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Is Apple Doing All It Can to Beat Vista?

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the both-barrels-double-shotgun-explosive-bullets dept.


aalobode writes "The New York Times is running an article on the narrowing window that Apple has for beating Microsoft's Vista. According the Times, not enough has been done to capitalize on the Mac user experience versus the 'world of hurt that is Vista'. It also points out that that restructuring of Apple leaves ambiguities about Apple's exact commitment to the computer end of its business. The article calls MS Vista's certified vendors, developers and driver writers a flywheel that takes a while coming up to speed - and then becomes unstoppable."

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cost (0)

wwmedia (950346) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624221)

they both can start by lowering their prices

Neither can compete with the cost of Ubuntu! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624323)

The reason I'm not using Mac OS X nor Vista is the cost. When I have Ubuntu so readily available, why would I want to use anything else? Compiz brings me all of the 3D GUI goodness of Vista and OS X. It's really nice not having to worry about the auto-updater updating files randomly and without my permission, like happens with Windows. I also can use Konqueror, which is just like Safari, but I find it's faster. And all of my Windows games run great on Ubuntu when I use WINE. So see, with Ubuntu I get the Vista experience and the Mac OS X experience, all for basically $0!

Re:Neither can compete with the cost of Ubuntu! (4, Insightful)

Haeleth (414428) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624389)

And all of my Windows games run great on Ubuntu when I use WINE
Yes, this could well be true -- if the only Windows games you play are Minesweeper and World of Warcraft.

Re:Neither can compete with the cost of Ubuntu! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624433)

No, I play games like Call of Duty, the Sims 2 and Oblivion on WINE. Maybe you should try a more recent version if you're having problems. About a year ago they made some really big improvements, and a lot of my games that wouldn't run did start to work.

service pack (5, Insightful)

Carbon016 (1129067) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624227)

Once SP1 hits, the flywheel's going to spin a LOT faster.

Re:service pack (1, Interesting)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624299)

I thought it was supposed to be called "7.10 Gutsy Gibbon" and not "SP1" :P

Seriously, why would you want to buy a Mac if you can have Ubuntu, apart from Adobe/Macromedia products? Lower price, UI looks as funky (if not funkier), more available software, albeit most of it is OSS or free.
When people tell me they are fed up with Windows and particularly Vista (happens daily), I tell them to give Linux a chance, and when I can get them to overcome their "it's free so it must be s*it" reservations, people are positively surprised and generally go at least for a dual boot XP/Linux.

And yes, I know that there are ~better~, more hardcore distros of Linux than Ubuntu, but the article is about users who should move from Vista to Mac and I don't think those are particulary interested in compiling everything they need.

The only good thing about Macs is the look of the case, and even THAT is a matter of taste.

Re:service pack (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624659)

The only good thing about Macs is the look of the case, and even THAT is a matter of taste.
I'd like to see a Windows or Linux-powered laptop go into and wake from standby in 2 seconds flat.

Re:service pack (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624359)

Even now Vista is a remarkably usable desktop. Aero Glass is also a lovely theme, and far nicer than Aqua IMO.

OS X looked so much cleaner than XP, but I really don't see that there is much about OS X that rates it over Vista.

Re:service pack (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624605)

What a shilly comment...

Re:service pack (1)

Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624689)

"remarkably usable"

lol, what a strange compliment

Re:service pack (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624747)

When is apple going to get over the "no-good-games" or "no-newly-released-games" hump. Or does it not matter anymore cause everyone prefers FPS with a playstation controller.

Not even for people on Software Assurance (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624585)

I think it will see resistance even after SP1, even from customers who've paid for it twice over under Software Assurance.

When you can't get the people who've already paid for it to install it, what does that say about it?

Re:service pack (1)

yabos (719499) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624653)

I don't know about that. I know people who are buying new computers and wiping Vista from the drive and putting on XP. Eventually they will have to upgrade but there's a huge resistance to it.

flywheel (1, Insightful)

siyavash (677724) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624233)

Well, I agree on the flywheel example. Very good one actually.

Re:flywheel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624583)

heard of a juggernaut?

Re:flywheel (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624661)

Well, I agree on the flywheel example. Very good one actually.

Well, what do you expect? It's a car analogy.

as in (2, Funny)

Joseph_Daniel_Zukige (807773) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624683)

flywheels slipping their bearings and coming crashing through the firewall?

Or flywheels that shatter from poor balancing?

Or what happens when the clutch locks?

world of hurt? (4, Insightful)

smash (1351) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624241)

Yes, vista has a few issues. Note: Few. I've been running it since March, and there's no way XP is going back on my box, at least not exclusively.

I've been tempted to buy a Mac, but I game - and for the cost of a 17" Imac with pretty crappy video, I recently built a Core2 Quad 2.4ghz, 2gb ram, 500gb disk, Geforce 8800GTS, etc.

If apple were to release a PowerMac chassis at a slightly less inflated price, i'd be pretty keen... but double the cost of what I built? No thanks...

Re:world of hurt? (2, Interesting)

Sweetshark (696449) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624297)

I've been tempted to buy a Mac, but I game - and for the cost of a 17" Imac with pretty crappy video, I recently built a Core2 Quad 2.4ghz, 2gb ram, 500gb disk, Geforce 8800GTS, etc.

How about buying a mac mini for work and multimedia and the game system of your choice for gaming? Wouldnt be more expensive and is way more fun.


Somebody happy with a mac mini and a wii

Re:world of hurt? (0, Flamebait)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624327)

Mac Mini's are way to slow to be acceptable for any real work. When you add the unnecessary animation delays built into the Mac OS X, then you need a world of patience to stop your self from throwing it out the window and go buy a PC.

Re:world of hurt? (3, Interesting)

numbski (515011) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624357)

I call BS. I use a mini as my primary workstation. I have a Core Duo (not Core 2 Duo, mind you...) and I have yet to feel that it is "slow" in any regard. Now realize the first thing I did was max out the RAM on it, but still. A mini in name only. The only thing you can't do is expand it with internal devices. Given that limitation, it is WELL worth the money spent.

Re:world of hurt? (2, Informative)

CandyMan (15493) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624755)

You are not alone. Designer Joshua Davis works on a Mac Mini [] . He is hardly a casual user. He writes code that produces the final graphics, and runs memory-and-processor hogs like Photoshop and Illustrator all the time.

Re:world of hurt? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624641)

When you add the unnecessary animation delays built into the Mac OS X

As opposed to the unnecessary DRM-checking delays for all I/O in Vista?

Re:world of hurt? (1)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624489)

How about buying a mac mini for work and multimedia and the game system of your choice for gaming?

Because consoles have never been good replacements for the types of games that PC gamers usually like to play, I'd imagine.

Re:world of hurt? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624353)

Yes, vista has a few issues.

And the Understatement of the Year Award goes to ... [drumroll] ... smash!

Wow, watch me get modded down for contradicting a low-ID! For great justice just install Ubuntu.

Re:world of hurt? (1)

BiggerIsBetter (682164) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624405)

For great justice just install Ubuntu.

I have both on my laptop. Vista is nice, but there's no question about which OS runs faster, is more stable, and doesn't hog as much resources. I've got 1 GB of RAM, and that's not enough for Vista + OpenOffice, antivirus, browser, etc. However, it IS plenty enough for Ubuntu 7 with the aforementioned apps + Compiz... and I don't get unsolicited updates, virus, etc on Ubuntu. If I had my embedded dev-apps on Linux, I wouldn't keep Vista on my disk.


Re:world of hurt? (5, Insightful)

pokerdad (1124121) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624409)

Yes, vista has a few issues. Note: Few.

Its not a question of how many issues there are, its a question of perception. Neither 98 nor XP were significantly different at 1 year old compared to 3 years old, but the perception of them changed massively in that time.

