Is Apple slowly becoming a software company?

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by vniow, Oct 29, 2002.

  1. vniow macrumors G4

    Jul 18, 2002
    I accidentally my whole location.
    Obviously, Apple's greatest asset right now isn't their hardware, it's just not up to par (speed wise) than the PC counterparts.

    It's OSX.
    It's the iApps also, iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, iTunes and iChat (in a few more revisions) are among the highest praise in consumer apps and Final Cut Pro is probably the single best video editing software period.

    Exactly what is different hardware wise than PCs?

    Motherboard, processor, case, video card, power supply.
    Most of the other pieces are standards, Pioneer A04, Maxtor hard drives and so on.

    Many in the PC worls believe that OSX for x86 would be the best thing to happen for them.
    While I don't think that it would be the best road for Apple to take, there seems to be a demand for it.

    IBM makes killer hardware, Thinkpads have a reputation for being some of the most rock-solid notebooks in the industry.
    What if Apple were to abanon making their propietary hardware and leave that to IBM (with Apple designing it of course, IBM's are solid but they're ugly)

    Also, what is the advantage of propietary hardware?
    There are many PC makers out there that make great hardware, IBM for one, Alienware is another, many of the specialized gaming machines are put together from the best quality parts, so QC can be done without making it propietary.
  2. evildead macrumors 65816


    Jun 18, 2001
    WestCost, USA
    If Apple is one... so is Sun

    Sun has tons of Software that they basicly give away... all of it runs only on their stuff...

    Apple is just giving us insentive to buy a Mac. They make a 30% margin on their harware
  3. Chaszmyr macrumors 601


    Aug 9, 2002
    Apple basically IS a software company. Apple doesnt actually manufacture any hardware, they are just a software company and a contracting company.
  4. arn macrumors god


    Staff Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    Re: Is Apple slowly becoming a software company?

    The advantage is that Apple makes more money on hardware than anything else... so killing hardware makes little sense.

    Here's a post from 2001 that I wrote about it:

    maybe Apple's making more on software now... but I'm too lazy to look up the numbers.

  5. thedude macrumors member

    Sep 22, 2001
    After all their acquisitions, (emagic, shake, rayz) this becomes a greater possibility, but still not likely. Kinda seems like their following in the footsteps of another company...M$...

    Apple's move to keep all the killer apps on mac only is interesting.
    (emagic and nothing real on mac only starting next year.) They're giving killer incentives for people to switch, ($2000 off shake with maya 4.5 purchase) I hope that the PC world takes a look at macs as viable workstations.
  6. vniow thread starter macrumors G4

    Jul 18, 2002
    I accidentally my whole location.
    Okay, I found the Q3 reports, and they arranged it a bit differently.

    This is a screenie cuz the PDF is sideways for some reason.[​IMG]

    Acording to these figures, software accounts for about 8% of their revenue.
    What I don't know is if the software revenue is just seperately sold software (Jaguar, DVD Studio Pro, Quicktime Pro, Final Cut Pro, etc etc) or if it includes the revenue earned from software pre-installed in the machines.

    I'm guessing seperate software, but I may be wrong.
    The numbers look too small for it to include all the Jag copies sold with each iMac or whatever.

    Remember that MS doesn't make most of it's Windows money by the copies sold in stores, it's all the ones that come pre-installed with PCs which make the big bucks.

    Attached Files:

  7. tjwett macrumors 68000


    May 6, 2002
    Brooklyn, NYC
    I hope they don't stop making hardware but it might be better for them. OS X is already the best OS out there. All they would need to do is make it X86 compatible(which it supposedly already is) and sell it in the box. I know about a million Windows users that would drop Windows in heartbeat if they could run OSX on their homemade PCs. The only issue would be piracy and they would have to enforce a strict registration thing like MS does. Still, they would probably make a lot more money than struggling to put out slow hardware and then charging out the arse for it. All those people that can't afford to "switch" now can and will be totally sucked into the world of OS X, for life. Those people that might not ever want to spend $3000 on a Mac would surely end up buying thousands worth of software in a lifetime instead. I could see it happening but I hope not. I hate beige.
  8. 748s macrumors 6502a


    Dec 14, 2001
    Tiger Bay
    the software is leverage to move more hardware. eg. fcp is becoming a standard in editing. it only runs on a mac. don't ever expect to see osx on x86. if windows users want osx bad enough they'll have to buy the hardware. leverage!
  9. tjwett macrumors 68000


