Smart companies should consider Apple Macs to cut IT costs

“When it comes to IT investments by businesses large and small, it’s all about the numbers,” David Shipley writes for The New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal. “There are other numbers beyond the sticker price business executives need to think about, particularly when making decisions about the next upgrade cycle. Known as total cost of ownership, such approach often leads companies to realize that higher-end computers offering more benefits than low-end machines because of increased worker productivity and longer lifespan.”

“Data theft, machine downtime, equipment repair, expensive scams and lost productivity are all things business leaders need to take into account when looking at computers and software. According to IT security firm Sophos Inc., there were 114,000 known viruses for the Windows platform in 2005, with a 44 per cent increase in malicious software. One in 44 e-mails in 2005 contained a virus.That’s reason to give any business pause. While companies are spending billions on anti-virus, spyware and anti-spam software, the onslaught from viruses continues to evolve with reports of organized crime now branching out online through theft of corporate secrets, blackmail and other scams” Shipley writes.

“Then there’s the Mac, which is virtually virus-free… While a few hackers have put out simple proof of concept viruses, there have been no widespread virus attacks on the Mac in the last five years. Apple’s Macs aren’t invulnerable, but the threats they face are the IT equivalent of a mild cold compared to the plethora of digital Ebola viruses infecting Windows,” Shipley writes. “Some argue that the Mac is immune from viruses because of its relative obscurity. Others argue its underlying take on computer security makes its more robust than Windows. Whatever the reason, it’s time for business people to stop thinking about Macs as a tool for the “graphics people.” It might just be time to move beyond total cost of ownership and to look at a new business term – competitive advantage. The good news for businesses looking at ditching Windows for Mac OS X is Apple’s latest generation of computers are competitively priced with similar offerings from other PC makers such as Dell or HP.”

“In March, Apple announced a new beta software program called Boot Camp that allowed users to install Windows XP alongside Mac OS X. This will enable users to continue to access Windows-only program while enjoying the security and features of Mac OS X. The only concern of course is that Macs running Windows are just as vulnerable to the same viruses that plague other PCs. The ability to boot between different operating systems is expected to be included in Apple’s next revision of OS X due in 2007,” Shipley writes. “Computers are a vital part of your operation whether you’re running a 10 person shop or a 1,000 person enterprise. But like any other business tool, they should just work. Sadly, in many cases, they don’t and cause businesses untold headaches. But perhaps an Apple or two can keep the more than 100,000 headaches away – or at least down to a far more manageable level.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Wolf” for the heads up.]

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Related articles:
Pfeiffer Consulting: Mac vs Windows: Total Cost of Ownership, Productivity and Return on Investment – March 30, 2006
Apple Macintosh simply does more and costs less than Windows PCs – February 14, 2006
FBI: Viruses, spyware, other computer-related crimes cost U.S. businesses $67.2 billion per year – February 01, 2006
Windows to Mac switchers: recommendations and Total Cost of Ownership analysis – September 29, 2005
Apple Macs are less expensive than Dell PCs – April 24, 2005
Apple Macs are far easier, cost less to manage than Windows boxes – March 02, 2005
Novell CEO: ‘Microsoft sucked $60 billion out of IT industry that could have used for innovation’ – September 13, 2004
Switching from Windows to Mac OS X costs less than you think – August 18, 2004
Windows worms and viruses cost companies average of $2 million per incident – July 08, 2004


  1. That’s $250.00 for the PC + $50.00 Anti-Virus software + $100.00 additional Software + the Grief (Priceless) and time lost in money = What?

    My IT department likes to spend as little on the harware as possible but fail to realize how much they’re really spending.

    They’ll never learn


  2. This guy is right on, but what companies want is hardware vendor choice AND all the reliability and security Mac OS X brings.

    They are not about to retrain millions of workers to OS X either and suffer lost productivity, although it would be a good investment in the longterm.

    Windows already has a huge base of developers and whatnot which would be difficult to leave.

    So in the big companies eyes the easiest method would be to force M$ to fix their software instead of jumping into a a more restrictive platform under Apple where there is no hardware choice.

    Vista and Trusted Computing on EFI based computers will go a long way to solving that problem for them.

    Of course if Vista fails miserably, then there is a chance, but M$ will just go back to patch upon patch cycle again and corporations and buisnesses will just accept it becasue they already bought in for another cycle.