In all likelyhood that pattern will repeat with Vista.

Re:world of hurt? (1)

astrotek (132325) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624581)

Win 2000 built a driver base for a year before XP launched. You could say XP was basically SP2.5 (ME sucked) of the 2000 kernel.

Vista SP2 will where it will become usable and it wont be adopted until SP3 or later by most companies.

Re:world of hurt? (1)

chuckymonkey (1059244) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624441)

You can always go buy a copy of OSX and find the patches for it so that it'll work on your hardware then go from there. I did it and made a hackintosh once, worked pretty well too.

Re:world of hurt? (1)

Distortions (321282) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624485)

Yeah, I'm a mac user and I'm at that point myself. My G5 tower works great for all my normal tasks... But gaming is a joke. An intel mac helps with that ( parallels, boot camp ), but the price premium is a bit much on their lower end. I would scoop up a iMac in a second if it had a reasonable video card. ...Instead, I'm probably going to end up building myself a box for linux/windows. If Apple gets smart they'll make one model of the Mac Pro thats cheaper. Sorry, I just don't need two dual-core Xeons. A mid-range core duo and 2 - 4 gigs of ram and a decent video card would do just fine. But, I guess they are worried it would cannibalize their iMac/Mac Mini sales.

Steve picked the Phone over the PC (4, Insightful)

DuncanE (35734) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624247)

Steve Jobs has picked the iPhone as Apple's next platform. Maybe he should of focused on getting Leopard out this year to steal Vistas thunder. Only time will tell if he has made the right choice.

Re:Steve picked the Phone over the PC (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624557)

I think he made the right call there. Microsoft won the desktop war. Get over it, move on. The desktop era is ending; there's maybe a decade left in it. The ubicomp era is just starting, and Microsoft has enough money to buy a decent amount of market share. Currently, they're sitting at around 7%, and it's going to take a lot of effort to keep them as a minority player. Diverting any energy to re-fighting the desktop war is a waste of effort.

Re:Steve picked the Phone over the PC (2, Insightful)

slipperman (737810) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624603)

I remember hearing something just like this around 10 years ago. Not much has changed since then (except maybe Google Apps).

Re:Steve picked the Phone over the PC (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624717)

Well, again like many other people, you miss the point. Apple doesn't WANT to put out a fast product to steal marketshare. They want to make great products. Their customers want great products, not a product that comes out too fast just to try and capitalize on Microsoft's current problems.

Portable stuff (3, Insightful)

RogerWilco (99615) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624253)

I think that the place where Apple design realy shines is in portable stuff. Both their iPod and laptop lines seem to be good examples. I have seen a lot of people switch to Apple laptops the last two years.

I was never too thrilled about their iMac, it seems that in the desktop arena, Apple design does not give so much of an edge, and their only advantage (and disadvantage) is their OS.

Re:Portable stuff (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624301)

Interesting how the same is true for Nintendo. The portable market is the new frontier, and it's not nearly as held back by legacy compatibility as desktop PCs are, so doing good is more a matter of design and innovation than whether you're a particular company or not.

Re:Portable stuff (1)

Charcharodon (611187) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624423)

Legacy compatibility is the hardware/software industry shooting itself in the foot.

The fact that they still include things like floppy drive, IDE devices, serial and parallel connections on motherboards is a perfect example. There is a market out there I'm sure for such things, but anyone that upgrades every year or two has moved on and won't be looking back.

Maybe it's too much to ask that they completely drop support for those in the software, but as far as hardware get rid of it already. They can always support niche users with add-on cards and the let rest of us move on.

Re:Portable stuff (1)

cyber-vandal (148830) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624437)

Yeh legacy compatibility sucks - let's force everyone to rewrite their software every couple of years and throw out perfectly good hardware. Who's going to pay for all this though?

Re:Portable stuff (1)

GPL Apostate (1138631) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624681)

'Anybody who upgrades every year or two' is a little sliver of the market.

Incidentally it's a fairly wasteful sliver of the market.

Don't look back. All the marketing bullshit is up front, in your face.

of course it's not (2, Insightful)

unfunk (804468) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624255)

It would help a lot if people who want to run OSX aren't artificially tied to the Mac platform.
I know, I know - the hardware is where Apple makes most of its money, but I think they could also make a fair bit from a licensing scheme similar to that of Windows - "OSX Certified" stickers could place a premium on parts like motherboards, network cards, sound cards, and the like.
Apple can't really say that their OS only works on their hardware any more, because it's quite easily hacked to run on anything, so they may as well make the best of the situation.

I know I'd be more likely to buy "OSX for generic PCs" than Windows Vista, but sadly, it's unlikely to happen. It looks like for the moment, I'm stuck on a Hackintosh with no networking if I wish to use OSX :(

Re:of course it's not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624337)

You could use a USB network adapter. There are tons of USB NIC drivers for OSX.

Re:of course it's not (1)

unfunk (804468) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624403)

I could, yes... but when I have an otherwise perfectly fine onboard networking (nForce4), and a total of three NICs lying around that again, are perfectly fine aside from not working in OSX (even with homebrew drivers), then I really can't be bothered.

Re:of course it's not (3, Interesting)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624351)

It would help a lot if people who want to run OSX aren't artificially tied to the Mac platform.

Bingo, unfunk.

I would buy OSX in a second if I could run it on my hardware. That's why this article is sort of wide of the mark. Apple will never be able to really compete with Vista (or Microsoft) as long as they insist on being a hardware company before all. The fact that OSX seems to have taken a back seat in Cupertino to all the little consumer electronics does not bode well for the future of the mac platform or for those of us who would love to run an Apple OS on our hardware someday. I guess when you're making enough money to give people $100 rebates on iPhones, you don't have to worry about the arts, media and educational markets that made you in the first place and are waiting for something good to happen on the increasingly ignored computer side of Apple.

I was always one of the "early adopters" in the OS space before the release of Vista. I tried it on a brand new computer (bought specifically to run Vista), hated it, removed it and ran back to XP Pro like to an old lover (who used to abuse me a bit, TBH). Vista is so bad that it may have actually transformed me from someone who used to love getting the latest OS to someone who just wants to run his programs, thank you very much.

Most important, Vista is not only so bad, but it's so NOT what I want in an OS. So, until Microsoft reverses course and gives me a new OS that's actually better than XP, or Apple decides to release an "OSX for My Hardware", I'll stick with XP and pray for a well-funded third party to enter the commercial OS marketplace.

Plus, I've just installed Ubuntu Studio on my test system and I'm loving it. It even works with my USB and Firewire audio and video hardware. I've just got to figure out how to install the driver thing so it will play the DVD thing and watch movies.

Re:of course it's not (5, Insightful)

peragrin (659227) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624533)

apple tried that it nearly bankrupted the company. Selling an OS without a monopoly is unprofitable. why else do you think that only free software OS's have been able to make in roads while every single other for profit OS company is just about gone?

Without a monopoly no matter how gained selling just an OS will fail. Apple is worth more than Dell because they keep things locked down, and stay out of the cut throat market of cheap hardware.

Apple is not widely avbl. or supported outside US (2, Insightful)

jkrise (535370) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624283)

Not even 5% of the availability or support for Linux distros, in any case.

In the US, in any market; the marketshare is something like this:

Top 3 or 4 vendors: 80%
All the rest share the balance 20%

In Europe, I believe in all sectors except the IT sector, the top vendors collectively share less than 50% market share - thanks to strict measures to combat monopoly and anti-trust issues.

