PDA

View Full Version : Can Apple take Microsoft's perch?


MacBytes
Nov 10, 2009, 08:51 AM
http://www.macbytes.com/images/bytessig.gif (http://www.macbytes.com)

Category: Opinion/Interviews
Link: Can Apple take Microsoft's perch? (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20091110095147)
Description:: That title should read "When will" not "Can they?" ;)

Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)
Approved by Mudbug

spillproof
Nov 10, 2009, 02:00 PM
I don't see this happening anytime soon, at least not in the next 10 years.

I hate to say it, but I fear that Steve Jobs is like Tom Brady, the team sucks and can't do things on their own with out him. So Steve, you better have a plan set out before you die.

cwt1nospam
Nov 10, 2009, 03:05 PM
I don't see this happening anytime soon, at least not in the next 10 years.

I think you've got this backwards. Microsoft has essentially two successful products and they both depend on IT preferring them over all other products in their class: Windows and Office. The lesson of the last ten years is that IT is becoming increasingly less relevant. People don't need to buy the hardware they recommend or the software, and consumers are tired of dealing with Microsoft headaches. Even now, with Windows 7 out, the basic feeling seems to be that Microsoft is in relatively good shape because 7 doesn't (so far) suck. Hardly a ringing endorsement or good news for their future prospects.

All Apple needs to do to surpass Microsoft is not screw up. If they just hold where they are now, they'll be looking down at a much smaller Microsoft in less than ten years!

ditzy
Nov 10, 2009, 05:30 PM
I can see Apple growing larger than they are today. I believe that growth will outstrip the market. But taking over as the market leader over Microsoft. Never going to happen.

thejadedmonkey
Nov 10, 2009, 05:40 PM
provided that Microsoft doesn't screw up...

It will never happen. IT staff know and are used to Windows. Further more, Apple doesn't have a business department. If they are, I've never seen them, and I've purchased a few computers for business. Additionally, their Applecare support sucks when it comes to businesses. Archive and Install is not a solution, nor is telling the end user that their computer must be buggy, but you can not install 10.5.8 on it because you bought it after 10.6 came out.

Lastly, the lack of a tower that is IT department fixable means that any hardware issues require at least a 1-week turnaround to fix. Unacceptable.

So yeah... If Apple doesn't make it into businesses, and Windows keeps improving, I see Apple having a problem, not Microsoft.

cwt1nospam
Nov 10, 2009, 08:05 PM
It will never happen. IT staff know and are used to Windows.
You sound like some one who is new to IT, probably less than ten years. IT used to be very relevant to technology, and even today it's important. Just not nearly as important or influential as it used to be. As that influence decreases, Microsoft will need to come up with products that are successful without IT's help. They've been trying to do that for years and failing.

jimmyjoemccrow
Nov 10, 2009, 08:38 PM
Explain how IT is becoming less relevant.

FX120
Nov 10, 2009, 09:39 PM
Ugh. I hate to imagine a world where Apple was the dominant player as a single source computer manufacturer.

But at the same time, that's why it will (and couldn't) ever happen. Apple would never be willing to give up their integrated hardware/software model.

If they did, all we would end up with is another Microsoft.

winmacguy
Nov 10, 2009, 09:55 PM
I can see Apple growing larger than they are today. I believe that growth will outstrip the market. But taking over as the market leader over Microsoft. Never going to happen.

Apple won't and doesn't plan on beating Microsoft in the desktop market share war. Steve Jobs has already said that Microsoft won that war in the 90's. Now it is time for Apple to win the mobile device OS war and so far things are looking good.:apple:

acurafan
Nov 10, 2009, 10:00 PM
is apple going to have $400 laptops and desktops?? do we see Fortune 100 companies committing to full apple deployments?

good luck with that, i see MS still on top in 20 years.

Prolanman
Nov 10, 2009, 10:09 PM
Explain how IT is becoming less relevant.

IT is no longer drives the business. The business drives IT.

MisterMe
Nov 10, 2009, 11:59 PM
is apple going to have $400 laptops and desktops?? do we see Fortune 100 companies committing to full apple deployments?

good luck with that, i see MS still on top in 20 years.This view is as naďve as the article linked in the OP. First, Apple and Microsoft have fundamentally different business models. Apple will never take Microsoft's perch because Microsoft's perch is not Apple's goal.

