A diehard Apple fan, that I am, it pains me to write what I am going to write. The new Apple IBook with its brilliant $999 price, and all the cool features pales in comparison with Averatec 3250for the same price point. For a Windows XP PC, it is pretty radical and cool looking, has more hard drive capacity (60GB), more in-built RAM (512 Megabytes) and has all a DVD+ CD-Burner. IBook has 30 gigabyte hard drive, and 256 MB built-in memory. Two points for Averatec. Averatec has 3 USB 2.0 ports, while Apple has two. Another point for 3250. The IBook scores a bonus point because it has a Firewire port.
Both computers evenly matched up on Airport and other networking stuff. Averatec is 0.4 pounds lighter, and its sleek silver casing does stand-up to IBook’s cool lush white looks, though given my bias, Apple has a certain “Euro” feel to it. In other words Averatec is not as hideous as a Gateway, Dell or a HP computer. Given that, I think the two computers are tied in the looks, and weight department. Extra Half-point to Apple for a smarter charger unit.
Mobile AMD Athlon XP-M 2200 processor is the crucial difference, and is more brisk in comparison to Apple’s 1.2 GHz Power PC . Averatec is simply more brisk. The screen quality is far superior on 3250 than IBook. The screen resolution is pretty much the same, at 1024 X 768, though I think Averatec has better graphics chip or at least that’s what it looks to me. I think these add up to about two points in favor of 3250. So far, Averatec has 5 points, to IBook’s 1.5 points. Apple’s OS-X gets 1.5 points, while its virus free and ease of use features merit another point. (Chris Holland explains the rationale behind this!) All told, Apple IBook walks away with 4 points. I am going to deduct half a point for Windows XP, and that would give Averatec 3250 4.5 points. Yup, that’s correct folks, Averatec wins this one, and if I had to buy someone a computer, 3250 would be my bet.
(PS: At higher price points, IMAC and Powerbook 15 inch win hands down against any Windows XP computer when it comes to value for money, and lifelong happiness.)