In India (where I live) the only desktop s/w that as any sizable usage is Tally (a financial accounting s/w). All other appln. s/w have a very fragmented marketplace; and it's nearly a 50-50 split between desktop, .Net and ASP apps on the one hand; and Web-based apps on the other, mainly on Linux servers. Apple Macs have less than 1% presence in the h/w space; so there's no incentive for s/w development on the Mac platform.

Last week, I was evaluating a PACS solution for the hospital I consult with - and a s/w vendor suggested Osirix - an open source app. that works only on Mac hardware. We will be implementing this shortly. A few years back, SGI had products in this niche, but they have disappeared now (I used to work for an SGI dealer).

Apple did try to set up shop in India, but strangely packed up and dismissed the thought a few months later. Unless Apple build up their presence in the hardware segment; they will not be a meaningful alternative to the Windows world - Vista or otherwise. Except in miniscule niche segments perhaps.

Re:Apple is not widely avbl. or supported outside (1, Offtopic)

the_unknown_soldier (675161) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624315)

You know, this isn't a text message. You can say "software". You don't have to say "s/w"

Development (1)

Arrow_Raider (1157283) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624285)

Whether or not [commercial] developers develop for an operating system has the largest impact on how well an operating system suceeds. With the .net framework, Microsoft has secured a very strong foothold in the programming world. Using the .net framework, you can create powerful, attractive, large applications very rapidly. While, it hasn't taken hold so much in the gaming development world, xna and directx 10 may change this. Moving to development for linux or mac when you are already a .net developer is a daunting and painful experience. One issue with developing on the mac is that you have to use a strange language called Object-C if you want to develop cocoa applications(which you do). Object-C is a bizare attempt at making C object oriented that was created before C++ was introduced.

Re:Development (2, Informative)

nkh (750837) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624339)

One issue with developing on the mac is that you have to use a strange language called Object-C if you want to develop cocoa applications
I used to write my GUIs with Qt or GTK but I now have a job writing Cocoa applications in Objective-C and I like it! I have to write less code than before, I have the bindings system and all the Cocoa framework for me so, yes, Objective-C is a PITA to learn when you begin but once you understand how to use it, it's a very powerful tool.

Re:Development (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624573)

Objective-C is only hard to learn if you don't already know Smalltalk, and I don't think I'd trust a developer who doesn't know Smalltalk to write OO code, even if they never use the language for real work.

If you're enjoying Cocoa, you might want to take a look at GNUstep; it implements Foundation and AppKit (and a few other frameworks) for generic *NIX systems (and Windows, although the Windows port is not very well supported). If you don't use Quicktime or the Core* APIs, you can often port code quite easily.

Re:Development (1)

yabos (719499) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624715)

I don't think you're going to find that many people that know Smalltalk that are starting with Objective-C.

Re:Development (1)

Zeinfeld (263942) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624719)

Objective-C is only hard to learn if you don't already know Smalltalk, and I don't think I'd trust a developer who doesn't know Smalltalk to write OO code, even if they never use the language for real work.

Objective C is miles better than C++. It is a real pity that the world was led down that blind alley. But at this point Java and C# are the ones that have won. Only good reason for using Objective C is if you are maintaining a legacy code base.

Vista works just fine on the right hardware. Admittedly the hardware I use has ten times the power of a Cray 1 if you count the graphics processors. But give it two years and my system will be mainstream.

The only problem with Vista is that it does not work at all well on machines not designed for Vista. Vista is a lot more intolerant of buggy drivers. That is a good thing, much of the instability of Windows has alawys been caused by baddly written drivers. The outsource shops that write them have little incentive to do the job right. They get paid when the box ships, driver bugs mean follow up work.

Re:Development (1)

Just some bastard (1113513) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624545)

Microsoft has secured a very strong foothold in the programming world. Using the .net framework, you can create powerful, attractive, large applications very rapidly.

Oh come on! Java and python [] and were already well established when .NET was vaporware.

While, it hasn't taken hold so much in the gaming development world, xna and directx 10 may change this.

More Microsoft proprietary technologies? The problem here is your mindset and nothing else [] .

Re:Development (1)

bealzabobs_youruncle (971430) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624569)

Both languages may have been established, but even today you don't see many "rich client" applications using either language (and when you do the Java apps feel sluggish). I'm not defending .NET or knocking Java/Python, but the OP is an example of how well entrenched MS languages are with many developers.

Here's an idea: get newspapers to write free ads! (4, Interesting)

mmarlett (520340) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624291)

With the New York Times putting fawning articles like this in front of millions of readers every day, why would Apple want to spend money to do the same?

As a lifelong Apple fanboy (all Apple since 1982, thanks), I can say without a doubt that there's not been a better time to be an Apple fanboy in 20 years. We actually have some street cred now. IT departments no longer laugh dismissively at the idea of perhaps a Mac in the office, maybe. (Though corporate America is a long way from embracing Macs. And Apple originally lost the PC war because most consumers bought what they had at work for home (and, hey, it was a little cheaper).) People are actually buying Macs. Sales are up; growth is up. The article makes a big deal of Apple not starting its relationship with Best Buy soon enough to gain a retail presence. Hello? NYT, two years ago Apple barely had the cred and was still working on retail presence for the iPod. I bought my iPod at Target; I've vowed never to buy so much as a blank CD at Best Buy after some of its shady business practices, and if Apple wanted to just make the Mac available to more people, it'd sell them everywhere the iPods are sold. How far away is that? Well, they'd have to be able to make enough Macs to put them there, but I bet we'll see it someday.

Inertia (1)

kfaroo (719510) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624305)

A significant portion of Apple's problem is that people who already have PC's are unlikely to replace / add to them with Mac's. Most businesses use PC's. In my company, for example, only the Creative folks get Macs. If I have a PC from work, then chances are that when it comes to my home machine I will go buy a PC. If my wife decides to buy a laptop I will get a PC for her as well.

Most people want uniformity in their lives, and don't want the hassle of having to learn two operating systems etc. Even if Vista sucks, people are likely to wait for it to improve rather than go buy a Mac. If I was replacing all the machines that I use (at work and home) at once, I would definitely want a Mac. But I am never going to replace all machines at once. Most businesses, even when starting up, are not going to chose Macs because it will be difficult to hire IT folks to support them (since there are fewer IT people who know Macs), and it will be additional cost to train the new employees on how to use Macs (since 98% of them have never used a Mac).

Bottom line, however hard Apple tries, it is going to make miniscule chages in its market share as far as Macs go. It is better to break into new markets (iPhones, iPods).

Why!? (2, Insightful)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624663)

If I have a PC from work, then chances are that when it comes to my home machine I will go buy a PC.
Why why why why why why why why why why whywhy why why why whywhy why why why whywhy why why why whywhy why why why whywhy why why why whywhy why why why why!!!!!!

I have been a PC user at work and a Mac user at home for the past, oh 20+ years, and I've never thought to myself (while sitting at home)...."Gee, I wish I had that crappy computer from work here at home too!" Now that my company gives me a PC laptop, I bring it home (so it doesn't get stolen from work) and it sits in its bag while I use my $1000 cheaper MacBook.

I'm not sure why you can't understand that a Mac at home does not suddenly limit your productivity at work. If anything, it only highlights how unproductive you work computer is. "hassle of having to learn two operating systems"? The only hassle I see would be having to learn how to learn to maintain and keep a PC running at 1/3rd the productivity of a Mac.

And I'm not sure you've read the article or the other posts, but it is fairly clear that Apple isn't trying "hard" to take over the business world. They aren't trying at all, and they and their users are perfectly fine with that. They aren't breaking into new markets either, just making existing markets better. If Mac OS X only does one thing for the business world, I would hope it would be the same thing their other products do: force the competition to improve their offerings. Everybody wins that way.

apple doesn't care about beating windows (5, Insightful)

sentientbrendan (316150) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624317)

and hasn't since Jobs took over. There was a period when Apple's main goal was to increase market share. When they licensed the mac os to run on third party hardware (I have a mac clone from back in the day). It almost killed apple.

