In a previous blog, I talked about the jump in Apple sales primarily due to the latter's ability to run both Windows and Mac OSX. My take then was that it was due to Apple's decision to put Intel processors into their systems and the increasing number of their stores worldwide.
However, I also agree with the IDC Analyst's that the phenomenal growth (equaling the #1 PC manufacturer, HP) may be as a result of Apple's marketing blitz of its iPhone and other products. Below is the comparative analysis of PC shipments for the 2nd quarter of 2007 and 2006.
US Shipments in thousands
But what really contributed to Apple's recent phenomenal rise - Is it Apple's switch to Intel chip or its marketing strategy? Let us take a look at another chart, this time the comparison between the online activities of Apple and Dell users, the #1 market share holder.
The above chart shows that there are significantly more Apple users online when compared to the sheer number of DELL PC users. The chart by the way is culled from the August issue of Macworld.
Does this mean that the most productive online members of the computing society have always been Apple users? Definitely not, let us look closely at the chart.
The chart simply illustrates that more Apple users today, with almost double the number of DELL users, are active online either as content creators or as spectators. IMHO, this may mean one of two things. One, that DELL users are either using their PC's exclusively for offline work. I know of companies who issue PCs to their staff but prohibit strictly connecting to the web. Or two, that more PC users who need to stay online are now shifting to Apple.
Not having the comparative data from two years back on the number of APPLE and DELL users who go online, it will be impossible to make a definitive conclusion. But my best guess is that more and more former PC users who need to stay on the web are shifting to Apple's Mac OS X because of:
- Apple's ability to run practically all their WINDOWS SOFTWARE
- Apple's more stable OS which, I could attest to, has done wonders to my productivity
- Apple's inherent security features (whether perceived or not)
- Apple's competitive pricing which has made its Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) considerably lower than that of a PC.
As a former PC user myself, my gut feel is that the main reason for Apple's phenomenal rise is its shift to the Intel chip that now enables it to run Windows either natively (Boot camp) or virtually (Parallels or VM Ware). You put on top of that the fact that an Apple computer is now priced the same as its equally configured PC counterpart, then you have a formula for success.
Non Tablet PC users would really need to think deep and hard if they should join the Apple bandwagon. There is just no way of telling what they are missing until they experience the worry free web surfing and general computing afforded by Mac OS X.