Linux News says Mac OS X could destroy Microsoft

Posted by tadelste on Nov 20, 2005 6:35 AM EDT
Lxer Day Desk; By Tom Adelstein
Mail this story
Print this story

LXer Day Desk: 11-20-2005

Apple can alter its business plan slightly and become the well-liked dominant force in the technology market. Everything Apple needs sits right in front of them for the taking. We're just sitting here waiting to restart global innovation and take the PC to the next step.

No one would call Steve Jobs a man of the people right now. But they could. Steve has the capacity to become a global hero. He just hasn't availed himself of the opportunity.

Steve has the capacity to be loved even with his current detractors. People would forgive and forget with Steve if he made a couple of moves toward a different model of business. That's not the case with Bill Gates.

Bill Gates could open source all his products, put Office into a public project and port it to Linux, adopt the GPL and people will continue to regard him with contempt. He may give all his money away before he dies and the world won't even mention him as a footnote in history. The Gates legacy lives in infamy. We know him for what he represents.

In contrast, people have not finished with Mr. Jobs. He still has time to reconcile himself. It won't take much. He just has to cross a narrow threshold.

How Apple Could take the Market Away from Redmond

I'm a Linux advocate. I always want Linux to win. But, I refuse to lie to myself when it comes to Apple's potential with Mac OS X.

OS X for Intel would change the PC landscape like no other operating system has or could. Apple should open-source their operating system, port to Aqua and bundle it for Intel PC's. Offer it for $199 for a home edition and $299 for a professional edition and the world will say goodbye to Windows for good.

Why? OS X is a stable and secure platform and offers the proprietary multi-media applications lacking in Linux. Reports of OS X for Intel indicate it performs well, has a great interface and provides a better overall experience than Windows. Some say the experience is vastly improved.

With Microsoft Vista borrowing heavily from the OS X look and feel, why wouldn't someone want the original? Apple could do a number of things with Aqua. Keep it proprietary and sell it, if you must. Or open it up and let the open source development community give users lots of great applications.

Sell Aqua for Linux and people would buy it in droves. Make a media player for it and you will sell that too. You have nothing but revenue looking you in the eyes.

Apple could continue to bundle OS X with their hardware and they would increase their hardware sales. Continue to offer high-end hardware solutions and Apple won't be able to keep up with demand. People will consider the value of OS X and purchase Apple hardware justifying the premium with the $300 software savings and the value of higher end hardware.

Make OEM deals that force the existing PC vendors to pay top prices for OS X. They'll pay you simply because they cannot afford to pass up the opportunity they would lose otherwise.

Would I spend more money for a great Apple computer? I already have. I bought a Cube when OS X was in beta.

We wanted the Studio Monitor, keyboard and mouse, sound system and the designer looks. Oh, the Cube eventually died, but we kept everything else, connected it to an Intel Pentium 4 box and run SUSE 10 on that system. Give me OS X and I'll install that without blinking.

My next purchase? A PowerBook with OS X. I'd then keep this IBM Thinkpad for emergencies and if I could, I'd dual book it with OS X and Linux.

What about Linux?

I would still run Linux where I could. I'd probably run it on Apple hardware. That's correct, I would buy an Apple Server and run Linux on it as my web service platform. If Red Hat ported their RHEL 5 to the Apple platform, that would be my solution.

And all the starving Linux developers would have a chance to make some money porting 17,000 packages to OS X, servicing them and selling them. Because, enterprises would move to Apple within a moment's notice and without hesitation. Apple's eco-system would grow and Steve would prosper like never before.

In spite of Apple's proprietary stand, many Linux developers including Linus, have empathy for the Mac. Given the choice between an iBook and any Intel based Laptop, Apple usually wins. Given the opportunity to offer Apple, the channel would beg.

Don't Underestimate the Affinity for Apple

Mac users have as much devotion to their computers as Linux users. Not much separates the two communities. You cannot say the same for Microsoft.

People use Windows begrudgingly. They use Microsoft products because they have to use them. Give them an alternative and they switch.

Last week's rejection of Steve Job's offer to provide China with software for the MIT Children's Notebook should have opened Steve's eyes. Even with the superior interface and the special applications, China chose to stay with Linux. It makes one wonder why Steve won't ride the horse in the direction it's going.

Assume the Mantle

William Wallace, Scotland's greatest hero, once asked Robert the Bruce to lead Scotland in its war with England. Wallace said, "if you'll just lead people will follow you. I'd even follow you." But Robert the Bruce declined. While he became king, the Bruce never achieved the stature of Wallace, who threw caution to the wind.

Mr. Jobs, the whole world is watching. Indeed history is watching. Give us what we want and you will have the loyalty of a planet. Stay with your current plan and you may pick up a few points in market share and that's all.

What have you got to lose? You can't take it with you , Steve. As time goes by that should become more obvious.

» Read more about: Story Type: LXer Features

« Return to the newswire homepage

Subject Topic Starter Replies Views Last Post
Not Quite... jxself 12 4,823 Nov 23, 2005 9:07 AM
I posted something similar a while ago nailchipper 3 3,779 Nov 21, 2005 4:35 PM
Man, if only I was Steve Jobs, I'd become Mark Shuttleworth mcneelymike 4 5,114 Nov 21, 2005 7:44 AM
I disagree chalex 1 5,667 Nov 20, 2005 2:31 PM

You cannot post until you login.