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Monopoly: Apple vs Microsoft


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#1
InsanelyPete

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No this isn't who is better war but a discussion of Apple's desire to maintain its hardware monopoly.

I'm not a fan of M$ (Microsoft) but I sometimes wonder what would happen if they acted like Apple. I'm curious why the government has come down many times on M$ for anti-trust violations while Apple has been ignored. Yes, I understand that M$ has such a huge market share that they get the government's attention.

Just imagine if M$ decided to do it the Apple way, that is their OS would only run on computers made by them and they would then jack up the price of their hardware. If the government wouldn't stand for that then why do they allow Apple to do it? How is the argument that Apple couldn't survive by only selling software. Seems strange considering M$ has managed to eak out a living on software alone.

I've always hated how as software companies gain market share they start using it as leverage against their competition and against their customers. I don't know if anyone has noticed but there has been a recent trend developing where Apple leveraging their hardware monopoly.

For example:
1. Apple has always been known for being on the cutting edge offering hardware that was best for multimedia. All their computers have had firewire as opposed to PCs that only had usb which isn't any good for importing video. So, people were naturally stunned to discover that Apple had decided to remove the firewire from its new release of the macbook. It appears Apple decided that their consumer and professional line of notebooks had grown to similar and they needed to give people a reason to "upgrade" to their Mac Book Pro line. Thats a pretty low move removing a pre-existing feature.

2. There has been a lot of talk in regards why hasn't Apple added Blue Ray drives to their computers. In October Steve Jobs balked at the question saying Sony wanted too much money and that he didn't feel it was the future of video distribution. The truth of the matter Apple has gone to great lengths to block Blue Ray but why? Turns out they wan't to distribute movies like they have done with music, over the Internet. This model allows them increased profits and leverage over the movie industry. Yet another example of when given a choice Apple would block hardware innovations that don't suit their interests. In addition they have not added Blue Ray to any of their DVD authoring software (consumer and professional). Its been previously thought BlueRay support had not been released because they needed more time or that they were waiting to see whether HD-DVD or BlueRay would win out, but now it seems more likely that they have no plans to support it. This has lead many in the video editing field to question how much Apple values multimedia. If they decide that they can make a lot more money on products centered around selling music where does that leave they're original customer base. I'm not predicting a dooms day scenario but I can't help think about the implications of Apples new direction.

I like many of Apple's products both hardware and software and have always valued their innovative spirit but I do not like when they start becoming more about how they can lock you in and then squeeze you for all your worth. I'm for good products at a reasonable price and the ability to choose (especially on the hardware side). I really wish Apple would release its hold on the hardware side. If they still want to make speciality devices such as iMac, Mini Mac, iPhone, iPod, etc. so be it just allow consumers to be able build their own machines.

I'm curious of what others think.

#2
SDRacer48

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Finally, someone who can set aside their own personal biases, and view things as they are. Thank you.

#3
morgang

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I'd love to see them open OS X up as well though it would complicate their support model and likely reduce their hardware margins (we just got a Macbook Pro -- the wallet still hurts!). I believe the difference (at least from the government's point of view) is the scale of OS market-share has allowed Microsoft to leverage bundling of products in a way competitors can't. Apple (and any other company) would do the same thing if they could. Neither is evil for it.

My ISP (Comcast) just introduced download caps which I'm sure won't apply to their video on demand or IP telephony services (but will apply to competitors' services). They all do whatever they believe will maximize long term profits, or their shareholders will replace them with people who will.

#4
InsanelyPete

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I believe the difference (at least from the government's point of view) is the scale of OS market-share has allowed Microsoft to leverage bundling of products in a way competitors can't. Apple (and any other company) would do the same thing if they could. Neither is evil for it.

Its true in many respects Apple is no more worse than M$ so I would modify that to say "neither is good". They both engage in behavior that shouldn't be tolerated and the only reason the consumer puts up with it is because they have little or no choice.

I find it repugnant that they want the government/courts to enforce their one sided EULA/copyright rules when they openly engage in monopolistic behavior. Why should size matter, the law is the law. You want to hold users to the letter of the law how about these companies do the same in regards to their anti competitive practices. The government should get more involved to maintain a fair and balanced playing field where all companies can compete based on the merits of their products not on how they can best trap their customers or lock out competition. It's naive to leave it up to software companies and hope they'll do what's right after all we've seen what happens when the free market is left to its own devices (sub-prime melt down).

#5
hecker

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I basically agree with what you are all saying and would like to see OS X released to non-apple X86 hardware. The only problem with that is that supporting any hardware (and we all know that it is not all good) would make it very difficult for Apple to maintain their current level of product quality.
I certainly do think that Apple should offer more flexible and varied hardware options, or at least have some sort of hardware certification program so that customers could configure their machines however they see fit.

