During the work from home period of the pandemic last year, I had been using my personal MacBook from 2016 as my primary computing machine for work. Since returning to work in the office this June, I had been given a Windows laptop with an i7 chip, which I assume is at least towards the high end of the speed spectrum, with 16 GB of memory. From my experience, if I was given a choice of a new Macbook with M1 or the Windows laptop, I think I would rather go with the MacBook.
The Windows laptop I was given was an HP laptop with a much bigger screen than my 12” MacBook. There were many advances in laptop technology in the last 5 years and the HP is faster with most operations. It had the advantage of a faster Intel ship, native software from Microsoft, and 16 GB of RAM to my 8 GB on the MacBook. Plus, my Macbook was barely above 1 GHz.