My bias: I primarily run Linux (writing this on a Debian workstation), so I suppose I might be more of a "Microsoft basher" than an "Apple fanboy."
However, one thing I will say about Apple is that it has arguably the best customer service of any large company I have ever dealt with in ANY FIELD.
Fortunately, Apple products tend to "just work" and continue "just working" so I don't have to deal with service that much. However, when I have I have been impressed.
When I called Apple support for a particularly obscure software problem, within I got conferenced in with an OS X software engineer who had kernel HFS code in front of him. Keep in mind, this was the standard consumer 800-number level support! How often would this happen at, say, Microsoft?
I broke one of the mechanical components of my iPhone, walked into an Apple store, and within ten minutes walked out with a replacement phone - no arguing, frustration, or upselling attempted. Along the same vein, a friend of mine had a laptop that was YEARS off warranty, and when the DVD drive finally died Apple still offered to repair it at no charge.
I've even gone into the Apple store to look at accessories like earphones and had a salesperson tell me that a different retailer was having a sale that I should check out to save money.
My point I suppose is that the "Apple tax" (or what I would more formally refer to as the "brand premium") is in no small part to pay for having a large number of well-trained (even more with respect to customer interaction than technical skill) employees with sufficient authority to actually deal with problems. Apple takes the attitude that customer satisfaction is more important than low prices - and I thank them for it.