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Desktops (Apple) Businesses Apple Hardware

Forbes Predicts 5% Desktop Share for Apple in 2005 1045

sebFlyte writes "Spurred on by the iPod, Apple's share of the desktop computer market will grow to five percent (from three percent) this year, according to research from Morgan Stanley. Apparrently nearly 20% of iPod users surveyed are planning to switch to Macs, and the sales figures for the last few quarters are backing up the theory of the iPod Halo Effect. All this suggests the question ... how many iPod-touting Slashdotters are thinking of switching?"
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Forbes Predicts 5% Desktop Share for Apple in 2005

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  • by CarlinWithers ( 861335 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:49PM (#12004401)
    I plan on getting my mac mini. I've been looking for a way to not have to use Microsoft anymore and a combination of a new mac mini and an old machine running fedora is how I'll do it.
    • by b1t r0t ( 216468 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:06PM (#12004708)
      Just be sure to either get it with 512M as a build-to-order option or have a plan to add your own 512M or 1G PC2700 stick when you get it. Your mom or grandma might be able to live with 256M, but if you're like most slashdotters, you really need the 512M minimum.
    • by Gr8Apes ( 679165 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:27PM (#12005005)
      I already converted. I bought a 15" powerbook. With after market addition of a 1GB DIMM raising the price to $2100, it does everything a $2500 windows machine does with much less worries regarding a virus, and also does the sleep mode reliably. Previous experience with a Windows 2K laptop weren't near as pleasant and I've only been using it for 3 weeks.

      Yes, there's some getting used to Mac ways of doing things, and some "unlearning" of bad windows habits. But, all in all, it's roughly equivalent to switching to a new Windows version as far as learning curve goes, with the additional benefit that everything just seems to work as a cohesive whole.

      Now someone will come along and say - but this item works in some screwy way. I haven't found that item yet. ;)
    • Using a PC doesn't mean using Microsoft software. This post is made from a machine running ubuntu and 0% Microsoft software.

      This suggests to me that your reasoning is flawed.
    • I've been eyeing the mini for a while, and trying to justify buying it. I love the interface, and will finally get UNIX with a reasonable GUI. App support is also reasonable...

      But two apps stick out, and force me to stay with x86.. halflife, and giants: citizen kabuto. Theyre both games.

      Apart from that, another sticking point is simply that on, you'll find the strongest chip is the Athlon64. I figured I can upgrade my current machine to athlon64 and its motherboard, for $200 USD. Thats less than
      • by MaxQuordlepleen ( 236397 ) <> on Monday March 21, 2005 @07:08PM (#12005489) Homepage

        Giants: Citizen Kabuto has been out for the Mac, and running on OS X for at least 4 years. There's been a copy sitting at the "Compucentre" in my local mall since about mid 2001.

        If you don't happen to live near me, use Amazon [].

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:49PM (#12004402)
    I'm going to buy a Mac, but not attach a screen to it!
  • I'll switch (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jholder ( 22001 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:49PM (#12004406) Homepage Journal
    But not because of iPod. Really, a nice desktop, integrated desktop apps, plus the joy of a UNIX cli under it all. Beat the pants of Linux for me.
  • Yup (Score:5, Funny)

    by bahwi ( 43111 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:50PM (#12004421)
    Well, not a total switch, I think only a few slashdot readers are capable of switching.

    Did you mean, "Add to your collection?"
    • Re:Yup (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Jeff DeMaagd ( 2015 )
      That's fair to say. For me, a Mac was an ideal network administration system on a network with a managed network switch, Linux and Windows boxes.

      For example, I found pretty easy instructions (two commands, edit the xinetd tftp file, then restart xinetd) on how to enable the TFTP server so I can update the firmware on my managed switch, the same two to turn it off. That switch has a built-in TFTP client, so having a server available was slick. The same instructions would have worked in Linux, but for som
  • I did the opposite (Score:3, Interesting)

    by plazman30 ( 531348 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:50PM (#12004433) Homepage
    Because I had a Mac, I bought an iPod.

