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1 Million Windows to Mac Converts So Far in 2005

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the viva-la-pomme dept.

Apple 891

UltimaGuy writes to tell us AppleInsider is reporting that according to one Wall Street analyst over one million Windows users have switched to Mac in the first three quarters of 2005. It is speculated that these numbers are a direct result of the popularity gained through the iPod and related technologies in addition to security concerns from Microsoft. From the article: "According to checks with Apple Store Specialists, Wolf also said a larger than expected percentage of Windows to Mac converts appear to be purchasing Apple's higher-end systems and that their transition is fueled by the epidemic of viruses and malware on the Windows platform."

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891 comments

Analyze this! (5, Interesting)

Paska (801395) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973761)

While I am sure this is probably random guesses and whohar from this one analyst, I actually somewhat believe him from my observations from down-under (Australia).

As a young man that works for a family owned and quite large computer business I've over the years seen people generally not ask very many questions, to now every day hearing people wanting details on Macs, and how they compare to standard white boxes.

Now bundle this in with the fact that our local, and only Apple store is constantly flourishing with business as compared to a few years ago when it was rare to see more then 1 person at a time in there, you'll understand why it's possible Apple have converted so many users.

Just in my direct experience over the last few years, it's converted myself, my brother, my mother and a few friends of mine - (2 to be exact).

It's also at the point, and while I am growing up and establishing my future that me owning and operating a Apple franchise is highly possible.

I've also seen the websites I manage, which are local to our area, sky rocket from 5-10 hits per week from Mac users, to now over 250-300 unique Mac users per week and raising.

Apple are on to something here, and Steve Jobs knows it!

Re:Analyze this! (4, Interesting)

CRC'99 (96526) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973862)

While this isn't the only reason...

My personal situation is that I have bought 2 Mac machines in the past 6 months (does that make me 2 'converts'?) because the underlying system suits my needs better.

I spend ~45% of my time using PuTTY on a Windows machine connected to a linux server doing things that I can't do on a windows laptop without a net connection. When you have this capability locally via the OSX terminal, I can do whatever I need to on the move and not be tied to an internet connection and SSH session.

The other benefits I get is that the OS is very solid, I get all the unix tools I need, and it 'just works'.

As a Mac user (4, Insightful)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974043)

These are interesting times to be a Mac user. It's incredible to say it, but Apple is actually on the upswing after a decade of total Windows dominance. Dell's revenues and sales are down while Apple's keep growing beyond the industry average.

As a Mac user myself, I'll just say this. I don't want an Apple monopoly dominating computing; I would just like an Apple marketshare at around 35%-45% again. It would make for a much healthier market and would mean a lot more applications for Mac, instead of waiting a year later for a third-party port.

So before you Mac-hating Linux kids start flaming another Apple article, most of us just want less Windows domination. That wretched pile of crap has wasted more time and money on reboots, endless "configuration wizards," registry cleanings, spyware cleanings, resource-sucking antivirus software, and so on. It's so bad that a lot of normal people are afraid of computers and their difficulty--they don't realize it's Windows that is difficult. Computers don't have to be.

Re:Analyze this! (2, Interesting)

PickyH3D (680158) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974045)

Reminds me of how Hitachi became so big in the mass storage business (not the actual backstory, just the effects).

Still though, I don't see the trend as continuing; I love my iPod (even though it is a scratched up Nano), but I don't have any tingling urge to buy a Mac.

Then again, I'm kind of crazy when it comes to my purchases, so I may just be an anomaly. Who really knows?

"switched" or "also bought"? (4, Informative)

conJunk (779958) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973764)

TFA:

"If we assume that all of the growth in Mac shipments during the past three quarters resulted from Windows users purchasing a Mac, then purchases by Windows users exceeded one million," the analyst said. "Indeed, the number of Windows users purchasing Macs in 2005 could easily exceed our forecast of 1.3 million switchers in 2006."

TFA seems to be using "switched to" and "converted" interchangably with "purchased", implying that every Windows user who bought a Mac was turning his or her back on PCs. I don't think that has to be the case at all. If we assume that TFA is right about the reason for such good Mac sales (derriving from the strength of the ipod), then isn't it reasonable to assume that a fair number of those are people who are buying Macs not as their exclusive computer, but possibly in addition or in complement to their PCs?