Ultimately, to take any significant chunk of the PC space, apple would need to start releasing hardware on a much smaller profit margin in order to compete with Dell, Gateway, Acer, and Lenovo. This would destroy Apple's profits and company, as the Apple clones fiasco empirically demonstrated.

On the other hand, Apple's current strategy of releasing high profile hardware to a niche market has done phenominally well for them. They've stayed profitable, and have boosted their marketshare to an incredible high compared to historical values.

If you'd bought apple stock and google stock at the time google went IPO, your apple stock would have outperformed your google stock by 3 or 4 times. Apple is doing *very* well and has no incentive to move away from their current low volume, high profit margin strategy. They are essentially skimming the creme of the consumer crop with their products.

Re:apple doesn't care about beating windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624475)

apple doesn't care about beating windows
and hasn't since Jobs took over.
"I'm a Mac. I'm a PC."


Yeah, Apple doesn't care.

If you'd bought apple stock and google stock at the time google went IPO, your apple stock would have outperformed your google stock by 3 or 4 times.
Not surprising since Google was an overhyped IPO, valued at $23 billion when they went public. Investors also caught on to the iPod revenue-generating machine. You think investors are that bullish on OS X?

Comparing Apples and Oranges (1)

Nymz (905908) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624553)

First bubble to break, Apple and Microsoft are not competitors. Unless Vista fails to do what people buy it to do, and that something is something Apple can do, but GNU/Linux can't do, then and only then would Apple see another sale.

All of the GNU/Linux distributions may be confusing, but they honestly offer different strengths and weaknesses, so don't expect there to be a single Unified_Linux_Sans_RMS any time soon. People and bussinesses pay money for goods & services that they value, but Apple and Microsoft simply don't have the overlap, a real enough overlap, for Jobs to cry about at any Lost-Opportunity cost here.

The NYT article is simply a torchbearer, a torchbearer in search of a leader, the leader they thought they had. That's not a slam at Jobs, he is leading his own path, the NYT is just a noisy backseat driver. Are we there yet? Have we crushed the richest man in the world yet? Have we turned the world into one big Cool-Hippie-Beatles-Peace-Free-Drugs-Woodstock world yet?

Re:apple doesn't care about beating windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624621)

They are essentially skimming the creme of the consumer crop with their products.

You've mixed up two different phrases there: "crème de la crème" and "cream of the crop". It's not "creme of the crop".

I have to disagree, moving into Best Buy (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624699)

is an indication that Apple is trying to get noticed for more than just their iPods.

I recently purchased my first Mac, an Imac, off of E-bay from one of those diehard Apple fans. The type that replaces perfectly good machines for newer models; mine was just 10 months old. Looking at his auction history he replaced a less than 6 month Mac Book Pro for one of the LED versions in February.

I think what Apple is missing is a headless Mac that sports more capability than the Mac Mini. They could do very well using the Apple TV form factor and have a system with good discreet graphics leveraging their use of similar tech in iMacs. Sell the unit with a mac keyboard and mouse, with notes that "your windows mouse" will work just fine. Price it in the range of 899 to 1699 depending on disk space and graphics power. Lure those Window's "gamers" that use the excuse. Hell, help Microsoft by having an OEM version of Windows available for bootcamp via coupon. People won't have to use Windows, won't being paying a Windows Tax, but with an OEM disk already made to install on a partition of their Mac from Apple they could make the whole thing a breeze.

I would move my parents to Mac but they have some Windows only software an no non-OEM Windows install meaning I would need to buy them both the Mac and Windows so they could continue as they do now.

While I find OS X pretty nice overall its not without aggravation. Its very easy to lose application configurations doing stupid things like changing user names and some software out there; cough FIREFOX; doesn't use the install process properly lending to the aggravation of converting to the platform.

Still I cannot believe they entered Best Buy without the expressed idea of appealing to a wider audience. It would be corporate stupidity not to try and grow your market. Mac users are not special. Their incentive to move away from their low volume high profit strategy is that they are close to the limits of what that market will support. The new trick is getting window users to their platform by making it so simple as to be a non-issue.

Love the Mac - PC's still rule in Corporate (1, Interesting)

PoconoPCDoctor (912001) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624319)

I bought a Mac Book Pro more than a year ago. Still love it. At work, I support PC's with only a sprinkling of Macs. We have Exchange for E-mail. Entourage still doesn't play nice with our server (not sure why, I only manage two small AD domains).

Just wondering out loud - do Blackberries work with OS X? Hmmm.... looks like you can synch with and Exchange server and OS X. []

We currently have a consulting group that manages our Exchange server - they only support Blackberries with Outlook - no Entourage support.

Maybe the new release of an Office suite for OS X might help, but the only way I can see Apple gaining on HP, Dell, etc, is by ramping up production and selling Macs in all the major outlets - Circuit City, Walmart, etc, instead of the cool but boutique-type Apple stores.

If Joe and Mary Computer shopper don't see it as they wander the mega-store aisles, they cannot buy it. Visibility. Show the product!

Macs in Best Buy (1)

lexarius (560925) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624471)

Maybe the new release of an Office suite for OS X might help, but the only way I can see Apple gaining on HP, Dell, etc, is by ramping up production and selling Macs in all the major outlets - Circuit City, Walmart, etc, instead of the cool but boutique-type Apple stores.

I was surprised the other week to see an Apple section in my local Best Buy, out in the open and obvious and stuff. Which was nice, because I wanted to buy a mini-DVI adapter. There was even a big sign by the door advertising this new addition. So maybe they are trying?

Re:Love the Mac - PC's still rule in Corporate (2, Interesting)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624479)

Apple's secrecy doesn't jive very well with a lot of corporate environments either. IT departments like to plan well ahead, and Apple (almost) unpredictably changing hardware etc. doesn't give them a very good feeling.

Another thing(coming from a 100+ user all Apple/Linux shop) that Apple does that doesn't work well with corporate environments is that they make it impossible to go back to previous OS X versions once a new one has been released. If history has anything to say, any new macs that come out after Leopard will not accept Tiger(well, there are no commercial Tiger discs for Intel machines anyway, only restore disks that are bound to the mac they came with). So say Apple releases Leopard and you find out that it doesn't work well with your environment for whatever reason(could be because you just haven't had enough time to rigorously test it). If you want one of those shiny new macs, you are screwed. You cannot install Tiger on it. We are going to purchase 100 new mac pros next real revision, and this may come back to bite us. That being said, Apple still does give security updates for its older OS products, there are still regular security updates for Jaguar(10.3) I do believe....

Now on the flip side of the coin, you can still install windows 2k or xp or almost any old version of linux, provided you are willing to risk not having 100% hardware support.

Re:Love the Mac - PC's still rule in Corporate (2, Informative)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624635)

...there are no commercial Tiger discs for Intel machines anyway, only restore disks that are bound to the mac they came with

What are you talking about, you can buy yourself a copy of Tiger through The Apple Store [] .


Re:Love the Mac - PC's still rule in Corporate (2, Informative)

robbieduncan (87240) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624667)

Yes, for PPC machines. That will not run on an Intel Mac. Check the hardware requirements on the page you linked to "PowerPC G5, G4 or G3 processor"

Re:Love the Mac - PC's still rule in Corporate (1)

b0s0z0ku (752509) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624639)

Another thing(coming from a 100+ user all Apple/Linux shop) that Apple does that doesn't work well with corporate environments is that they make it impossible to go back to previous OS X versions once a new one has been released.