    Kudos to Apple, though, for getting more market share.
  • by stecker ( 263711 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:51PM (#12004436) Homepage
    What's interesting about this is that in some sense, an iPod user has the least reason to switch, as Apple has done such a good job of making iTunes work as well as it could possibly be expect to on both the Mac and the PC. Is it just a design thing?

    I'm all for the trend, though, whatever the reason.
  • No iPod (Score:5, Interesting)

    by nelsonal ( 549144 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:52PM (#12004456) Journal
    I do not have an iPod (and probably won't buy one), but my next system will either be a G5 iMac or a Mac Mini. The irony is that an X-Box was the final factor in my decision, since I found myself spending most of my gameplaying time on the console, I do not need a PC around to run games.
    • by Faust7 ( 314817 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:04PM (#12004670) Homepage
      The irony is that an X-Box was the final factor in my decision, since I found myself spending most of my gameplaying time on the console, I do not need a PC around to run games.

      I would go further and say that there may be a great deal of overlap between the people that switch to Macs and the people that primarily use consoles for gaming - total end users that like the simplicity of hooking a console to a TV, shoving in a game, and having it just work, and similarly like the simplicity of plopping down in front of their Mac and having it "just work."

      The big question is whether the Mac's software library is up to the task. It has respectable Internet software available and there is Mac Office (IMHO the single most important application to the Mac platform).
      • by Otter ( 3800 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:13PM (#12004813) Journal
        What is missing from the Mac Internet software lineup to hold it down to the level of "respectable"? Except maybe for mIRC (although like X-chat better), there's nothing I can imagine missing, even if you assume that most users won't attempt to run X applications.

        Once you take games out of the equation, the only thing that's really missing on the Mac side is narrow vertical business and hobby apps (which, admittedly, can suck if you really rely on one).

  • Why this is big (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bonch ( 38532 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:53PM (#12004468)
    More marketshare means more income to spend on R&D. With what Apple puts out already, I can only imagine what they'll start putting out with more marketshare (compare to Microsoft's $10 billion a year R&D, and all they can put out are picture-viewing smartphones and media center TVs). At some point, there's a threshold where growth begins to fuel itself through momentum (maybe ~10% or so). With Longhorn not due out until 2006, Apple has the opportunity to grow a few more points next year as well.
  • Switching (Score:5, Interesting)

    by suwain_2 ( 260792 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:53PM (#12004469) Journal
    I used to hate Macs; pre-OSX I was convinced they were complete garbage. My next computer will probably be a Mac. I do own an iPod, but it wasn't the iPod that convinced me to switch; it was seeing that OS X is based on UNIX, and that it looks incredibly spiffy, and that it's stable, and....

    Have you ever been face-to-face with their 30" Cinema? It's the most amazing thing I've ever seen.
  • by aengblom ( 123492 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:54PM (#12004491) Homepage
    What was that? Rumors of Apple's imminent *survival*?

    I give Apple six months before Jobs shuts the place down just to spite us all.
  • by winkydink ( 650484 ) * <> on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:54PM (#12004493) Homepage Journal
    the level they were at in, what, 1992? No sarcasm intended.

    Apple makes a great product, but I seriously doubt it will see double-digit market share any time soon.

    Go ahead Apple zealots, mod me into oblivion for speaking heresy.

  • Switch (Score:3, Insightful)

    by carpe_noctem ( 457178 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:56PM (#12004530) Homepage Journal
    I have an iPod, but when I got it I just used it under linux. To be honest, it worked great, and I could care less for iTunes or any of that crap. I "switched" much later on after being lent a 300Mhz powerbook by a friend... even though it was slow, I could do everything I needed in OSX that my craptacular 650Mhz acer laptop could do, and I got 4 hours of battery life.

