In a wonderful article for the Baltimore Sun, entitled, “Apple’s Office Politics,” David Zeiler explains how Apple is daring to take on Microsoft with Keynote and Safari and also contains this interesting section, “Rob Enderle, a research fellow at the technology research company Giga Information Group Inc. in Cambridge, Mass., called Apple’s current moves ‘unwise,’ as the withdrawal of Microsoft support for the Mac platform ‘removes a level of validation.’ Enderle said Apple could be acting pre-emptively. If Apple suspects, for instance, that Microsoft is considering dropping support for the Mac anyway, it needs to be ready for when Microsoft drops the bomb. Even so, he said Apple could have quietly prepared substitute programs like Safari without provoking Microsoft with a public release of the software. The risk to Apple involves more than just whether Microsoft would stop producing Mac versions of Office and Explorer. Microsoft, for example, could try to sabotage Apple’s QuickTime video technology by crafting subtle incompatibilities into its next version of Windows.”
Zeiler goes on to wonder whether, “Apple could release a ‘pro’ version of AppleWorks that’s on par with Office for the Mac, charging, say, $349 or $399. A ‘lite’ version of the suite, with fewer features, could sell for $99 and still be bundled with new consumer Mac models. Both versions would have one vital feature: total compatibility with Microsoft Office formats. Apple also could sell the individual “pro” components separately, as Microsoft does, except at a lower cost, of course. This shouldn’t be too difficult, considering that Word, Excel and PowerPoint for Mac OS X sell separately for $350 each. Keynote costs $99. As for Microsoft, it could choose between updating Office and competing with ‘AppleWorks Pro’ — that’s what I’m calling it — or drop all software development for the Mac and transfer its Mac Business Unit employees to the Xbox division.”
An excellent read. Full article here.