Friday, April 18, 2008

Another big step for Mac - IBM transitioning to Mac

I hadn't used Mac's since High School but a little over a year ago, I was given a Mac as my main machine and I've grown to love it. I never had any angst towards main gripe was just the software available, particularly the games. But as my gaming has moved to more console based, it's not as big a complaint anymore (although I still play games here and there on the PC and I have a suped up rig).

Anyway, IBM has announced a pilot program whereby they're transitioning users to Mac's and gaging their reactions. Apparently the initial responses are great...people love the simplicity of network setup, wireless setup, installations, and pretty much everything about the Macs. It seems that many in the pilot program didn't want to give up their Macs as the program ended.

It's still too early to tell just how far IBM will take their Mac initiative, but I would definitely not be surprised to see them take the transition to a larger scale.

What would it do to the "PC" world if IBM (a name synonymous with "Windows PC" for years) transforms into a company largely Mac based? Will other large corporations follow suit?

It seems to me that most companies are into function, convenience and inertia. If what they have functions, and it conveniently fits their needs, then the inertia is to stay the course. However, computers break down and need upgrades. As companies find themselves purchasing new end user systems (not even putting the server issue into the mix now), their main choices are MS Vista or Mac OS X since I don't see a lot of businesses jumping on the Linux bandwagon. The reception to Vista hasn't been great (how's that for downplaying the response?) and people I've talked to who have been forced to transition to Vista at work are in one of two camps. They are either completely indifferent to it or they hate it. On the other hand, the people I've run across who have been forced to transition to OS X (generally from Windows XP), are overjoyed. They've fallen in love. One such person was in the market for a new home computer and bought a Mac rather than a Windows PC and loves every minute of it.

I know that Vista just released Service Pack 1, but I suspect it's too little too late for Microsoft. The damage has been done. People are ready to make the move to something better. Word of mouth is getting out just how great Mac OS X is and as people try it (especially if they compare it to Vista and really use the OS for something other than a word processor or a web portal), they're ready and willing to tout their recommendation to friends.

I don't think these newcomers to Mac are turning into the rabid Mac fans that Apple breeds. Some of them are, but I think at lot of them still feel some sense of discomfort at the change and still want to give Microsoft another chance. I believe that if Microsoft gets their act together and fixes the mistakes they made, they still have a chance to close the floodgates of people thronging to Mac and win back some of the fence sitters and even some of the newly converted.

However, if Microsoft continues to flounder and make stupid mistakes, I'd say we are seeing the beginning of the change and Apple is ready to make a giant surge in market share.

The jury's still out. And it could be a while before we have a verdict. But for the present, it is evident that Microsoft is falling and Apple is rising. How long the trend continues is anyone's guess.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

NO, don't listen to this blathering idiot. Macs suck, they are really really bad. They increase global warming. They ramp up your bad cholesterol. They make you beat your kids.
(this is self serving. if Apple gets any more market share then they run the risk of turning into the next 'Microsoft' and I really really don't want that to happen. Long live 6% market share!!!)