    OSX was the workhorse that sold me on Apple... the iPod's just a toy for long car trips and lugging data files around.
  • Wrong Crowd (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hawkbug ( 94280 ) <psx AT fimble DOT com> on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:57PM (#12004542) Homepage
    I think you're asking the wrong crowd. What I mean is, for myself, I enjoy "building" computers. I do it at work, and I enjoy putting together slick systems for myself and others I know. If I could install Mac OS X on these machines, I would in a heartbeat. I do use Linux in some cases, but Windows ends up being the defacto standard because people know it more than Linux. I'm willing to bet many slashdotters, besides the current Apple users, probably like building computers as well. If I could get an IBM PPC chip on a stock motherboard I could buy online and build myself a Mac clone, I might do it.... but what I know for sure is that AMD 64 chips are amazingly fast, fairly cool, and cheaper than most alternatives on the market right now. So, what I REALLY want, is Mac OS X ported for x86. Then I would definitely switch, and possibly a large number of other slashdotters would give it a try as well. But, I know Apple makes cash off of very expensive hardware, and they would never give that up. So, what I'm trying to say is, it would take a hell of a lot more than a fancy MP3 player (that works fine with Windows BTW) to switch both software and hardware for me. I'm not saying I'm the average slashdotter, but I'm willing to bet many people share some of the same preferences I do (even though there is no question somebody will violently disagree with this post like always).
    • Re:Wrong Crowd (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Just Some Guy ( 3352 )
      I do it at work, and I enjoy putting together slick systems for myself and others I know.

      I used to enjoy building systems for friends and family until I realized that they had this mysterious idea that I would be providing free tech support for the next decade.

      But, I know Apple makes cash off of very expensive hardware,

      No way. It always costs me $700 to build a computer. Always. This has been true since about '96. By the time I research the specs and assemble a parts list, it comes out to be with

  • by krgallagher ( 743575 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:58PM (#12004550) Homepage
    "All this suggests the question ... how many iPod-touting Slashdotters are thinking of switching?"

    I have been consulting for a large Linux shop the last few months and was surprised at the number of people running Mac laptops. The company itself provides Linux desktops for everyone, and Windows laptops for the suits, but a lot of the developers and other IT people use Mac laptops for their personal computers. I have to say I have been pretty impressed with what I have seen in terms of performance. Besides Mac just give you that extra little "Wow!" factor. Of course it is BSD under the hood, so it is a real OS. They really are slick machines. I do not think that the Ipod is the influencing factor here though.

    • by 3770 ( 560838 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @07:02PM (#12005434) Homepage
      Not discrediting the parent poster. But I must comment on one thing.

      People keep excluding Windows as a "real OS". I've worked with a group of _really_ really good server application people. I mean "walk on water" good.

      Their product runs under Solaris, HP-UX, VMS, Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and AIX. So one would think that they know what they are talking about when comparing operating systems.

      They didn't like Microsoft, but they did grudginly admit that the Windows API was better and more efficient than the UNIX API for server applications (at least the type they were working on).

      Please give Windows some credit. Don't discredit it with a herd mentality because you don't like Microsoft.
  • Big-S Switchers (Score:3, Informative)

    by dduck ( 10970 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @05:58PM (#12004568) Homepage
    I did. Started with an iPod 20GB. Then got the GF a nice 12" Powerbook. Then got her a 40GBiPod. Then got myself a Power Mac.

    Now I've started porting my commercail applications to OS-X.

    I guess the ole' Reality Distortion Field really DOES work, eh? :D

  • by drakethegreat ( 832715 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:00PM (#12004600) Homepage
    A few years ago everyone told me not to touch a mac. Then in 2004 I got a 20 GB ipod and realized the potential. I can listen to almost all my music in the car using an aux input on my deck and I can portably listen to music on my way to class or anywhere I feel like. I even sometimes carry around an RCA cable and jack to RCA convertor so I can use it on most people's stereos. At the time I still had a thinkpad which was running linux (I was switching distros often) and I was not satsified. Don't get me wrong, I love linux but I realized that until the wireless drivers are improved, its not a great laptop distribution (I had a discussion about this with one of the PHLAK developers who was also irritated about this situation). So what did I do? I bought a Powerbook G4. OH NO some people are thinking. Its memory is lower quality and its processor isn't 3 Ghz. Yet ultimately the processor is powerful enough to do everything that a laptop should do and the software is seemless. I can compile most programs I want from linux and it accomplishes my needs with perfect wireless support and allows me to still have an easy setup to use gcc during my Computer Science classes. It beats Windows and if you ever have doubts just run a PowerPC distro on it. Yet I think some people will be impressed with how far MacOS has gone in the last few years.
  • Switch? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Schnapple ( 262314 ) <tomkidd@[ ] ['via' in gap]> on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:00PM (#12004609) Homepage
    Why the obsession with people "switching"? Has anyone thought that perhaps their market share is going up because people are buying a Macintosh in addition to their current machine, which they keep? If people buy Macs and then use them in addition to their Windows PC then the Mac market share goes up but the actual number of people using Windows doesn't go down.