  3. People need to stop participating in group think:

    1. Apple has been in business for over 30 years. If any hardware company will be around in the next 10, it’ll be Apple.
    2. Big companies want choice? Then how come all of their choices are tied to one company: Microsoft?

  4. In companies eyes, they would be trading a operating system monopoly (M$) for a hardware and operating system monopoly. (Apple)

    If Apple released Mac OS X for any machine, then M$ will make Windows better and give it away for free to shut down Apple for good. Apple would of course lose and income from software and hardware sales as nobody would buy a Mac when a PC + pirate OS X would be cheaper and provide the same experience.

  5. Only Apple Macs can run both Mac OS X and Windows. Two for the price of one. Even a CEO can understand that concept.

    Run Mac OS X instead of Windows and watch productivity and profits rise. Workers actually work longer since they love working on the Macs. Put a price tag on that.

    That’s what we’ve experienced in my company.

  6. Unfortunately this reads like consumer reports dribble.

    I’ve been harping on competitive advantage since the late 80s where the Mac is concerned.

    It doesn’t matter.

    The same processes that go into voting for a new Congressional candidate go into choosing a computer. I.e. none at all.

    This is why we wind up with the same idiot congress people, and businesses wind up using the same idiotic OS over and over.

  7. It seems to me the strategy for IT groups to follow is to run Windows only apps in Boot Camp or Parallels, but keep Windows off the internet since that is the avenue, excuse me Interstate, by which malware gains entrance to Windows. Confine Windows to the intranet of the organization, but do not let it have access to the internet. All email and web browsing should be done on Mac clients only. Quarantine keeps them clean! (Well, one hopes so, at any rate.)

  8. Hah! More productivity on Macs?

    Hortense knows that given a choice and lack of surveillance, employees would bring their movies, pictures and music to work to do the editing etc. with iLife on company Macs…just picture them working longer hours, either getting bonuses for their efforts, overtime pay for some. Yes, they would have so much fun using Macs that they would indeed stay longer at work.

    No wonder companies want them to suffer by making work as unattactive as hell, which is what cows see when they truly look at the vista before them. They do not necessarily believe the grass is greener on the other side. Can’t have the workers racing to work, you know.

    IT guys are there to have fun, not to let others in on it. And fun is staying employed, maxing out the number of IT guys per computer. That’s what “support” means.

    Yes to bigger herds. No to Macs.

  9. The argument that Macs running Windows and OS X will be attractive to businesses has a flaw: the extra IT support needed for TWO operating systems. What business is going to pay for the tech support for both when they both do the same thing? They’re going to either do all OS X or all Windows unless they’re a tiny business with one tech who knows the ins and outs of both.

  10. static mesh,

    If Apple released Mac OS X for any machine, then M$ will make Windows better and give it away for free to shut down Apple for good.

    makes windows better? oh yea like they are actually able to do that at all, let alone overnight if apple ever did license os x.

    but apple wont need to, microsoft may need to resort to giving away there os though, thats a good point, who really wants it?

  11. sn,

    I think the attraction is that the IT support for mac is about 100 times less than for windows in the real world and smart companies know they can cut costs by investing in macs.

    wheres that flaw again?

  12. This article may turn out to be a bit of a tipping point.

    I haven’t seen anything so pro-business for Apple before. It’ll be picked up by other journo’s researching the topic and bingo…

    Look out Microsoft. You had a good run for your money. But as we know nothing lasts forever – much less cheating, stealing, bullying, copying and incompetence.

  13. sn:

    Yep, you could have compromised Windows systems – which even senior Microsofties acknowledge can be impossible to fix at times (as per the Jim Allchin story yesterday and the remarks made by MSFT’s security czar [!] earlier this year) – and spend huge amounts of company money keeping your systems free of viruses and spyware.

    Or you could buy a network of Macintoshes and have a support staff:user ratio of about 1:250, and not be a hostage to Microsoft, Symantec, McAfee and others.

    Of course, many Mac OS professionals already have a good grounding in Windows tech – myself included – whilst many (or even most) Windows professionals (or paper-MCPs to be more accurate) don’t really know about Macintosh and – what’s more – are too blinkered to embark on a voyage of discovery.

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