“Apple is already gearing up for a major marketing campaign for the holidays, and if they’re able to ramp up demand, and then deliver the system when they say it will be delivered, it could trump Microsoft in a way that Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs would crow about for years,” Elizabeth Millard reports for NewsFactor.
Millard reports, “Before Apple’s recent announcement that it would be releasing OS X 10.5, called Leopard, it appeared that Apple would be drawing mainly on its streamlined OS interface to try and best Microsoft, along with emphasis on its switch to Intel. But the recent news that it would be building robust features into Leopard puts the fresh system directly in competition with Vista, changing the rules of engagement.”
“As Microsoft began its campaign to ease users into thinking about Vista, it seemed that Apple’s only answer would be to point out that it now runs on Intel chip, and emphasize the ability to toggle between Windows and Mac systems thanks to new software,” Millard reports. “But beyond Boot Camp, it turns out, Apple intends to intensify its chances of winning Windows users, and wasn’t about to rest on the laurels of Boot Camp. With the new OS X 10.5 version, planned for shipping in spring 2007, users will be able to tap into new backup and recovery technology, introduce virtual desktops, and have more powerful iChat functions.”
“Another potential advantage for Apple has nothing to do with Leopard’s features, and actually doesn’t depend on anything the company can do internally with development: it’s the ability of Microsoft to release Vista on time and address potential bugs in its beta versions,” Millard reports. “In other words, Apple seems to be fighting Redmond on two fronts, countering Microsoft with its OS features as well as slamming the company through marketing efforts and general commentary.”
“Jobs also noted that some of the features of Leopard would be kept under wraps, not just because Apple is notoriously secretive with its upcoming releases, but because the company didn’t want Microsoft to ‘start their photocopiers,'” Millard reports.
“Although Leopard might present a challenge to Microsoft — and likely inspire some zesty new Mac v. Windows ads — some analysts note that it won’t exactly become an Apple-driven world anytime soon,” Millard reports. “Windows still commands a sizeable chunk of the OS market, with most estimates putting it around 95 percent. Since it’s used in so much of the corporate world, it’s not likely that IT departments will skip Vista and turn instead to replacing desktops and servers with Apple’s lineup. Where companies go, consumers do tend to follow, since many people find it useful to have the same type of system at home as they do at the office, making for easy file transfers and telecommuting.”
MacDailyNews Take: Apple Mac can run Windows, so what’s the problem? Answer: there is none. People, especially those who shop based mainly on sticker price, can quickly understand that only Apple’s Mac offers a “twofer” – run Windows if you need it and also get the superior Mac OS X, iLife, etc. for the price of one computer.
Millard continues, “In other words, most of the world will still buy Windows, no matter what bugs the first version of Vista might have, and although there could be some converts, it’s still more cult than religion.”
MacDailyNews Take: Illogical. Apple Macs can run Windows and Mac OS X. Nobody else can do so. Apple’s strategy is to first embrace then extinguish. Enough people will do so to create a marked change. And nobody makes a better Mac advocate than a recent Windows to Mac switcher. These people will tell their friends. Apple’s Mac platform has the capacity to grow faster and take more share from Windows than most people think. Some people are going to be very surprised.
Millard continues, “Some might counter with the fact that Boot Camp will make that issue irrelevant, but others believe that the limitations with running Windows on a Mac — most notably, in having to buy a full Windows license — will create limitations.”
MacDailyNews Take: Buy an Apple Mac and, for the price of a boxed copy of Windows, get two computers or buy a Dell, HP or anything else and be stuck with just Windows. That’s the proposition. We think even Joe and Jane Wal-Mart Shopper will be able to easily grasp that one – if Apple can get the message out effectively.
Millard continues, “But just because it won’t become standard equipment in the corporate world in the near future doesn’t mean that Apple can’t increase its popularity — after all, to belabor the analogy, some groups once called cults really did become full-blown religions… If Vista continues to be delayed, and can’t meet its January target, it could greatly benefit Leopard, especially if Apple is able to get the OS shipping earlier than expected.”
Full article here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “LinuxGuy and Mac Prodigal Son” for the heads up.]
MacDailyNews Take: From everything we’ve seen, Apple’s Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger – released April 2005 – is itself quite superior to Microsoft’s Windows Vista. Apple’s Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard will only increase the superiority gap over Windows Vista which looks like nothing more than a warmed over Windows XP. Another Microsoft pig adorned with lipstick is not much to which Windows sufferers can look forward or get excited about. Change is coming.
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