“We may be watching the demise of Apple as a PC company and its rebirth as a cross-platform multimedia company. This has been going on for some time, but it just became obvious to me when I had a chance to review Apple’s latest financials. The PC market grew at a good rate — at least compared with previous years — with 16 to 20 percent growth, depending on who provided the numbers. Apple grew its PC business at a near-flat 5 percent and lost share, again,” Rob Enderle writes for TechNewsWorld.
“On the other hand, the MP3 player business grew an impressive 87 percent. Now this is a hot market. Apple grew its MP3 player business better than 900 percent. That’s a nine followed by two zeroes. I’d love to see anyone argue that Apple isn’t kicking the proverbial butts of the other player makers, including old stalwarts like Creative Labs and Sonic Blue as well as giants like Phillips, Thompson Electronics, GE and Samsung,’ Enderle writes.
“Next time you are watching an Apple ad or looking at an Apple billboard, see if you even can find a personal computer. The ads are almost all about the iPod or iTunes. Head-to-head comparisons between Apple and Napster, RealNetworks and MusicMatch almost always favor Apple as number one. And, clearly, the iPod has taken all comers, slapped them around and spit them out. While the new mini-iPod has had some initial issues, it remains one of the hottest retail products on the market as well, making kicking butt a new Apple tradition,” Enderle writes.
“If you think about it, on the PC side, Apple really is little more than a brand and some nice shells. The company, like most other PC makers, has gone to offshore manufacturers for most of its products. Underneath, the hardware is mostly IBM now, and the software is based on an open-source version of Unix developed by others, called FreeBSD. The actual intellectual capital invested by Apple in the platform itself seems to be in decline, and, as much as I personally like FreeBSD, the hot alternative to Microsoft these days is Linux,” Enderle writes.
“For years, I’ve pointed out that I think Apple could do very well in the Wintel market, but it wasn’t until the iPod was released that I could prove it. iPod sales have been phenomenal and mostly on Wintel hardware and against entrenched Wintel vendors like Creative Labs, which showcases just how powerful Apple’s advantages are in this market… Apple is on the cusp of an important decision that either will take it to a position of dominance or will doom it to the declining niche of companies that could have been contenders. The iPod has shown the way, and my bet is Apple will eventually follow,” Enderle writes.
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Has Apple forsaken the Macintosh? Unless we see something from Apple on the Mac side soon, we’d be hard pressed to say, “no way!” Lately, it seems Apple had forsaken the Mac. iPod, iTunes, iPod, iTunes, iPod, iTunes, ad infinitum, it seems are the Apple news of the day. Apple had better watch out. We love Apple the company because of the Macintosh platform. The iPod is nice. iTunes is nice. The Mac is insanely great. Do not forget that, Mr. Jobs.