4.07.2006

If Microsoft gets heat for playing monopoly, should Apple tread carefully in PC territory?



I know this sounds crazy and I normally wouldn't post something like this unless I thought it had merit. Before I get blasted (I’m just waiting on the Mac fans to go ballistic) I am hoping that people will read what I have to say and consider that this is only a blog, it’s not the gospel. I am simply throwing out a theory that seems plausible.

About six months ago my brother (our CEO) proposed a whacked out theory that Apple might start an “OS war” in 2006. Needless to say I all but dismissed it – until recently. His theory was that Apple would lure people in with their sexy hardware and introduce flexible OS configurations by allowing users to install Windows on their Macs. This would allow new non Mac users a taste of Mac OS in hopes of them “making the final switch” to Apple. I thought he was nuts, I didn’t quite believe that Apple would allow Windows to be installed on their systems - that until Boot Camp was launched.

Personally I have had a long look at Apple’s latest OS, and I don’t appreciate it as much as many of my friends do. I am not sure how to describe my feelings for it other than to say they made it too simple for someone who appreciates complexity. I believe Apple designs PCs for those who hate machines, but love what the machines can do for them. Apple hardware is sexy no doubt, but again it’s too simplistic for me, I’m a gamer and I need maximum power and flexibility.

Even though I may prefer Windows over Mac OS - Apple is essentially giving the choice to their customers and in the process they introduced a new variable which few people have considered. This could be dangerous for other large OEMs if they don’t learn how to play with this younger, edgier generation of consumers.

On another note, after Apple announced their partnership with Intel I knew there was a good chance that they would increase their market share to around 8% by January of 2007 (by way of Intel). In fact I had somewhat of a friendly bet with the CEO of another major OEM about this (you know who you are). He completely disagreed and was willing to bet that Apple would not come close to 8% North American market share by January of 2007.

I think it’s evident now that Apple will gain share in the mainstream market - and thanks to Boot Camp it’s more likely to happen now than ever before. Apple is now officially “unofficially” allowing customers to install Windows on their Macs.

Does this mean that they may have planted the seeds of a monopoly? Could major Windows based OEMs sue Apple if they do not make their OS available to them? Will Microsoft put the boots to Apple – or do they like the fact that people are installing their OS on more machines? Short term thinking makes me believe Microsoft doesn’t care - but long term thinking says it might be more of a threat than Linux and Google combined.

Here are just a few implications to Apple Boot Camp.

Implications to Apple:
Apple hardware is quite desirable. They may use this opportunity to give Windows users a taste of MAC OS. Ultimately this means people may switch if they find the Apple operating system easier / better than Windows.

Apple will grow to 8% U.S. market share by January 2007. Global market share will also grow very quickly with jet fuel from Intel.

If Apple can sell a piece of hardware with software that no one else can buy – there may be some people out there that view this as “Monopolistic”. Although nothing that Apple is doing now shows behavior of a monopoly, who knows what could happen down the road. As I said above, they may have planted the seeds to something bigger.

If Microsoft can be sued for unfair competition by Netscape and the like, Apple might be challenged for unfair competition by other large OEMs. The United States is a fairly litigious society, wackier lawsuits have been launched.

Something tells me Apple may ultimately release their OS and unofficially allow others to do as they please with it.

Implications to big OEMs:
Oh oh, unless big OEMs start implementing some real outside of the box thinking to their designs in order to attract this younger edgier generation of consumers they could be in trouble, at least in the consumer space. At the same time it might be wise to work a deal with Apple to install Mac OS on their systems – or alternatively variations of Linux may need to be elevated to the next level.

Dell may rely on Alienware to create cool products to compete for design as they continue to evaluate their relationship with Intel. Gee, I wonder where Michael got the foresight to plan to compete against the pending threat from Apple. He must have some smart people working for him.

Implications to Microsoft:
The $150,000,000 that Microsoft used to bail Apple out (or bail Microsoft out depending on who you speak with) a number of years ago seems to have come back to haunt them in an odd ironic sort of way. I am sure Microsoft is considering “all of the above” and there are various opinions at the Redmond Campus. Some are probably hoping that this problem will just go away. Others realize that Vista getting delayed doesn’t help.

Microsoft could have an issue if Apple decides to license their OS to other OEMs. This could prove to be a huge problem in the long run. At the same time, why should they worry? Doesn't Bill own a big chunk of Apple?

Regardless of the situation I hope that Vista will be the ultimate operating system leaving little choice for the consumer. I am quite open minded on this point, I love Vista so far so I’m pretty optimistic. I love the built in media center features, the support for multiple displays, and all the rest.