    May 6, 2002
    Brooklyn, NYC
    You're absolutely right. Apple's motive thus far has been to push people to the hardware by way of kick-@ss software and standards. But is it working? I don't know a single "switcher" and the PC folks I do see take interst in Apple blow of the Mac platform due to nothing but the price/mhz. Every time they get a single "switcher" Apple makes anywhere from $1000 to $4000. Instead 25,000 people probably would have spent $129 on Jaguar for x86. One could look at it as losing a lot rather than gaining a little.
  10. pantagruel macrumors regular

    Oct 29, 2002
    here and there
    Right on Brotha! Apple pushes software that only work on macs, there is not windows software and there (hopfully) never will be, I mean they recently introduced a windows iPod, but they bundled it with Musicmatch and not with a windows version of iTunes. Apple is hardware and Software and they have always been that way. It doesnt matter if Apple themselves dont produce the drive they label as an Apple Superdrive, it's proprietary and that's where they make the money.
  11. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    Apple has always marketed themselves as a systems company, not concentrating on hardware or software, but designing them to work together. By making both the software and the hardware, Apple prevents a lot of problems with compatability, and they're also able to get more capability out of their hardware and software.
    If Apple stopped making hardware, they would lose almost every advantage they now have, and eventually would die as a company.

  12. vniow thread starter macrumors G4

    Jul 18, 2002
    I accidentally my whole location.

    While I agree with you, I don't know if a lot of consumers would.
    Right now Apple's hardware isn't up to par and many people are turning away from Macs cuz the price/performance ratio isn't as small as it used to be.
    Many people spend up to $1500 on a computer and you can't even buy a Powermac for that much which would probably be enough for people's needs, but not all.

    Right now Apple's advantage isn't hardware at all, it's software, like I said before.
    I think that they're only doing this cuz they can't deliver some hardware to complement.

    Here's a scenario for you:

    In the inbetween time of speedy hardware, Apple's marketing software instead of hardware cuz the latter can't hold up to the competition in terms of raw performance.
    What if that turns out to be extremely sucessful and a lot of people start buying Macs for the sole reason of using OSX?
    That's true to a point now, but things could be better.
    What would be the point in making propietary hardware then when people buy Macs for the sole reason of OSX?

    BTW, OSX for Intel isn't the only scenario I proposed, I also wondered what would happen if IBM made the hardware, Apple just designed it along with the software.
  13. vniow thread starter macrumors G4

    Jul 18, 2002
    I accidentally my whole location.
    A lot of the top PC makers avoid compapibility problems by selecting the right parts also, without making them propietary.

    Look at Alienware for example, reputed to make some of the best gaming systems in the PC world, they've done a great job at getting the hardware and software well-integrated while getting top-notch performance out of both.
  14. BenderBot1138 macrumors 6502

    Oct 28, 2002

    I have been thinking recently that Microsoft would dearly love to do nothing but make software for third party OSs like Jaguar and put the Windows nightmare in a Trashcan.

  15. cb911 macrumors 601


    Mar 12, 2002
    BrisVegas, Australia
    Re: Hardware/Software

    hey, that's an interesting idea. with Linux, Lindows and the like gaining popularity Windows might not be profitable in the future (i'm thinking about 3-4 years in the future). what does everyone think the possibilities of this are? if Microsoft developed alot more for OS X i'm sure they could come out with some cool stuff.

    and just to keep the thread on topic, i'll say that i don't think that Apple is becoming a software company, mainly because i don't think they will ever make stuff for other platforms. they do use all their iApps and things like FCP as leverage, but these are all dependant on the hardware, so i don't think there is any risk of them becoming a software only company.

    i think that they will continue to develop more and more software though, but this is good news for us.
  16. vniow thread starter macrumors G4

    Jul 18, 2002
    I accidentally my whole location.
    Re: Re: Hardware/Software

    I think that deserves to be a new thread.[​IMG]
  17. jefhatfield Retired


    Jul 9, 2000
    Re: If Apple is one... so is Sun

    that 30 percent is a bad longterm strategy and investors know it...look at where apple's stock is now!

    so what if apple is profitable and SHRINKING?

    heck, i could start a hot dog stand and buy one hot dog, cook it, and sell that one hot dog and call myself profitable

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