    I think this is what Apple finally realized with the Mac Mini. They'll never get people en masse to go to the Mac cold turkey, but by giving them an affordable option, there's a lot of people who might try it since there's a way out (they can just write off the $500).

    I guess the better question is - what percentage of Mac Mini purchasers continue to use it actively and don't eventually write it off as a bad investment? And how many of them swear off Windows?

    • Re:Switch? (Score:3, Interesting)

      I bought a Mac Mini, The progression was iTunes Windows -> iPod -> iMac (for my wife) ->Mac Mini & Shuffle I thought I'd just kick the tires on the Mini but it quickly has become *the* computer I use. My PCs are only used for Windows dev and increasingly I'm looking for OS-agnostic alternatives. It's amazing what happens when you unwrap your entrails from the Microsoft technology stack. Bottom line: I'm never going back.
    • Re:Switch? (Score:4, Funny)

      by argent ( 18001 ) <peter&slashdot,2006,taronga,com> on Monday March 21, 2005 @07:16PM (#12005602) Homepage Journal
      And how many of them swear off Windows?

      Swear off Windows, or swear at Windows. There is no third choice.
    • Re:Switch? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by pilgrim23 ( 716938 )
      Agreed. I started buying Macs used (far cheaper) some years ago to do some specialized tasks. I learned a lot about the boxes while still using a Windows box as my primary computer. Soon I aquired a lot more Macs from people who had them stored away under the stairs or in the attic. I bought a book "Macweek Upgrading and Repairing Your Mac" by Lisa Lee (Excellent book on older Macs) and learned far more then is healthy about pre System 8.5 Apples. Still though I was using Windows. Around 2002 I go
    • I'm an "adder" (Score:3, Interesting)

      by CausticPuppy ( 82139 )
      I got a mini to start using OSX and to have a portable media server. I was originally going to buy a windows notebook for that purpose, but I decided on the mini because it just looked too intriguing.

      However, I also upgraded my desktop system the same week, it's now an overclocked Athlon64 system with an SLI motherboard and a GF6800 (only one for now). It runs windows XP. So I certainly didn't "switch" to the mac.

      I use the Athlon box for games, and as a digital audio workstation. But now with the mini
  • I switched... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by X_Caffeine ( 451624 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:02PM (#12004639)
    ...but it wasn't an iPod that convinced me, it was having a cheap 400mhz iMac to use as a server/living room stereo for a couple years.

    Not only was it great for some simple hosting, utter silence and low power consumption, but I found that I even preferred to do casual browsing on it -- despite being so remarkably slow (OS X - Quartz Extreme = Windows on a 486). It's just so comfortable.

    As others have pointed out in this thread, there won't be as many Slashdot "switchers" as there will be "adders," and that probably counts for the larger population as well (why throw out the old computer when you can keep it for the dog to use?). But I bet many will follow the cheap Mac they bought on a lark to a shiny new Powerbook, just like I did.
  • Already switched (Score:3, Interesting)

    by finkployd ( 12902 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:04PM (#12004671) Homepage
    Seemingly along with most of Higher Education. It used to be that when I went to Internet2 or Educause conferences there were about 90% thinkpads and 10% power/ibooks. Now it is usually around 60%-70% power/ibooks. and I have noticed a lot more Linux installs on the Thinkpads.

    Apple seems to have made a massive dent in Universities.