I can only imagine what Bill Gates is thinking at this moment. Bill, if you get a minute please drop me an email, I’d like to know what you’re thinking.

On another note, here is the link to the Mac on Windows benchmarks.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

I thought that the main reason Microsoft bailed Apple out was that, as long as Apple existed as a viable choice with a significant number of users, Microsoft could not be accused of being a monopoly. If this is the case, then it will be truly ironic for Apple to be the one being sued as a monopoly, no?

Surya said...

I totally agree with you but I think Apple has a while to go to become a monopoly. I think in that repsect Apple is quite safe. But yes because of their hardware package, the way it looks mostly, people will want to try out their hardware and now that they see that Windows OSes are running quite well on those machines, Apple has basically accomplished the first step of luring users of Windows into the world of Mac. A lot of people despite installing XP or what have you, will tinker and play with OS X and then quite possibly think "Hey this pretty sweet!" and stick to OS X. Apple is hoping for that IMO and that will allow them to sell both hardware AND software. Very cunning plan on the part of Apple I must say.

While on the topic of OS X, I have to agree that it is a very nicely done and userfriendly implementation of UNIX. I am pretty sure people will be perplexed seeing userfriendly and UNIX all in the same sentence but Apple has pulled off the impossible. However, I am so familiar to the Start Menu that even if I buy a Mac in the future, I am going to use both OSes and not switch totally. I need my games after all and because games are driving the current hardware innovations, seeme to me that performance and features in the Windows side of things will be always a bit greater than the Mac side of things.

Anonymous said...

What about Apple's behaviour has changed to make you think that they are now behaving monopolistically? Apple has been selling hardware with software that no one else can use (the Mac OS) for years; so what has changed?
Microsoft used anticompetitive practices such as forcing customers to bundle IE for free thus killing the browser market and reducing consumer choice. The only change here is that Apple is actually giving the consumer more choice. If anything this move has removed the monopoly that was the market for Mac computers' OS. That used to be a monopoly owned by Apple. Now the consumer can choose between OSX and Windows. Am I missing something?

Tris said...

I suppose the difference between Apple and Microsoft is that Microsoft are only selling software, while Apple are selling hardware/software "bundles" - or were, at any rate. Up to now, a lot of people like Mac hardware and have taken MacOS as necessary to use it; but now, they can install windows on their Mac, they can have the best of both worlds. Surely Microsoft have only extended their market? Vista will still be shipped as standard with any shop-bought PC, which is always going to be the major market share...

Peter Cohen said...

The fascinating thing from where I sit is that when a Mac runs Dual Boot and XP, it *is* a PC. So we can finally benchmark Macs the same way we benchmark PCs and come up with a reasonable estimation of how well Apple has done.

So far, our own tests show that Macs running XP benchmark in games quite similarly to what you'd expect on similiar hardware.

Obviously the implication for gaming on the Mac is huge -- this might decimate "hardcore" Mac game porting efforts, but it's also likely to draw a lot of people to the platform who'd never looked at it before.

The other thing it's likely to do is light a fire under Apple's ass to improve performance of key elements of Mac OS X (like OpenGL) when we find out how big the delta is between Mac ports and their PC equivalents operating on the same hardware. If there's a 20 or 30 percent difference in, say, Doom 3, working on the same Mac box, Apple is going to have to look long and hard at what it's doing and figure out how to do it better.

Half-Life 2 plays freakin' GREAT on my 20-inch iMac, btw.

Peter Cohen said...

"The $150,000,000 (give or take?) that Microsoft used to bail Apple out a number of years ago seems to have come back to haunt them in an odd sort of way

That $150 million didn't "bail Apple out", Rahul. Apple had before then and after plenty of money in the bank, though I admit its stock and market cap was in the friggin' toilet. And THAT'S why money changed hands.

That money bought non-voting shares of Apple stock -- it was a token gesture designed to bolster Apple's reputation on Wall Street -- not to keep the lights on in Cupertino.

Anonymous said...

The biggest surprise for PC users "if" they make the switch to apple is the cost of replacement parts. If their Motherboard (logic board in apple lingo)ever dies, the cost to replace it is 80% of what they originally paid. For example, just do a google search for "Imac g5 logic board" and you get the great deal of $879.95.
You don't have this issue with PC parts.

Anonymous said...

I don't think this amounts to much. Nobody is going to buy Mac hardware just to run Windows. If you have the hardware, you might do it for the geek factor. Or if you're a Mac devotee, you're going to do it to get access to something not available natively.