Second—in no way does this guarantee the viability of Microsoft. There is a misconception in fan space that Microsoft is healthy because Microsoft is big. This is not how corporate business works. Corporate health is predicated on growth. Microsoft is tapping around like a blind man in its search for growth areas. It is not having a lot of success identifying growth areas that generate profits. Currently, it is laying off employees. I'm not holding my breath until this situation changes.

cwt1nospam
Nov 11, 2009, 01:25 AM
is apple going to have $400 laptops and desktops?? do we see Fortune 100 companies committing to full apple deployments?

good luck with that, i see MS still on top in 20 years.
How does $400 junk machines have anything to do with Microsoft remaining on top? It's those cheap machines that are killing companies like Dell. Companies that Microsoft depends on for selling its biggest cash cow: Windows.

I suppose that twenty years ago you saw IBM, Compaq, and DEC remaining key players in the PC manufacturing business today as well.

winmacguy
Nov 11, 2009, 02:09 AM
is apple going to have $400 laptops and desktops?? do we see Fortune 100 companies committing to full apple deployments?

good luck with that, i see MS still on top in 20 years.

Ironically Apple doesn't need to produce anything like a $400 PC to beat Microsoft. Up until Windows 7 the only OS that would run on a $399 netbook was Windows XP or Linux and Microsoft gets ony a few dollars in licensing fees for every Netbook running XP compared to about $40-50 for every PC running Windows 7.

The thing that will continue to weaken Microsoft is increasing use of iPhones, Google Docs, Google Wave, Android OS and Cloud based application services all of which are very cheap or free and are new areas that Microsoft is trying to attract customers into with only limited success with its own cloud based services.

jimmyjoemccrow
Nov 11, 2009, 04:42 AM
IT is no longer drives the business. The business drives IT.

Which basically means the uninformed suits will be making the decisions on tech, not the people who actually know what they are talking about.

Gav2k
Nov 11, 2009, 05:09 AM
The only way apple will beat microflop is to open there os to the pc Market. This causes two problems. 1, a very driver heavy os that will be buggy live winblows. 2, the little malware/virus people will target osx every which way thy can.

BongoBanger
Nov 11, 2009, 05:29 AM
I think you've got this backwards. Microsoft has essentially two successful products and they both depend on IT preferring them over all other products in their class: Windows and Office.

Whereas Apple have none at all in this arena.

gregorsamsa
Nov 11, 2009, 05:47 AM
Love my Macs, but this will never happen as long as Apple refuses to cater for most of the computer market, ie. low-end. If anyone topples Microsoft, it'll probably be Google.

MisterMe
Nov 11, 2009, 09:10 AM
Whereas Apple have none at all in this arena.I guess your own point is lost on you. Microsoft relies on massive sales of two software products to a small group of buyers. Apple relies on small sales of a limited array of hardware products to a large number of end users.

The mammals are overtaking the dinosaurs and you are betting on the dinosaurs. Good luck with that.

alent1234
Nov 11, 2009, 11:56 AM
Ironically Apple doesn't need to produce anything like a $400 PC to beat Microsoft. Up until Windows 7 the only OS that would run on a $399 netbook was Windows XP or Linux and Microsoft gets ony a few dollars in licensing fees for every Netbook running XP compared to about $40-50 for every PC running Windows 7.

The thing that will continue to weaken Microsoft is increasing use of iPhones, Google Docs, Google Wave, Android OS and Cloud based application services all of which are very cheap or free and are new areas that Microsoft is trying to attract customers into with only limited success with its own cloud based services.

Google's products can't touch MS in a lot of cases. with Office 2010 you will be able to grab data from a database and do BI functions on your desktop. In the past this required going to your local BI developer and waiting for the report to be written

google wave has gotten pretty bad reviews in some rags. the cloud is another name for the same thing i've heard over the last 10 years or so. in the future everything will live somewhere else, and yet it never happens. personally i think the cloud is a scam made up by the hardware companies to sell more higher margin hardware to companies like Amazon instead of less lower margin hardware to customers like my employer

BongoBanger
Nov 11, 2009, 02:29 PM
I guess your own point is lost on you. Microsoft relies on massive sales of two software products to a small group of buyers.

95% of businesses and 90%+ of consumers is a "small group".

Denial. It's not just a river in Egypt.

FX120
Nov 11, 2009, 03:00 PM
I guess your own point is lost on you. Microsoft relies on massive sales of two software products to a small group of buyers. Apple relies on small sales of a limited array of hardware products to a large number of end users.

