There's been a lot of discussions and debates in numerous threads the last couple of weeks about the desktop computer being a dead end evolutionary and that laptops now are the way to go and the future of computers (and Apple), and frankly a laptop is so much better, not because it's a laptop per say, but as a computer overall. I'd like to point out some objective and personal points that sheds some light on why this to most of us isn't true, and have a discussion of desktops vs. laptops that takes up more than performance vs. cost. Why an iMac would be a better choice if your intention is using a computer at a desktop: - Bigger screen. Let's take the obvious first. An iMac has a much bigger screen, which to most people is vital for their work. And yes - you can hook up an external one, but that still leaves you with a laptop screen, that might be of little use, and you can't turn off. (Also, part of the price is for the screen) - Screen placement(s). When faced with different sized screen it's harder to position them well if you intend to use both, but also if you intend to use only the external (think placing a Mac Mini vs. a MacBook.). And if you need more than one external monitor it becomes just silly. - Clutter. If hooking up a laptop to a monitor, you are left with a laptop standing there also, and if you have no or little use for the screen, it could just as well be integrated behind your big monitor - oh look at that! Hello iMac! - More clutter. It's harder to hook things up to a laptop in a neat way compared to the iMac. On a laptop it all goes on the sides, on the iMac - barely seen on the back. (Side note: this is something that Apple has focused on in the past, dating back to the white iMac design, and been proud of and used it as a selling point and still does) - Ports. An iMac or any desktop computer for that matter come with more ports than any laptop. I realize there's enough ports for most people, but personally I always have 4+ things connected via USB, this wouldn't be possible on a laptop, especially not if the USB devices require a lot of power (not sure how this would work now with USB 3.0, but for sake of argument, let's keep this about USB 2.0). Also - ethernet ports are disappearing from laptops, and I'd like to keep my computer wired for numerous reasons. - Keyboard. Full sized keyboards are favorable for most things, many people use a great deal more on keyboards than the part that comes with laptops. I couldn't get by without the numpad, and yes I know there's add-ons and software for the touch pad to get around that, but why do that when there's a perfect solution already - a full sized keyboard. And even if some people don't care about the size or type of keyboard, there's the placement of it. - Peripherals placement. For extended periods of time working at a computer, the laptop will not win many prices for it's ergonomics. Most users, if using an external monitor and the laptop as a desktop substitute, will use an external keyboard, but then again.. why did I pay for an integrated keyboard if I'm not gonna use it? It's not practical to use the laptop's keyboard if you have an external monitor connected, period. The same things applies to the touchpad, external touch pads, wireless or wired mice and other doo-das. - Paying for portability. Can't make it any clearer than that really on this point. Part of the price of a laptop is the portability, you sacrifice this portability not only for money, but also for things mentioned above, and also for performance. - Performance and components. Desktops and laptops does not use the same components. Okay well.. the iMac uses mobile graphic cards, but we all know the reason for that, it's an all-in-one, takes less power, less heat. Graphics aside (even though the mobile ones in the iMac are still better than the ones in laptops), a desktop have better processors, desktop processors, and other components that yield more computer power, and faster computer power. - Noise level. Power = Heat = Noise well, almost. Desktop computers have more power, which generates more heat, which should generate more noise compared to a laptop faced with the same task. Desktops, iMacs especially, have more sophisticated cooling systems for it's form factor, and will run cooler and quieter, it's not as much as a compromise as it is for laptops. - Longevity and aimed usage. Laptops aren't work horses, neither are iMacs compared to Mac Pro's, but more so than laptops. Laptops are astonishingly well designed and have high performance today - yes, but heavy tasks will tear on a laptop more easily than on a desktop. iMacs might not be the perfect comparison on this point, but there's still a difference. - Laptop components aren't designed to be used as desktop substitutes. The components of a laptop aren't designed nor powerful enough to be as good as a desktop when hooked up to one or more external monitors. The laptop works best when it's used as a laptop. It's best at what it's designed for. These are some of the things I think about when reading the desktop is dead and that laptops are just as good. Some people seem to view the entire world of computers as just that computers, and that the computer started off as a huge machine that evolved into a desktop machine, and then later into a laptop. In my mind there was a crossroads long ago that separates computers into desktops and laptops, check how any store categorizes it's computers to see they think the same way. On this point I really don't think there's much room for having an opinion, it's fact that the computer comes in different shapes and configurations and that the computer is not just one thing that is evolving. I'm even surprised to see that iPads and other tablets are considered PC's, as if they could some day replace all current desktops and laptops. Everyone does not need portability, and most of us are not ready to sacrifice money, performance, ergonomics, longevity, noise level or our carefully planned cable logistics for a computer that at the end of the day is far from the optimal solution, when there is a better one out there. Apple might put it's money on portable devices, but the desktop era will probably never end and desktops are far from dead... if anything, tablets might kill laptops.