The 800 lbs gorilla is when will Apple annouce a 086 version of OSX. It's totally possible, actually logical. The fastest way to grow market share is not building better hardware, it's by co-opting existing PC desktops. Think of all waves Linux has made for Msoft. What would a slick Unix derivative like OSX do?

Are you more likely to drop $500+ on hardware to taste the Apple experience, or drop $100 on an OS to taste the experience.

When OSX for 086 is ready, then the switching questions really begin.

Anonymous said...

The triumph of the Underdogs (AMD & Apple)

Can apple bail out Intel from their troubles ?

just a relatively normal guy said...

What the hell are you saying? Apple's on the verge of becoming a monopoly? With 3% of the global market, you're fretting about a monopoly? Give yourself a shake, man!
In fact, give yourself 2 shakes, cuz you sound downright pompous pronouncing how you need maximum power and flexibility because you're a gamer, and therefore you need a blistering rock'em sock'em PC. If there ever was a monopolistic, bloodsucking behemoth on the landscape, it's Microsoft and the stolen pearl called Windows. And THAT is the cold hard fact. But like so many other self-styled rebel "Gamers" out there, you trip over your own rhetoric after a while.
There's plenty of real people out there who for years have ALSO need raw computing power to get things done, people like publishers and producers and musicians and graphic artists and engineers.....and many of them use Apple products. You don't think these influence of these industries completely DWARFS the trivial world of computer gaming ?.....oops, i almost forgot... you're one of the countless nerdy pundits writing a blog about Apple becoming a monopoly. Now i get it.

tmolnar said...

Just relying on my 25 yrs of using macs (and pc's), to be honest I have never had a mac motherboard go bad. I have run a lot of labs and seen a lot of machines, never seen it happen, though I am sure there must be some failures which if not covered by Apple Care would require purchase of new MB's. Still by that time (3 years later) why would you want an 'older' or even new MB to go into the now "antiquated" architecture of your pc, when for a bit more you could just get a new machine ???
The normal cost arguments really don't hold much in the mac world as I have experienced as the cost of ownership is much less than the pc's on average. Gardner and other research groups have pretty well substantiated this over the years, though to be honest I am not sure what their latest stuff might say.

For the second "anonymous" poster, OS X for for intel x86 chips is already here. Did you mean to say if/when Apple allows their OS to be run on non apple x86 hardware, then you will have that furry 800lb gorilla (?). The outcome of that I think would be hard to predict. Still it would be very interesting to see what happens if Apple allows their OS to move off their own hardware. One possibility is that the consumer actually reaps some benefit through a greater abilty to compare and choose computing options measured out on a fairly clear "playing ground".

regards,

Rahul Sood said...

Anonymous said...

I thought that the main reason Microsoft bailed Apple out was that, as long as Apple existed as a viable choice with a significant number of users, Microsoft could not be accused of being a monopoly.


Yep, I do belivee that was part of it. Funny how they ended up richer in the process :)

If this is the case, then it will be truly ironic for Apple to be the one being sued as a monopoly, no?

Well, I don't think they'll be sued for "being a monopoly" - but it's fair to assume that people may consider it unfair competition in the long run. I think Apple may end up licensing their OS. If they do it on specific hardware specifications then they have nothing to lose and lots to gain.

Friday, April 07, 2006 1:47:07 PM

Surya said...

I totally agree with you but I think Apple has a while to go to become a monopoly. I think in that repsect Apple is quite safe.


Agreed there, I don't think they're a monopoly, but certainly it's worth considering. They are weilding a ton of power at the moment.

But yes because of their hardware package, the way it looks mostly, people will want to try out their hardware and now that they see that Windows OSes are running quite well on those machines, Apple has basically accomplished the first step of luring users of Windows into the world of Mac.

Yep.

A lot of people despite installing XP or what have you, will tinker and play with OS X and then quite possibly think "Hey this pretty sweet!" and stick to OS X.

My kids can't even navigate OSX. This isn't a shot to Apple fans, but man - I find it very difficult to understand. Maybe I just prefer the "ease of use" with Windows.

Apple is hoping for that IMO and that will allow them to sell both hardware AND software. Very cunning plan on the part of Apple I must say.

Very cunning indeed.

While on the topic of OS X, I have to agree that it is a very nicely done and userfriendly implementation of UNIX. I am pretty sure people will be perplexed seeing userfriendly and UNIX all in the same sentence but Apple has pulled off the impossible. However, I am so familiar to the Start Menu that even if I buy a Mac in the future, I am going to use both OSes and not switch totally.

