Friday, June 10, 2005


The response of the markets suggests that Apple goofed when they linked with Intel. As an original Macintosh Evagelista I say BALONEY. The essence of Apple, at least since the reappearance of Steve Jobs, has been the operating system. OSX is impregnable compared to Windows. It also is filled with wonderful bells and whistles that Mr. Baumer only dreams of.

So what are the risks?

#1 - Execution - The Osborne Problem - my first computer was an Osborne - when Adam Osborne announced his next generation of machines, he killed his company - or so the folklore goes - because his channel died and he failed to deliver. The conditions here are quite different. First, Jobs wisely created backwards compatability - the PPC and Intel platforms will be able to work across each other. He offers an environment called Rosetta that will allow programmers to write on both chips without doing work twice. Second, that also allows a transition among those who want to buy a PPC model. The chatter in the WWDC seems to have been - this is not tough and will increase our market. So in the short and long term this seems to make sense.

#2 - The Maginot Problem - Let's face it, Windows is not open source but it is certainly a leaky boat as it relates security. It has more viruses than the NIH. If we go to their chip will we face the same problem? I think not - I am not a programmer but those I know say the inherent issue is with the software not the hardware. OSX is unix based and less likely to have the same kind of problems that pre-Longhorn Windows has. In this case I would rather be a Tiger than a cow.

#3 - The market comparison problem - With an intel chip why buy a Mac? The simple answer is even greater flexibility. Look at the comments about the latest operating system - most border on the scale of insanely great. Walt Mossberg had it right when he wrote his comments about Tiger. What Mac users get out of this is a bit more flexibility on size and battery life and speed. We still have Apple engineers who have some of the best designers in the business.

#4 - Will the company lose focus? Apple has lived well in the last couple of years based on the iPod but also on some really great software. The sold base of the new OS - several weeks into launch - is more than 2 million units - according to Jobs' speech at the Developer's conference this week. The adoption rate is quick. Thus, this seems to integrate with current focus and also seems to offer some long term benefits.

I for one often am not a fan of Job's speeches at Macworld and the WWDC - but the substance of his message - the linkage he got from a couple of major dogs including Mathematica, Microsoft and Adobe - suggests that the pros like this deal. If you want to see his WWDC speech and judge for yourself you can at Steve Jobs at WWDC

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