I like many of Apple's products both hardware and software and have always valued their innovative spirit but I do not like when they start becoming more about how they can lock you in and then squeeze you for all your worth. I'm for good products at a reasonable price and the ability to choose (especially on the hardware side).

Unfortunately, successful businesses will never offer you something for less if they can force you to buy it for more. Good products for a reasonable price? That died in the '50s. :)

#6
Shredplayer

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i think the difference is Apple is more of a hardware company w/c bundles OS X with it, unlike M$ is more of a Software Company w/c main product is it's Windows OS.

Apple = Mac (hardware)
M$ = Windows (software)

but i would love OS X to be open, but then the fun ends. :D

#7
Dammacx

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As a long time Mac OS user and lover (former hardcore fan boy)I agree that It would be nice to see Apple more open to where it's OS can be installed. I understand all the reasons both technical and financial why they don't and I think up until now it has been the smart thing to do. But in todays market where Apple is becoming more than just a Computer company it would do them good to be a little less restrictive when it comes to OS X. I think for them the best way is the removal of those few words in their EULA that says "Mac OS can only be installed on Apple Hardware". (Or however it is worded) and change it to something like "Only supported on Apple hardware." That way it opens up for people to not feel guilty about going the Hacintosh route. (or in my case the EFIX route) It is such a simple solution because it basically makes it legitimate without them having to take responsibility for it. It basically says "hey Mac OS works best on our hardware but if you want to do it yourself go ahead, just don't call us if you have problems." Maybe even in the begining they state that it is against the EULA to build and sell Apple OS systems (Clones) but if you want to do it for yourself go right ahead. From what I have read on these forums, most people that go the hacintosh route already own or plan on owning a "real" Mac and if they don't probably never would anyway. Well thats what I think. :-)

#8
SDRacer48

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Apple = Mac (hardware)
M$ = Windows (software)


Considering that the majority of the Apple's profits are driven by the software, I would have to disagree.

Not only are there the major software packages they sell (iLife, Final Cut Studio, iWork, iTunes store, etc.) that drive profits, but the operating system is the only thing driving their hardware sales. A MacBook is nothing more than a regular PC with a fancy sleek cover now. It uses the same components, and the same quality of components.

I think that when Apple dropped the word "Computer" from their name, they officially because a software company. More directly, a software operating system company competing directly with the likes of Microsoft and Sun. I feel people have failed to realize this fact...

#9
packrobottom

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Considering that the majority of the Apple's profits are driven by the software, I would have to disagree.



you're wrong go research it the majority of apples revenue is hardware driven.

#10
hecker

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you're wrong go research it the majority of apples revenue is hardware driven.

I think that what SDRacer meant so say is that Apple's hardware sells is driven by OS X.

#11
Chris Mills

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you're wrong go research it the majority of apples revenue is hardware driven.



Revenue and profits are two different things.

Software is low revenue

Hardware is high revenue

However the costs to Apple for hardware are far higher than the costs for software.

Therefore the profit as a percentage of revenue for hardware is much lower than software.

#12
SDRacer48

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I think that what SDRacer meant so say is that Apple's hardware sells is driven by OS X.


Thank you.

Revenue and profits are two different things.

Software is low revenue

Hardware is high revenue

However the costs to Apple for hardware are far higher than the costs for software.

Therefore the profit as a percentage of revenue for hardware is much lower than software.


And Thank You. I am a business major so what I typed is exactly what I meant in the first place.

#13
InsanelyPete

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I don't get how its illegal to run their software on non-Apple hardware. For that matter what is Apple hardware? Every thing inside Power macs are components found in a traditional PCs. Their EULA is basically them not wanting to compete with anyone on the hardware side. What does it matter how much revenue they derive from hardware sales?

That's why the government considered splitting M$ into parts one for the OS the other for the software apps. It makes sense because of the impact that the OS has on everything else you can do on the computer. Its inevitable that an OS company will use its position to give itself an unfair advantage. If I remember correctly M$ was trying to dictate to computer builders what software they could bundle with their computers. Here Apple is the only one allowed to make their computers so they're doing the same thing but only worse.