Yeah, I am still of the mind that I don't need both OS's to do anything.

I need my games after all and because games are driving the current hardware innovations, seeme to me that performance and features in the Windows side of things will be always a bit greater than the Mac side of things.

You can still play games on the Mac, now - just not nearly as well on the PC.

Friday, April 07, 2006 1:51:13 PM

Anonymous said...

What about Apple's behaviour has changed to make you think that they are now behaving monopolistically?


Nothing. I didn't say they were behaving like a monopoly.

Apple has been selling hardware with software that no one else can use (the Mac OS) for years; so what has changed?

Nothing, other than the fact that they are now planting the seeds to compete in an entirely different space.

Microsoft used anticompetitive practices such as forcing customers to bundle IE for free thus killing the browser market and reducing consumer choice.

Yeah, but how is that different from Apple bundling Safari? Other than size, there is no good reason that MS shouldn't bundle a browser with their OS. In fact I think an OS without a browser is downright useless.

The only change here is that Apple is actually giving the consumer more choice. If anything this move has removed the monopoly that was the market for Mac computers' OS.

That's a valid point no doubt. I'm sure Microsoft is concerned.

That used to be a monopoly owned by Apple. Now the consumer can choose between OSX and Windows. Am I missing something?

Yes, the part you're missing is what it means to compete with other hardware vendors. I'm sure - at the very least - if Apple doesn't license their OS then large OEMS will put pressure on Microsoft to stop this from happening. What a mess that could be.

Friday, April 07, 2006 1:54:54 PM

Tris
Tris said...

I suppose the difference between Apple and Microsoft is that Microsoft are only selling software, while Apple are selling hardware/software "bundles" - or were, at any rate. Up to now, a lot of people like Mac hardware and have taken MacOS as necessary to use it; but now, they can install windows on their Mac, they can have the best of both worlds. Surely Microsoft have only extended their market?


MS does extend their market - perhaps for the short-mid term. Long term perhaps Apple makes more improvements to their OS that makes it more desirable and more switchable to some users. That being said, Microsoft has a problem.

Vista will still be shipped as standard with any shop-bought PC, which is always going to be the major market share...

Yes, agreed.

Friday, April 07, 2006 2:00:50 PM

Peter Cohen said...

The fascinating thing from where I sit is that when a Mac runs Dual Boot and XP, it *is* a PC. So we can finally benchmark Macs the same way we benchmark PCs and come up with a reasonable estimation of how well Apple has done.


They've done well, by using Intel Core Duo and ATi Mobility Radeon they have effectively created a PC with mid-range performance. For mainstream users it's way more than enough power.

So far, our own tests show that Macs running XP benchmark in games quite similarly to what you'd expect on similiar hardware.

Agreed!

Obviously the implication for gaming on the Mac is huge -- this might decimate "hardcore" Mac game porting efforts, but it's also likely to draw a lot of people to the platform who'd never looked at it before.

Yes, very true.

The other thing it's likely to do is light a fire under Apple's ass to improve performance of key elements of Mac OS X (like OpenGL) when we find out how big the delta is between Mac ports and their PC equivalents operating on the same hardware. If there's a 20 or 30 percent difference in, say, Doom 3, working on the same Mac box, Apple is going to have to look long and hard at what it's doing and figure out how to do it better.

There will be a difference. Windows is simply a better environment for gaming. DirectX 10 is going to be a very compelling reason to play games on a Windows based PC.

Half-Life 2 plays freakin' GREAT on my 20-inch iMac, btw.

No doubt.

Friday, April 07, 2006 2:31:58 PM

Peter Cohen said...

That $150 million didn't "bail Apple out", Rahul. Apple had before then and after plenty of money in the bank, though I admit its stock and market cap was in the friggin' toilet. And THAT'S why money changed hands.


Well, some say it was to keep Apple going in order to take pressure off of Microsoft for being a perceived monopoly.

That money bought non-voting shares of Apple stock -- it was a token gesture designed to bolster Apple's reputation on Wall Street -- not to keep the lights on in Cupertino.

Yeah, perhaps.

Friday, April 07, 2006 2:35:08 PM

Anonymous said...

The biggest surprise for PC users "if" they make the switch to apple is the cost of replacement parts. If their Motherboard (logic board in apple lingo)ever dies, the cost to replace it is 80% of what they originally paid. For example, just do a google search for "Imac g5 logic board" and you get the great deal of $879.95.
You don't have this issue with PC parts.


That's true. Great point!

Friday, April 07, 2006 3:26:26 PM

Anonymous said...

