Apple users have always been a funny bunch. They’ve never really had much of an argument as to why they want to use a Macintosh besides the fact that ‘most other artists’ use them professionally. Most of the Apple users, I believe, just enjoy finding ways to define themselves as different and the Macintosh has been marketed as the product ‘different people’ use. Which is fine, everyone can define themselves how ever they wish. The part I’ve found hardest to swallow is that Mac’s have better hardware for doing graphics design and movie design. I’m not saying that Mac’s are bad or inferior to PC’s, but that I think the difference in performance is negligible at best.
The only legitimate leg I believe that Apple users can stand on is that only certain software products are developed for the Mac, and these products are regarded as very efficient for their intended purpose. Its kind of like video game consoles. I remember when I was young and how I’d argue how the Super Nintendo was way better than the Genisis because it could display 32k colors where as the genisis was only able to display something like 256 colors at a time. But a more mature me would argue what good is displaying all these colors if what I really wanted to do was play sonic the hedgehog which was only on the Genesis? Although I believe that the debate is much more complicated than that I think its a good idea to step back and say what do I want to accomplish and what is the best way to accomplish it? So if video editing and movie editing is your cup of tea, have at it, buy the newest Mac. Just don’t make the Mac out to be something that, we all know now, its not.
But here is the question that I think people should be asking about apple, and it ties into my game console analogy. Eventually Sega got out of the hardware business because they couldn’t compete. Now they develop games on the systems of all their previous competitors, and have a decent niche in the arcade business. Will Apple go down that same route? Will we someday see Apple software running under windows? I think so, but not after one last battle.
If you look at their last major move, Apple moved from their in-house developed OS to an open platform OS (aka, a modified BSD distro). And we all know that BSD runs on the x86 architecture. I think that move would have been a clue to the astute that apple was moving to x86. If they could successfully move their software to a new Operating System architecture (an OS that operates in, among other things, x86) then they are eventually able to move it all over to the x86. I believe at first Apple will try to control what hardware the new Mac’s will be able to use, like they have been with previous Mac’s. But eventually as they develop their OS on the new chip and make it more mature they will move to a Windows business model and try to compete one on one with Microsoft to be king of the desktops. I believe you will be able to eventually buy a Dell “Built for OSX” and a Dell “Built for Windows.”
But I think that this will be all for naught.
Microsoft Windows, despite of all its critics, is not only the most popular OS but also the most versatile. And it didn’t get that way over night.
If Apple wants to tango with Microsoft, it had better pay attention to Microsoft’s dance steps.
I personally would put my money on Microsoft.
Update: Here is a link I found to a blog stating that Apple would never switch to Intel and that the IBM Power PC Chip is far superior… posted on May 23, 2005, just weeks before Apples official anouncement.
Here is a quote (Just in case he’s embarassed and takes down his blog):
“But why would Apple switch from IBM, which is kicking ass, to Intel, whose heyday may be over? Intel’s chip technology trails both IBM’s and AMD’s. IBM’s dual-core processors are a couple of years ahead of Intel’s, which is why all three next-generation gaming consoles will be based on variations of the IBM’s PowerPC chips — the same chips used by Apple.”
I thought this was a good quote of someone who enjoys Steve Jobs blowing smoke up his ass.