CNET’s Reisinger: Windows 7 will push Apple’s Mac market share back down to pre-Vista levels

“As a new Microsoft operating system starts making its way to store shelves, it’s incumbent upon us to forecast its expected impact. And after downloading the Windows 7 beta and immersing myself in its environment, I think I can say, both as a Mac user (I’m writing this on my iMac) and what some may call an Apple nut (I own just about every Apple product released over the past five years), Windows 7 will not only stymie Mac OS X’s growth, it will push Apple’s market share back down to pre-Vista levels,” Don Reisinger writes for CNET.

“Even though it’s only in beta testing, and there are still quite a few months left for Microsoft to screw things up, Windows 7 is easily one of the best operating systems I’ve ever used. Driver support is outstanding, and performing basic tasks on a 3-year old, homemade Windows box was delightfully fast. User Account Control was barely seen, and the operating system’s redesign, though obviously taking pointers from Mac OS X, made using Windows much easier than in previous iterations. Simply put, the experience was delightful,” Reisinger writes.

“That ‘satisfaction factor’ will enable Windows 7 to capture some of Mac OS X’s market share. For the first time in recent memory, the new Microsoft OS will appeal to consumers who want a better experience, companies that want reliable software without breaking the bank, and vendors that want their customers to be happy. That didn’t happen with Vista, which forced many to switch to Mac OS X, but I think that it will happen with Windows 7,” Reisinger writes.

“Now, I know some of you are thinking that the damage has already been done that Mac converts will never look at a Windows machine again. I’m sure that a large percentage of Mac users would probably agree with that sentiment right now. But I’m a firm believer that if people use a particular operating system at work and like using it, they’ll bring it into the home,” Reisinger writes.

“It’s the average consumer–the person who doesn’t follow the tech world, doesn’t know why so many people hate Microsoft, doesn’t understand the basic difference between Mac OS X and Windows, and simply doesn’t care about tech, as long as it works–who will consider the alternatives. She will read about Windows 7 on sites like this, examine the price differences between a MacBook Pro and the latest-and-greatest Hewlett-Packard notebook, use Windows 7 at work, and then pick Microsoft’s product over Apple’s up for personal use,” Reisinger writes.

“As a person who performs almost every computing task on a Mac and tells anyone who will listen that at this point, the average consumer should be using a Mac instead of a Windows machine because of security and usability, I’m starting to prep myself for the single moment that I thought would never come: I’ll be using a Windows 7 machine as my main computer and telling anyone who will listen that, believe it or not, using the latest Microsoft operating system really is worth it,” Reisinger writes. “Now excuse me while I go outside to take some pictures of those pigs flying around my house.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We’d wait to see a Snow Leopard before snapping any flying pig photos (or judgments), Don. Especially since we heard much the same type of stuff during Vista’s development, too. Historically, Microsoft has never been particularly adept at copying; they’re always at least a little off and usually much worse. From what we’ve seen from reputable sources, Windows 7 is not much more than a Vista Service Pack with a different name on the box.

That said, competition is good and Apple does not require Microsoft to suck in order to sell Macs. Macs are perfectly capable of selling on their own merits. Plus, the fact that only Apple Macs can run all of the world’s OSes/software natively and/or via fast virtualization while routinely earning the highest satisfaction ratings can only help sales – especially in a time when people are likely to be looking for sound investments in products that will give them the most flexibility and value for their hard-earned dollars.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “The_Wzrd,” “Beowulf,” and “BD” for the heads up.]

90 Comments

  1. OK, MDN, time to put your money where your mouth is.

    You frequently accuse Mac critics of lambasting Apple products without ever using them. Now here you go, citing unnamed sources to proclaim, “Windows 7 is not much more than a Vista Service Pack with a different name on the box.”

    To be fair, you should download the Windows 7 beta yourself and give it a spin. Or you should admit your own MS aversion will never allow you to even attempt to make unbiased comparison.

