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Apple in Education Turnaround?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
51,581
13,209
Businessweek has a detailed article which covers Apple's steps and mis-steps in the educational market over the past few years.

While Apple's most recent educational results appear to be disappointing, Businessweek notes that sales to higher education are the best they've been in seven years, and that based on October surveys, Apple is predicted to make up 30% of K-12 school sales in the next year. This would represent a significant rise from Apple's most recent results.

In addition, Apple's strengths with Mac OS X, competitively priced laptops, and powerful G5s may aid in the turnaround.

The author still cautions though that Apple still faces stiff competition from Dell and HP.
 

arn

macrumors god
Staff member
Apr 9, 2001
15,650
4,462
Originally posted by LimeLite
Ha, sales to higher education are doing good? Wonder if VT had anything to do with that!! :p

The VT sale is too recent to have had an effect. The article (if you read it :) ) details Apple selling laptops and ipods to incoming college students.

arn
 
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dbally

macrumors member
Jul 27, 2003
71
0
I'd like to see such mac friendly universities. At the student computing center on campus there is one table with maybe a dozen imacs on it while the rest of the room is filled with different dimensions of Dells. In the architecture lab too (thought this makes a little more sense because of the CAD software) there are 2 powermacs surrounded by other Dells. I thought there'd be more need with all the Photoshopping and Illustratoring that might need to be done but I guess the administrators feel differently . . . I just wish they'd 'think different'ly.

My 2 cents.
 
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LimeLite

macrumors 6502a
Mar 20, 2003
651
0
Los Angeles, Ca
Originally posted by arn
The VT sale is too recent to have had an effect. The article (if you read it :) ) details Apple selling laptops and ipods to incoming college students.

arn
It was more of a joke, but good to know Arn. Maybe the VT sale will keep the trend up for the next batch of results?
 
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mactastic

macrumors 68040
Apr 24, 2003
3,681
665
Colly-fornia
Frankly I think that the whole switch from OS9 to OSX was a major reason a lot of schools opted away from Apple over the last couple of years. Now that things have settled down again, and a lot of the software everyone needed has migrated to OSX and it has a proven record as a really enjoyable and powerful OS to use, many of the people who were hesitant will now be more receptive to returning. Of course Apple has to make up a whole lot of lost ground, but their transition to a modern OS is basically over. The Wintel world will have to make a similar leap at some point, and it won't be pleasant for them either.
 
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Toppa G's

macrumors 6502
Jun 19, 2003
425
1
The exurbs, MN
Laptop campus

My campus (University of Wisconsin - Stout) has started requiring freshmen to rent laptops from the university - mostly Compaq :( but there are 3 majors that get Apple iBooks or PowerBooks. The computer lab for my major is equipped with 6 G5s, a mess of quicksilvers, and a row of iMacs. Our lab (Graphic Communications Management) is better and more up to date than the design and multimedia labs on campus :) My major is definitely Mac-friendly..the campus has some very anti-Mac pockets though
 
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dguisinger

macrumors 6502a
Jul 25, 2002
840
1,211
Originally posted by mactastic
Frankly I think that the whole switch from OS9 to OSX was a major reason a lot of schools opted away from Apple over the last couple of years. Now that things have settled down again, and a lot of the software everyone needed has migrated to OSX and it has a proven record as a really enjoyable and powerful OS to use, many of the people who were hesitant will now be more receptive to returning. Of course Apple has to make up a whole lot of lost ground, but their transition to a modern OS is basically over. The Wintel world will have to make a similar leap at some point, and it won't be pleasant for them either.

You people make me laugh so hard. Windows XP/2003/Longhorn is modern. MS had a 32-bit preemptive multitasking OS for over 5 years before Apple did. Apple needed a modern OS. UNIX had those powers, so they adopted UNIX by buying out NeXT.

Windows on the other hand has all those features. Just because its not UNIX doesn't mean its not modern. Furthermore, Windows is just as stable as UNIX if you use certified drivers. Due to the number of hardware vendors for Windows, most drivers aren't certified or run thru ample testing. Its rarely Windows that causes a bluescreen, rather poorly written vendors from 3rd party companies.

