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View Full Version : Windows dominance to last "two to four years"


MacBytes
Nov 18, 2004, 11:11 AM
Category: Opinion/Interviews
Link: Windows dominance to last \"two to four years\" (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20041118121152)
Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)

Approved by Mudbug

AmigoMac
Nov 18, 2004, 11:57 AM
Forget it, it will last a long time before we can see a huge difference, my guess: the cake will be mostly for Linux/Apple/*-nix, of course apple will lead in USA and in a big part of Europe... but at that time we will be speculating about the PB G10... :rolleyes:

Jimmni
Nov 18, 2004, 01:35 PM
I really, really hope OS X never passes 10% market share.

Josh
Nov 18, 2004, 01:38 PM
I really, really hope OS X never passes 10% market share.

Why's that? Wouldn't that be a good thing?

afields
Nov 18, 2004, 01:38 PM
I really, really hope OS X never passes 10% market share.

whaaaaaa?!? :confused:

ajkst1
Nov 18, 2004, 01:45 PM
I doubt this seriously. It would be lovely to see this happen, but it's not going to happen. Until we start to see Fortune 100 companies switching to Linux/OS X/others, it's just going not to have any effect on the market. Students learn Windows because "that's what businesses use." I'd love to see other businesses pick up OS X or Linux, but then the "Macs don't have viruses" excuse goes out the window because then it becomes a targeted OS. OS X has a lot of vulnerablities that just aren't exploited because no one targets it.

I have a Powerbook and I love it to death. I love that I don't have spyware or viruses. I would love to see everyone run OS X. But at the same time, I know that if OS X controlled 95% of the market and Windows only had 3% that OS X would be slammed with viruses. Hackers target what's going to make them notorious. Look at the past few "major" viruses. Blaster, Sasser, etc. didn't do any "physical" damage per say, but caused a very large network problem. They infected the machine, e-mailed itself to other machines, and repeated the cycle. It didn't erase hard drives because it knows that's the end of the line. They caused a boatload of network traffic and clogged networks everywhere. Mac users were immune to the virus itself, but weren't immune to the traffic thrown around a network as a side effect of the virus.

Fender2112
Nov 18, 2004, 01:50 PM
I really, really hope OS X never passes 10% market share.
This is kind of how I've felt for a long time. Alot of folks gripe about Apple's market share being so low. Have these folks ever stopped to think that maybe Apple does NOT want a huge market share? Apple seems to be doing very well. They make a nice profit. They have a huge cash reserve. Stocks are trading quite nicely. You don't have to be the biggest to be the best. ;)

As long as Apple makes at least one computer that I can afford, I don't care what their market share is. There will always be a few of us that don't do Windows. :D

Trowaman
Nov 18, 2004, 01:51 PM
I really, really hope OS X never passes 10% market share.

30-35%, I'd understand, but 10% is pretty, low. I don't think Apple could keep up with a 50% or greater marketshare. Besides, if they became the front runner, innovation has a good chance of slowing down within the company.

Again, this is just my opinion, I could be wrong.

wrldwzrd89
Nov 18, 2004, 01:54 PM
I doubt this seriously. It would be lovely to see this happen, but it's not going to happen. Until we start to see Fortune 100 companies switching to Linux/OS X/others, it's just going not to have any effect on the market. Students learn Windows because "that's what businesses use." I'd love to see other businesses pick up OS X or Linux, but then the "Macs don't have viruses" excuse goes out the window because then it becomes a targeted OS. OS X has a lot of vulnerablities that just aren't exploited because no one targets it.

I have a Powerbook and I love it to death. I love that I don't have spyware or viruses. I would love to see everyone run OS X. But at the same time, I know that if OS X controlled 95% of the market and Windows only had 3% that OS X would be slammed with viruses. Hackers target what's going to make them notorious. Look at the past few "major" viruses. Blaster, Sasser, etc. didn't do any "physical" damage per say, but caused a very large network problem. They infected the machine, e-mailed itself to other machines, and repeated the cycle. It didn't erase hard drives because it knows that's the end of the line. They caused a boatload of network traffic and clogged networks everywhere. Mac users were immune to the virus itself, but weren't immune to the traffic thrown around a network as a side effect of the virus.
Sure, if that were the case Mac OS X would be slammed. However, the virus damage potential would be limited to areas the current user has write access to (home directory only if ordinary user; home directory + several other directories if administrator). The critical system files would be pretty much immune unless the virus somehow got root access.

