Analysts Don't See Windows on Mac Making Corporate Inroads

While they expect consumers to switch to Macs in greater numbers, analysts Charles Wolf and Michael Silver donit see medium and large corporate environments doing the same, even with the ability to run Windows factored in.

Mr. Wolf, of Needham and Company, sees Appleis market share among home users tripling, but, he told Macworldis Mathew Honan: "Iim relatively cautious about the corporate market, medium and large business in particular. The decision maker is usually not the user in those cases.

"My observations are that they are very Windows-centric and consequently the fact that the Mac can run Windows well at some point in the future probably wonit matter."

Mr. Silver, who works for Gartner, agreed. "If you want to buy a Windows machine," he said, "especially if you are in a company buying hundreds or thousands of PCs, there are cheaper ways to do that than buying a Mac. Thereis only one vendor, and you still have to install Boot Camp and buy a full version of Windows, which has a list price of like $300."

The fact that Boot Camp requires users to reboot their computers was also seen by both analysts as an impediment to productivity, and, thus, a stumbling block for the corporate world. Mr. Silver recommended that Mac owners rely on Parallels, which, as Mr. Honan pointed out, is promoted by Apple on its Web site and in one of its new "Get a Mac" ads.

Mr. Wolf revealed that Apple vice-president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller told him that the company would "absolutely not" include virtualization similar to Parallels in the next version of Mac OS X. "The R&D would be prohibitive and weire not going to do it. Our solution is dual boot," Mr. Schiller told the analyst.

Mr. Wolf also said that he would like to see Apple promote other third party virtualization solutions, such as the one offered by CodeWeaver. In addition, heid like to see Apple have Macs on display running Windows in its stores. "Itis my assumption that the key driver for Windows users switching are going to be the Apple stores," he explained.

And while he applauds Appleis efforts to promote Macs in areas that are the companyis strength -- education, creative fields, science, small businesses and so forth -- he noted: "I think it would be foolish for Apple to do a broad-based attack on the business market. I think it would fail; it would be wasted money."