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Would Apple ever switch to Microsoft Windows?
Wednesday, June 22, 2005 - 04:09 PM EST
"Would Apple ever switch to Windows? Jobs concluded his [recent WWDC] keynote address by noting that the operating system is the soul of the Mac. This was hardly a revelation to those who have followed Apple’s history – particularly during the brief period when a less compelling Mac OS was enticing enough to power a clone market that quickly eroded Apple’s hardware sales. While, from Microsoft’s perspective, the Mac OS has always been Windows’ friendly rival (or historical R&D lab), Microsoft too is now pumping billions of dollars into R&D in an attempt to withstand competition from Linux, just as Intel has stepped up its investment to compete against a resurgent AMD," Ross Rubin writes for Engadget.
"Today, such a switch seems unlikely because Microsoft still has a long way to go to make Windows a clearly superior alternative to Mac OS. Indeed, the spyware and viruses that plague Windows drive many to seriously consider the Mac platform. However, Longhorn is focused on greatly alleviating the security flaws in Windows. Ultimately, Apple doesn’t want to win the virus war simply because the Mac’s low market share makes it a less “desirable” target. A lot can happen in 20 years, particularly if the PC market saturates to the point that operating system R&D becomes harder to justify and Apple continues to see more of its growth coming from cross-platform devices such as iPods," Rubin writes.
"A Macintosh without Mac OS would probably be about as successful in the PC marketplace as Sony has been. Consider, however, how far Microsoft has come since the missteps of Windows 3.1 and infancy of Windows 95," Rubin writes. "Much more so than in chips and especially around Infinite Loop, software may be more art than science, but, as Bill Gates has shown with Corbis, a big enough bankroll can buy a lot of art."