Wha wha wha wha what?!?!

winmacguy
Nov 11, 2009, 08:41 PM
google wave has gotten pretty bad reviews in some rags. the cloud is another name for the same thing i've heard over the last 10 years or so. in the future everything will live somewhere else, and yet it never happens. personally i think the cloud is a scam made up by the hardware companies to sell more higher margin hardware to companies like Amazon instead of less lower margin hardware to customers like my employer

Interesting. Have you got any links to those reports on Google Wave?

alent1234
Nov 12, 2009, 12:08 PM
Interesting. Have you got any links to those reports on Google Wave?

http://scobleizer.com/2009/10/01/google-wave-crashes-on-beach-of-overhype/

and i'm one of those people that never installed our corporate IM app because i don't like people interrupting me

cjmillsnun
Nov 12, 2009, 12:19 PM
http://scobleizer.com/2009/10/01/google-wave-crashes-on-beach-of-overhype/

and i'm one of those people that never installed our corporate IM app because i don't like people interrupting me

Oh a blogger, rather than a journalist. What does a real journalist say?

http://www.forbes.com/2009/11/02/sap-gravity-software-technology-cio-network-google-wave.html

ahh yes, wait and see. Could that be because Wave is still in Beta?

pdjudd
Nov 12, 2009, 12:23 PM
Wha wha wha wha what?!?!

Mirosoft's biggest sources of revenue come from volume licensing of 2 products - Office and Windows. That's the bulk of their profits. They are the two biggest cornerstones to maintain dependence on their products.

FX120
Nov 12, 2009, 09:36 PM
Mirosoft's biggest sources of revenue come from volume licensing of 2 products - Office and Windows. That's the bulk of their profits. They are the two biggest cornerstones to maintain dependence on their products.

Sure, but that's hardly a "small group" of buyers.

And Apple certainly doesn't have a large group of buyers in the computer market.

MisterMe
Nov 13, 2009, 10:57 AM
Sure, but that's hardly a "small group" of buyers.

And Apple certainly doesn't have a large group of buyers in the computer market.What you don't seem to get is that Microsoft's other products produced by the majority of its divisions lose money. What is more, Microsoft's profitable divisions have monopoly positions in a declining market. They have few growth prospects.

Apple does not have as many customers as Microsoft, but its customer base is large by any credible definition of the word.

Take a look at the stock performance of both Microsoft and Apple over the last ten years. Then get back to me.

FX120
Nov 13, 2009, 09:21 PM
What you don't seem to get is that Microsoft's other products produced by the majority of its divisions lose money. What is more, Microsoft's profitable divisions have monopoly positions in a declining market. They have few growth prospects.

Apple does not have as many customers as Microsoft, but its customer base is large by any credible definition of the word.

Take a look at the stock performance of both Microsoft and Apple over the last ten years. Then get back to me.
I fail to see how any of this makes your original statement any more true.

MisterMe
Nov 14, 2009, 08:32 AM
I fail to see how any of this makes your original statement any more true.I am not surprised.

pdjudd
Nov 14, 2009, 09:35 AM
And Apple certainly doesn't have a large group of buyers in the computer market.

Apple’s market, unlike most of the PC industry is growing - however Apple is always going to be a niche player simply due to the way the industry works. PC hardware running Windows has a tremendous push in businesses and I just don’t see this changing due to dependency on Windows software.

Windows and Office are going to be keeping MS in business with a high marketshare for a very long time. MS has several powerful partners to distribute their hardware - low dependancy. Apple has a very high reliance on their own hardware, but they really cannot change this. Just having a good OS isn’t enough to change this. MS is just waaay too large to change things anytime soon.

The big fallacy is assuming that Apple is after Microsoft's market share. They aren’t doing that because they do not have the same business strategy that MS has. There are some fundamental differences that are going to make sure that a company like Apple from getting to the size of MS.

Remember, even at the top of it’s game, Apple had less than a 15% market share or so. Even getting to that is going to be a struggle by pure momentum alone and because Apple’s hardware competitors as well as MS are much larger than Apple is. Jobs said it long ago. The marketshare wars are over - MS won. Too many people want Windows. The only way that I ever see that happening would be if Seattle were to utterly vanish off the face of the earth and every out of state MS employee decided to quit. And even then I doubt that things would change much.

Apple isn’t going to get high marketshare because they don’t need it. They just need a core group of customers that like Apple’s hardware and software enough to keep buying their products.

KeriJane
Nov 14, 2009, 10:08 AM
Second—in no way does this guarantee the viability of Microsoft. There is a misconception in fan space that Microsoft is healthy because Microsoft is big. This is not how corporate business works. Corporate health is predicated on growth. Microsoft is tapping around like a blind man in its search for growth areas. It is not having a lot of success identifying growth areas that generate profits. Currently, it is laying off employees. I'm not holding my breath until this situation changes.

Absolutely true!

Being big and dominating a part of a market has no bearing on long-term survival.