Timelessblur
Nov 18, 2004, 02:06 PM
think about it they way. if apple is having massisive supply problems at 10% market share I dont think they can handle much more.

wrldwzrd89
Nov 18, 2004, 02:16 PM
think about it they way. if apple is having massisive supply problems at 10% market share I dont think they can handle much more.
Actually, Apple's already having significant supply trouble at their current 1.5% (approx.) market share (keep in mind that this figure is different from installed base, estimated at 12-15% in the USA and around 9% worldwide). I don't think Apple's supply problems will suddenly improve if their market share were to double (or triple, quadruple, whatever).

Timelessblur
Nov 18, 2004, 02:19 PM
Actually, Apple's already having significant supply trouble at their current 1.5% (approx.) market share (keep in mind that this figure is different from installed base, estimated at 12-15% in the USA and around 9% worldwide). I don't think Apple's supply problems will suddenly improve if their market share were to double (or triple, quadruple, whatever).

That was basicly my point. If apple get more market share they will only have more problems getting stuff to its costermers. As of right now apple is getting away with it rather poor shipping ect due to small market share and diehard fans. increase the number of computers they need to ship the problems will increase even more so and increase greatly. You can not ship what you do not have. Only this time the media will not be so forgiving and the public will not be very forgiving either

zelmo
Nov 18, 2004, 02:32 PM
Actually, Apple's already having significant supply trouble at their current 1.5% (approx.) market share (keep in mind that this figure is different from installed base, estimated at 12-15% in the USA and around 9% worldwide). I don't think Apple's supply problems will suddenly improve if their market share were to double (or triple, quadruple, whatever).

I have no idea if the percentages you quote are correct, but the sentiment is spot on. If they get too big, innovation (what they really do best, IMHO) slows to a trickle as they learn to keep up with manufacturing demands.
That being said, I would love to see Apple double their market share, but remain a relative niche player. An increased share would encourage s/w developers to keep plugging away with Mac products in the face of the dominant Windoze platform and the growing Linux market.

macridah
Nov 18, 2004, 04:11 PM
I hope within the next 2-4 years, apple will double it's market share or even better, have a double digit market share.

nagromme
Nov 18, 2004, 04:13 PM
2 to 4 years? I predict Windows will dominate for at least 5 years at the unlikely MINIMUM, and probably closer to 10 years. I DO think Windows will be clearly faltering in the market well before 5 years... but it's got a LONG way to fall before it's not the most-used OS anymore.

Linux and Mac will both benefit--and once people think of trying Linux over Windows, sometimes a little "Mac = UNIX" lightbulb will go off too.
I predict Linux and Mac will both continue to gain foothold in some corporate uses--with Linux having a big head start. But on the home desktop, I predict Mac will make huge leaps and Linux will only make small progress against Windows.

How about more-or-less equal thirds of the overall market? That sounds like healthy competition--nobody's got close to even half the market. In 2012:

1/3 Longorn II--nothing like we've ever seen because MS will be forced to make sweeping changes that will alienate many but actually make a decent OS.

1/3 Linux with a nicely evolved GUI and lots of apps.

1/3 Mac OS XX, so far beyond the other two it's not even funny but not putting them out of existence by any means.


Or it could be 40%, 35%, 25%, whatever... still good competition and no monopoly outside of certain fields.

wrldwzrd89
Nov 18, 2004, 04:55 PM
2 to 4 years? I predict Windows will dominate for at least 5 years at the unlikely MINIMUM, and probably closer to 10 years. I DO think Windows will be clearly faltering in the market well before 5 years... but it's got a LONG way to fall before it's not the most-used OS anymore.

Linux and Mac will both benefit--and once people think of trying Linux over Windows, sometimes a little "Mac = UNIX" lightbulb will go off too.
I predict Linux and Mac will both continue to gain foothold in some corporate uses--with Linux having a big head start. But on the home desktop, I predict Mac will make huge leaps and Linux will only make small progress against Windows.

How about more-or-less equal thirds of the overall market? That sounds like healthy competition--nobody's got close to even half the market. In 2012:

1/3 Longorn II--nothing like we've ever seen because MS will be forced to make sweeping changes that will alienate many but actually make a decent OS.

1/3 Linux with a nicely evolved GUI and lots of apps.

1/3 Mac OS XX, so far beyond the other two it's not even funny but not putting them out of existence by any means.