#14
Ether42

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I don't really get what the question is here.
Apple makes a product with their product they give you a list of terms.
IF YOU VIOLATE THOSE TERMS YOU ARE IN BREECH OF CONTRACT.
That is it plain and simple.
They make 2 products these are made to be used together.
Why are they made to be used together?
Because Apple said so.
Just because you don't agree with something doesn't make it OK to break a contract.
I don't agree w/ pot laws but that doesn't I should be allowed to smoke a joint at my bus stop and get away with it.
My old sony w800 phone had a custom os on it
you couldn't replace or install it other places
"MONOPOLY Kill sony the are over priced {censored} they suck" you would scream
or would you
No that is crazy talk
We have hundreds of embedded devices that we use everyday
I have a programable thermostat
It has its own little os
Would you think it was cool if I dumped the eeprom flashed it to an Arduino
to make it do the same thing.
I mean yes it would be cool but...
Some one sold me the device and all the T and C that come with it.
If you don't want to agree with the EULA don't {censored} buy the thing.
Run {censored} Linux
{censored} run BEOS for all I care





I have taken apart many iMacs and Macbooks and let me tell you there is very little similarity between those and the pcs I take apart.
Sure they use the same proc and ram
But that ain't no freakin ASUS inside
This is not the same stuff inside PCs
Look at one of these machines and then go buy the parts and build the same thing
You can't
Apple just doesn't head down to frys and get some parts
The have teams of people on H/W and S/W who work really had at what they do.
Those people made both of these together
So that they work together
If you can't except that then don't buy it
Apple is not the only place that makes computers
They have no Monoply
As was said before VW only makes VW that doesn't mean they have a monopoly





FULL DISCLOSURE
I am an ACMT (apple certified Mac tech).
I am also a MCSE.
I prefer mac over windows.
I run a hackintosh.
I also buy mac machines.
I have 3 PCs and 5 Macs

#15
Baudouin

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"I think that when Apple dropped the word "Computer" from their name, they officially because a software company. More directly, a software operating system company competing directly with the likes of Microsoft and Sun. I feel people have failed to realize this fact... "

SDRacer48, I do think that it is because the main revenue comes for years now from harware which are not computers, like ipods and to present Apple to the non_Apple_ computers_users as a company which is not doing just computers.

#16
A Nonny Moose

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Wow, the same most frequent wrong comment posted twice within the same month?



7. Apple is a monopoly

Boy it does look that way, doesn't it? I mean, the only way to use the Mac OS is to buy a computer from Apple. Well, wait, Apple isn't the only computer company you can buy from. You can buy from Dell, HP, etc. The only issue with that is you have to use Windows. Or Linux. But you can use Linux on a Mac too. Fact is there are lots of choices for your computing usage, and Apple represents just one of many many choices. It also represents one OS out of many many choices. And all of those choices are pretty viable choices.

Apple isn't preventing you from exercising your right to choice when it comes to what brand of computer you're using. You have a right to choose to use whatever brand of computer you want. You also have the right to choose whatever OS you want to use, even if those choices are limited by certain factors. Apple isn't forcing you to use their OS or buy their computers.

#17
Guest: cavallo_*

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Wow, the same most frequent wrong comment posted twice within the same month?
7. Apple is a monopoly

Boy it does look that way, doesn't it? I mean, the only way to use the Mac OS is to buy a computer from Apple. Well, wait, Apple isn't the only computer company you can buy from. You can buy from Dell, HP, etc. The only issue with that is you have to use Windows. Or Linux. But you can use Linux on a Mac too. Fact is there are lots of choices for your computing usage, and Apple represents just one of many many choices. It also represents one OS out of many many choices. And all of those choices are pretty viable choices.

Apple isn't preventing you from exercising your right to choice when it comes to what brand of computer you're using. You have a right to choose to use whatever brand of computer you want. You also have the right to choose whatever OS you want to use, even if those choices are limited by certain factors. Apple isn't forcing you to use their OS or buy their computers.


That's right.
But there is more.
Microsoft obblige also mobo manufacturers to don let some functions enabled or accesible that with Osx86 will better with.
you need more?

#18
Valdeam

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I don't really get what the question is here.
Apple makes a product with their product they give you a list of terms.
IF YOU VIOLATE THOSE TERMS YOU ARE IN BREECH OF CONTRACT.
That is it plain and simple.
They make 2 products these are made to be used together.
Why are they made to be used together?
Because Apple said so.
Just because you don't agree with something doesn't make it OK to break a contract.
I don't agree w/ pot laws but that doesn't I should be allowed to smoke a joint at my bus stop and get away with it.
My old sony w800 phone had a custom os on it
you couldn't replace or install it other places
"MONOPOLY Kill sony the are over priced {censored} they suck" you would scream
or would you
No that is crazy talk
We have hundreds of embedded devices that we use everyday
I have a programable thermostat
It has its own little os
Would you think it was cool if I dumped the eeprom flashed it to an Arduino
to make it do the same thing.
I mean yes it would be cool but...
Some one sold me the device and all the T and C that come with it.
If you don't want to agree with the EULA don't {censored} buy the thing.
Run {censored} Linux
{censored} run BEOS for all I care





I have taken apart many iMacs and Macbooks and let me tell you there is very little similarity between those and the pcs I take apart.
Sure they use the same proc and ram
But that ain't no freakin ASUS inside
This is not the same stuff inside PCs
Look at one of these machines and then go buy the parts and build the same thing
You can't
Apple just doesn't head down to frys and get some parts
The have teams of people on H/W and S/W who work really had at what they do.
Those people made both of these together
So that they work together
If you can't except that then don't buy it
Apple is not the only place that makes computers
They have no Monoply
As was said before VW only makes VW that doesn't mean they have a monopoly





FULL DISCLOSURE
I am an ACMT (apple certified Mac tech).
I am also a MCSE.
I prefer mac over windows.
I run a hackintosh.
I also buy mac machines.
I have 3 PCs and 5 Macs



A man after my own heart!

