'Mac people' more open, liberal than PC users

A study finds that Mac users are more liberal and open-minded than PC users.

People who prefer Apple's Macintosh computers over PCs have long been considered to be on the artsy, hip end of the personality spectrum -- and now a study proves that "Mac people" indeed are more liberal and open-minded than average folks.

According to Mindset Media, people who purchase Macs fall into what the branding company calls the "Openness 5" personality category -- which means they are more liberal, less modest and more assured of their own superiority than the population at large. Mindset Media helps companies with strong brands develop ads targeted to people based on personality traits or people's "mindsets," and does research to that effect.

So-called Openness 5 types tend to seek rich, varied and novel experiences, according to the company, and believe that imagination and intellectual curiosity are as important to life as more rational or pragmatic endeavors. They also are receptive to their own inner feelings and may experience life with more emotional intensity.

The company uses Nielsen Online's panel for the Mac mindset study, the results of which are based on responses from 7,500 participants.

It's no great secret that Macs have always been popular with creative types -- the computers have been the mainstay of creative agencies and video- and sound-editing houses for years. This probably has as much to do with the fact that Apple and partners have delivered popular software for graphic and multimedia designers and artists as it does with the contemporary industrial design Macs have long reflected.

Mac users are quick to agree there is definitely a mindset among their kind of people, and aren't offended by a company profiling them according to their enthusiasm for Apple computers.

MacBook Pro user Reatha Braxton said much of the Mac mindset stems from how Apple has projected the image of its products through advertising -- natch, as she runs her own New York-based media planning and buying agency, Braxton Strategic Group.

"The whole [Mac] package -- the advertising, the design, the whole image of that is creativity," she said. Braxton, who has been in the advertising business for more than 20 years, said Macs were almost exclusively used in ad agencies, from the people designing the ads to top executives like "the CFO to the CEO."

As for the idea that Mac users possess an air of superiority, Braxton was less inclined to agree. She said that Macs actually have a pragmatic draw for their faithful because "most people who use Macs will tell you they are smarter machines than PCs, and they want to take advantage of that."

Still, Braxton did acknowledge that the idea of using the PC "alternative" has an element of cool factor that lures creative types to use Macs over more run-of-the-mill PCs. "It's cooler not to be a lemming," she said.

Igor Berstein, a computer programmer for a Web-based startup in New York, also agreed there is a Mac mindset, but he doesn't think he necessarily fits into it. He started using his MacBook Pro because, with the Unix base of the OS starting with Mac OS X, it was more convenient for him as a Linux user than a PC was.

But "since Apple thinks a lot about aesthetics, style-oriented people go for [Macs]," Berstein said. Macs also are more expensive than PCs, so people in the middle-class or upper-class who have accumulated a certain amount of wealth are mostly likely the people who can afford them, he said.

Berstein also noted that people who care more about brands are also more likely to purchase Macs over PCs. While the term "PC" refers to a computer architecture tied to more than one vendor, Macs are a subbrand tied to the strong Apple brand -- which to some is a catalyst for purchasing a Mac in and of itself, he said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Elizabeth Montalbano

IDG News Service
Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >




Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?