Calling myself a convert isn’t exactly fair — because I did still regularly use Windows computers between 2004 and early 2014. However, yes I did switch in a sense returning to windows as my primary system.
Some of the issues that led me to purchase a Windows system (HP ProBook 450 G1 to be exact), have been fixed by Apple. They have upgraded their software 10.9 to 10.9.2 and just a week ago 10.9.3. I still don’t like where Apple is going with hardware on most systems. They are essentially “sealing off” these computers so only they can repair them. This is great if you have a second computer or have second computing device. Apple Care warranty service is still really good. However, what if you have a MacBook Pro and take it somewhere to get work done (like in a hotel room or your brother’s house in Plattsburgh) and something goes wrong — and there is no Apple Store nearby? You may be stuck. However, with a Lenovo, HP or Dell business class system and the manufacturer’s extended warranty — someone will be out there THE NEXT business DAY to meet you.
I also think that Apple has secrecy going against it. Apple’s warranty support is great, but I feel like they would rather just fix the problem (if they want to go that route) then offer an explanation. In late January, when my 2012 MacBook Air was conking out on a regular basis — all Apple had to say to me was — Do you think you could hold off on using that external monitor you have plugged into your laptop for 1 month? We have a software update coming that will fix it.
While I find it extremely useful having 2 screens going at once (laptop + 1 external), I could have made that sacrifice. Apple could have kept a customer. I had no issues from day one using the external monitor with my HP. Apple eventually fixed the problem with their Feb. 28, 2014 software update (10.9.2) but I made my choice.
Note: My mixed feelings toward Apple’s computers do not apply to their mobile devices. I think the iPod Touch, iPad, and iPhone 5s / 5c are great. They will only get better.
My picks for best Windows laptops have not really changed — only the model numbers. For standard sized 14 / 15 inch, you can’t beat, Lenovo Thinkpad T440 / 540 or the Dell Latitude E6440 / 6540.