Looking Out from the Inside

Thursday, November 17

Analyst: Apple isn't so great, it just sucks less.

iPodNN reports on a rather disturbing report from technology analyst Roger Kay. It seems Mr. Kay is attributing apple's recent rise in market share not to any purported halo effect coming off the iPod but rather just the natural cycle of the company. The report has some very nice graphs but never gets around to saying where his data is coming from. He's dealing entirely with percentages of market share but that's notoriously hard to measure.
Case in point. I'm writing this post on a G3 iMac that was introduced in 2001. We're verging on 2006 and it still as snappy as it was when I first got it. It's a little sluggish when it comes to multimedia but for being a three and a half year old pc it's perfectly respectable. I got this PC a year after I received a Dell as a graduation present. Why did I abandon my Dell after only 12 months? Because it crashed. Crashed hardcore. Crashed enough for me to go out and buy a new computer because damn, that thing just totally crashed. Now say I'd gotten another Dell in it's place and gone through the whole routine in another year or two. From a market share perspective in the last 5 years Apple has only sold one computer to one user while Dell is rocking the market with 2 or 3 users in the same time. See what I mean? Percentages are tricksy things and without hard numbers I'm not exactly on board with this dude's analysis.
Of course having said that there is the usual disclaimer that the Halo Effect, if it exists, has only really been in effect since the iPod became crazy popular in 2003/04 so no matter what it's too soon to say that A caused B. In the meantime why don't we all just cool our heels and realize that in a time leading up to a processor shift, a period normally overshadowed by the specter of the Osborne Effect, Apple is actually selling 48% more macs this past quarter than a year ago. This should have been Apple's dark hour and instead they're growing. Halo Effect or no, that just gives me the warm fuzzies all over.

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