Where Apple leads, Wintel follows years later

“Will it matter? Will the world really change now that Apple is rolling out a sub-$500 Mac named after a cute little car? Will the Mac Mini have any impact on corporate IT at all? The answers are pretty clear: Yes, no and sure, but not the way Mac lovers might expect,” Frank Hayes writes for ComputerWorld. “Let’s get the obvious analysis out of the way upfront: A $500 price tag won’t make corporate IT shops crave Macs. Heck, if Apple gave them away with a $500 bill taped to each machine, we still wouldn’t use them. The transition costs would be too high. But will the Mac Mini have an impact on us? Probably. And it’ll likely almost all be good news.”

Hayes writes, “We’re used to writing off Apple as irrelevant because Macs don’t run Windows software. (Strictly speaking, they can, but it’s usually not worth the trouble to make that happen.) There might be some Macs in marketing or some other odd corner of our corporate world. But Macs — with a measly 3% market share in desktop computers, by units shipped — aren’t mainstream. They’re not for us. That’s corporate IT gospel.”

Hayes writes, “But notice: Even at just 3%, there are still only seven companies in the world that sell more computers than Apple does. And most of those seven companies are sweating, because there’s not much they can do to innovate or differentiate in the lock-step, beige-box game… So if Apple wants to abandon floppy disks or sell computers in funny colors or shapes, it can. In contrast, PC makers have been trying since 1999 to get away from the beige tower and legacy features. So far, they haven’t even managed to get rid of parallel printer ports… Where Macs lead, PCs follow… For corporate IT, there’s no downside to the Mini. And any upside will take a year or so to hit us.”

Full article here.


  1. “Where Apple leads, Wintel follows years later”

    Does that apply to Fast user switching, Multithreaded Apps, Liquid Cooled Systems, Hypertransport Bridges, MultiCore Processors, terminal services / RDC, event viewers, system policies, thumbprint authentication, Pen/ink recognition, voice recognition, Compatability Modes, system restore, FLASH Media Players, Business Productivity, and full integration ..NO Its doesnt.

    Brought to you by “step” as in “If you’re a flamer, step off.”

  2. No IT Man, as I keep having to explain to people, $499 buys you OSX and iLife. Use it for one thing only, some of the time, of completely replace your Windows machine with it. It’s up to you.

    The hardware just comes with it as an extra.

  3. Excuses, Excuses

    Brought to you by Effort….”I put no effort into securing a Windows Network of 1500+ clients”…. : )

    Laziness is a virtue…WoooHooo

  4. And what ugly, feature poor shitboxes those PCs are, IT Man. Firewire? Not likely. Quality video sub-system? Not likely. Faster CPU? Well, that’s debateable and you’re still saddled with XP, that enormous, bloated rotting corpse of an OS that it is.
    And of course Dell can make a cheaper low end PC, with all of the above plus the corporate and environmental ethics of a neo-liberal.
    No, with Apple (I’m a switcher BTW) I’m buying the whole, seamless experience; the whole elegant package.

    Hassle free IT.

    When you look at those ‘cheap’ PCs, you need to consider why they are so cheap. Things like the conditions, wages and treatment that the component assemblers work under. How do these manufacturers treat the environment? All of a sudden when you start to factor these things in, the PC is not just cheap, it’s also nasty. That’s another reason why Apple hardware is that little bit more expensive when we see the ticket price.

    In my eyes, the hardware, even pre Mac Mini, is a bargain.

  5. Oh and when you add up the prices of the excellent and extensive software bundle you get, it equals the price of the Mini itself. So you’re buying the software, and getting a powerful little feature rich computer for free.

  6. IT Man, your name suits you well. You’re the absolute picture of most IT people in the world: short-sighted, and ignorant. As for the megahertz myth, even Intel has announced that it’s true. No one ever said a 700mhz PowerPC equals a 3.4ghz Pentium, but a 700mhz PowerPC chip is a hell of a lot faster than a 700mhz Pentium.

  7. IT Man, I have some experience with those $300 PCs. Bought an almost new eMachine (with monitor) at a garage sale for $2. The owner said it just got slower and slower and finally wouldn’t work at all. I took it home and wiped the hard drive and re-installed Windows. What a nightmare! Inside it was the most horrendous conglomeration of obscure, clearance bin hardware I’ve ever encountered. Drivers were either non-existent or didn’t work, and the MB, etc. were not compatible with the standard stuff from my spare PC parts bin. I ended up deciding I’d paid too much and tossed it.

  8. ” What part of the word MAJOR do you not understand? Cappuccino PC? Pu-lease”

    Apple isn’t exactly a major manufacturer either with less than 3% market share. They are a small niche market product.

    “Yes, I said a Pentium III. Pathetic.” That’s exactly what I think of the G4 processor.

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