  • by Gilmoure ( 18428 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:06PM (#12004719) Journal 2% less beleaguered! Oh, woe is me. Do you have any idea what kinda' influence Apple could have on the world if they had 5% market share? A democrat might actually win an electoral race or something. Gah! The War on Tourism might be called off! What would I use my .50 cal for, then?
  • by RatBastard ( 949 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:06PM (#12004721) Homepage
    I switched last year. Bought a nice, shiny dual 1.8GHz G5 Powermac and have never been happier. Yeah, it's not perfect and I do keep my old secondary PC around for games (along with my XBox, PSX and Dreamcast) but the crap I no longer have to put up with is worth it.

    For me it wasn't the iPod. It was iTunes. I was using iTuines for six months before I got my iPod and it was my experience with iTunes that made me look at the Mac for the first time in five years. I had not liked OS 9 and below and I used to consider Macs to be a joke back when they first came out.

    And yes, I did give Linux a try. Several, as a matter of fact, starting with SLS 1.0 back in 1993/1994 and the last time with Suse 9 last year. I never got along with Linux very well. I figured that if I tried it out seven times in ten years and never got comfortable with it it probably wasn't for me. But I did give it an honest try.

    The Mac, well, OS X, I got along with from Day One and am quite happy with. A++ Would do it again.
  • 20%!?!?! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by acherrington ( 465776 ) <acherrington AT gmail DOT com> on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:06PM (#12004723)
    I am calling Shenanigans []!

    Ipod sales are predicted at 13.3 millioin units for 2005 [], but I find it hard to believe that one out of five (2.66 million) will convert soley due to their experience with the ipod (sure there is windows based frustration).

    It would make sense that many people would say they plan to switch to the platform, but how many really follow through with that is going to be lower once they find the sticker shock on their standard systems. If they can gain a market foothold with the mac mini [] will may work. There is also the question of being retrained on a new system. There certainly is something to be said for the status quo.
  • I switched (Score:3, Interesting)

    by OzUnsane ( 55826 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:08PM (#12004750)
    I'd stuck it out with Linux since making the trek to my University with a bag full of floppies and downloading Slackware 0.97 or something like that, years and years ago. I trashed Windows to install a real operating system and scoffed at the Mac.

    But recently, I got tired of Linux. The endless quest for a better desktop or a more compatible distribution. You've just upgraded? Congratulations, now go and recompile all your multi-media apps (like DVD playing). Want to plug in a device that's been on the market for a couple of years but no one in kernel land has? Good luck and plug it into your partner's mac to use instead.

    For me the final straw was buying a G4 iPod, and deliberately setting up a Windows machine so that I could make sure it was formatted VFAT rather than HFS so that it would definitely be able to be used with my Linux system. And viola, it too didn't work! So, goodbye Linux, hello Mac. Sold my Linux custom-built workstation for $500 AU, bought an eMac, and have never looked back. I'm more productive, significantly more compatible with any device I want to buy and the interface is about ... oh ... 10 years in front of Gnome and 5 years ahead of KDE.

    I still use Linux, I think it's a great server platform, but for the desktop, nah. I'm even going to be buying myself a bright shiny new 17" PowerBook soon out of my own money rather than continue to use Linux as my laptop OS for work.

    Mac OS X - what Linux could have been, and what Solaris should have been.
  • by Mr. Cancelled ( 572486 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:14PM (#12004832)
    After finally making the plunge last year to buy a Mac, I found myself giving more and more consideration to getting an ipod (something I'd previously wrote off as being overpriced, and unneccesary).

    A year later, my ipod's with me daily, and serves up more than just music, via the amazing Pod2Go [] software. The only regret I have is not taking the plunge earlier than I did!

    I went from hours and hours of tweaking, and modding my systems to behave in a somewhat intelligent manner, to just having a computer work the way I want it to. Someone in a different thread once put it best: "If I want to tweak and play, I can do so, but when I need to knuckle down and do real work, it just works, no tweaking needed". I couldn't have said it better myself.
  • by calibanDNS ( 32250 ) <brad_staton&hotmail,com> on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:18PM (#12004889)
    Just getting people into an Apple store, be it to see an iPod or not, is often enough to make them want to switch. When I wanted to see the iPod Shuffle and Mac mini, I took my wife with me to the Apple store and she fell in love with OS X while we were there. She doesn't want a computer for gaming; she only needs web browsing, email, text-editing, iPod management, and basic digital photo editing abilities. Currently, she's doing this on a WinME desktop and WinXP laptop (she had them both before we got married, don't blame me). After about 10 minutes exploring OS X while I waited to play with the only iPod Shuffle in the store, she decided that our next computer will be a Mac. She'll get no protest from me; I love using my linux boxes and will keep using it but certainly won't mind adding a Mac to my collection.
  • Running a Mac Mini (Score:3, Interesting)

    by dappleyard ( 794532 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:19PM (#12004897)
    I was a happy iPod owner for around a year.