I don't think this amounts to much. Nobody is going to buy Mac hardware just to run Windows.


True, but if they have the choice they might.

If you have the hardware, you might do it for the geek factor. Or if you're a Mac devotee, you're going to do it to get access to something not available natively.

True.

The 800 lbs gorilla is when will Apple annouce a 086 version of OSX. It's totally possible, actually logical. The fastest way to grow market share is not building better hardware, it's by co-opting existing PC desktops. Think of all waves Linux has made for Msoft. What would a slick Unix derivative like OSX do?

Great point, thanks for the comment.

Are you more likely to drop $500+ on hardware to taste the Apple experience, or drop $100 on an OS to taste the experience.

Hmmm, depends on the user I guess.

When OSX for 086 is ready, then the switching questions really begin.

Yep, good point - do you think they will make it available to install on any PC? That's the million dollar question.

Friday, April 07, 2006 3:43:24 PM

Anonymous said...

The triumph of the Underdogs (AMD & Apple)

Can apple bail out Intel from their troubles ?


Intel will bail themselves out eventually. They are too big, too powerful, and they have too much money.

Friday, April 07, 2006 4:24:24 PM

just a relatively normal guy said...

What the hell are you saying? Apple's on the verge of becoming a monopoly?


Nope, did I say that?

With 3% of the global market, you're fretting about a monopoly?

I'm not fretting about anything.

you sound downright pompous pronouncing how you need maximum power and flexibility because you're a gamer, and therefore you need a blistering rock'em sock'em PC.

:) Try playing a game at 2560x1600 with maximum detail enabled on your PC. When you can't - then you'll understand my point.

If there ever was a monopolistic, bloodsucking behemoth on the landscape, it's Microsoft and the stolen pearl called Windows.

You sound like a Mac fan.

And THAT is the cold hard fact. But like so many other self-styled rebel "Gamers" out there, you trip over your own rhetoric after a while.

I don't get it.

There's plenty of real people out there who for years have ALSO need raw computing power to get things done, people like publishers and producers and musicians and graphic artists and engineers.....and many of them use Apple products.

Yes, they do. The software on the Apple makes sense for these consumers. ..but if Apple licenses their OS to other companies you'll suddenly realize that you could have been doing things much faster on other systems.

You don't think these influence of these industries completely DWARFS the trivial world of computer gaming ?....

No, I don't. You are probably in your 40's I'm guessing. Gamers are the next generation of influential buyers - don't kid yourself.

Bob said...

I know quite a few people who actually don't or haven't played around with Windows that much and have always had a mac. I think in some cases this could go the other way for Apple when some of those users start booting into windows more than they do into OS X - grabbing a PC the next time around ;)

Parker said...

I don't think Microsoft has anything to worry about unless you can put OSX on a none Mac machine easily (I know it can be done but it is a pain in the butt). I think that the ability to have XP on a Mac is only compelling to the computer uneducated. No one that I know who likes computers would switch over to a Mac even with XP. Have you tried opening a Mac up ever? You can't really do anythign to them. Sure the engineering is amazing but it won't be fun if I can't tweak it, color it, mod it, and build it. You can't really do that so much with a Mac. If the mobo goes bad you don't get the joy of picking out a new one and testing it out and having fun with it, you take your Mac to the Apple store. Lastly I personally just hate the Mac OS(7-X). I had to use them in high school and I hated every minute of it. Windows is just much much easier to use.

relatively normal said...

Apple, on the verge of becoming a monopoly? Did you say that? Basically, Rahul, yes, you did. If you didn't say it, you certainly suggested it. That was the cheap journalistic point of your article, planting seeds and all that....remember? Don't play footsie with words. And don't for a nanosecond talk to me about doing things faster on a PC.... I've spent countless hours bailing out my own brother, who has firewalls on top of firewalls, and spyware looking out for spyware, and security updates every week or so, just so he doesn't have worms crawling thoughout his Windows hard drive....he shoveled smoke for 8 years before I finally him convinced him to stop whining and try a goddam Mac. I will grant you that PC's are great for games. But games are (no offense) completely and utterly trivial. There's starving people in this world. Don't you dare talk to me about doing REAL things faster on a PC.

Anonymous said...

Sure the engineering is amazing but it won't be fun if I can't tweak it, color it, mod it, and build it. You can't really do that so much with a Mac.


What about those of us who have better things to do than worry about what outfit the processor is wearing?


I just want it to work, a feat which apple does wonderfully.

Anonymous said...

Your post is relatively pointless.

If you are afraid that your brother is too dumb to handle a PC then lock him into a guest account.

