Yesterday's Apple Keynote (if we can call it that way) was not only about presenting new products. It 's also been the occasion for Tim Cook and the top management of Apple (Steve Jobs being the puppet master) to show how big the rifles were . Rifles for what? Rifles against MSFT, of course. Because I can tell you this people : we're back in the war between Apple and Microsoft.
That war had been stopped in 98 by Steve Jobs when he asked MSFT to re-invest in the Mac Business, both by making better apps and by putting money. And Bill Gates was wise enough to accept the opportunity. It wasn't a war anymore, even if the Mac herd still eyed Microsoft developers as copy machines (remember these WWDC mottos?). And then recently, both during a chat, and then afterwards through a memo that was 'leaked' to the press, the other Steve (Ballmer) decided that it was time to spread FUD on Apple once again.
Why did that guy decide against Apple this time? He feels he's in danger in his core activities.
Microsoft is present on four platforms :
- music players
- console games
On platform 3, the Zune player is almost counted amongst the 'others' group when people report on market figures. I haven't seen any here in Germany, or in France where I live. iPod has a 70%+ market share in the US, and a good market share in other regions, apparently;-)
Apple 1 - Microsoft 0
On platform 2, Apple has proven since the announcement of the iPhone back at MacWorld 2007 that it could once again turn a market upside down and has since become the #2 phone seller in the US (I have to check those figures anyway, is it only on the smartphone segment as I suppose?). On the other side, Microsof annournced recently that the new version of Windows Mobile was postponed until late 2009, maybe even 2010.
Apple 2 - Microsoft 0
On the console platform, Microsoft is known to lose a lump of money, and Apple is not yet really present, despite the emphasis they've put on games withe the iPhone and iPod Touch. They don't confront, yet.
Apple 2 - Microsoft 0
On the desktop and laptop (can you make a real distinction anymore?), Microsoft still has their superior market share. But they don't have the mind share anymore, as people are turning away from Vista. When you have a failure, the best communication you can have in Microsoft mind set is to talk about something else. Linux doesn't seem to be a problem (although Asus using it on EeePC might show a new way) on the desktop platform anymore.
Apple has a good record and switching is real. If Windows is still strong on the desktop business, Apple is gaining market shares in areas that it was weak before : education, law, management, physics. Areas that are not only graphic design or video. Figures speak for themselves.
Apple 3 - Microsoft 0
That's too bad. I preferred the Microsoft of the early 90s. The one we're seeing today is like the bull in the arena. 32 times out of 33, the toreador wins. Right now, we're up for a new show as spectators of the Apple- Microsoft war.