Maybe the real signficance of this (assuming the numbers are correct) is that it's no longer uncool to own more than one computer!

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (4, Interesting)

dave-tx (684169) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973854)

Excellent point. I added OSX to my arsenal this past year, but did not "switch" from Windows or Linux, both of which still get daily use by me.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (2, Interesting)

Browncoat (928784) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973857)

I have a PC in my room but I use a mac in the office. If I had the money right now I'd buy a powerbook. It doesn't mean I'm switching from PC to Mac, I'm merely complimenting both machines. I want the best features of both at my disposal. I agree that Apple seems to be unfairly gauging the situation as "everyone who buys a new Mac was a disgruntled PC user"...it's certainly still very cool to have more than one computer.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (1)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973952)

Instead of a powerbook, consider an iBook.
I have an old G3 500MHz iBook, and it does just fine at websurfing and DVD playing. I do all my other stuff on my tower Mac, but an iBook is an excellent satellite, and doesn't cost as much as a powerbook.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (1)

Browncoat (928784) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974021)

Also a viable option. I do a lot of graphics work so my original interest was in a powerbook. That was last summer though...the more I'm looking at my situation now, where I'm going in my career, I think I'll stick to my trusty PC until the time is right for several computers.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973873)

The assumption is "growth in Mac shipments". It also assumes that everyone already owns a desktop.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973898)

"If we assume that all of the growth in Mac shipments during the past three quarters resulted from Windows users purchasing a Mac..."

That's a really stupid assumption, a lot of Mac buyers could either be buying their first computer or upgrading from an old Mac.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (0)

vizualizr (462581) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973947)

Even though the apps I use every day at work aren't ported to it, I'd love to have a powerbook. Same story.

There are a couple of things about this that stink of Apple propaganda to me - first of all, even if a million users worldwide switched from PC to Mac - that's still a fairly small percentage of the overall set of computer users in the world. Additionally, these mac articles never even address the fact that there might be people out there (like my parents) who bought a first generation iMac, and are now in the market for a new computer, and will probably buy a PC.

The switch works in both directions.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (1)

Cro Magnon (467622) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973979)

I didn't get rid of my Windows/Linux desktop when I bought an iBook. Actually, when I do replace my desktop, I might get one of the Intel Macs and boot between all 3 OSs.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (1)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973986)

isn't it reasonable to assume that a fair number of those are people who are buying Macs not as their exclusive computer, but possibly in addition or in complement to their PCs?

No. Outside of geek circles and people who have a dedicated work machine at home, I don't know one single household with multiple operating systems. Average people simply don't care enough about computers to have more than one.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (1)

Cro Magnon (467622) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974031)

Hmm, it seems to me that families would likely have more than one computer, at least if they have kids. Of course, money and desktop space are issues, but a lot of people are rich enough to handle it.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (4, Insightful)

plover (150551) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973994)

I don't think the distinction between 'OR' and 'XOR' is important. That they chose a 'NOT PC' is really the telling factor. Ten years ago when "average" PCs were a thousand dollars, and "average" Macs cost more than that, very few people owned more than one computer. But now, it doesn't require a financially crippling investment just to try one.

If Apple wants to call them all "switched", well, that's fine for marketing. But just having their foot in one million more doors, that's huge no matter what. And unless Apple pulls a huge boner, I would suspect most of those million will actually switch and stay switched. (At least until they get tired of Super Breakout. :-)

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (2, Interesting)

afaik_ianal (918433) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974013)

Further to that, the article makes no attempt to quantify Mac users who are buying PCs. It is all very well that a million users (who may have been PC users) have bought Macs, but if 2 million Mac users have bought PCs in the same period, then that does not bode too well for the Mac.

In fact if you use their logic, and assume that any nominal growth in market A is caused by people in market B (and disregard all other markets), it probably doesn't look good for them. (I have nothing to back it up, but I doubt the nominal growth of the PC market would be less than that of the Mac in the same period).

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (1)

defected (908047) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974029)

Exactly... I bougth mac mini but it's secondary computer used mainly for web browsing. It's going to be next to impossible for me to switch - there are just too many Windows only applications. Even the ported applications are not quite the same as in Windows and this has caused issues.

Re:"switched" or "also bought"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13974055)

But don't they actually ask people who buy from the apple store if they are upgrading from Windows?