On that note....after seeing Longhorn betas I may never upgrade....the UI is getting worse, not better. However, I will not stand down from critisism of comments stating that the Wintel world has an outdated OS.
 
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ITR 81

macrumors 65816
Oct 24, 2003
1,052
0
As long as it's not open source it's out dated in my book.

MS is going for more Fisher Price look will end up putting off alot of it's older users. I hate Xp but W2K is ok..not sure about the new 2003 edition since I haven't used it.
 
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dguisinger

macrumors 6502a
Jul 25, 2002
840
1,211
Originally posted by ITR 81
As long as it's not open source it's out dated in my book.

MS is going for more Fisher Price look will end up putting off alot of it's older users. I hate Xp but W2K is ok..not sure about the new 2003 edition since I haven't used it.

Wow, so then OS X is outdated? You do understand that about half of OS X is not open source right?
 
Comment

macomposer

macrumors newbie
Jan 16, 2002
24
0
Eh, sales are worthless without service

At the university where I work, my department has taken a thorough deep dicking from Apple recently. We are not happy customers at the moment.

I manage a lab with a dozen 1 GHz eMacs, and we have been having trouble with the machines just dying. Three months out of the box, and 2 of the 12 will not boot, one of those two is kaput for the second time in six weeks. The problem is with the backup batteries going dead, and we have already had one replaced a few weeks ago.

I'd fix it myself if it were not such a huge pain in the butt to get a tiny purchase order through the university red tape to buy batteries. And then, would such a self-repair void the warranty? I have not read the fine print, but I bet it would.

So, when the two machines went down with what was obviously the same manufacturing problem, I called Apple to get warranty service on the units. Figured it would take 15 minutes or so on the phone, just like last time we had this problem. Silly me.

I was on the phone an hour and ten minutes, half of it on hold, half of it trying to explain the simple problem to some nimrod named "Steve" (certainly not Steve Jobs!), who eventually transfers me to a "Product Specialist", who asks me the same ^%$# questions "Steve" did.

Guess what? He agreed that I had diagnosed the problem correctly. At this point I had been on the phone for 70 minutes. He says he will set up on-site service for us, that I will get a call from the certified on-campus technician who served us last time, and finally the phone call is over. I am finally free to go 45 minutes late to a seminar I wanted to attend.

Five minutes later my phone rings, "Wow," I thought, "that was fast." Silly me. It was some other doofus from Apple calling to say that we cannot be serviced on-site because we do not have AppleCare, and that we have to yank these two computers from the lab, drive them across town to an authorized repair center that I know is crappy from past experience, and then wait a week or two while they get around to doing a 30-minute job before going back to pick up the machines.

Never mind that these machines have been out of the box since only mid-August, never mind that the office of the repair tech is right across the friggin' street, never mind that it is clearly a recurring defect, either in battery drain or a bad batch of batteries.

So, before we Mac fans get all excited about Apple picking up more education market share (which I would love to see, as I sit here typing on my new Powerbook), let's see support and service for educational customers be something that is not total garbage.

If Apple is serious about remaining strong in the educational market, they will bend over backwards to ease the BS for us in dealing with their "Support" wing. As with any institution, we already have a ton of manure and idiots to wade through locally whenever we need to get something done: forms, lazy office staff, purchase orders, senseless management, multi-layer approvals, and so on. I don't need BS and static from Cupertino as well.

Else, next time around, no one will want to buy Apple because of the service headaches. And none of us want that.
 
Comment

Rower_CPU

Moderator emeritus
Oct 5, 2001
11,219
0
San Diego, CA
Ouch, macomposer. Luckily my lab of eMacs (700MHz) has not suffered any of those issues, nor the CRT problems, and the few times I've had to call in I've been helped pretty well.

I'll be happy to see more competitive prices for edu institutions, especially with budgets these days. It was painful to have to go all the way down to low-end eMacs when we updated the lab from G3 B&Ws because that was the only way to get enough machines within budget.
 
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sethypoo

macrumors 68000
Oct 8, 2003
1,580
0
Sacramento, CA, USA
Originally posted by dguisinger
Wow, so then OS X is outdated? You do understand that about half of OS X is not open source right?

Isn't this thread about Apple in education?

