When considering whether you should get a Mac or PC for your child you should take into account many factors including price, usability, popularity, purpose being several of them.
Though a Macintosh computer may have a slightly easier learning curve and be more graphic and art friendly the simple fact remains is that PC’s dominate the home and business worlds and a child is better being taught on the systems that are most common and prevalent in the industry.
Often you can get a PC laptop or desktop for less than 50% of the cost of a MAC and the way computer hardware becomes outdated you will often have to update your computer every few years so you want to buy the most cost effective machine that you can.
Lets face it, kids not only need to learn computer skills but they want to have some fun with their computer as well. Windows has far more video game support, with only a fraction of the games playable on Mac OS X, so chances are you would spend the money and buy a MAC computer only to have a Windows dual boot installed for the latest and greatest games anyway.
There is much more freeware titles available for Windows than Mac, and you can get some pretty phenomenal programs for free like Paint.Net, OpenOffice, Audacity among many others. No matter what you want your child to learn there is a much more vast software library for Windows based PC’s than Macintosh.
A child will also want to have and use something that his peers are using and this should also be taken into consideration as they will often ask each other for help, advice or want to use the same software titles. Even schools now are starting to use more PC’s due to the lower hardware costs so the days of Macintosh being dominant in school are fading.
Personally I think Mac makes a higher quality Operating System and high end systems, for musicians, artists and certain media and graphic designers it is a far better system in many ways than a PC running Windows. But Windows is simply too dominant, has vastly more software choices and is far less expensive than a Mac, which makes the choice clear.
Some day Mac may be on equal terms with a PC and if your child or kid is old enough to know a specific reason to get a Mac vs a PC, then you may be convinced to get a Mac, but unless there is a specific reason your child wants a Mac and there is no good alternative on Windows, it is a better decision to get a PC. Even if you don’t want to use a Microsoft Operating System, Ubuntu and Kubuntu make fantastic alternatives and you can have an Ubuntu laptop for thirty percent of the cost of a comparable Mac OS machine.