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Cringely: Buying Adobe -- The Payoff for Apple

Cringely: Buying Adobe -- The Payoff for Apple

by , 12:45 PM EDT, May 5th, 2008

Apple would have a lot to gain by buying Adobe, according to Robert X. Cringely on Friday. However, first Apple must get its monopoly-factor ducks in a row by unloading its pro apps: Aperture, Final Cut Pro, Logic and Shake.

The argument goes like this: Apple's professional apps has done well, made money and established Apple and Macs in Hollywood production, but there are bigger fish to fry. "...Steve Jobs tends not to think quarter-to-quarter so much as decade-to-decade," Mr. Cringely wrote. "This is a guy with a LONG horizon, which is why he appears, frankly, to be the only one of his peers with either a plan or a clue. As Jobs did with the iPod and iTunes and now with the iPhone, he is setting the standard and most Apple competitors are mainly waiting and reacting, which is hardly a way to lead anything."

Mr. Cringely claimed that clues have been accumulating for months. Apple's resistance to Blu-ray is an effort to slow the technology and pave the way for Internet downloads. Meanwhile, according to the author, Apple was quietly, very quietly, shopping its pro apps an NAB in order to avoid anti-trust issues prior to a potential acquisition. What Apple would be gaining is much more important.

"Apple's goal in acquiring Adobe would be to control first Flash and second Adobe's emerging Air application platform. Adobe announced this week a broad industry initiative to extend Flash to mobile devices, but Apple wasn't a participant. Why bother if you intend to shortly own Flash outright?" Mr. Cringely asked.

More to the point would be giving up some professional apps, acquiring Adobe's, and geting control of key Internet technologies. "They'd be giving up a sports car in Final Cut Pro, but end up effectively owning the road instead," Mr. Cringely concluded.

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