WINDOWS OR MAC? APPLE SAYS BOTH
- From: John Gasman <jjgassman@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- To: blindcasting@xxxxxxxxxxxxx, blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Thu, 06 Apr 2006 07:47:00 -0700
I found this story very interesting and so am passing it along.
Its from today's New York times.
WINDOWS OR MAC? APPLE SAYS BOTH
The New York Times (Late Edition - Final) - April 06, 2006 - Front
Page, Business/Financial Desk; SECTA
By JOHN MARKOFF
SAN FRANCISCO, April 5 -- After long imploring computer users to
''think different'' and defining the Macintosh as a lone bulwark
against the Windows onslaught,
Apple Computer has decided to open the gate, at least a bit.
Two decades after the first Mac arrived, Apple said Wednesday that it
would offer users of its latest models a simple way to run the
Microsoft Windows operating
system as well as its own.
That means a single Apple computer will run programs written for
either the Mac or Windows, though it will have to shut down one
system to start the other.
The move was greeted with exuberance even among the loyal cult of
Macintosh enthusiasts who sustained Apple through many bleak years
before its resurgence
on the strength of its iPod music player. Its sleek machines have
long been objects of consumer lust but are frequently passed over in
favor of more pedestrian
computers that run Windows, leaving Apple with about 5 percent of the
personal computer market.
Wall Street analysts and computer industry experts also greeted the
move as an obvious and potentially lucrative one for Apple, whose
stock jumped almost
10 percent, ending the trading day at $67.21, up $6.04.
''The religion has changed,'' said Charles Wolf, a financial analyst
at Needham & Company, a New York investment firm. ''Apple is saying
we have the chance
to really build the Macintosh platform, and although there are risks,
we're going to do it.''
Indeed, although much is still made of the rivalry between Apple and
Microsoft, and Steven P. Jobs, Apple's co-founder and chief
executive, has continued
to poke fun at Microsoft's struggles to modernize Windows, Apple has
steadily moved to accommodate itself to the rest of the computing world.
Shortly after he returned to Apple in 1997, Mr. Jobs persuaded
Microsoft to commit to make its Office software run on his computers
and invest in his company.
More recently, in 2003, he developed a version of his popular iTunes
software that runs on Windows-based computers, giving him an opening
to sell his wildly
popular iPods to tens of millions of PC users.
Last year Mr. Jobs stunned the computer world by announcing that he
would break away from his alliance with I.B.M. and recreate the
Macintosh based on Intel
microprocessors. It was the switch to Intel chips, long the standard
in the Windows world, that opened the door to Mac-Windows harmony.
Through all of these moves, Mr. Jobs has managed to maintain his
loyal base of customers. In fact the Macintosh religion can still be
palpably felt among
those who have remained loyal to the user-friendly computer even as
its market share dipped below 3 percent.
''I love the Mac platform, I just hope I won't have to boot Windows
even for Photoshop in a few years,'' Alexandros Roussos, a student at
of Paris who is founder and editor of the MacCulture network, a group
of Web sites for Macintosh enthusiasts.
Wednesday's move also won an important endorsement from Apple's other
co-founder, Stephen G. Wozniak, who long ago left the company but
remains a vocal
Macintosh user and is idolized by the Mac faithful.
''It's a great thing for Apple,'' he told a reporter by e-mail. ''I
don't see the earth being rocked, but I can now recommend Apple
hardware to a lot more
people. One pitch is that if Windows gets too frustrating and
unbearable and unsafe, then they can easily switch.''
And Microsoft took the opportunity to salute the move, and itself.
''Windows is a great operating system,'' a Microsoft statement said.
that Apple customers are excited about running it, and that Apple is
responding to meet the demand.''
But even as it introduced the new capability, in the form of a free
program called Boot Camp available for download, Apple tried with
language to play down its significance.
Ever the showman, Mr. Jobs had been accused of excess in a recent
product introduction, when he called reporters to Apple's
headquarters on short notice
for a presentation that included a leather glove to protect the
finish of an iPod music player. But he was nowhere in evidence for
which was made in a simple news release.
Word of the new offering was not visible Wednesday morning on the
front page of Apple's Web site, which usually trumpets new products
Instead, to obtain the Boot Camp software, it was necessary to
navigate to an inside page on the Web site, where the download button
was buried in a small
''Obviously ever since the Macintosh was moved to Intel, we've been
getting this question from customers,'' said Philip W. Schiller,
Apple's senior vice
president for worldwide product marketing, explaining the Windows
decision. ''We always said it's possible.''
Its muted announcement notwithstanding, Apple did a significant
amount of technical work to make Windows run cleanly on a Macintosh
computer. Part of the
challenge was writing software modules called device drivers that
connect the Microsoft software to the Macintosh hardware components
like disk drives
and video displays.
The Boot Camp system makes it possible for an Intel-based Macintosh
to start up running either Windows XP or the Mac operating system, OS
X. But one system
must be stopped before the other can be started. Moreover, the user
must also purchase a copy of the Windows operating system, at $99 or more.
Apple said Wednesday that it planned to make the Boot Camp capability
a standard feature of the next version of OS X, which is expected to
later this year or in early 2007.
Entering the mainstream of the computing world might undermine one of
Apple's greatest selling points recently: that the Macintosh has been
to computer viruses and other malicious software.
But because the Macintosh programs are shut down when Windows is
running, and the Windows XP operating system does not know how to
read and write information
to the Macintosh file system, Mr. Schiller minimized the risk that
Macintosh users might be taking in adding Boot Camp.
To be sure, this is not the first time that a Macintosh has been able
to run Windows software. At one time Macs could be outfitted with
special cards that
ran Intel processors, and more recently several companies have
produced software emulators that permitted Windows and Macintosh
programs to coexist. But
those were improvised solutions, with sluggish results.
Several companies, including VMware, a subsidiary of the data storage
company EMC, are working on a technology that slips a thin layer of
the existing Macintosh operating system. Such an approach would
conceivably allow the Macintosh to run Macintosh, Windows and Linux
at full speed.
A number of analysts and software developers said Apple's greatest
risk was that by opening its machines to Windows software it might
the enthusiasm of software developers for producing programs to run
with the Mac operating system.
The potential downside was far outweighed by the opportunity to
expand the number of Macintosh users, Mr. Schiller said, which is a
central factor in attracting
''We thought long and hard about this,'' he said. ''At the end of the
day, the most important factor is Mac market share.''
Mr. Wolf, the Needham & Company analyst, said that he had done
several user surveys since Apple's shift to Intel to measure the
potential sales increase
from a Windows-compatible Mac, and that user enthusiasm had come back
so strong that he had distrusted his results.
He said the biggest and most immediate increase would come in home
and education markets in the United States; Apple has 14.8 percent of
and secondary education market, and 5.1 percent of the home market,
according to the market research firm IDC.
''It will double Apple's share in these markets,'' he said.
But in the ranks of Mac veterans on Wednesday, some remained leery of
crossing the threshold.
''I had the Windows disk halfway into my MacBook Pro,'' said Jason D.
O'Grady, the editor of Powerpage.org, a Macintosh enthusiast site.
Then he recalled
the reports he had heard about the risks of exposing unprotected
Windows-based computers to the Internet and how quickly they could
''I thought to myself, 'Do I have an entire afternoon to waste?' '' he said.
Photo: Apple is offering free software called Boot Camp that allows
users to choose the operating system they want to use as a computer
starts up. (Photo
by Apple)(pg. C11)
Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company. All Rights Reserved.
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