In other news, (3, Funny)

killa62 (828317) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973777)

AOL has signed up 2 million new users for their newbie-friendly internet service thru their dell computer preinstalls alone.

Is it because I bought a Mac? (2, Informative)

garcia (6573) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973779)

Just because I bought a Mac does not make me a "convert". In fact, I don't particuarly care for OS X at all. Yeah, it does some stuff well but it's such a different UI for me that I'm just not all that comfortable using it.

I seriously hope that I'm not lumped in that 1 million figure.

Re:Is it because I bought a Mac? (5, Funny)

k4_pacific (736911) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973826)

I seriously hope that I'm not lumped in that 1 million figure.

According to the article, you were the 137,565th person to switch, sorry.

The Mac Demographic (Re:Is it because I bough...?) (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973872)

"I don't particuarly care for OS X at all... it's such a different UI for me that I'm just not all that comfortable using it."
Well, here's the problem. Mac OS X, and in fact the entire Apple experience, is intuitive for a certain kind of person. Artists, fashion mavens, leftists, and other creative personalities [atspace.com] can sit down with a 12-inch PowerBook running the iLife suite on Tiger and comprehend its sensitive, tasteful aesthetic [atspace.com]. It's a rare instinct, this appreciation for beauty and truth [atspace.com]; accountants and other such pencil-pushers haven't a prayer.

In summary, unattractive squares should stick to Linux [atspace.com] and Windows [atspace.com]. Macs are for different thinkers. [atspace.com]

* * * gallery updated 5 Nov. 2005 * * *

to be fair (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973940)

I don't particuarly care for OS X at all. Yeah, it does some stuff well but it's such a different UI for me that I'm just not all that comfortable using it.

I think you don't like change and having to learn how to do basic tasks again, rather than disliking OSX per se... ya know : )

Hang in there, it gets good.

Re:to be fair (2, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973981)

I think you don't like change and having to learn how to do basic tasks again, rather than disliking OSX per se... ya know : )

I'm not debating the reasons why. I'm refuting the article's author's assumption that because someone buys a Mac or an iPod they are instantly a "convert".

Re:Is it because I bought a Mac? (1, Insightful)

enigma48 (143560) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973969)

Just a random thought. (I agree with you completely however)

If your purchase doesn't make you a "true" convert, how many windows users are "true" windows users?

If say 100,000 aren't "true" converts, then maybe a few million of the 90 million Windows PC users are false as well. Maybe the Windows numbers are off by a few million - which makes a small difference for Windows marketshare, but potentially doubling the "true" Linux/MacOS marketshare.

Wish there was a cheap and accurate way to measure this correctly.

Re:Is it because I bought a Mac? (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974005)

If your purchase doesn't make you a "true" convert, how many windows users are "true" windows users?

What would they be a convert from? Nintendo? No, they are Windows users originally and now this article is claiming that they are Mac "converts" from Windows because they have an iPod or bought a Mac. That's entirely false!

They might be a Mac user or an iPod user but they don't necessarily have to be "converts".

Re:Is it because I bought a Mac? (1)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973983)

So... you must have bought it for the games.

If you're not quite getting the hang of OS X, You might want to devote a few minutes learning the keyboard shortcuts.

Open System Preferences, select Key Board and Mouse, click on the Key Board Shortcuts tab.
Things like the built in dictionary (ctrl+Apple+D) are quite handy.

Another thing to consider is that OS X is very Drag and Drop oriented...
try dragging and dropping items from finder to an app, or from an app to another app, or from an app to the finder. You might be surprised.

Re:Is it because I bought a Mac? (1)

jeriqo (530691) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974053)

"ust because I bought a Mac does not make me a "convert"."

I believe Apple has sold more than 1 million Macs in 2005.
The article says 1 million PC/Windows users were converted to Mac/Mac OS, period.

You're not part of it, sorry.

No Suprise Here (5, Insightful)

flakier (177415) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973784)

I just wonder what the tipping point will be before we start seeing an exponential rise in Mac malware.

Then what, the masses start switching to BSD or Linux?

Re:No Surprise Here (0, Troll)

isbhod (556556) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973818)

ummm... isn't mac 0S X BSD with a pretty interface?

Re:No Surprise Here (1)

baadger (764884) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973888)

Why yes...yes it is.
Noone bother explaining the composition of Mac OSX AGAIN. Look it up if you're curious, it's like +5 redundant already.

