Big race? Which will ship first, Microsoft’s Windows Vista or Apple’s Mac OS X Leopard?

“As Apple announces a spring release for its latest Mac OS, many analysts suspect Vista’s January update may be delayed until later in the year,” Ina Fried reports for CNET News.

“Apple chief executive Steve Jobs first talked about Leopard at last year’s developer conference, saying it would arrive in late 2006 or early 2007. Vista, meanwhile, has suffered through many delays, most recently missing its target of being ready for PCs on sale in this year’s holiday shopping season,” Fried reports.

Fried reports, “Apple has been making hay about Vista and its many delays since the Windows update was still known by the code-name Longhorn. At the 2004 developer conference, the company welcomed attendees with signs saying ‘Redmond, we have a problem’ and ‘Redmond, start your photocopiers.’ The jabs continued on Monday, with Apple displaying posters such as ‘Mac OS X Leopard: Introducing Vista 2.0’ and “‘Hasta la vista, Vista.’

Fried reports, “Jobs also said the Mac maker was holding back on some of Leopard’s features. He outlined 10 new things in the operating system, but said that there were more that the company was not talking about. ‘We don’t want our friends to start their photocopiers any sooner than they have to,’ he said. In particular, Gartenberg noted that Jobs pointed to a new version of the Front Row media software, but did not offer any details. The current version allows remote-control access to pictures, music and videos, but stops short of the TV-recording features offered by Windows XP Media Center Edition. ‘I suspect there is a lot more to Leopard that Apple is holding back,’ Gartenberg said.”

Fried reports, “Even though Apple is largely on track with Leopard’s timing, some analysts noted that the company could have scored an even bigger coup had it had the revamp ready in time to include on Macs for this year’s holiday shopping season. ‘They had a huge, gaping window of opportunity if they could ship this fall,’ said IDC analyst Bob O’Donnell. But now there’s ‘a good chance’ that Leopard won’t ship until after Vista, he said.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Some people are delusional. Apple already has a massive lead as this Christmas it’s Mac OS X Tiger vs. Windows XP. No contest, as usual. Let’s get real here: Mac OS X Tiger vs. Windows Vista is no contest, either. Leopard vs. Windows Vista will be like a thermonuclear bomb vs. a past-dated bag of Pop Rocks.

Related articles:
Analyst: Apple’s new Mac OS X Leopard sets new bar, leaves Microsoft’s Vista in the dust – August 08, 2006
Gartner analyst: It’s a ‘distinct possibility’ that Mac OS X Leopard will ship before Windows Vista – August 07, 2006
Apple WWDC banner: ‘Mac OS X Leopard. Introducing Vista 2.0’ – August 07, 2006
Ballmer analyzes Microsoft’s One Big Mistake, Vista… er, ‘One Big’ Vista Mistake – August 02, 2006
Microsoft Windows Vista demo goes bad – July 29, 2006
Sophos: Apple Mac OS X’s security record unscathed; Windows Vista malware just a matter of time – July 07, 2006
Leopard attack on Vista: Apple taunts Microsoft with much faster operating system launches – July 05, 2006
What Microsoft has chopped from Windows Vista, and when – June 27, 2006
Microsoft botches another copy job: Windows Vista Flip3D vs. Apple Mac OS X Exposé – June 26, 2006
Windows Vista rips-off Mac OS X at great hardware cost (and Apple gains in the end) – June 13, 2006
Computerworld: Microsoft Windows Vista a distant second-best to Apple Mac OS X – June 02, 2006
Thurrott: Microsoft collapsing under its own weight, Gates has driven Windows Vista into the ground – April 20, 2006


  1. It’s better if Leopard ships after Vista. Tiger already has a huge advantage over XP. Let MS come out with Vista and then just when they “think” they’ve caught up with Apple, here comes Leopard. There’s far more bang for the back with that scenario than if Leopard beats Vista, and then Vista ships as the “latest and greatest”…that’s surely how MS would spin it.

  2. I don’t understand why analyst firms insist on paying people like IDC analyst Bob O’Donnell….

    He obviously doesn’t know anything he’s talking about if he believes that Leopard is a one-on-one competitor to Vista…..

    Mac OSX Panther is a more advanced OS that Vista…

    Who buys IDC reports w/ ‘insights’ like this one? LOL!

  3. This guy doesn’t know enough to be reporting. In order for Apple to be ready for the holiday season, they’d need to have it final by about October, so they can start making it and get it to shelves in November. That means they would have to cut out about 4 months of development, which is a lot of time, especially toward the final stages. Leopard is going to be sweet, and I believe there are many many sweet features not yet talked about that will blow Vista and the next 3 OS’s Microsoft can create over the next 15 years (assuming 5 years between OS’s for Miscrosoft).

  4. Apple always updates all of their hardware first and then the operating system. I’m sure they would rather sell you a computer and then an additional software upgrade than giving it to you all in one shot. Mac users have no problem upgrading the operating system, but I don’t know any Windows users who have ever done that. They would wait to buy the computer. Not Mac users.

  5. Plus another thing that these moron analysts are missing here is that every Mac shipped from now on forward will run both OS X AND Windows. So it’s not like consumers have to pick between the two, they can have them both on one system, but only if they buy a Mac.

  6. Duh, that’s Apple put the banners up.

    from the article:
    The jabs continued on Monday, with Apple displaying posters such as ‘Mac OS X Leopard: Introducing Vista 2.0’ and “‘Hasta la vista, Vista.’

    I’d say that gets the point across quite nicely. Apple isn’t leaving it up to the reporters “opinions”.

  7. Steve is a genius. First, more free press. The press is now comparing OS X and Vista as equals and in a race to see who will be first out and the winner. Second, ship just before Vista and let the free press tell everybody what a great product Leopard is and how they are ahead of the yet to be release Vista. Mr. Jobs is in a no lose situation. He has a superior product ready to go. Redmond knows it. Cut throat business at its best.

  8. Leopard getting released early for holiday sales is a non issue. Apple has more pressure on them to release a new iPod nano or iPod video for holiday sales or an iTunes Movie Store.

    Can’t wait for Leopard and I will be purchasing a new Mac to run it. Here’s to hoping that iMacs get a Blu Ray disc drive in January.

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