ZDNet’s Faber Craves The Mac Again

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ZDNetis Dan Farber is interested in the Mac again. In an article he penned earlier this week, Mr. Farber examines Appleis new product lineup and the philosophies surrounding the digital lifestyle. Despite IDCis report on Linux overtaking the Macintosh and Merrill Lynchis prediction of continued market share loss, he believes that Apple shouldnit be written off so easily. From the article:

Based on what Apple and maestro Jobs showed yesterday, I wouldnit count Apple out. Jobs introduced a number of new products, demonstrating that innovation and differentiation are still alive at Apple.

In fact, Apple keeps setting the bar higher for the industry in personal computing. The question is whether best of breed products are sufficient to alter market dynamics and the buying habits of corporations for whom cost reduction and platform standardization are key drivers of technology acquisition. The Dell/Microsoft combo, for example, seems to be doing quite well without matching Appleis level of innovation.

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Since Jobs returned to Apple in 1997, the company has steadily executed on a strategy to deliver a robust operating system with Mac OS X and the most innovative desktop and notebook computers.

Mr. Farber continues his article by examining each of the announcements of Steve Jobsi keynote on Tuesday. While he draws comparisons to Microsoft in almost every case, he concludes that Apple has a more elegant and effective approach to the digital lifestyle. He ends with some thoughts for the future:

During his keynote, Jobs said that Apple would "do for digital lifestyle applications what Microsoft Office did for productivity." He was like a proud father showing off his offspring. He gets exciting about cross dissolves, digital movie making, fast browsers, and the quality of the buttons and fonts. For him, the goal seems to be attaining a kind of beauty and product quality that satisfies his sense of aesthetic virtue.

If Jobs gets as excited about e-mail, word processing and other productivity applications as he does about digital lifestyle and presentation software, I would give Apple a good chance to succeed over the next three years in becoming more relevant to the business world. It wonit be an overnight phenomenon, but an alliance of some kind between Apple and the Linux community could prove interesting. In any case, itis worth keeping tabs on Apple, just to see what the maestro has up his sleeve.

More of Mr. Farberis thoughts on Apple can be found in the original ZDNet article.

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