Re:No Suprise Here (1)

varmittang (849469) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973841)

OS X is basically a BSD.

Re:No Suprise Here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973881)

If having some BSD userspace tools and some BSD networking code makes OS X "basically a BSD", then Linux would be "basically a BSD."

Re:No Suprise Here (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973967)

But Linux doesn't have BSD userspace tools! It has GNU tools, which are different in important ways (e.g. supporting different options, supporting GNU-style long options, etc.).

Re:No Suprise Here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13974024)

$ strings /usr/bin/* |grep -i "regents of the university of california" | wc -l
30

$ uname -a
Linux localhost 2.6.12-1-686 #1 Tue Sep 27 12:52:50 JST 2005 i686 GNU/Linux

$

Re:No Suprise Here (0, Troll)

theJML (911853) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973883)

Cool, So I'm ahead of the gang, I just jumped right over Mac and went straight to Linux.

Onlly reason I haven't... (5, Interesting)

trib (184485) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973789)

... is the prohibitive cost here in Australia. The 15.2" Powerbook I want (with a spare battery and 2Gb RAM as the only upgrades) will set me back in excess of AU$4200.
I get to play with a Mac a little at work for some of my app testing, and I have serious envy of the guy whose desk it sits on...

Re:Onlly reason I haven't... (1)

Penguin Follower (576525) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973866)

Well, that's why I bought a used Mac. This way I didn't have to fork out quite so much cash and still have OS X. ;)

It's definitely no worse than Windows, and it certainly has yet to really be targeted by viruses & worms.

So for now, it's cool. OS X on my Mac, Linux/WinXP dual boot on my PC. And my webserver runs strickly Linux.

Re:Onlly reason I haven't... (1)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974007)

Well, they probably figure that if you do a lot of design, compiling, scientific computation, rendering, or AV encoding while you're unplugged for 6 hours, you can probably afford a $4200 PB.
If on the other hand you don't do much of that, then probably such a PB is not for you.

Much like I don't have use for a Hummer, but my Honda GL500 suits me just fine.

Scanned (1)

COMON$ (806135) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973790)

I just scanned the article but where did they get these numbers from?

Is this just a publicity stunt to say, hey everyone else is moving to mac so you should to?

Re:Scanned (5, Insightful)

general_re (8883) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973855)

I just scanned the article but where did they get these numbers from?

Like many analysts, he pulled it straight from his butt. Or, more specifically, he gathered a few anecdotes from Apple salesmen and extrapolated them to cover the entire universe.

I am one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973792)

August 15, The date I made the switch!! :-)

Mac mini (5, Interesting)

dots and loops (448641) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973793)

Actually, it was the Mac mini which caused me to use the Mac as my primary home computer, not the iPod.

Re:Mac mini (4, Interesting)

jsebrech (525647) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973946)

Actually, it was the Mac mini which caused me to use the Mac as my primary home computer, not the iPod.

For me it was the ipod that made me seriously consider the switch, and the mac mini that drove my decision. The mini was priced at a point where I could try it out and abandon it if it didn't work for me. The plan was that if I didn't like a mac as my main desktop machine, I would use it as a server, running linux, and buy a cheapo windows system. I never did end up buying that cheapo windows system.

I'm just mad at myself for not having made the switch sooner.

I'm not surprised (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973794)

Ever since Mac started running on BSD, it's a better option than Windows for Unix converts.

Suckers wanted! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973795)


Apple zealots and their money part easily.

Certified A.S.S. (5, Funny)

k4_pacific (736911) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973798)

Apple Store Specialists

Do you suppose these specialists abbreviate their title on their business cards?

Re:Certified A.S.S. (4, Funny)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973919)

"Apple Store Specialists"

Do you suppose these specialists abbreviate their title on their business cards?


Just be glad you didn't work as a Student Assistant (studentassistent) here in Norway. The abbriviation was stud.ass., I kid you not.

Kjella

Re:Certified A.S.S. (2, Funny)

spxero (782496) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973999)

On a serious note, how do those guys take themselves seriously standing under the "Genius Bar"?
I'd hardly call being a mac tech (more like a CSR) a genius.

Both != Convert (2, Insightful)

Mkoms (910273) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973806)

I'm guessing a lot of people use both macs and PCs for different features. Most video/photo editors and designers probably can't live without a mac for work, but when you come home and want to use the software others can...

