“It broke Mike’s Viglione’s heart to see that old Macintosh abandoned on the street like that. Who would do such a thing, he wondered? He grabbed the computer and took it home. He dusted it off and gave it new life. The Apple joined a happy little computer family made up of three Mac Classics, four Powermacs, a dual G4 Desktop, a G4 Powerbook and a charming little iPod. Viglione doesn’t use them all. He just likes having them around. He says he doesn’t ‘have the heart to throw away the classics.’ Hey, it’s a Mac thing – PC folk just wouldn’t understand,” Christopher Hutsul reports for The Toronto Star.

Hutsul reports, “Because the Macintosh, which celebrated it 20th anniversary in January, has endeared itself to a community of computers users in an almost spiritual way. Two decades after Steve Jobs unveiled the first Mac, people like Viglione – and me – get downright emotional about our Macs. Ever heard of new Mac smell?”

“‘For the people who are dedicated enthusiasts, I think they see their computers almost as pets,’ says Viglione, who sells Apple products by day at a computer store. ‘As a Mac user, your computer takes on a personality. You treat it with a human-like quality.’ You don’t often hear people talking about their consumer electronics this passionately. But Macintosh has been able to separate itself from the herd since the beginning,” Hutsul reports.

“Now this isn’t about whether Mac is the better computer. Depending on how you slice it, Macintosh has been both the best and the worst of the computer market. Even with the recent successes of the iPod and the coveted Titanium Powerbook series, some estimate that only 3 per cent of the market does its computing on Apple machines,” Hutsul reports.

[MacDailyNews Note: 3% is the current quarterly market share, not the installed base. Hutsul should have reported “only 10 percent of the market does its computing on Apple machines.” It’s knowledge that can be gathered, but for some reason most in the media never seem to be able to do their research. Here’s an exception: “Naysayers have been calling for Apple’s demise for years. But Apple not only has survived but thrived, it seems, at least partially by the sheer force of Jobs’ will and his ability to maintain the ferocious loyalty of Apple’s users, who still account for 10% of the world’s computer users, while its sales usually account for about 3% to 5% of the world global PC market,” Arik Hesseldahl, Forbes.com, June 2, 2003. (source)/a>

“Dissidents would argue that in terms of pricing, the high-end Macs cost up to 50 per cent more than a similarly equipped PC (though I’d counter that by suggesting the price gap is erased by the fact Mac users seem to hold on to their computers for about twice as long as PC users, thereby spending the same amount),” Hutsul reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: A good article that repeats the same mistake many reporters make. Macs last longer than Windows PCs. If Mac users replace their Mac every 4 years and PC users replace their every 1.5 years, what does that do to quarterly market share numbers? Not to mention, what does that do to landfills? The important number to analysts, marketeers, software developers, and others should be how many people out of 100 use a Mac? The answer is closer to 10 people out of 100 or 10 percent. Not 3 percent. We get tired of having to point this put, but we’ll never stop doing so until the “3 percent myth” is destroyed.

Obviously, Apple needs to address the current market share numbers or their percentage of all computer users who use a Mac will erode over time.