Or it could be 40%, 35%, 25%, whatever... still good competition and no monopoly outside of certain fields.
I would LOVE to see a perfect 1:1:1 split for marketshare between the Big Three (Windows, Mac OS X. Linux), with the remainder going to various UNIX derivatives and other OSes not covered (BeOS, for example).

tpatricks
Nov 18, 2004, 05:33 PM
Sad article, frankly. No concept of how business operates, how people's habits become ingrained, how change takes place.

First, what's "dominate" mean? Mind share or market share? Or something else? If it's a simple majority of installs, say 51%, then Windows is likely to "dominate" for a decade or two-- unless there's such a great alternative that the pain of switching is "substantially" less than the pain of staying.

Second, what's required to make a switch? Sadly, there's still probably not enough pain with Windows to make corporations, IT groups, and people who don't know any better (and can't imagine how good we have it on the Mac side) make a switch from the dark side.

Windows will continue to dominate for many years to come. It'll be the favored target of hackers, the preferred target of malware writers, and the talk around the water cooler which strangely seems to bond many Windows users.

Will Mac and Linux alternatives continue to make inroads? Yes. Steady and sure progress, then assuming continued progress with Mac and Linux vs. Windows problems, perhaps even larger, ever growing chunks of market share. But it'll take many, many years for that to happen; for Windows to fall off the money wagon.

Look at the desperate defense Microsoft is putting up now, though market share has only nudged downwards-- price cutting on Office and Windows to governments and large corporations to prevent their Linux seeding programs. Implied threats from MS to governments and corporations that Linux may be the target of patent/copyright lawsuits. FUD is the strategy of choice emanating from Redmond, as always.

Microsoft (execs) sold their souls to the Devil to become #1, rich, powerful. As soon as they're toppled, they'll be taken away to Hell so they'll do everything in their power again (illegally, FUD, lies, et al) to keep from being dethroned.

Interestingly, it's their very soul (or lack of) that will probably destroy them. Microsoft is so huge and complex, Windows so utterly complex that no one knows what's really going on in the bowels of that code. Already Windows is crumbling and weakened. Those of us who watch closely can see it. Longhorn will take forever to hit the streets and it'll more resemble SP2 than a groundbreaking, powerful, and secure OS.

Maybe the "groundbreaking" of Longhorn will be what occurs to the ground just after the funeral and before the casket is dropped into Hades. :eek:

The caged rats still live on a sinking ship but they'll eat anyone or anything alive before dying themselves. If Apple were much of a threat to the MS money stream, they could easily afford to buy Cuptertino in a heartbeat. Linux can't be bought but it probably could be litigated to death.

I'd prefer Apple/Linux (worthy alternatives) to grow steadily while Microsoft simply decays and crumbles-- and the current leadership (Gates and Ballmer) decides to hang it up and head to the pasture.

Fun thoughts, huh?

wrldwzrd89
Nov 18, 2004, 05:54 PM
Sad article, frankly. No concept of how business operates, how people's habits become ingrained, how change takes place.

First, what's "dominate" mean? Mind share or market share? Or something else? If it's a simple majority of installs, say 51%, then Windows is likely to "dominate" for a decade or two-- unless there's such a great alternative that the pain of switching is "substantially" less than the pain of staying.

Second, what's required to make a switch? Sadly, there's still probably not enough pain with Windows to make corporations, IT groups, and people who don't know any better (and can't imagine how good we have it on the Mac side) make a switch from the dark side.

Windows will continue to dominate for many years to come. It'll be the favored target of hackers, the preferred target of malware writers, and the talk around the water cooler which strangely seems to bond many Windows users.

Will Mac and Linux alternatives continue to make inroads? Yes. Steady and sure progress, then assuming continued progress with Mac and Linux vs. Windows problems, perhaps even larger, ever growing chunks of market share. But it'll take many, many years for that to happen; for Windows to fall off the money wagon.

Look at the desperate defense Microsoft is putting up now, though market share has only nudged downwards-- price cutting on Office and Windows to governments and large corporations to prevent their Linux seeding programs. Implied threats from MS to governments and corporations that Linux may be the target of patent/copyright lawsuits. FUD is the strategy of choice emanating from Redmond, as always.

Microsoft (execs) sold their souls to the Devil to become #1, rich, powerful. As soon as they're toppled, they'll be taken away to Hell so they'll do everything in their power again (illegally, FUD, lies, et al) to keep from being dethroned.