We had an Oldsmobile car dealership 3 blocks from here. Olds was in business for a CENTURY, had a top-selling car for years and years.... then a couple of models got discontinued and Poof! all gone.

Now, a few years after that and "Too Big To Fail" GM itself....
Is begging for Government handouts!
Got the Handouts!
Found out about the strings attached.
Is sliding into obscurity, dropping brands and models like crazy. First Pontiac, then Saturn..... who's next?


Now I hope that somehow GM manages to survive if only for the benefit of all the people that work there, but the prospects don't seem very good.
Certainly not as unstoppable as they seemed only 10 years ago.
Who could have imagined Big Bad GM begging for handouts?
Up until recently they dominated the worldwide automobile market.

Kinda like Microsoft today.
They're Too Big To Fail!
They have an unbeatable lead over all competitors.
They've dominated the market for decades!
What could go wrong?

Well, one thing that could go wrong (for MS) is Open Office!
Only a few big companies have sit to back and think: "Free is cheaper than hundreds of dollars per User".

The big Cash Cow isn't Windows. System manufacturers don't pay very much for OEM licenses and that's the vast majority of Windows sales. MS's big cash cow is Office, especially versions with Access.

If anything happens to Office, MS is in big trouble very quickly.

Oh, but noone knows how to use OOffice, you say.
Oh, but MS is too well-entrenched, you say.

But that's where GM was not long ago!

Interesting times ahead,

Have Fun,
Keri

Point2G
Nov 14, 2009, 12:42 PM
That's why microsoft should chill out and just stick to making win7 and office..
Haven't they learned about the Jack of all trades?? And while they're at it how about a nice fresh version of "age of :series" for win 7 64bit!

KeriJane
Nov 14, 2009, 05:23 PM
That's why microsoft should chill out and just stick to making win7 and office..
Haven't they learned about the Jack of all trades?? And while they're at it how about a nice fresh version of "age of :series" for win 7 64bit!

Actually, they should probably diversify. At least some. All their eggs in one or two baskets probably isn't the safest bet.
But look what happened: They tried to dominate the Server market and LINUX of all things took a big chunk! What happens if OpenOffice (or something else) takes a big chunk out of Office? That'd be bye-bye time most likely.

Of course they do need to keep their core products viable.
They should be very careful about making sure Windows and Office are as perfect as possible. Windows 6 gave Apple an awful lot of customers and they should probably avoid doing that again.
I feel that the biggest thing wrong with Win6 was the whole Jack-Of-All-Trades thing. It tried to do everything for everyone and failed.

But that's their business model.... work on practically any Hardware and run practically any Software and try to make everyone happy. Tough job. One that Apple avoids.

no apple can not take microsoft perch

Apple doesn't have to. MS might just fall off its perch on its own.
Apple's only burden is to make a decent profit.
They have several avenues to do this, most of which are not easily copied.
They can sell you Mac Computers, iPods, iPhones and Accessories as well as a few (easily copied) software products. Like it or not, they've carved out a niche that no one else has successfully taken much of. By controlling the quality of Hardware and Software and getting it right (or at least better) this time they've grown like crazy.

Microsoft's main business is easily copied Software products. Their Zunes, Mice and Keyboards are not easily copied but compete with generics directly, a mistake Apple does their best to avoid. (that's why there's probably not going to be a Mac mini-tower anytime soon)

Worse than being easily copied, MS's big two products (Windows and Office) have competitors that are not only catching up but are generally free.
Top that off with being perceived as expensive, slow and treating paying customers like thieves and they've got potential problems. Even if it's not their fault.

Someone said that without Steve Jobs Apple would fall apart.
I wonder if Microsoft is very different?

Danger! Interesting Times ahead! :eek:

Have Fun,
Keri

FX120
Nov 14, 2009, 05:55 PM
I am not surprised.
:rolleyes:
What you don't seem to get is that Microsoft's other products produced by the majority of its divisions lose money.Which has nothing to do with the purchasers of Microsoft software being a "small group of buyers".

What is more, Microsoft's profitable divisions have monopoly positions in a declining market. They have few growth prospects.Again, irrelevant.

Apple does not have as many customers as Microsoft, but its customer base is large by any credible definition of the word.
End of story. You can't call Microsoft's customers "small", then turn around and call Apple's user base "large".

Take a look at the stock performance of both Microsoft and Apple over the last ten years. Then get back to me.Which has nothing to do with anything that we've been talking about.

KeriJane
Nov 15, 2009, 09:48 AM
OMG!

I just google'd "Apple Market Share"
http://www.tuaw.com/2009/01/02/apple-market-share-tops-10-windows-share-lowest-since-tracking/

Apple's crossed the 10% mark!

