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No. of Recommendations: 2
I agree that the iPod contributes heartily to Apple's progress and outlook. However, the Mac OSX is the key to the enterprise kingdom. Apple has the majority of the desktop Unix sytems operating worldwide. This stable OS, loaded with features that Vista could only copy, is about to be upgraded to the Leopard release. Apple's 3% market share, focussed primarily on consumer users, is poised for growth. It's impressive 75% share of the MP3 player market is hostage to the growth rate of the entire market. Imagine the impact of a major user such as GM, or IBM, deciding to standardize on Macs for their networked systems. The cost of setting up an Apple wireless network, or of adding new clients to an existing network, is minimal. Maintenance costs for PC network are much higher than for Mac networks. Now that Macs run on Intel chips and can natively run programs written for the Windows OS (using Parallels without need for installing Windows) or can boot up on Windows OS using Boot Camp, the argument for Windows standardization has much less effect on corporate decisions for hardware. IT managers may still oppose the invasion of Macs, but CEO's and CFO's having seen potential savings and potential boosts to their bottom lines will become more agressive and more inclined to override IT preferences for hardware. Apple's vision is focussed on entertainment AND professionals (desktop publishing and video production, for example)AND the enterprise (wireless networking and powerful servers). Think of their vision as iLife and iWorld. If either objective fulfills its potential, Apple's shareholders will benefit. Remember that business is war. Microsoft and Dell, HP, Gateway, Sony, Losovo and others will not remain static targets. But Apple's control of hardware and software integration may in the long run overturn the notion that Steve Jobs erred when he decided not to license the Mac OS to others.
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