Do I count? (1, Insightful)

MightyPez (734706) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973807)

I realize I'm setting myself up, but I have not RTFA yet. Do people that casually get into it count among those statistics? For example, a friend gave me an old 400mhz G3 iMac for free because he had no more use for it.

I just play with it to see how OSX works and use apps I wouldn't normally use on my PC. This is the most exposure to a Mac that I have had since the original 1984 Macs. Does that make me one of the "converted"?

Re:Do I count? (1)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973844)

I guess they are saying to "follow the money". If somebody buys a mac this year instead of a pc, they are converted.

Re:Do I count? (1)

Browncoat (928784) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973913)

I think it only makes you a convert if you go out and shell out money to buy a new mac of your very own.

Actually... (3, Funny)

kmartshopper (836454) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973815)

Actually I'm pretty sure it's a direct result of all those dads buying their college-bound daughters Macs because they were told they wouldn't be cool without them.

Re:Actually... (2, Funny)

Dragoonmac (929292) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973839)

it's because OS-X is the windows user's linux.

Re:Actually... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13974050)

head......going......to....explode..... Gaaaahhhh!!!!!! POP

One Million Monkeys? (-1, Offtopic)

daniil (775990) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973824)

Screw the Postmodernists, but in my case, every reading [of a Slashdot story title] is a misreading :7

Attention Apple Fags! (2, Funny)

Asshat Canada (804093) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973831)

They are changing the campaign theme from 'Switch' to 'Come Out Of The Closet!"
Talk about target marketing!

Malware huh? (5, Funny)

Mkoms (910273) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973833)

They must have not experienced the Adam and Eve virus... you know, the one that takes a few bytes out of your Apple. [Credit: somewhere on the internet]

Startup School (5, Interesting)

pHatidic (163975) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973836)

A few weeks ago I went to Startup School, a conference for hackers with entrepreneurial interests that was hosted by Paul Graham. I'd say 80% of the people there with laptops had macs. It was one of the most amazing things I'd ever seen, to look back from the front of the room and see an entire roomful of Apple computers. I think Paul is right that most of the new Apple users aren't switchers, but rather are switch-backers. I for one am extremely happy with my powerbook that I bought two years ago, switching back from XP, so I don't think I will ever become a switch-back-backer. The amazing thing is that even though this computer 22 months old it feels brand new, rechargable battery issues aside. I have never had to reformat the hard drive, remove a virus, or uninstall any adware. I know that it is theoretically possible to get viruses on an Apple and there have been proof of concepts, but personally I don't give a damn about theory. All I care about is my last two years of "just works" computing.

daffynition of switch? (2, Insightful)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973853)

"It is speculated that these numbers are a direct result of the popularity gained through the iPod "

So, if i own an ipod, but have 5 windows computers, does that mean i "Switched" to ipod?

What if i own an imac mini (good to have, small, cute, good for a den computer when i want to check news/status of the intarweb), but still have 5 other windows computers and only use the mini for half an hour max every day. Does that mean i switch?

What about grandma who never had a computer, ever, and her kids decide that a mac would be the best solution for an elderly computer user, did she "switch"?

I 3 marketing hype...

Re:daffynition of switch? (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973989)

What if i own an imac mini (good to have, small, cute, good for a den computer when i want to check news/status of the intarweb), but still have 5 other windows computers and only use the mini for half an hour max every day. Does that mean i switch?

If you have six boxes, I'd say you switch waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much.

Re:daffynition of switch? (1)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974047)

1 test XP bed, 1 windows 98 computer test bed, 1 windows 98se laptop, 1 XP laptop, and my main box.

The test beds are only used for consulting, the 98se laptop is for working out on the porch and various wireless funtime tasks, the xp laptop is a guest computer and used for travel, and my mainbox is where i spend the bulk of my time.

Each has its purpose, but they're not all brand spankin new or top of the line, the 2 tests beds were resurrected from parts i had in my closet from previous computers that were once my main box.

Ah, but how many Linux to MacOS converts? (5, Interesting)

Bazzalisk (869812) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973863)

Me for one ... my new machine will be the first I've had since 1997 for which Linux is not the main OS.