I contributed! I did the deal "Buy a Bundle, get a Bundle Back", in which you buy a PowerBook at the educational price, a printer, an iPod at educational prices, and you get a $300 rebate check. One sweet deal, if you ask me.:D
 
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Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
38,448
4,961
Los Angeles
The trend is great news, and I hope it turns out to be true. I helped convince two K-12 schools to go with Macs, and they now have over 500 Macs between them. (Hey, where's my commission, Apple?) And yes, they are buying laptops as never before.

If Apple could develop an iPod-based application for students' educational use, think of all the extra sales they could make to schools. No, not audio Cliff Notes. Something like iAssignment, for homework transfer between teachers and students. Anybody got a good suggestion?
 
Comment

sethypoo

macrumors 68000
Oct 8, 2003
1,580
0
Sacramento, CA, USA
Re: Eh, sales are worthless without service

Originally posted by macomposer

So, before we Mac fans get all excited about Apple picking up more education market share (which I would love to see, as I sit here typing on my new Powerbook), let's see support and service for educational customers be something that is not total garbage.

If Apple is serious about remaining strong in the educational market, they will bend over backwards to ease the BS for us in dealing with their "Support" wing. As with any institution, we already have a ton of manure and idiots to wade through locally whenever we need to get something done: forms, lazy office staff, purchase orders, senseless management, multi-layer approvals, and so on. I don't need BS and static from Cupertino as well.

Else, next time around, no one will want to buy Apple because of the service headaches. And none of us want that.

Exactly. Today I turned off File Vault (or is it FileVault?) because after I purchased a song on the iTunes Music Store it locked up and said my iTunes library is unreadable. I tried to trouble shoot it myself, but could find nothing. Then Safari stopped working, so http://www.apple.com/suport was useless (obviously). I called Apple support's number, and the guy would not answer any of my questions about iTunes because I was outside of my 6 month free period of phone help.

He wanted me to pay $49.95 for 5 days of tech help over the phone! Right.....

I feel your pain macomposer! I just wanted a quick question answered......they (Apple) might benefit from having a life help line on a first come first served basis for simple questions, offered for free, no matter how outside the free period you are.
 
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Mr. MacPhisto

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2003
281
0
This is not surprising. I've talked with the people who set up computer labs at my University and they regret ever switching over to Dell. I've been told that as soon as each contract expires, the school is returning to Apple. The only suggested improvement they'd like (and they've told Apple) is USB ports, Firewire, and an audio jack on the front of the eMacs and iMacs.
 
Comment

Mr. MacPhisto

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2003
281
0
Originally posted by dguisinger
You people make me laugh so hard. Windows XP/2003/Longhorn is modern. MS had a 32-bit preemptive multitasking OS for over 5 years before Apple did. Apple needed a modern OS. UNIX had those powers, so they adopted UNIX by buying out NeXT.

Windows on the other hand has all those features. Just because its not UNIX doesn't mean its not modern. Furthermore, Windows is just as stable as UNIX if you use certified drivers. Due to the number of hardware vendors for Windows, most drivers aren't certified or run thru ample testing. Its rarely Windows that causes a bluescreen, rather poorly written vendors from 3rd party companies.

On that note....after seeing Longhorn betas I may never upgrade....the UI is getting worse, not better. However, I will not stand down from critisism of comments stating that the Wintel world has an outdated OS.

Having worked professionally with Windows for years, I have to disagree. Windows XP, 2000, NT 4.0 - pick one, none are as stable as OS X with certified drivers. I know this from experience on hundreds of systems - and I also know this one systems I've personally owned and been careful with. Those versions of Windows were more stable and able to multi-task better than OS9, but OSX has been more stable since Jaguar.

I wouldn't say the Windows OS is outdated, but I do think it to be inferior in many regards. As you've stated, the UI is getting worse and worse. The OS is very non-intuitive - it often takes several more steps to do things in Windows than in OSX. The stability is better than it once was, but I've never felt that Windows could ever rival Unix for stability and power. Heck, OS/2 was far more stable on the PC in its time, but that was before XP and 2000 -- although the NT kernel was directly based on IBM's work on OS/2. It's kind of funny, Apple is now relying on IBM, the company who helped create the MS monster.
 