    I got a Mac Mini last week, and from my experiences so far - I'll never go back to Windows on my personal computer.
  • I did (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Darth Maul ( 19860 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:19PM (#12004907) Homepage

    Bought an iPod July 2003. Bought an iMac February 2004. Bought two more iPods. Buying a Powerbook any week now.

    So yes, it works.
  • Games (Score:5, Insightful)

    by HerbieTMac ( 17830 ) <> on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:25PM (#12004969)
    So I read a number of posters stating that the lack of games for Mac will drive people away. I am amazed by this claim for two reasons.

    First, if a game is decent, chances are, it exists for the Mac. Nearly all major games (Warcraft (I-WoW), Call to Duty, NWN, SW KotOR, Sims, etc.) have Mac versions that equal their Windows counterparts (not emulation). Second, who is running away from Linux because of the lack of games?

    In all fairness to people buying these computers, it is about user experience. If the Macintosh delivers a better user experience, people will switch. The halo effect of the iPod is to show people what a well-designed machine feels like. Since (IMHO) the Macintosh has a much better experience, along with all of the accoutrements of a *nix under the hood, I had very little heartburn over switching.

    Incidentally, the main use of my Mac is collision modelling in FORTRAN. Thank goodness for gfortran. The POSIX-compliant version is much more stable than its Windows counterpart and neither it nor g95 require MinGW on Darwin (obviously).

    Finally, Darwin has the ability to compile the *nix OSS that we have all come to love. I keep a recent build of Apple's X11 on my machine and have yet to run into a tgz that didn't compile cleanly or with minimum tweaking. For those who love their OSS but don't like to work their own code, there are a couple decent package managers for the Mac as well (i-Installer [], Fink [], etc).

  • by stumpyrider ( 762706 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:42PM (#12005214)
    I got an iMac G5 20" last month and I am absolutely loving it. I do my coding at work, I want to turn on my computer, surf, do a little photo and music work at home. The iMac is great for that. And my wife hated our pc, she loves the mac. I used linux for a while but I got tired of having to spend hours recompiling software for smoother fonts etc. I'm getting old and tired of hacking at my computer, I want to turn it on, compute and thats it. If I want to game, I have my PS2. I loved the iMac and iTunes so much I just got an iPod shuffle. Great, simple piece of equipment. The wife wants one too. I guess the word is simplicity, with power still available. I'm not going back...
  • Switch?? (Score:4, Funny)

    by StikyPad ( 445176 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @06:51PM (#12005303) Homepage
    All this suggests the question ... how many iPod-touting Slashdotters are thinking of switching?

    Switching? Slashdotters don't switch hardware. We aggregate and incorporate. Why would I ever dispose of anything that could generate a couple more SETI@home points per month, while also filling in as my firewall, e-mail, and/or MAME and streaming media server? And that's just my 8088! You hipsters with your disposable hardware. Makes me sick.
  • by tonedog5 ( 580203 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @07:36PM (#12005889)

    I like the look of OSX. No, I LOVE the look. Everything is so refreshingly appealing to the eye. I like the built-in capability of 128px icons. I like the dock. However, I can get icon sets and other nice, colorful, appeasing items for XP Prof. Hell, I can get OSX imitation themes for it.

    I work with a bunch of designers (I'm a devloper), and I am on a Mac probably 2 times a week for a few hours. I don't feel overwhelmed enough by OSX to actually switch to Apple. I use an XP Prof. machine, and I NEVER have any problems with it. It has failed on me maybe 1 time in the past 6 months. Maybe. My coworker has a Mac, and it freezes on him probably 2 times a week. Freezes in a manner than doesn't allow him to do anything besides restart. I just sorta laugh to myself, and continue working.