I don't have anti virus, firewall, or anything and have never gotten a virus in using a PC for 10 years. All it takes is a bit of intelligence.

Sure when I am helping some clueless fool I put anti virus on b/c I know they will try to illegally download crap, or do something else stupid and get a virus, but if you are intelligent you don't have viruses, worms, or spyware crawling all over your system.

People are starving ROFL, yeah so quit making movies, b/c we all know movies are so much more important than games, and music as well. Without your britney spears you might die of dissapointment.

Engineers, well maybe where you are, I sure don't see many macs in engineers offices.

relatively normal.... said...

Hmm....now you've further broadened a pretty dumb discussion by insulting my beloved brother and introducing a real tight argument about PC's being virus free. You're correct on both counts, of course. No sane person would ever seriously claim that PC's are more prone to viruses than Macs. The notion is preposterous. And when computer illiterates do stupid stuff like open anonymous attachments, well they've simply got it coming. Any hardcore gamer knows that. (Inhale marijuana here) Plus, only really smart people use PC's. Cuz real computers are incredibly complicated, and what's going on under the hood would make most peoples heads spin....So I take back every ignorant syllable i've said. Are we friends now? Geez, I can't help thinking i touched a nerve somehow. (By the way, I AM an electrical engineeer, and I DO use a mac.) And oh yes....just in case you didn't know, people aren't actually starving in movies. The people you see are just actors. They are simply playing roles. Documentaries are different. They show real starving people. But you can't watch documentaries if you're eating popcorn and playing computer games all the time. It's simply not possible....so i say to all you happy little lardass gamers, do yourself a favor, and face up to some REAL gore once in a while.

Sharikou, Ph. D said...

I think it's far simpler than all the convoluted theories you have discussed: Apple is just planning to become a true PC vendor. It will come out with cute little Windows PC boxes with cute VIIV labels that can be sold at $300 higher than Dell's dull little boxes with identical internal components -- Intel processor, Intel chipset, Intel network card, the 3 elements of V//V. Apple will get the $200 extra profit, and Intel will take $100. Dell left with nothing.

It's called fashion.

Right now, it's not possible for Apple to sell standalone Mac OS X software -- drivers missing.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't Bill own 49% of Apple?

ehm, no, he doesn't. you're joking?

Anonymous said...

Apple's Bootcamp might steal a few % of the OS marketshare, but they won't get much of the business market that Steve surely wants to gain a significant share of.

Virtualisation might gain a greater pie of that pie, but is Windows on MacIntel going to be any more reliable? No.

The one benefit might be migration from Win to MacOS, but unlikely.

In the short term the Windows foothold seems unlikley to be dislodged by dual-booting Macs or Virtualisation - both of which add to M$ coffers anyway through licensing.

The long term looks good though when you consider the one stop shop for hardware and software support ... now that is hard to get these days.

A hint to Mac resellers ... learn Windows fast, get that cross platform network setup with Exchange, et al.

I'm looking forward to the next few years - selling my skills for Windows to Mac migration and integration. It's all good.

...

Anonymous said...

There is a whole generation of that has only really known iPod and that has an Apple logo on it. They are the buyers and it will be fun to see this play out in real numbers.

Fun times!

Rahul Sood said...

Bob said...

I know quite a few people who actually don't or haven't played around with Windows that much and have always had a mac. I think in some cases this could go the other way for Apple when some of those users start booting into windows more than they do into OS X - grabbing a PC the next time around ;)


True, Vista will be compelling. Although OSX is one beautiful platform.

Friday, April 07, 2006 8:04:16 PM

Parker
Parker said...

I don't think Microsoft has anything to worry about unless you can put OSX on a none Mac machine easily (I know it can be done but it is a pain in the butt).


It may be possible in the near future. Perhaps the very near future.

I think that the ability to have XP on a Mac is only compelling to the computer uneducated. No one that I know who likes computers would switch over to a Mac even with XP. Have you tried opening a Mac up ever? You can't really do anythign to them.

The idea is you don't have to - thus it's designed for those who hate machines who love what the machines can do for you.

Sure the engineering is amazing but it won't be fun if I can't tweak it, color it, mod it, and build it.

A Mac is not for everyone, most def.

You can't really do that so much with a Mac. If the mobo goes bad you don't get the joy of picking out a new one and testing it out and having fun with it, you take your Mac to the Apple store. Lastly I personally just hate the Mac OS(7-X). I had to use them in high school and I hated every minute of it. Windows is just much much easier to use.

