Sunday, June 05, 2005

OS x86

News is breaking that Apple is going to be making a shift to an Intel based architecture for their computers. The news is good news. There are a lot of skeptics out there who think that a move to Intel is a bad idea, but I can't figure out why. In my mind, if in fact Apple is talking of migrating to an x86 processor architecture, it's a good thing for everyone.

It will be good for Apple because it will make their computers cheaper potentially allow people to use OS X on any x86 computer. Yet people are skeptical about this move because they believe that it will harm Apple. But such beliefs are really unfounded.

In my mind, right now there are only 2 legitemate reasons to buy an Apple. The first is the operating system. OS X is very cool, and it gets great reviews. I think it'd be fantastic if it was available to run on any computer. I'd ditch windows in a heartbeat if I could run OSX on the box I've got. The second reason to buy an Apple is the design of their computers. Let's face it, they drive the trends. Their computer design is the best in the industry, by a wide margin. Why else do people buy Apples? People are ceratinly not buying them because they are cheap or fast.

So this move makes sense to Apple. They have the potential to grow as a company by bringing a real alternative to Windows to the mainstream. It enhances the strengths of their business, and causes no harm. If OS X becomes runnable on the other 95% of computers in the world, they can sell a ton of software. And let me tell you, I have a good feeling that there are MUCH better profit margins on software than there are on hardware. Additionally, such a move wouldn't harm their hardware business because people are only buying apples because of the design. So, that part of competition would not change.

Let the skeptics rest. Intels in Apples is a good idea. The only thing that might be a problem is to the developer. How much extra work will be required to make current software run on an x86 OS X platform? Lots of software vendors already support both platforms. What's involved?