OTOH, there are few enough Mac types that the same image will work on multiple machines. And no STUPID licensing and activation CRAP like a certain company based a few states north of Apple sees fit to foist upon consumers.

Vista is a turd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624325)

No amount of polishing is going to transform Vista. OSX is the only current viable mainstream OS and Apple really could shift a lot of boxes if they produced a low end desktop machine. The Mac mini is almost a goer, if Apple could reduce the price or sell it as a loss-leader until they hit profitable volumes, then they'd take a considerable slice of the market.

iMacTouch (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624329)

When the next mac goes the way of the iphone and itouch, then it will beat Vista. Think about it: no_keyboard + touch_the_screen_for_all_your_computing_needs = DOMINATION!

Re:iMacTouch (1, Insightful)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624367)

the day this happens, I'll start investing my money in Windex and Kleenex

Re:iMacTouch (1)

b0s0z0ku (752509) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624647)

When the next mac goes the way of the iphone and itouch, then it will beat Vista.

I know you're being sarcastic, but I have an iPhone and actually _like_ its touch screen interface. It's not appropriate for a desktop, but it's perfect for a phone -- for one, it's easy to keep clean, unlike dozens of buttons and it's almost infinitely configurable. iPhone + 3rd party software :)

Platform of choice. (5, Insightful)

ThePhilips (752041) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624331)

Silly people. Jobs was talking about this numerous times.

Apple never targeted broad audience. True, it can sell to very broad audience, but still Apple prefer to have few but loyal customers.

What also crossed my mind, is difference between Windows/Vista and Mac OS X. How does MacOS becomes platform of choice? Because you have to choose MacOS (as well as Apple hardware) by yourself. This establishes kind of barrier. But people who would cross the barrier are people who made their choice. The barrier works both ways: it takes some money investment to cross it (acquire hardware/software) and it takes some paining experience to come back to Wintel (which lacks all the polish, integrity and utility of Apple offering). But still, you are to make the choice by yourself.

And now ask yourself, who of us had chosen Windows?? Right, nobody. It's the thing which came preinstalled.

Re:Platform of choice. (2, Informative)

unfunk (804468) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624381)

And now ask yourself, who of us had chosen Windows?? Right, nobody. It's the thing which came preinstalled.

I chose Windows. Yes, it came preinstalled on my Compaq Presario back in 1995, but I got rid of it as soon as I found out about Linux.
That lasted about six weeks before I got fed up with the lack of application support for it back then, and ever since, I've been hopping between a lot of different 'alternative' operating systems and Windows. Currently I'm multibooting between Windows XP, Ubuntu 7.01 and OSX.

Windows gets about 90% of the useage.

Re:Platform of choice. (1)

TehZorroness (1104427) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624609)

In my opinion, the time has come where you can again dump windows. I have been happily using GNU/linux as my only desktop OS for 6 months now (I've had no proprietary code installed - at all - other then my video drivers for 2).

Re:Platform of choice. (1)

AbbyNormal (216235) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624459)

As a SMB manager who manages mostly a WinXP network, I believe it will be when management of a entire network of Apple's from a single group policy (accounts,fileshare profiles, network profiles, mail accounts all from a single utility).
I manage a few Suse and Ubuntu servers, so this would go for them as well.

Re:Platform of choice. (1)

b0s0z0ku (752509) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624685)

As a SMB manager who manages mostly a WinXP network, I believe it will be when management of a entire network of Apple's from a single group policy (accounts,fileshare profiles, network profiles, mail accounts all from a single utility).

Not sure about mail account info, but you can push all the other stuff you're talking about (and more) to Apple clients via LDAP. An OS X server is useful for this, but not strictly necessary -- you can run the management utilities on any OS X box connected to an LDAP directory.


Re:Platform of choice. (1)

W2k (540424) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624473)

I chose Windows. Despite all the talk about "the world of hurt that is Vista", the supposedly poor security of Windows in general, etc, I've had no problems with either of my boxes, which run Vista Biz and XP Pro, respectively. I try to give Linux a chance every time I have a PC to spare, but always end up switching back after a week or so of getting annoyed at how poorly everything works. Despite being a software developer, I don't want to tinker; I want everything working out of the box. I've tried Mac as well, but everything about that platform seems to be designed by a marketing department with retards as the target audience. I don't want a computer that thinks I'm an idiot, even if the UI is very nice and shiny and polite about it.

So yes, I chose Windows. It does what I want my computer to do, better than any other OS I've tried. All the apps and games I like run on Windows. My systems are fast, stable and I have lots of experience keeping them that way, to the point where doing so takes no effort. So why would I choose something else? Come on, one reason?

Re:Platform of choice. (2, Insightful)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624615)

I don't want a computer that thinks I'm an idiot,
So you chose an OS that TREATS you like an idiot?

Re:Platform of choice. (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624775)

I can think of a few compelling reasons to stay away from Windows. First of all, power consumption: the latest Linux kernel was re-engineered to use fewer CPU cycles, and on laptops, that is a HUGE plus, not to mention on virtualized servers. Then, there is KDE -- the latest version has also been fixed up to be more power efficient, and the upcoming release of KDE 4 should see continued improvements in this field. KDE is also very modular, much more so than Windows; I haven't had much experience with Vista, but in KDE, plugins will load in the ZIP archive file previewer, something that programs like Explorer and WinZIP just don't do. KDE is network transparent -- you can edit files on SFTP filesystems as if they were on your local machine. I know Windows has some capabilities for this, but it has never worked well for me, and the range of supported protocols is very limited. Most distros come with out-of-the-box support for zeroconf, which is particularly useful when working with people who don't know much about computing or networking (in this area, a particularly useful little KDE applet is the Personal File Server, which creates an HTTP interface to a chosen directory, then advertises with zeroconf, which is great for quickly sending files to people).

If Windows works for you, great. Personally speaking, I find that it is far too limited in terms of functionality for my taste, unless Vista is really all people claim it is. Why should I switch?

Re:Platform of choice. (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624487)

Apple never targeted broad audience. True, it can sell to very broad audience, but still Apple prefer to have few but loyal customers.
Is that his actual opinion though, or an excuse for a poor market share to calm their users? Are we to assume Steve Jobs never try to spin obvious disadvantages in market share to his adv advantage, but for example Microsoft often do?

I understand that making OS X generally available would reduce their profit margin, but what you're saying isn't about that, but that they don't want to make a big profit from their products from a larger audience? What advantage lies in that? If the audience is no longer very small, it no longer matters to have them very loyal either -- just ask Microsoft.

Apple's Busines Practices.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624371)

Is MacOS X a better OS than Windows? Sure. Is Apple better than Microsoft? I don't see it. They just aren't quite as successful. Even if Apple does displace Microsoft, I see no sign we will see any big ethical improvements when it comes to fair competition. Thus I find it hard to get excited about OS X's fate, no matter how well done it is. If Apple becomes had a record of being more open to competition, I'd care a lot more.

Apple can't sell HW to everybody (4, Insightful)

pmontra (738736) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624395)

OSX won't replace Windows anytime soon because it's tied with the Mac and only Apple can make and sell a Mac. There is no way Apple can manufacture as many Macs as the Windows-PCs made by Dell, HP & Co. Ff everybody stop buying Windows-PC and go buying Macs, there simply won't be enough offer to meet the demand. Prices will skyrocket or delivery times will get impossibly long and most people will have to buy PCs no matter what.

OSX can replace Windows only if Apple sells it as Microsoft does, but that means becoming a software company and compete with other manufacturers for the hardware, and likely lose the HW market. Remember what happened when Mac clones started to be successful in the past? Apple shut them down.