Re:Ah, but how many Linux to MacOS converts? (5, Insightful)

MoOsEb0y (2177) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973931)

I actually switched from Linux to MacOS because I was sick and tired of fighting with my system configuration everytime I updated my packages or wanted to install new software. OS X allows me to run all of the same OSS apps that I loved on Linux (VNC, SSH, irssi, etc) while at the same time being a joy to use.

I first was exposed to OSX from the leak to x86. After that, I loved it so much I got a Mac Mini (the first mac I've seen which I could actually afford).

One million? Cool -- only 513 million to go! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973864)

Now that's what I call progress.

Mateeeeeyyy (3, Insightful)

s-twig (775100) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973874)

They'll have more users when the piracy thing catches on. Hell, I wouldn't use Windows if it wasn't free...

I'm a statistic. (5, Interesting)

heresyoftruth (705115) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973875)

My hubby and I are two of those converts out there. After the zillionth windows disaster, we saved up and got a set of powerbooks. I can't say the iPods had anything to do with it because we didn't get a set of those until after we got the powerbooks. I always hated the overzealous mac lover, but it appears I just bought my way into the cult. I can't be happier to have switched, as I haven't had one problem since February. That's definitely longer than I went without having to tweak my PC box.

Or alternatively... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973877)

Install OSX on your PC. Posted from an OSx86 box.

And is anyone keeping track... (4, Insightful)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973879)

And is anyone keeping track of the number of people that switched BACK after discovering that they have to re...invest substantial amount of money into Mac version of software titles they already own for the x86?

Re:And is anyone keeping track... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13974015)

you really believe people BUY software?

pahahaha

Minimal issue now... (2, Informative)

Chordonblue (585047) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974025)

Think about it, most apps people are interested in are already included with the base Apple. My guess is that a lot of the switchers out there are frustrated users (generally older) who have HAD IT with the spyware and other BS security games on the PC.

Now what do those people do? Hmmm. Word processing maybe, Internet (probably AOL), listen to music / watch movies (covered), etc. Years ago I think you'd be right about this. If you wanted a simple calculator program or even wanted to play a CD you had to buy a program to do it. Nowadays, all of that sort of thing is included with most computers - particularly Apple ones.

I've converted my own school's dorm machines to Mac Mini's (all 35 of them) this year and the main reason was the security issues associated with Windows. Well... That, and the girls just LOVE those things!

Re:And is anyone keeping track... (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974034)

Why buy Mac software, when just about everything you need is either already included (e.g. BSD subsystem, iLife, etc.) or has a good Free Software alternative?

I've been using a Mac for two years now, and I haven't bought a single piece of software for it (aside from the O.S.)

Just curious (1)

sedyn (880034) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973887)

What is the current % of mac users out there? (were there, say, 90 million copies of windows sold? (that sad thing is that I don't even know how rediculous this question is)) Meaning that nothing much has changed (give or take).

Furthermore, isn't purchasing a bad way of determining number of users? For example, wouldn't x86s assembled from parts would be difficult to measure how many computers are currently in use?

Re:Just curious (1)

Taladar (717494) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974038)

...not to mention the difficulty of applying such measures to Linux user percentage (even the word "market share" implies buying something).

On? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973891)

is fueled by the epidemic of viruses and malware on the Windows platform.

Or rather, is fueled by the epidemic of viruses and malware that IS the Windows platform!

Count me in (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973903)

I'm one of them. I actually switched *back* to the Mac.

It's not all roses (some niche apps are on the PC only, like my preferred family tree software and the software for my Polar heart rate monitor), but overall I'm glad I made the switch (back).

Apple is Microsoft with tiny market share (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973904)

Apple is Microsoft with tiny market share.

If I have to choose between Apple (overpriced hardware) and Microsoft (overpriced software), I'd pick Linux [debian.org] any day.

Betting pool? (1)

Kraeloc (869412) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973909)

Anyone wanna take bets as to who's ass this statistic was pulled out of? I doubt it's a completely baseless claim, though. I know several people who have already or are considering switching to Mac, in light of how much the company overall has improved in the later half-dozen years.

Anecdote (enough of these and we'll have data) (1)

pq (42856) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973912)

IAAA (I am an astronomer). Started on Solaris as a grad student, moved to Linux halfway through (when my boss could buy two Dells for the cost of one underpowered Sun), and while my desktop machine is still a Linux box, I have a high-end Powerbook as my daily laptop.

