Why won't Apple let you buy Snow Leopard via a download?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by elgrecomac, Aug 17, 2009.

  1. elgrecomac macrumors 65816

    elgrecomac

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    #1
    This seems like a no-brainer given Apple's internet capabilities. Forcing one to going into a store or receive it in the mail seem so....well....1990's, doesn't it?
    :eek::eek::eek::eek:
     
  2. CJS7070 macrumors 6502a

    CJS7070

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    #2
    Perhaps because it's an operating system--you're going to need physical media to install it anyway. Just a guess.
     
  3. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604

    thegoldenmackid

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    #3
    No, that would be ridiculous.

    Also, it would only increase the ability for users to pirate.
     
  4. kryptonianjorel macrumors 6502

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    #4
    How would you store it? On your HDD? or would you burn it? How would apple prevent you from burning copies for all of your friends. Also, a 6 GB download is crazy. It takes a good while on a torrent connection, let alone from a dedicated server
     
  5. elgrecomac thread starter macrumors 65816

    elgrecomac

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    #5
    Hmm...

    Well, it doesn't seem to bother Microsoft and the various Linux providers, does it?
     
  6. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604

    thegoldenmackid

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    #6
    Apple releases beta versions and what not online, but it would only create more problems.
     
  7. celticpride678

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    #7
    Like others have said, a 6GB + download you take you a good 2-3 days, add all the server traffic and that is a good 5 days.
     
  8. pdjudd macrumors 601

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    #8
    1) Most people do not have access to download speeds that can accommodate a 6 gigabyte file reliably nor do capped ISP's like the idea either. Apple is not an ISP so their internet capabilities mean little. Its just not viable for most customers.

    2) Without DRM, piracy would be rampant.

    3) The installer needs exclusive access to the drive - physical media comes into place anyway. That means that every Mac Owner is going to need at the least, a blank dual-layer burner. Not every Mac owner has one.

    4) Microsoft only distributes its software to consumers via disc.

    5) Discs are easy to manufacture and distribute to large consumers and tend to have high reliability that is required. Having tens of thousands of customers trying to access Apple servers brings it to it's knees. Look at Apple's smaller, normal downloads. They tend to be slow as it is.
     
  9. kryptonianjorel macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Snail mail would FINALLY be faster than the digital age
     
  10. pdjudd macrumors 601

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    #10
    Not to mention that developers testing OSX tend not to be consumers and are utilizing high speed lines (like a T1), not cable or DSL. Same goes for Microsoft, they only allow software downloads to businesses or educational institutions that can take smaller downloads. I think the only exception is the RC's. Those tend to get distributed in smaller numbers though.

    Linux distributers tend to be online only because their sizes are limited to 1-2 CD's. Thats far more viable. We also have to remember that CD distribution is not really viable for a free OS that has low demand.

    It's just not worth it - shipping and boxed copies are still more efficient for the vast majority. And you still are going to need a disc for install.
     
  11. LoganT macrumors 68020

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    #11
    I like how people act that Snow Leopard being on a disk mean it's invulnerable to piracy. How do you think OS X gets on torrent sites? By someone buying SL, and ripping it to their computer.
     
  12. elgrecomac thread starter macrumors 65816

    elgrecomac

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    #12
    Good points made by all but...

    It is 2009, not 1999. Its all about service and being customer-centric. So not not offer this as an option still seems quite silly. As for the download of an OS taking 2 days, well, I downloaded Win 7 RC and it took 2 hours and SN can't be more bloated that Win 7, can it? As for bringing Apple's servers to their knees, well, maybe 'pdjudd' hit the nail on the head: Apple just can't handle it. But this seems equally silly given that Apple has re-written the book on downloading...apps, moives, music, podcast...etc.

    Just one man's opinion.....
     
  13. otis123 macrumors 6502a

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    May 4, 2006
    #13
    I would DL snow leopard if it was a option, i got a DL burner and DL media, and a fiber optic connection. I would do it right now if it was a option, save me the hour trip to go pick up the disc.
     
  14. kryptonianjorel macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Just because it is old school as you seem to be implying doesn't mean that its not the best method of distribution. A pressed CD/DVD can last decades without any damage, other than user damage, whereas the average burned CD/DVD begins degradation after 2 years. So, storing it on your hard disc is nice, but when that crashes, where's your OS?

    Just because something is new and "hip" doesn't make it the best. If you like downloading OSes over the net, switch to openSuSE, its huge and a PITA to download.

    Or you could save the hour trip and have MR. FedEx man deliver it to your doorstep. Worst comes to worst you have to go to your post office and pick the package up
     
  15. outZider macrumors member

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    #15
    How? Is it that much easier than plopping the DVD in the drive and creating an image?
     
  16. amirite macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 17, 2009
    #16
    This is 2009; I could download 6gb in about 5 hours - so could many other people. Those who can't, can buy it from a store.

    Piracy is going to be rampant anyway. OS X discs don't have DRM.

    Those who can't, can buy it from a store. Many Macs have DL DVD burners.

    So?