Probably Apple is still not interested to change its business model and is happy with OSX being a niche OS, maybe a large niche, but still a niche compared with Windows market share. After all the revenues aren't that bad and MS has no particular reason to look at them as particularly dangerous. I suppose they're thinking, we're making a lot of easy money now, so why take risks and change?

Re:Apple can't sell HW to everybody (3, Insightful)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624527)

I think you are correct thinking Apple is happy being where they are. I've been a Mac user for 20 years, and this niche is plenty big enough to handle 100% of my home computing needs and about 99% of my business needs. I for one am happy that Apple's first company goal is to produce the best product possible. Anything else would be selling out (which I believe they've saved for the iPod divisions..not that those are bad, but they seem to apply a more aggressive business model there).

The problem with EVERY market-share study is they are diluting the Mac presence by including their count in areas they have no interest in being. Whereas a PC is a cheap whore that will do anything for money, Macs tend to be made for personal/home use. If Apple wanted to get into the big businesses, I doubt they'd ship things not needed in big business, such as iTunes and GarageBand. To fix this misrepresenatation of Mac market share, why don't these consulting firms just look at a category called "personal computing" or "home computing". I'm sure Apple would be closer to the 20% range in the States, and closer to 50% in metropolitan areas.

I CAN use a Mac at work, but trying to get all the tightly controlled computer things to work on my Mac (even in Windows mode) isn't worth it. Not because the computer doesn't play along well, but because the tech idiots at work freak out and act like I'm some sort of anti-christ hooking up a MacBook Pro to a windows network. If they'd let me, I'd just do it myself, but these control freaks have to write a work order up for something as simple as hooking my laptop up to the LAN-drop if I move cubicles for the day.

In short, Apple doesn't want to dominate the corporate because it would diminish the quality of their home-user products, and the IT world doesn't like the threat of losing their power.

Vista is the next Windows Millenium (1, Troll)

siDDis (961791) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624449)

Vista is the worst thing I've ever installed on a PC. I have a quite high end system. Core 2 Duo running at 3.2Ghz with 2GB ram. Still after a few months use I struggle with constantly disc swapping and 5 minutes waiting everytime I alt-tab out games, for example Warcraft 3. After a week without a reboot Vista use 1.8GB of memory. Some is probably caching, however as I said I struggle with a lot of swapping to the disc and a reboot of Vista helps A LOT!

In two years people will say that 2GB ram for Vista is minimum, and recommended amount of memory is 8GB ram(No I'm not joking). It's like when WinXP was released, 128MB was minimum, and recommended was 512MB. Today it's 256MB minimum and 1GB recommended.

My laptop with WinXP and 512MB ram is way more responsive than my desktop with Vista and 2GB ram :(

The only thing Apple needs is more (especially high end)games and I'm sure people will get a Mac next time. Imagine if Crysis were only to be released on a Mac!

The world of hurt that is vista (2, Funny)

Cafe Alpha (891670) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624457)

Ha! That reminds me of one of my vary favorite jokes.

An old Penny Arcade shows Tycho in a wrestling ring being beat to a pulp by a guy labeled "Windows XP upgrade" (ok the picture is allegorical) and he's calling out to Gabe, "Why? You told me this would be easy, an hour at most! My world is pain!"

And Gabe replied, "Sometimes when you want to hurt someone very badly you have to tell them terrible lies."

How about Mac OSX for every computer? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624463)

Yes, cos I don't like apple hardware, it's expensive, low quality (yes i had an ibook.. which was broken 1000 times) and you can't customize it.

100$ for Mac OSX would be fine, this way apple could probably make more money in the future..

Lock-Ins and the All Might Dollar (1, Interesting)

sqrt(2) (786011) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624519)

One of two things would have to happen for me to consider apple to be an actual option to MS. Apple would have to lower its hardware cost to match that of a system I could get from Dell/Acer/HP with similar specs, or they'd have to allow me to buy just the OS and install it on any machine I build myself. There's practically no chance of this ever happening. Well, their loss if they don't want my business. XP and Linux work just fine. I even like Vista more than XP on the one machine I installed it on, it's definitely an improvement--and I've never had a problem with drivers, most get downloaded automatically anyway.

Re:Lock-Ins and the All Might Dollar (1)

michaelknauf (830252) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624643)

"Well, their loss if they don't want my business. "

No, it's their gain as they do not want your business. As an AAPL shareholder I'd be very upset if they lowered their hardware cost to match that of a system from Dell/Acer/HP -- all arguments about "comparable systems" aside, or if they "allow me to buy just the OS and install it on any machine I build myself". No doubt you'd want to pay a comparable price to windows for that OS, too.

Apple is very successful in the marketplace, market share is going up, profit margins are high... just compare the performance of AAPL over the last 10 years with any other stock, index, fund, you name it... how many of them come close to a 2500% return? GO ahead, compare aapl vs goog vs msft for the last 5 or 10 years.

Apple has made a choice to be a premium brand and make a luxury product. That's a choice they are happy with and their shareholders are happy with.

Re:Lock-Ins and the All Might Dollar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624671)

I don't know about you, but I don't make my hardware (or, fuck, anything for that matter) decisions based on the stock market.

Troll (4, Insightful)

JamesRose (1062530) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624561)

I find it surprising to come from the NYT, but this is such a troll of an article. starting "if you want a new PC you're screwed because everyone knows Windows is shit" going on to say "Apple has a much superior operating system" and ending with "Apple only has a 3% market share because it doesn't want a bigger market share, if they wanted a 90% market share they could have it any time they wanted" And all this suported by the most selective of fact picking.

are you doing all you can to impede evile? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624563)

try that, & the stock markup FraUD softwar gangsters (as well as a rather large contingent of greed/fear/ego based baby murdering southern baptist fanatics (philistines)l:) will fairly well disappear.

see you there?

meanwhile, back at the debacle we lovingly call man'kind', yOUR fearful 'leaders' continue to develop more&more cruel & unusual ways to create additional debt & disruption for most of US, while our fellow humans across the water continue to explode by yOUR $hand$.

infactdead corepirate nazis still WAY off track
(Score:-1, Offtopic)
by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 01, @09:35AM (#20433195)
it's only a matter of time/space/circumstance.

previous post:
mynuts won 'off t(r)opic'???
(Score:-1, Offtopic)
by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 30, @10:22AM (#20411119)
eye gas you could call this 'weather'? [] [] [] []

be careful, the whack(off)job in the next compartment may be a high RANKing corepirate official.

previous post:
whoreabull corepirate nazi felons planning trips
(Score: mynuts won, robbIE's 'secret' censorship score)
by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 01, @12:13PM (#20072457)
in orbit perhaps? we wouldn't want to be within 500 miles of the naykid furor(s) at this power point.

better days ahead?

as in payper liesense hypenosys stock markup FraUD felons are on their way out? what a revolutionary concept.

from previous post: many demand corepirate execrable stop abusing US

we the peepoles?

how is it allowed? just like corn passing through a bird's butt eye gas.

all they (the nazis) want is... everything. at what cost to US?

for many of US, the only way out is up.

don't forget, for each of the creators' innocents harmed (in any way) there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/US as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile will not be available after the big flash occurs.

'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious life0cidal glowbull warmongering execrable.

some of US should consider ourselves very fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate.

it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc....

as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis.

concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order.