The primary reason I abandoned my Thinkpad was, I think, that I outgrew tinkering. It used to be fun to make ALSA work and to figure out the winmodem and all that, but after one more broken kernel upgade, I just didn't want to do it any more. Meanwhile, OS X was just the right thing at the right time for me.

Now (postdoc) I know at least three colleagues who have moved to Mac desktops, and since all our processing software (mostly GPL/BSD licensed) is just as happy on the Mac platform as on Linux, I might do so too. (See, for example, Professional Astronomy Software for Mac OSX [harvard.edu].)

Conclusion 1: I "switched" (partly), and I was counted as leaving Windows (my Thinkpad can still boot WinMe, I think), but I actually left Linux.

Conclusion 2: Lickable hardware is *nice*. I bought a nano last weekend!

So how many are in the same category as me? (1)

blonde rser (253047) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973914)

I switched from using a linux desktop for the past 4 years to almost exclusively using a mac. What's the size of my demographic? What do you mean nobody cares?

And that is just in the US (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973918)


You can double that number to count Mac-switchers from all over the world.

Price, duh. (1, Interesting)

the0ther (720331) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973923)

Maybe it's because Apple finally came down off their high horse and offered an affordable computer for once?

Time to sell Apple Stock (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973933)

It's time to sell when you start hearing all this "Mac's going to take over" propaganda.

The time to buy would have been when Apple was about to go under 1997 [com.com].

The bottom line is that Apple is in the fashion business, not the serious computer business. What's iPod to day is walkman tomorrow.

Quality of Hardware might also be a factor. (1, Interesting)

olddotter (638430) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973938)

I switched to a Mac as much because Mac hardware is just higher quality than most PC hardware. I am more comfortable on Linux than on Windows, so I joined the "cult of mac" because I was tired of my white (or black) boxes falling a part after 2 or 3 years of use. (built in ether net dies, parallel port dies, USB ports die, machine finally refuses to boot) Macs cost more, but they appear to be higher quality.

But I do agree that the iPod and iTunes has probably introduced many people to Apple. I realize I am not typical in my knowledge of the pros and cons of OS's.

apples and oranges (3, Interesting)

micromuncher (171881) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973941)

There probably is no correlation between people buying iPods, people using Wintel, and people buying Macs...

The lifecycle of a PC is about 2 years. A mac is about 5 years. Its probable that this is just a turnover of pre-existing mac users.

Nobody I know or has met who has a Mac bought one because of an iPod.

One one person I've met has bought a Mac because of Windows issues... and they were also a frustrated Linux user.

However, I've met a few people who have bought Macs just because they look cool, fit in with their Ikea furniture, and are trendy.

(I'm a former Mac user. Now I use Windows, mostly for games. Not that I want to... I had the choice between starving MacOS developer, average Wintel developer, or corpulent enterprise Java developer. After starving for a number of years, I chose the corpulent route.)

Skewed Numbers (1)

3CRanch (804861) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973944)

It'd be interesting to see how those numbers were gathered. I'm guessing that it's nothing more than a simple increase in the number of Mac's purchased this year vs. last year instead of those that have actually switched over.

So, for example, last year I purchased 3 Mac's (a G5, a Mini, and a 12" laptop), but retained my two Windows PC's. There is no possible way the author could count, nor should they, me as a 3 time switcher.

Buncha crap to just get published, if you ask me.

Stock valuations are really weird (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973960)

"Despite the Needham's positive comments on Apple, the firm on Monday downgraded shares of the company's stock to "Hold," saying it believes Apple shares are now "fully valued.""

I can't help thinking there is something seriously screwed up in our economic system. A wildly successful company gets its stock downgraded. I understand the rational for this - i.e. it's chances of going up in the future are low - but its sort of a strange logic. If a company becomes wildly successful, takes over a market, and matures into a stable entity producing good product the stock market loses significant interest as soon as the company reaches "maturity." I can see this for a stock not paying dividends, but really based on the logic I see given for stock buying it's not just a little like betting on sporting events - it's EXACTLY like betting on sporting events. States that want to make gambling illegal should take a look at the stock market as problem number one.