Comment

Dippo

macrumors 65816
Sep 27, 2003
1,044
1
Charlotte, NC
Originally posted by dguisinger

Windows is just as stable as UNIX if you use certified drivers.

Yea right, my new HP that with Windows XP has all certified drivers but I got a blue screen last week and had to reinstall everything. Now all of a sudden it won't connect to the internet anymore, because it picked up a virus while I was downloading the security updates. I just have it turned off until I have time to reinstall Windows again!
 
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Phil Of Mac

macrumors 68020
Dec 6, 2002
2,036
0
Washington State University
Originally posted by simply258
Actually when Apple wanted Steve Jobs back, he agreed to come back on the condition that Apple buy out his NExT company

This is a severe oversimplification, even if it was part of it.

You have to remember the time. 1996 and 1997. Apple was dying and Copland was floundering, and Apple needed to go somewhere to get their next generation OS. They took the desperate step of just buying out another OS and basing the next-generation OS on it.

A number of modern OS's were considered, including BeOS, Windows NT, and NeXT OpenStep. BeOS was the operating system developed by Be, Inc., which was founded by none other than former Apple exec Jean-Louis Gasseé. It was a pretty sweet OS, but OpenStep was still better in the eyes of Ellen Hancock and Gil Amelio, so they bought NeXT (NeXT was close to an IPO at the time), acquiring the services of Steve Jobs as a consultant. Within months, current and former NeXT execs (Jon Rubenstein, VP of NeXT hardware and Avie Tevanian, VP of NeXT software) were installed as Apple execs. Amelio himself was fired and Steve Jobs took power as interim CEO and announced that Apple was searching for a new CEO. It was actually a few years before he dropped the "interim" from his title, since even though Jobs took firm control and changed the company (spearheading the iMac project and slaying product lines such as Newton and canceling, for instance, the 6-slot Power Mac G3 project), he was, and is, still CEO of Pixar. It's very unusual to be the CEO of two different companies, and Jobs' reluctance to fully declare himself CEO is something we won't see fully explained until we read his memoirs.

In any case, Rhapsody was announced (and Steve Jobs promptly transformed Rhapsody into Mac OS X), but until Mac OS X's release, it could be said that Apple had bought Steve Jobs and gotten NeXT included with the deal. But I think the operating system most of us are now using is adequate proof that that is no longer the case.
 
Comment

Thom_Edwards

macrumors regular
Apr 11, 2003
240
0
Originally posted by dguisinger
You people make me laugh so hard. Windows XP/2003/Longhorn is modern. MS had a 32-bit preemptive multitasking OS for over 5 years before Apple did. Apple needed a modern OS. UNIX had those powers, so they adopted UNIX by buying out NeXT.

Windows on the other hand has all those features. Just because its not UNIX doesn't mean its not modern. Furthermore, Windows is just as stable as UNIX if you use certified drivers. Due to the number of hardware vendors for Windows, most drivers aren't certified or run thru ample testing. Its rarely Windows that causes a bluescreen, rather poorly written vendors from 3rd party companies.

On that note....after seeing Longhorn betas I may never upgrade....the UI is getting worse, not better. However, I will not stand down from critisism of comments stating that the Wintel world has an outdated OS.

well, you make me laugh! "if you use certified drivers" and "due to the number of hardware vendors" are the two statements that just blow your whole argument out of the water.

you can't take those two parts out of the equation! how do you go about keeping those nasty "uncertified" drivers out of your system. and aren't alot of the drivers certified because the company paid microsoft a fee to use the logo???

sure, if i install windows and just let it sit there with that really purdy screen saver, i doubt if i get the blue screen. but if i use it like i would a mac, without having to think about it too much, then i'm gonna have trouble? just doesn't add up....
 
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TomSmithMacEd

macrumors 6502
Nov 5, 2003
350
0
Fargo, ND
Mac os X in schools

I'm involved with a school system that used to be all mac based. There wasn't a pc there. But once OS X came out it didn't work with novell client so they made a huge switch now almost all the computers are 2.4ghz p4 compaq with XP.
ERR! At least I have something more to look forward to when I come home.
 
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