'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

Article doesn't give all the facts (3, Insightful)

tsa (15680) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624599)

The article doesn't do Apple credit I think. Apple may not be doing well in the desktop world, but they are right there with the big boys when it comes to notebooks. Here [] is an article that tells us that Apple's notebook market share was 17.6 percent in June 2007. But having said that, I also must say that I think Apple's policy to only sell their hardware in their own stores and in 'Apple certified retailers' is a way to make certain that they won't get a large marketshare on the desktop. Apple's policy ensures that people can not really compare Apples and other computers side by side, and people who own Apple computers will continue to be considered hip, or weird, or stupid, depending on who you ask. O, and one more thing! Here in the Netherlands Apple certified the Media Markt to sell their computers. In Enschede a few iMacs and notebooks are cramped on some shelves that are just behind the computer the employees always use to check availability and prices of the things they sell. That means there is no space for customers to have a good look at the beautiful iMacs et al. that are displayed there. I asked a Media Markt employee a few questions about the new iMac, and he turned out to know next to nothing about it. He even admitted that. If I were Apple I would make damn certain that the people who sell my hardware in 'certified' shops know their stuff, and put my precious hardware on display in an easy to reach place. My experience at the Media Markt made me decide not to buy the iMac there but online. I'd rather wait a few weeks than have to do with clueless salesmen.

Mac v Wintel (1, Offtopic)

RedFive (78003) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624627)

My current employer has been switching us all to Macs. Got me a MacBookPro - I love it, I was productive in a day. We are a *nix/Java shop so it was a no-brainer really.

With this in mind, when it came time to get a new home PC - I bit the bullet and got an iMac. I've only had it for a week, but I love it. Sure - I probably could have got clone Wintel box cheaper, but when I found myself using my MacBookPro at home rather than my Windows machine - it wasn't a hard decision.

Yes - I've got Bootcamp and Windoze for games and a few MS only apps, but overall I won't be looking back.

Apple sent a pretty clear... (1)

bealzabobs_youruncle (971430) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624631)

message at MacWorld when they removed the "Computer" part of the company name. There has been nothig really exciting from Apple Computer since the new Pro towers, but the new iPods from Apple Gadget Co. are very nice. The latest bumps to iWork are half-hearted, iLife bumps are now money grabs and they are still trying to leverage .Mac when you can get most of what it offers for free. I think it's pretty clear that Apple will sacrifice the OS to sell more gadgets. That said, the Windows iTunes client is getting fairly bloated, has some long standing issues and needs to be updated on a relentless schedule. And the lack of a Linux client and recent somewhat hostile moves toward Linux users with the new iPods isn't helping either. If you want to provide gadgets to a wide range of consumers you have to respect and support them equally.

I have been no fan of Vista and had stopped using it at all back in February, but I recently slapped it on a spare PC to see if it had improved (and no shock) it has in many ways. The WSJ is right, the big MS machine is coming up to speed and the transition pains are disappearing... at this point any competitor has missed the boat.

Mod the NYT Down (1)

mbone (558574) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624649)

I have gotten to the point where I just don't care about these kinds of articles. I don't believe their statistics, I don't believe their reasoning, and I don't think that they have any particular insight into the future. This particular article strikes me as particularly un-insightful, and hardly worth the trouble.

For example, Apple now has 17.6 percent of the laptop market, according to PC World [] . Those are the computers that people actually use personally. As a frequent traveler, I can say I believe it, the number of Apple laptops you see at airports has grown greatly. It is not uncommon to see more Apple's than every other type in the transit lounge. This didn't fit into his pre-conceived notions, so didn't make the article. He could have talked about this, or about whether laptop use leads to increased use of office machines, or whether Apple's home entertainment solution is working or not, but he just chose to repeat some industry conventional wisdom he probably heard from some Dell sales guy. Mod him down.

I will get bashed for this but... (0, Troll)

therufus (677843) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624651)

Two things are stopping Apple from having the percentage of market share that Microsoft has:

1. Fucked up pricing (why spend $$$$ more when you can get a PC that does the same thing for less?).

Why should a user have to pay for OS updates (they're free and frequent with MS, yet you have to pay for each version of OSX)? Why do Apple Mac's cost so much when they're really just a closed up PC with different OS and fancier cases?

2. Holier-than-thou attitude.

Don't deny it. When it comes to the 'Mac culture', it's a resounding "my Mac is better than your PC because... blah blah blah...." with much chest beating. Majority of PC users don't actually care about Mac's. If anything, they wouldn't mind one. Most don't go into an Apple shop and say "Your dumb Mac can't play S.T.A.L.K.E.R.". Even support. iPods suck balls hard. I used to work in a retail store that sold iPods when they first came out. I had to call Apple 3 times in the first week with faulty units. I got 3 different D.O.A. policies from 3 different Indian call centre workers (yea, that iPod that you overpaid for sure didn't go into tech support). Ranging from 'Two week DOA policy, send it back to the distributor' to 'We're Apple, we have no DOA policy'. One tech support guy had the balls to tell a customer 'We don't manufacture faulty products, you clearly broke it' when it had the infamous frowny face error.

Look, if a Mac was given to me, I'd love it. Truly, they're great at what they do. Better than PC's in some areas. But the reasons Apple aren't the company they should be, appear to be the fact they don't want to be #1. Maybe Steve Jobs likes to be the underdog. I don't know.

Re:I will get bashed for this but... (1)

micropitt (105804) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624789)

You forgot to mention that the average Apple (Mac) user will hold on to his/her Mac 3 times longer then a PC user. I have an G4 Quicksilver from 2001 and still will be able to run the new OS X that will be released in October. Yes, Apple hardware is more expensive but you also have to consider that you don't upgrade things every 6 month not to mention buying a new machine every 2 years. Do you think anybody can run Microsoft Vista on a PC from 2001? Besides, on todays Mac's you can run OS X, Microsoft Windows, Linux and several BSD flavors. Sounds like some pretty good choices to me.

Apples and oranges and bears, oh my! (1)

davmoo (63521) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624675)

I have an Apple G4 (Quicksilver) running OSX (Tiger). I have a scratch-built PC running Windows Vista. I have a Toshiba laptop running Linux (Mandriva Spring 2007.1, and which happens to be the machine I'm typing this up on). I use each machine about equally.

And quite frankly, when set up properly (before you give me static, read that last part again), I see no difference in security or stability with any of the three. They all lock up every now and then for unknown and strange reasons. I've never had a virus or spyware on any of the three. They all have their various hardware and software installation pains in the ass. They each have their strengths, and they each have their shortcomings.

Apple can't beat MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20624711)

Maybe they can displace Windows market share, but anyone making this argument has no grasp of the businesses at hand. Apple in comparison is a pretty small company, they make their own proprietary crap mostly, their own closed development software and a bunch of trendy gadgets. Plus they get handed loads of cash by MS whenever they get into fiscal trouble.

If anyone is not putting the pressure on the competition it's MS. They have the money to just waste with or without a return and still easily come out on top.

If you guys really had a grasp of the market you wouldn't ask yourself these questions. MS is an entirely different business model than Apple and they really aren't in that much competition with each other. There is no way Apple can gain significant share by just having a good OS. That will never be enough to make developers and consumers quickly move to Apple and anything else will give MS the time to reshape their model.

See no matter what happens, MS can still hire more consultants, dump more money at the problem, buy more advertising and bribe more retails and business allies. Even if MS model starts to fail they have plenty of money and fame to just tweak it. If Apple truly threatened MS market share, MS already has many ways on the back burner to fight back. The reality is, that MS is the one not being aggressive. Apple could try, but chances are they would only effectively piss MS off and considering how much more money they have to spend, currently that would be a mistake. Apple needs to stay put and see how much money they are going to loss on the iPhone in the long run. Seems to me in a couple months it will be an overpriced and under reliable platform without much good software. OH, the fate of Apple, to not have enough developers interested in their platforms.

Market share or competition with MS is not what Apple needs. They need more developers and ways to generate interest among developers to make their platform appear more ideal.

MS already has MSNBC and the Xbox, they have a voice in the public spotlight that Apple does not and they have the worlds most useful console system. If worst came to worst, MS could put a PC in every home for less than the 188 dollar laptop that's supposed to spread education throughout the developing world.