    They have 500MB updates. I don't think it's that much of a stretch.
     
  17. cmaier macrumors G3

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    #17
    I figure it's to avoid the inevitable support costs dealing with folks who have no physical media to use to boot the system when it goes to heck. So you'd probably have to download and burn to a dvd, anyway, so you'd have bootable media in an emergency. That, and apple doesn't seem to have a ton of bandwidth; look what happens to the servers half the time when a new iphone sdk is released.
     
  18. amirite macrumors 6502a

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    #18
    Apple could easily let users know that they need to burn it to a disc before installation, or the installer could create a 6gb partition on the hard drive to install from, which you could also reinstall from if anything goes wrong in the future.
    You're forgetting that Apple is the company that removed floppy drives from its computers almost a decade ago, and is now removing CD/DVD drives (see: MacBook Air).
    Physical media is inevitably going to be replaced with this sort of stuff. And besides... it's Apple, they could figure it all out.
     
  19. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    #19
    The way I see it, Apple is simply making the whole process of an OS upgrade as simple as possible. The average user doesn't know about things like burning images and whatnot. They do know how to put a DVD in and follow installer instructions though. Thus having only only one way to distribute the update is the easiest for both Apple and the majority of their users.

    As already mentioned, most people don't have the connections to download a big image file either. For me 6 GB is nothing but lots of people are still using way under 10 Mbps connections.

    I hope Apple never adopts the "let's have installation files on a separate 'recovery' partition" method employed by most PC vendors. It's a waste of space most of the time.
     
  20. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

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    #20
    Not only will you need physical media to install the OS if you are doing a clean install, but noone wants to go the route some companies do (windows PC manufacturers I'm looking at you...) of having to "burn your own install disks".

    Also 6GB is too large for todays internet, not everyone has broadband, plus, in a lot of countries you have very strict download limits and you get charged an unreal amount for going over that limit. New Zealanders I'm sure will chime in on that one.

    Physical media is just a better way.
     
  21. vniow macrumors G4

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    #21
    Why is it so many people presume that most Apple users are idiots? That many don't know how to burn a DVD from a disc image file or how to resume a download once its stopped? Clearly everyone here knows how to, do you really think you're that much in the minority?

    As someone mentioned above, its 2009 for ****s sake. If you live in a somewhat major city chances are you have a decent internet connection and can download this overnight. Unless you live somewhere like NZ or AU you don't have internet caps small enough to worry too much about bandwidth unless you just happen to download 6GB+ OS install images daily.

    If you have a Mac that can handle Snow Leopard, you most certainly have a DL DVD burner and if you're savvy enough to know what to do with a disc image, you're also more likely to know how to restore it onto a separate partition/drive and install from there.

    Piracy is a moot issue as many have mentioned above, it will be pirated anyway. The GM release is already out on torrent sites. Having physical media only is almost a non-existent barrier since as soon as it is released to the world, its going on teh t0rrentz.

    I personally don't care either way whether its physical media only or optional download, the way things are going physical media such as DVDs, especially for software, will soon become the way of the floppy drive.

    Also, I think what most people here are wanting is the option to do so, not to have it as an exclusive way of distribution. Obviously if you have a slow/capped internet this would not be the best option for you.
     
  22. Daveoc64 macrumors 601

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    #22
    As has been said before, why does it need to be a case of download OR physical media?

    Many companies manage to offer their product in both ways.

    Apple could easily create a very easy app (presumably working on Tiger and Leopard - possibly even Windows) that would download the image and then automatically burn the disc.

    It's even possible to copy the DVD to the Hard Drive (as a partition) and then boot the installer that way. Apple could easily write a program to do that.

    You could then keep the option of buying the disc in-store as well.

    Piracy is not an issue IMO. Mac OS X has no security of any kind really, so it's just as easy for the disc image to be leaked (it's not like the so-called "Gold Master" has been kept under wraps is it?).
     
  23. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #23
    I agree with the OP.
    People could have and did download windows 7, both the beta and the RC version. They just burned an ISO image and were off and running

    Linux has been doing this since the beginning, I download ubuntu, burn the image, and I'm off like a herd of turtles.

    The argument of piracy is really a hollow argument because pirates will get their grubby little mits on the the code an upload it anyways.

    We're in 2009 not 1999 and having the ability to get the software without buying the physical media is a no brainer.

    So many vendors do that now, adobe, all shareware, etc.
     
  24. Daveoc64 macrumors 601

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    #24
    Not all recent Macs feature DVD burners (especially not Dual Layer ones).

    The low end MacBook has only just gained a SuperDrive.


    But I do think it's still a realistic proposition.
     
  25. rwilliams macrumors 68040

    rwilliams

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    #25
    I don't see the harm in giving users the option to download Snow Leopard. As others have pointed out, Microsoft made the beta, RC, and RTM versions of Windows 7 available for download, and most of us were able to grab the entire thing in a couple of hours or so. Ubuntu isn't really a good example though, because it fits on one CD, which makes it at least 3 times smaller than your standard Apple or Microsoft release.
     

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