I find Windows much easier to use, no doubt. Although people who buy Macs hate PCs for the same reason that you love them. It's like someone once told me "the number of people who switch are similar to those who switch the other way." The part that he missed was if Mac gives their customers the choice, what does that mean? Well if you're a large OEM it could mean trouble.

Friday, April 07, 2006 8:10:47 PM

relatively normal said...

Apple, on the verge of becoming a monopoly? Did you say that? Basically, Rahul, yes, you did.


No, I didn't.

If you didn't say it, you certainly suggested it.

I suggested that they may be called for unfair competition if they do not make their OS available to large competitors - I still believe there's some validity behind that. Think about it.

don't for a nanosecond talk to me about doing things faster on a PC....

Why not? You can do things MUCH faster on a PC than a MAC. If you'd like I can demonstrate by simply benchmarking this Mac in Windows and benchmarking one of our PCs - the difference is ridiculous. The same goes if I install Mac OS on one of our systems - there's no performance comparison, none whatsoever.

I've spent countless hours bailing out my own brother, who has firewalls on top of firewalls, and spyware looking out for spyware, and security updates every week or so, just so he doesn't have worms crawling thoughout his Windows hard drive....

Sounds like his computer is a mess. I use one software package - Zone Alarm, and it covers everything. I also don't care if you have a Mac or PC if you don't have security software you're at risk.

he shoveled smoke for 8 years before I finally him convinced him to stop whining and try a goddam Mac

That's great, but as more users switch to Mac your beloved operating system will experience more worms,viruses, and security hacks than you could ever imagine.

I will grant you that PC's are great for games. But games are (no offense) completely and utterly trivial.

I guess that would be your opinion, I respect that.

There's starving people in this world. Don't you dare talk to me about doing REAL things faster on a PC.

I don't get it.

Friday, April 07, 2006 8:43:12 PM

Anonymous said...

What about those of us who have better things to do than worry about what outfit the processor is wearing?


Exactly, it's not for everyone as I said before.

I just want it to work, a feat which apple does wonderfully.

That's a matter of opinion. They both work. My 6 year old son finds the Mac difficult to use, although Windows he picked up fairly quickly. Same goes for my 8 year old daughter - and of all people my wife who doesn't like computers - she likes what computers can do for her.

Friday, April 07, 2006 9:27:44 PM

Anonymous said...

If you are afraid that your brother is too dumb to handle a PC then lock him into a guest account.


That's a good point.

I don't have anti virus, firewall, or anything and have never gotten a virus in using a PC for 10 years. All it takes is a bit of intelligence.

True, but it's easy to get viruses online if you're not careful. I recommend a good firewall regardless.

Sure when I am helping some clueless fool I put anti virus on b/c I know they will try to illegally download crap, or do something else stupid and get a virus, but if you are intelligent you don't have viruses, worms, or spyware crawling all over your system.

Yes, that's true.

Engineers, well maybe where you are, I sure don't see many macs in engineers offices.

Performance is everything.

Friday, April 07, 2006 9:41:54 PM

relatively normal.... said...

No sane person would ever seriously claim that PC's are more prone to viruses than Macs. The notion is preposterous.


I'm not sure if you're joking here or not. Clearly with the wide install base of Windows there will be more viruses/worms/etc. This only makes sense.

And when computer illiterates do stupid stuff like open anonymous attachments, well they've simply got it coming.

Yep.

I take back every ignorant syllable i've said. Are we friends now?

:)

Geez, I can't help thinking i touched a nerve somehow. (By the way, I AM an electrical engineeer, and I DO use a mac.)

Yeah, but do you use the Mac for CAD or Solidworks or 3D Animation.

so i say to all you happy little lardass gamers, do yourself a favor, and face up to some REAL gore once in a while.

I don't get it :)

Friday, April 07, 2006 11:29:56 PM

Sharikou, Ph. D said...

I think it's far simpler than all the convoluted theories you have discussed: Apple is just planning to become a true PC vendor. It will come out with cute little Windows PC boxes with cute VIIV labels that can be sold at $300 higher than Dell's dull little boxes with identical internal components -- Intel processor, Intel chipset, Intel network card, the 3 elements of V//V. Apple will get the $200 extra profit, and Intel will take $100. Dell left with nothing.


Yes, I believe that Apple will be able to demand a premium.

Right now, it's not possible for Apple to sell standalone Mac OS X software -- drivers missing.

Agreed, I don't think this is what would happen. They might have a list of approved hardware.

Saturday, April 08, 2006 1:23:01 AM

Anonymous said...