Interestingly, it's their very soul (or lack of) that will probably destroy them. Microsoft is so huge and complex, Windows so utterly complex that no one knows what's really going on in the bowels of that code. Already Windows is crumbling and weakened. Those of us who watch closely can see it. Longhorn will take forever to hit the streets and it'll more resemble SP2 than a groundbreaking, powerful, and secure OS.

Maybe the "groundbreaking" of Longhorn will be what occurs to the ground just after the funeral and before the casket is dropped into Hades. :eek:

The caged rats still live on a sinking ship but they'll eat anyone or anything alive before dying themselves. If Apple were much of a threat to the MS money stream, they could easily afford to buy Cuptertino in a heartbeat. Linux can't be bought but it probably could be litigated to death.

I'd prefer Apple/Linux (worthy alternatives) to grow steadily while Microsoft simply decays and crumbles-- and the current leadership (Gates and Ballmer) decides to hang it up and head to the pasture.

Fun thoughts, huh?
Well I'm impressed. Great post tpatricks! This explains why Microsoft can't get Longhorn out the door when they want it out, while Apple has no such trouble - in fact, rumor has it that Tiger may arrive earlier than expected. How's that for a 180 degree turn?

Chobit
Nov 18, 2004, 05:56 PM
I agree, windows will dominate for more than the article thinks. I don't really mind though, as long as Apple keeps churning out great products, and keeps getting industry support (some more would be nice) I'll be happy. It'd be great if apple's market share (based on sales) would jump to 5-10%, but its not absolutely necessary.

-Chobit!

kiwi-in-uk
Nov 18, 2004, 07:01 PM
Don't forget that Microsoft has been busily diversifying - acquiring mid range ERPs (Great Plains, Axapta) and others.

In parallel they have launched the Windows Multimedia Centre.

Regardless of the merits (or otherwise) of these huge current and potential installed bases, and even without ANY revisions to Windows, they will dominate PC and server OS market share for many years - some say five; my guess is ten to fifteen.

Microsoft built market share and power during the 90s by gaining control of the corporate desktop. They are now doing the same with business management systems.

At the end of the day it will matter little to MS whether the underlying OS is Windows, Unix, Linux, or OS-X. They will continue to derive most of their income from sources other than OS licences. So Windows vs Linux / OS-X etc is an amusing sideshow for them.

SilvorX
Nov 19, 2004, 10:43 AM
as sad to say, linux will surpass mac os x... many people don't realize how good OS X is, they probably either had experience with OS 9- or never used a mac in their life and feel that linux is the best choice... since it's free (for most distros), i'dd love to see Mac OS really take off again, but I just don't see it happening.. I can dream though, but it'll never happen, i know MORE people who use linux than mac os (of any form). I know linux junkies who purchased macs and basically never looked back.. but also know linux junkies who diss Mac OS X like crazy

bousozoku
Nov 19, 2004, 10:52 AM
Sure, I can see that happening, to a certain extent. However, just as the mainframes have survived, so I see Microsoft Windows. Eventually, it would only be a niche market, relegated there by a new "answer" to it all.

chanoc
Nov 19, 2004, 11:04 AM
Students learn Windows because "that's what businesses use." I'd love to see other businesses pick up OS X or Linux, but then the "Macs don't have viruses" excuse goes out the window because then it becomes a targeted OS. OS X has a lot of vulnerablities that just aren't exploited because no one targets it.


Well I look at the Alaska job market (http://akjobs.labor.state.ak.us/akjb/joblist.asp?PageNo=1&Region=Anchorage%2FMat-Su&JobType=select+a+job+type) every day and very rarely do jobs come around that use Macs or Linux, although this may be different in other markets - I don't know. The University of Alaska is so Winblows essentric, they bash Macs and tell students Macs are not made anymore. The ignorant students actually buy into that fallacy, yet this student did not.

wdlove
Nov 19, 2004, 11:31 AM
I was surprised that the article only talked about Linux. Apple is in this game also. There would be more of a problem with supply of product if the market share would increase. The bigger probe would be that Mac OS X would be more of a target for a virus.