  2. @MacMidget

    You’re right on, IMHO. This guy is NO Mac user. He shops at “ShillsRUs” and is on his way right now to collect his check from the Bank of Redmond.

  3. I really don’t see Apple’s market share falling as a result of W7 and I’m not sure, if the user is as much of a Macolyte as he says he is, how anyone could reach that conclusion. Don’t misunderstand–I’ve been using the 64-bit 7000 build of W7 for over a month and it’s great, but people using Apple are using it because it’s Apple, not because it simply isn’t M$ or Linux. They just like that particular computing ecosystem and what it offers them. It’s a different consumer group.

    W7 is excellent, even in beta, but I hardly think it’s going to roll back Apple’s march into the mindshare of consumers already pre-disposed to buy their product.

  4. First off, no one is sure when it will be out. They say maybe summer 09, maybe Jan 2010….who really knows? Microsoft has never really made any of their ship dates in recent memory.

    Second…who knows exactly what it will break. Will games run on it? Serious software? Etc, etc.

    I’m not worried. Until there is actually a shipping date, it is just like talking in the wind.

  5. I think he’s partially right. Windows 7 will garner a more positive opinion among the masses because they are fixing things, but as MDN clearly states, Apple is not standing still. Snow Leopard will continue leap ahead and set the standard for what an operating system should be like, and Windows 7 will continue to be cast in it shadow.

    You know even small rock on the road can cast a large shadow from oncoming headlines. That small rock is Snow Leopard.

  6. Well at least he mention that Microsoft used pointers from Apple. Which is given, without Apple how effective could Microsoft be. With that said- Why wait for years as Microsoft attempts to perfect ther OS- Just buy an Apple.

    “User Account Control was barely seen, and the operating system’s redesign, though obviously taking pointers from Mac OS X, made using Windows much easier than in previous iterations. Simply put, the experience was delightful,” Reisinger writes.” ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smirk” style=”border:0;” />

  7. The company I work for is currently working on a transition from Windows 2000 to Windows XP. I don’t see them out rushing to put Windows 7 on anytime in the near future. All the PC’s at the university I attend are all running XP. Windows 7 will need to have some real compelling reasons for large infrastructures to make the switch.

    Wasn’t it Ballmer that said, “Windows 7 is Vista, just better?” If that is the case, you can count me out. I purchased Vista within a month of its initial release and reverted back to XP within a few months.

  8. Don Reisinger writes for CNET:

    “I think I can say … Windows 7 will not only stymie Mac OS X’s growth, it will push Apple’s market share back down to pre-Vista levels”

    You hope. Dream on.

    Underneath it’s still the same old thing Registry and all. It’s built on ad hoc technology without enough forethought. Grief, they still have a System32 directory on the 64 bit . Goodness! Windows is built around a one-window-per-application paradigm. How lame is that?

    And it’s backwards-compatible enough for old f***ed software to run – which makes it messier than it should be. And if it weren’t MS would lose an important competitive advantage, so that they can’t afford not to make it so.

    Underneath it’s still the same old thing, Reisinger. And anyway OS X isn’t standing still in the meantime.

    Now I’ll tell you what’ll happen through the next couple of years. Microsoft will have an increasingly hard time. Already they’re not a good bet for investors. It’s likely that the increasing popularity of netbooks will further damage Microsoft. If you were an OEM, Reisinger, would you keep paying over the odds for Microsoft licenses even on cheap, low-margin sub-laptops when said hardware will run Linux better at far lower cost? The white-box assembler serfs are rebelling.

    No, the slide will continue. Your friends in Redmond are in for leaner times.

  9. How does one take the ending statement?

    Reisinger writes. “Now excuse me while I go outside to take some pictures of those pigs flying around my house.”

    My first take was on Reisinger’s article was an admission of a psychological condition and a figment of his imagination.

    However, if it wasn’t, it would still be a logical diagnosis by an learned individual.

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