Valdeam Posted Image

#19
atka

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I have taken apart many iMacs and Macbooks and let me tell you there is very little similarity between those and the pcs I take apart.
Sure they use the same proc and ram
But that ain't no freakin ASUS inside
This is not the same stuff inside PCs
Look at one of these machines and then go buy the parts and build the same thing
You can't


This statement is just wrong first the iMac and obviously the Macbook are laptops sure the iMac doesn't look like a laptop but it has the guts of one. Can you assemble a Sony VIO or a Dell laptop from parts from frys or anywhere else? I don't think so last time I checked I haven't heard of anyone makeing a laptop that didn't used to be a console.

#20
InorganicMatter

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No this isn't who is better war but a discussion of Apple's desire to maintain its hardware monopoly.


I knew this thread would be full of ignorance at this line right here. You really need to learn the basic definition of a "monopoly" before you go slinging around such a dirty word. Wikipedia shall help you, here is the most basic definition:
  • No close substitutes: A monopoly is not merely the state of having control over a product; it also means that there is no real alternative to the monopolised product.
  • A price maker: Because a single firm controls the total supply in a pure monopoly, it is able to exert a significant degree of control over the price by changing the quantity supplied.
Now let us consider Apple. Are there close substitutes to a Mac? Yep, you can go into any electronics store, and right next to the Macs you will find other computer systems running Windows/Linux, and believe it or not, those system surf the same internet that Macs surf. How about the other, is Apple a price maker? Nope, they have keep prices low enough to remain competitive with the Sony Vaios, Lenovo ThinkPads, and Dell XPSs.

1. Apple has always been known for being on the cutting edge offering hardware that was best for multimedia. All their computers have had firewire as opposed to PCs that only had usb which isn't any good for importing video. So, people were naturally stunned to discover that Apple had decided to remove the firewire from its new release of the macbook. It appears Apple decided that their consumer and professional line of notebooks had grown to similar and they needed to give people a reason to "upgrade" to their Mac Book Pro line. Thats a pretty low move removing a pre-existing feature.


Oh, you mean kind of like how Microsoft removed the ability to join a domain from it's new release of Windows, and only put it in the "Professional" version of Windows XP in order to give businesses a reason to "upgrade" to the "Professional" versions of Windows?

2. There has been a lot of talk in regards why hasn't Apple added Blue Ray drives to their computers. In October Steve Jobs balked at the question saying Sony wanted too much money and that he didn't feel it was the future of video distribution. The truth of the matter Apple has gone to great lengths to block Blue Ray but why? Turns out they wan't to distribute movies like they have done with music, over the Internet. This model allows them increased profits and leverage over the movie industry. Yet another example of when given a choice Apple would block hardware innovations that don't suit their interests. In addition they have not added Blue Ray to any of their DVD authoring software (consumer and professional). Its been previously thought BlueRay support had not been released because they needed more time or that they were waiting to see whether HD-DVD or BlueRay would win out, but now it seems more likely that they have no plans to support it. This has lead many in the video editing field to question how much Apple values multimedia. If they decide that they can make a lot more money on products centered around selling music where does that leave they're original customer base. I'm not predicting a dooms day scenario but I can't help think about the implications of Apples new direction.


You insinuate that Apple is "blocking" Blu-ray on Mac OS X, with absolutely no proof to back it up? What about Microsoft, Windows Vista SP2 got Blu-ray playback yanked at the last second, so is Microsoft also "blocking" Blu-ray playback on Windows in order to protect playback software makers?

By the way, there's a huge difference between Blu-ray playback and authoring, and you're trying to blur the lines in order to further your point. Blu-ray playback takes expensive licenses and complicated decoding software. Blu-ray disk authoring only takes a burner, and the latest version of Toast.

I'm not a fan of M$ (Microsoft) but I sometimes wonder what would happen if they acted like Apple. I'm curious why the government has come down many times on M$ for anti-trust violations while Apple has been ignored. Yes, I understand that M$ has such a huge market share that they get the government's attention.


Microsoft does act like this, you've just grown blind to it; Apple learned from the best. :wacko:





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