbooks where the prices are more or less fixed and not amenable for reconsideration.
Secondly, the new-gen Windows PCs are seen to be better choices when it comes to gaming. With video games becoming more and more immersive, there’s a large need for high-spec laptops that house the latest graphic cards. Moreover, a significant number of video games that have hit markets recently aren’t compatible with macOS.
The last but important reason for switching to a Windows PC is the abundance of free applications and utilities. Similarly, availing of tech support can be more time-consuming and expensive in the case of Macbooks as compared to Microsoft devices.
Challenges of switching over to a Windows device
Getting to the actual problem at hand, here’s a short description of some of the most common problems you might encounter while shifting to a Microsoft device from an Apple product.
1. Getting started
One of the first challenges you’ll be facing is in creating an altogether new Microsoft account to get started. The process is more or less similar to creating an Apple ID. Search for the Microsoft account webpage on a browser of your choice and click on Create New Account. Type in your Email address and a password of your choice.
You’ll next need to verify the email by clicking on the verification link sent to the email address that you typed in earlier. Once signed in, this single account will give you access to most if not all Microsoft services like Office, OneDrive, Bing, Surface, MSN, and Outlook. You’ll also need the same account credentials to further download other applications from the Windows Store.
2. Familiarizing yourself with the screen layout
Since Windows and Macbooks run on two separate operating systems, there’s a considerable change in the layout between the two. It might take a while for you to get used to the new layout and work out how to navigate across multiple applications smoothly. For instance, the Spotlight function in Apple devices is replaced here with a search bar that makes it fairly simple to look for files containing images, videos, or documents.
In a similar vein, the option to minimize or close a specific tab is located in the right corner of the tab in cases of Windows, whereas the same is located on the left in cases of Macbooks.
The same rule applies to some of the basic utilities as well. So here, TextEdit gets replaced by Notepad, Notes by OneNote, Stickies by Sticky Notes, Terminal by Command Prompt, Preview by Windows Photo Viewer, iMovies by Windows Media Maker, and iWork by the infamous Microsoft Office.
3. Learning about the new kind of keyboard
While the above points have all dealt with software, this next challenge has to do with hardware, more specifically the keyboard. There’s a sizeable difference between the two and there definitely is a learning curve attached to the process of learning how to use one.
Like, for example, the Command key that you would have used infrequently on a Mac keyboard for easing the performing of tasks through a Shortcut or two doesn’t exist here and you’ll go have to go back to using the Control key instead.
4. Transferring data from an older device
Your older laptop might house a group of sensitive documents or a priceless photo album from the past. You’ll obviously want to transfer them to your newer device, but since it’s not an Apple product, AirDrop wouldn’t work. You might have to resort to using an external hard drive to transfer files.
But, this could present a complication if the files are formatted in such a way that they could only be read on Apple products. A converter would have to make use of first before transferring the files. If an external hard drive is hard to come by, then Google Drive, OneHub, or similar file-sharing applications can be made use of as well.
As far as email entries are concerned, Emailchemy is your best bet at making the transfer easy. Browser data should be fairly easy to transfer given that accounts can be synced across devices at the press of a button.
5. Protecting your precious computer
It’s a well-established fact that all Windows devices are prone to cyberattacks at a much more alarming rate in comparison to Macbooks. This is attributed to the fact that downloading applications or files from third-party websites are much easier on Windows PCs as opposed to Macbooks.
To protect your device from such malicious cyberattacks, make sure that you make the best use of Windows Defender, an in-built security tool on all Microsoft devices. Enable firewalls to protect you from unwanted threats and use the latest Antivirus software. While free versions are available of the same, the premium version affords an extra layer of security which could prove to be invaluable.
In a similar vein, you can protect your pricey laptop from external threats like theft or natural calamities like a fire, a lightning strike, or a volcanic eruption by availing insurance for your laptop. It might seem like an unnecessary expense, but it can prove to be worthwhile in the longer run. Moreover, in most situations, laptop insurance is a part of the renter’s insurance.
6. Managing Windows updates
Unlike in the case of macOS, Windows does not provide notifications in case a new update is available to let you make an informed choice, but instead automatically installs the latest updates.
This is in a bid to keep your laptop protected from newer threats that only seem to be proliferating at a rapid pace. But, there is an option to bypass this step and install the latest update manually at will.
So, those were some of the most common challenges you may encounter while switching from a Macbook to a Windows PC. Staying one step ahead of the curve can help you identify if something goes wrong while making the transition.