TEN PERCENT?

Wasn't it just a few years ago we were at 3%?

Most of that 7% percent difference probably came right out of Microsoft!
Losing a bit over 7% of your market share is bad if you're MS, but not hopeless.

But the important thing is:
Apple's market share has tripled in a few short years!

MS might be down a bit under 10% but Apple is up 300% plus?

Better, (for Apple) these are nearly all sales made at full price and a tidy profit. No OEM license giveaways to dominate the market like MS does.
That's an incredible amount of momentum (and cash) for Apple.

Given that kind of massive impetus, Apple possible COULD knock MS off its perch!
All Apple has to do is maintain the momentum. Now the burden falls to MS to stop their decline. What they try is likely to become very interesting.

It wouldn't be the first time a tiny, insignificant competitor has surpassed the long-favorite giant.

It appears that the game is now not only MS's to lose but Apple's to win.


Finding it hard to believe 1 out of 10 computer online are Macs,
Keri

PS. Yay! Go for it, Apple!

MisterMe
Nov 15, 2009, 10:03 AM
:rolleyes:
Which has nothing to do with the purchasers of Microsoft software being a "small group of buyers". Microsoft's bread and butter is selling to institutions rather than to end users. Institutions employ a small number of buyers to make purchases that will be deployed to a large number of users. When you get a job, you will see this for yourself.

Again, irrelevant.Maybe to you, but to the investment community it is highly relevant.

End of story. You can't call Microsoft's customers "small", then turn around and call Apple's user base "large".

...This has now been adequately explained. FWIW, Microsoft is the one that is laying off employees.

KeriJane
Nov 16, 2009, 08:02 PM
OMG!

It IS getting interesting!

Not content with ripping off idea after idea from Apple for decades...

Microsoft is enticing Apple Store employees away from Apple and opening MICROSOFT RETAIL STORES?
:eek::p:confused::eek::D:o

http://www.engadget.com/2009/10/26/microsoft-borrows-apple-store-blueprint-manager/

Just what do they intend to sell? a new "Microsoft" branded PC line? Zunes? xBoxes? Accessories? Software? Bill Gates Action Figures? "I'm a PC" Bumper Stickers?

If all they want to sell is what other companies like Dell, HP, eMachines, etc... already make, how can they hope to make the Rent let alone a Profit?

I thought they already had stores like these. Aren't they called "Best Buy", "Comp USA", "insert name here Discount Computer Store"?

Just how on Earth do they intend to copy the Geniuses? Doesn't Geek Squad already do that as best they can? How could any one group deal with a dozen brands of PCs spanning years?

It's hard enough to do it with ONE brand. What are they going to do with the swarms of "My Netbook/Notebook/Desktop/All-in-One/Homebuilt/Gaming/Workstation/xBox doesn't work right people that are going to come clomping on in expecting the gentle loving touch from dozens of highly qualified rocket scientists?

It's an especially odd situation because the vast majority of Windows boxes are Major OEM brands that MS made very little money per unit from.
Are they going to restrict help to only those people with Retail Boxed versions of Windows and Office?

It's nice that they're trying SOMETHING, but ripping off the Apple Store concept isn't likely to be anything but a giant money pit for them.

Apple maintains their Apple Stores by insisting on making a decent profit on their products and by having a unique brand identity. Being only one brand with a limited number of possible configurations helps the Geniuses cope as well.

If MS actually pulls this off I'll be Impressed. And Amazed.

Checking to see if maybe this is some kind of April Fools Prank,
Keri

BongoBanger
Nov 17, 2009, 06:48 AM
Microsoft's bread and butter is selling to institutions rather than to end users. Institutions employ a small number of buyers to make purchases that will be deployed to a large number of users. When you get a job, you will see this for yourself.

And they still hold in excess of 90% of the consumer market. When you actually understand 'sales volume' and 'market segmentation' you will see this for yourself.

You probably want to stop digging that hole now but I'm guessing you won't.

MisterMe
Nov 17, 2009, 08:23 AM
And they still hold in excess of 90% of the consumer market. ...

You probably want to stop digging that hole now but I'm guessing you won't.Microsoft's health like those of every other public corporation depend on profits. Microsoft's profits depend on institutional sales, not consumer sales. The hole that I am digging is so that I can reach you before your hole caves in.

BongoBanger
Nov 18, 2009, 11:26 AM
Microsoft's health like those of every other public corporation depend on profits. A lot of Microsoft's profits depend on institutional sales, not consumer sales which also account for a lot. The hole that I am digging is so that I can reach you before your hole caves in.

Fixed.