hulugu
Nov 21, 2004, 01:29 AM
We are seeing the beginning of a tipping-point, a moment when Microsoft's mile-long freight train has already hit the brakes and it's just taking time for it to slow down. Microsoft is the great white-hunter hit by a pygmy's poison dart, it just doesn't realize it's dead yet.
Linux was created, for all intensive purposes, less than a decade ago, and now that software is the main interest of companies like IBM. Companies are considering Linux as a viable alternative, and with the security brewhaha of the past year Microsoft has been clearly shown as incapable of evolving. Their security assurance has been a joke and not everyone wants to wait for Longhorn the late bullock.
Linux works on x86 hardware and versions such as Linspire and others are making it easier to run Windows programs without Windows. Versions of Linux are very powerful, but can be easy to use (although OSX beats them all hands-down) and don't come with the ActiveX security night-mare that is IE.
And in that note, IE and dare-I-say WMP, are also becoming less and less dominant. IE is losing market-share already, and WMP isn't doing very well against the combination of iTMS and the iPod.
Microsoft's only real stablity comes from MS Office and even this is being challenged by OpenOffice, albeit less sucessfully.
Microsoft has been engaged on several fronts at once and they're not winning many battles.

Laslty, I think a nice 55% (Linux), 15% (Apple) and the remainder goes to Microsoft and all the various flavors of *nix would be perfect. This way, Apple holds a powerful position, especially among movie/music/creative interest, without getting killed like Microsoft is now as the king-of-the-hill. Let someone else hold that position. And, while Apple has problems shipping machines now this could be mitigated, because as Apple grows so does it's infastructure. And 15% of the market means more money for R&D and therefore more development. This also allows room for a new player, and new company to move into the computer industry without a single dominate player. This variance also enforces standards, because any developer will choose the technology that works across many platforms. Goodbye Active X, goodbye WMP 10 with DRM. This means cross-platform Java, scripting, and web-browsing. This means no one company can ignore CSS rules without paying for it.
Microsoft can be an innovator, the company has produced outstanding products, but they have become lazy and irresolute, too full and too satisfied with themselves to be anything better.

Abstract
Nov 21, 2004, 03:11 AM
I really, really hope OS X never passes 10% market share.

Me neither. I'm happy with them sitting at 3 to 5%. They make money, and they still have the time to innovate without the pressure of being the biggest.

takao
Nov 21, 2004, 05:02 AM
2 to 4 years ? yeah RIGHT
i expect it to last way longer (decade at least)

Linux does profit a lot more from microsofts weakness at the moment while apple seems to keep it's marketshare (1,7 or below here)
and for the "user share being bigger" thing: perhaps 9% is true for switzerland
_i_ don't know anybody personally who has mac (i know enough who had macs before and switched...'the evil way')
i would give you twice asm uch percentage than marketshare ..but 10 asm uch isntalled machines still running is a little bit too optimistic

wrldwzrd89
Nov 21, 2004, 07:40 AM
2 to 4 years ? yeah RIGHT
i expect it to last way longer (decade at least)

Linux does profit a lot more from microsofts weakness at the moment while apple seems to keep it's marketshare (1,7 or below here)
and for the "user share being bigger" thing: perhaps 9% is true for switzerland
_i_ don't know anybody personally who has mac (i know enough who had macs before and switched...'the evil way')
i would give you twice asm uch percentage than marketshare ..but 10 asm uch isntalled machines still running is a little bit too optimistic
My installed base and market share numbers aren't exactly from a reliable source (my own memory), so if they're way off it's understandable. The only problem is that nobody has a good sense of the true installed base figure, and an accurate market share number is hard to get too (to get a true picture of market share, you have to exclude all the terminals and servers that get inexplicably included in market share for Windows, since Apple reports those things separately).

takao
Nov 21, 2004, 08:16 AM
My installed base and market share numbers aren't exactly from a reliable source (my own memory), so if they're way off it's understandable. The only problem is that nobody has a good sense of the true installed base figure, and an accurate market share number is hard to get too (to get a true picture of market share, you have to exclude all the terminals and servers that get inexplicably included in market share for Windows, since Apple reports those things separately).

according to the last apple report pdf i have seen their xservers are included in their powermac numbers (as far as i remember)

i would think that the page hits from big internet sites wuld be pretty accurate (does google have some stats perhaps ?) but even such stats would have to be taken with a grain of salt...

you know the situation in the US is very different from over here..in the US apple is still big in schools which helps them a lot with so called "mindshare"...

apple sells best in the graphcis designer market and in the *grasp* CS students market..not exactly the "joe average" computer market (of course thats only here)

(my 12 year brother never heard of apple, my parents said something around "aren't they incompatible ?", my 24 year old sister said "no..never" when proposing her an apple laptop and none of them ever used one in their whole life)