    Maybe I'll switch in the future, but I just couldn't bring myself to spend 2500 on a 15" Powerbook when the only thing that I admire about OSX is the "prettiness". I spent 1700 on a HP zt3000, and got pretty much all of the same features for, oh, about 800 less.

    Just my 2 cents. I really don't have anything against Apple, and I'm glad that they're taking market share from Microsoft. But when I have a perfectly good AND CLEAN XP OS, I can't bring myself to fork over the extra "style" money required to use an Apple.

  • I've been using Athlons for me and all the people I've been building custom Linux PCs for. I remeber a few years ago when AMD had one socket and Intel had 7. That was a major reason to use AMD.
    Now AMD has something like 3 (or more) adding up to 9 or 10 different PC CPU sockets. Add in the bazillion variants of RAM clockings, HDD (SATA, EIDE (3 different speeds), SCSI (god know how many different types, etc.) conection standards etc. and even for a hardwarefreak like me things are getting very confusing.
    I don't have the time for this anymore. And since configuring a PC with good hardware and a good OS (Linux) takes lots of time, in the end a Mac is cheaper. Much cheaper.
    Linux will be the future workhorse OS, OS X will be the appliance OS.
    Apple has gotten things just right for quite some time now, they deserve the market share they are just gaining.
  • My prediction (Score:3, Insightful)

    by sootman ( 158191 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @07:58PM (#12006143) Homepage Journal
    As soon as the Mini came out, I predicted Apple could go as high as 10-15% by Summer 2006. To everyone who asks my advice on what kind of new computer to get, I recommend a Mini so they can avoid spyware. To everyone who has a PC and is sick of spyware, I recommend a Mini. (My mom wanted to replace her aging PII/266 but she didn't listen to me--she got an iMac instead.)

    Now that spyware is such a huge honking problem and people are buying new PCs just to get away from it, I imagine it'll drive a bunch of people to switch. Honestly, if it weren't for spyware, I'd still go either way. All else being equal, PCs are still cheaper for low-end use. But with spyware being as bad as it is, I think Apple can really make a dent.
  • It'll happen (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rediguana ( 104664 ) on Monday March 21, 2005 @08:30PM (#12006399)

    Ya, I've been down this path. iPod Jul 2003, PowerBook Jul 2004.

    I used to build PC's and it was fun and you'd get more bang for the buck, but I got ever sick of dealing with flaky drivers and Windows problems. But until the Mac Mini there wasn't an affordable Mac for most people.

    I do almost all work and personal stuff on the Mac now. Only time I tend to go back to WinXP is for Visio (which doesn't seem to quite work right under VirtualPC). I'm hopeful that one-day Visio will be produced for the Mac.

    Fedora Core is also used, but primarily as a server platform in my small business.

    We've got a number of Toshiba WinXP laptops and all of my users have trouble every single day with Windows Wireless networking. They have to repair their connections 2-3 times a day. My PowerBook has no troubles at all with connections. Hibernation of laptops is another - try going a week with hibernating Windows - it becomes so flakey. Now the PowerBook only gets a reboot when an OS update needs it. Otherwise hibernation just works - currently at 24 days with hibernation only - no reboots! All off my work colleagues reboot their WinXP laptop daily.

    I have been providing tech support for family and friends in the past, but now with the Mac Mini I'm going to provide them with a subtle and a not-so-subtle hint - "Check out the Mac Mini!" and I'm no longer providing support for Windows.

    The Mac operating system and application platform is great. iLife (haven't touched Garageband) is a really great suite of software and the integration works really well. I'm going to be suggesting to family that they should switch just because of the improvements they will have in being able to manage their digital photos etc. And having it all on *nix underpinning is nice - its great for me being able to crank open terminal.

    I had an Apple ][ many years ago - ah Castle Wolfenstein ;) but hardly touched pre-OSX because it was and still is crap. I did get a dual-CPU Mac once but promptly installed BeOS instead.

"I'm not afraid of dying, I just don't want to be there when it happens." -- Woody Allen