Someday, our economy may move towards a kind of steady state condition when fossil fuel becomes expensive and people won't be interested in buying anything disposible. Ever notice how virtually EVERYTHING is disposable nowadays? Make it low quality, sell it cheap, and depend on people having to buy lots of whatever it is when their old ones become obsolete/go out of style (that one really gets me)/crumble into dust because they're so cheaply made. The resources it takes to make these things are lost, the raw materials that could have made better quality, more durable products are lost. I shudder to think what we are going to look like in the eyes of future generations. Virtually all economic, corporate, and even governmental thinking is now focused on short term returns and enjoyment at the expense of the long term. Renewable energy? Why should we fund that? We've got enough oil to last us, and working for future concerns hurts this quarters profits.

Bah. Science, long term thinking, conservation - alien thoughts to a massive part of our society. Community means absolutely nothing - there is no sense of community thinking in corporate or government circles any more. It's all equations, and people aren't in them. Profit, re-election, power... I think Orwell might have been right, in the end. With no sense of community to hold us together, with no caring for other human beings, I have my doubts that society can be stable in the long term.

What do they consider a "switch"? (2, Interesting)

DaveCBio (659840) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973974)

I am contemplating buying a Mac Mini just to check things out. Doesn't mean I'll be dropping my Windows machines any time soon.

ipods success (4, Insightful)

oddbudman (599695) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973975)

To me this increase in sales can be somewhat attributed to the success of the ipod. The ipod certainally has brought a whole lot more exposure to apple in general over the last 12 months. And it's not like OSX is a bad OS for them to be pushing, if someone is curious and checks it out they probably won't be too dissapointed. Couple that with the fact that Windows XP is a few years old and is starting to seem a little dated. Windows will probably strike back a little come Vista but I guess only time will tell.

The Perils of Popularity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13973987)

"their transition is fueled by the epidemic of viruses and malware on the Windows platform."

Their transition is expected to fuel an epidemic of viruses and malware on the Mac platform.

Mini (5, Interesting)

squison (546401) | more than 8 years ago | (#13973996)

I'm sure a lot of those 'converts' were due to the Mac Mini. I know, for me, the #1 reason why I never even tried owning a Mac was because I wasn't willing to spend $1-3k to try something out. $500 is a lot easier to spend than $2k for a PowerMac.

Then you have an ever-growing application support for OSX. Large games like World of Warcraft coming with a Mac client at release surely can't hurt.

Plus, damn if the iBooks don't look a lot nicer than my drab, boring Thinkpad.

What about Mac to PC/*nix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13974009)

Just becoz they have an extra high sale doesn't mean every single one has converted. And they would have no clue how many that have got a PC or *nix box instead of their old Mac. Sales go up and down. Welcome to a regular market.

Never ass/u/me anything... (4, Insightful)

dada21 (163177) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974022)



TFA: "If we assume that all of the growth in Mac shipments during the past three quarters resulted from Windows users purchasing a Mac, Or Mac users wanted a second PC, or their kids or parents needed their first or new immigrant H1B workers bought them. How can they assume these numbers are ex-Win users?

appear to be purchasing Apple's higher-end systems They appear to be? So they might not be? Huh?

fueled by the epidemic of viruses and malware on the Windows platform. Based on what figures? Last year it was "fueled by better video editing" and before that "fueled by better graphics editing" as sales people only mimicked their pitches.

the firm on Monday downgraded shares of the company's stock to "Hold," saying it believes Apple shares are now "fully valued." Because the 1 million Windows converts are all that will convert? Not only shit can be pulled from an analyst's ass.

"During the past year, in response to the introduction of breakthrough new iPods and Macs and outstanding financial results, we've doubled our price target." And even $61 is a worthless number, offering no real income (profit dividends, interest, commitment sales, etc). Take your stock money, start your own business, and stop gambling.

Still, the analyst hedges his bets, explaining Apple's "frenetic pace of innovation" could present new opportunities,"The ship is not sinking, but it might. It could also fly possibly." These people are worthless.

I have friends who are analysts, and they're worthless, too. My Costa Rican bookie gives me good advice based on the pros. These analysts either give neutral advice, or just enough so that mom's stock will go up.

Net or Gross? (1)

dtfinch (661405) | more than 8 years ago | (#13974026)

How many Mac users bought non-Macs? Are they subtracted from the "1 million"?

Maybe 20 million people installed Linux this year, but I doubt more than 1/4 of them will still be using it next year.
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