Well, why not sell them an xBox with a keyboard and mouse. With the deal MS has with Intel the hardware costs are lower than anything else out there by far and since the xBox already runs win32 it's set. MS just knows it's a lower profit business model so they aren't going to make moves like that unless someone makes them more aggressive.

You guys really don't see what they are doing. After MS made their billions they adopted a strategy to ride out their success as slow as possible which maximizes profit. As long as they don't sit around obliviously while major chunks of market share erode they are doing just fine.

The xBox and .Net show you the direction MS is going, full cross platform and the lowest cost hardware platform on earth. Apple is trying a similar move with the iPhone, but it's just not good enough. The average American would certainly rather having a gaming console/PC for half or a third of the price of a picture phone. It would seem to me to be an unstoppable platform and if MS can lower the hardware costs for the sake of game sales, that means they could lower the hardware costs even lower if they have more resale value. Giving XBox full PC software support would make the hardware that much better. Yea I know there is Linux, but you know, if Linux was gonna sell, it would and it's not as a home user platform. You don't even have to wonder why, the sales speak for themselves and that's all I'm talking about here.

The windows has more or less closed for Apple already anyhow. The windows was at the end of the XP life cycle because the main driving point in people switching to Apple is malware, without a doubt.
Mac OS reminds me of people who run AOL. Sure it's safer and more colorful, but I'd rather just have the standard. Mac hasn't even proven it's BSD platform is stable, they've had one OS release successfully on BSD and before that they almost went out of business. Plus their best office suite is MS Office. I wonder how often MS has to re-sign that deal into effect.

Nope, you guys are wrong. Apple needs to lay low still, build on BSD more. They are doing fine, a big push for market share will draw major competition from a vastly more funded competitor. Apple should keep on with marginal gains and slowing drawling in developers. In fact, since we all know the world is going cross platform, why does Apple need to push at all ? It's not like it was back in the day, where one platform will rise to the top and then dominate.

It's more like if you take on market share that you can't handle you will just waste advertising money, disappoint users and draw in more competition. Just look at Linux's desktop market to see how not to try to advance a platform that isn't complete enough.

Face it, the vast majority of Mac users barely use their computer to it's potential. To them the computer is a thing to surf the web, listen to music and occasional do some spreadsheet work with.
If you want the access to loads of free software and updated software their is still only one platform. Mac users think the built in webcam is a major plus to the Macintosh platform. Cmon, these people are like the children of computer users. Exposed to nothing but fisher price looking menus and new age graphics. It's not going to work in the long run. Mac will be the old people's platform while more and more adults find themselves interested in 3d games. Oh and what is MS doing, launching a game building community and framework. What's Apple doing? They are locking down the iPhone development market, keeping linux off their iPhone, bulding more overprices MP3 players AND locking them into iTunes.

They just aren't not the professional company that I would expect them to be. Making comments about NBC's choice to pull their content from iTunes as stupid or idiotic of whatever they said is just completely childish. You don't publicly insult your clients. Perhaps Jobbs is having a god complex moment again and he'll have to disappear to some far east mystic for advice.
I'd rather have the poker player than the new age mystic guy running my platform of choice.

I'd prefer BSD or Linux, but they mostly suck as desktops for my wide variety of uses. People with more focuses uses of their PC won't find that as big of a problem, but I use mine for everything from audio/video recording, to movie conversions, to a home entertainment center, gaming system, development platform, and a host of other things. The fact is Linux nor Mac could serve me better for now. I've tried Linux plenty of times even back when you had to rawrite floppies and while it's getting better it's still broken in many places and I find the lack of standardization to just be a pain more than anything. Who needs flashy desktop icons, sidebar gagets or 3d desktops, not me. I don't want to play with my computer, I want to use it. Mac of course, like most people doesn't run on my hardware since Apple was I dunno, in bed with Intel on the SSE2 and SSE3 requirements. That really screws AMD users out of using Mac x86. Oh well for Apple on that one. They'd have a huge market share surge if they didn't port their OS to not run on the majority of systems still out there. Vista has been completely secure for me, with or without virus protection, in use a community surfing PC, and running P2P constantly. Now I do think I screwed it up a little tweak with it the first time, but it was vastly easier to get up and running than it was for the months I tried Linux. What I am supposed to review all the Linux software out there until I find software to replace what I had ? Shit, I can't even find a good torrent client native to Linux. I have to run utorrent in Wine if I want a quality torrent client that doesn't run java slow.

Vista is a sh!t, but you will use it anyway. (5, Insightful)

hotfireball (948064) | more than 7 years ago | (#20624749)

IMHO Vista is a sh!t. But, IMHO, you are doomed to use it anyway.

Below is all my IMHO, folks. Be friendly, don't take me as troll. But you still doomed to see Vista, no matter how shitty Vista is. Because:
  • Microsoft Office on MS Windows is still a winner for daily business. It is tragic, it is incompatible between its versions, it is unstylish, it is horribly looking. But winner. Why? Because people is using it for so long time and Excel there is fastest among competitors and has lots of features. And Excel is stupid fucking format, which all users in business companies usually stupidly fucking using it. Either you shall do something better or give up. Look at the newest Apple thingy: Numbers from iWork '08. It just does not works like Excel does. It is different thing. People, who already working -- they won't change in their mind. They want simply continue their work and go beer at the evening.
  • Linux Desktop is just plain sucks and disappointing thing. :-( Yes, it works. Yes, it DOES works. Yes, it has that stunning XGL things (despite of it is completely useless CPU waste, yet I still love it). Yes, you can install Enlightenment and feel like inside Unreal Tournament. Yes, KMail is brilliant, Evolution is really nice, with you can do very complex usefull business ugly documents, yes you can listen the music, radio, watch the video and even eventually semi-sync your iPod (still no iTunes Store available). But all this is not a Desktop yet. The *integration of the software* is just plain sucks simply everywhere -- no matter Gnome or KDE or in between. Well, there are NO integration at all. You have dozen different pop-up dialogs for "Open file", you have extrenely stupid Nautilus with total absense of user-friendly (e.g: take pencil and paper and enumerate steps required to enable Trash Bin on desktop?) and so on... X11 desktop which is available today is that *wacky* and painfull.
  • "Grey mass" syndrome of simply users. They think in chain way, like: John use Windows, Steve use Windows, therefore I have to use Windows.

You would say what is the proposal? Let's try to think. ;-) In my opinion:

  • Desktop integration. Take a look at OSX and simply copy the principle. The first step would be making the fucking holy standard for developing the applications, no matter this is GTK or QT or whatever you want.
  • Killer application. I have to admit that Firefox and OpenOffice are much better their predecessors (Mozilla and StarOffice). But we need something killing for DAILY boring office worker desktop usage. It should be fast, nifty, compatible and easy (to learn and to launch too).
  • Do something with those glibc/libc incompatibilities between distros. I am sure vendor wants to release a software, the binary of which could work on any Ubuntu, any RHEL, any Fedora, any SuSE, any Gentoo and any other things you can imagine. Just take it, drop it to the installer thingy and zip-zop! -- it is installed, no matter distro you have. This perfectly works for OSX and works for Windows. Well, almost perfectly. ;-) I am not talking about apt-get or yum things (infrastructure). I am talking about compatibility of them.
  • Stop ridicule and underestimate Microsoft but start respect them as a competitor and usually BETTER software writer. They generate brilliant ideas -- that's their strong side. But they implement them usually shitty and never think more practically about their ideas -- that's weakness we can exploit.

P.S. I am MacOSX, Solaris, Linux and BSD advanced power user and developer of software for more than 10 years. Don't tell me soap stories about "nice Linux Desktop", please. Just fucking please.

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