Doesn't Bill own 49% of Apple?

ehm, no, he doesn't. you're joking?


I was just kidding - but I do believe they have a large position of Apple.

Saturday, April 08, 2006 7:36:53 AM

Anonymous said...

Apple's Bootcamp might steal a few % of the OS marketshare, but they won't get much of the business market that Steve surely wants to gain a significant share of.


I'm not sure about that.

Virtualisation might gain a greater pie of that pie, but is Windows on MacIntel going to be any more reliable? No.

No, certainly not.

The one benefit might be migration from Win to MacOS, but unlikely.

Unlikely.

In the short term the Windows foothold seems unlikley to be dislodged by dual-booting Macs or Virtualisation - both of which add to M$ coffers anyway through licensing.

True, but the threat is people will be lured by Mac OS (or the other way around?)

A hint to Mac resellers ... learn Windows fast, get that cross platform network setup with Exchange, et al.

Yeah good hint. :)

I'm looking forward to the next few years - selling my skills for Windows to Mac migration and integration. It's all good.

It'll be interesting.

Saturday, April 08, 2006 11:05:47 AM

Anonymous said...

There is a whole generation of that has only really known iPod and that has an Apple logo on it. They are the buyers and it will be fun to see this play out in real numbers.


Yes, they are already seeing buyers as a result of iPod.

Anonymous said...

Watching the speed of Linux evolving I sometimes wonder if the future will have Windows and Mac as presentation, usability, and application inter-operability layers sitting on a linux backend. Using a Linux backend wouldn't necessarily mean interoperability between Mac, Windows, and traditional Linux apps because the layers above the kernel could be significantly different... for example Windows on Linux could forego X-Windows and use something more similar to what they have now with a DirectX focus. Really almost all the libraries that Windows apps run on could be ported to a Linux backend and with a recompile Windows apps would be... ummm, Windex apps? All the Microsoft libraries could remain proprietary and all the reasons that people buy Windows could continue to exist... but the hardware layer would be managed in the open. Darwin's BSD backend isn't too far from Linux and a Mac user probably wouldn't care if Linux was running behind Mac's UI.

If the whole industry was focused on a common open backend that would free resources at Microsoft and Apple to focus on more value added features rather than backend maintenance. One hardware driver could be written which would work for Windows, Mac, and Linux. All application platforms would run on all hardware.

Anonymous said...

Microsoft sold all its shares of non-voting stock a loooooooong time ago. For quite a handsome profit, too, I should add.

Trojan said...

First time posting on your blog, but just wanted to chime in. Windows are easier to use, atleast for me and countless other people I have talked to. I get what you mean by unfair competition, although I believe that Apple will license their OS to OEMs with specific builds, and as you said this just might be trouble for MS in the long run. I personally will not switch even if I were given a million dollars. To all those people who use XP and still hate it I say, you hypocrites!!! Now to Mr.Normal's abnormal reaction to this post, please read the first paragraph I think it clearly states that this is just specualtion and theories and NOT the gospel. I guess we are the narrow mindedones because we think that all gamers are pot smoking, useless mofos. I am from a third world country, so I know what real gore is. Yes I am also an avid gamer, and I refuse to give up all the pleasure s of life just because the worlds a mess. Yes we should work towards making it better, but we can do that without overtly sacrificing ourselves. So please stop hating gamers, just because they are what drives the consumer markets, they are the new computer consumers, and people like me will shape the computer market.

That is all I had to say. If I think of anymore I will drop a line again.

Btw Rahul, I do like reading your blog, makes it simpler to keep up with the industry. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

There's another viewpoint why this will never lure PC users to buy Macs.
I haven't 'bought a new PC' in years. This year I'll do MB's, processor and RAM (I'm waiting for some dual cores to show up the door right now). That's maybe $600. Next year I'll do drives and video card. $500 max. This is common practice among PC users. So, I'm always at the current generation of performance. There is no direct equivalent for swapping the board and processor on a Mac. You can get a new video card and add RAM (but slower, say PC3200, not PC8500). And there's no way I'd stick with the same PC for five years. This industry moves exponentially, not linearly. I see no reason not to take advantage of increased computing power.
Now, I'm not a gamer, but it seems uninformed to think that segment doesn't have a big impact driving performance. My PC's keep getting more and more synergistic and able to provide that instant feedback that drive a kinetically positive computing experience, even when I'm bouncing multiple 24/96khz audio tracks, or encoding DVD quality video.

Sana said...

Rahul,

AMD released its quarterly numbers and absolutely blew away expectations. So much for those analysts who recommending selling the stock, eh?

Link