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Apple's holiday Mac shipments outpaced PC growth by largest margin in 5 years

post #1 of 51
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While some pundits speculate that Mac lineup could be on the way out in favor of the iPad, Apple's traditional notebooks and desktops outpaced the overall PC market by nearly 25 percent last quarter, representing the largest margin separating the two in five years.

Needham


Apple's successful holiday quarter was highlighted this week by analyst Charlie Wolf with Needham & Company, who questioned whether the strong performance by the Mac is "a one-quarter blip" amidst a sinking PC market.

Mac shipments grew 18.1 percent in the December 2013 quarter, which outpaced the overall PC market by 24.7 percent. The year over year increase in Mac sales was a reversal for Apple, which has not been immune to consumer adoption of touchscreen tablets such as the iPad.

Overall PC shipments, which are dominated by Windows machines, have been shrinking year over year for the last seven quarters. Apple has also seen its Mac shipments decline in some quarters, but the company has still gained market share vs. Windows PCs in all quarters since 2005 but one.

The Mac's unit share of the worldwide PC market has grown from 2.1 percent in 2005 to 5.5 percent in 2013. Apple's revenue share growth has been even greater, surging from 3.2 percent to 10.4 percent.

Needham


As for Apple's particularly strong growth in the December quarter, where it posted sales of 4.8 million units, that was aided by a favorable year-over-year comparison: In the same period in 2012, Apple faced a severe shortage of its redesigned iMac, which limited Mac shipments in the quarter. That ended up being the lone quarter where PC shipments outgrew the Mac.

"The question we don't have an answer to is whether Mac shipment growth can overcome the headwinds of negative growth in PC shipments," Wolf wrote. "While the Mac represents a small fraction of Apple's revenues, it nonetheless is an important barometer of the health of Apple's ecosystem."

Wolf believes that tablets have "undoubtedly" cut into PC sales, though he questions the "magnitude of this effect" so far. He suggested that sales of the iPad might adversely affect Mac sales more than traditional Windows PCs.

"Shoppers at the Apple Stores most likely consider both a MacBook and an iPad for their next purchase," he said. "The allure of an iPad is undoubtedly far greater when it is in close proximity to a MacBook than it is in other shopping venues."

In a separate note issued earlier this month, Wolf detailed how Apple has held the Mac's average selling price steady at $1,300, even as overall PC prices have trended downward with the popularity of netbooks, and later tablets. The steady pricing helps to explain how Apple's dollar share of the PC market has outgrown its market share over the last decade.
post #2 of 51

I never trust analysts.  They just rely on guesswork.

post #3 of 51

Either way, Apple is doomed. I haven't seen any signs of doomness, but Apple is still doomed somehow. 

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post #4 of 51
I'm Apple all the way and am happy Macs are growing faster than PCs (actually growing instead of falling) but graphs like these are why I hate graphs. Going from 2.1% to 5.5% worldwide marketshare in 8 years is the most critical information mentioned in this article. Tons of people are still buying Windows PCs, not Macs, and until Macs are closer to 50% of the mix, Apple is still behind. iOS devices are secondary computers for many people and they are killing Microsoft devices but now they have to fight Android garbage. Twist and turn the numbers any way you want then use them to justify an article just doesn't make it. It's the same garbage analysts use when talking about increases made by Apple competitors. Their sales go up 100% while Apple's only goes up 5% but Apple is talking about millions of units sold while the others are talking about thousands. Statistics are always used to justify someone's position but rarely mean everything.

I am very happy Macs are still selling into every market although I wish they were selling more into the government (one of the largest continuous buyers of PCs).
post #5 of 51
Doomed. Rules of Apple punditry:
1. Apple is doomed.
2. Bad news for others is actually worse news for Apple
3. Good news for Apple is actually bad news
4. Only Apple needs revolutionary products
5. Apple must maintain margins AND sell no-profit phones.
post #6 of 51
BYOD will drive the business purchases in general down. The growth market for Macs is home and education (all those cheap 10 year old pcs are dying, and and edu discount mac Mini and/or macbook air make huge sense for an iPad leading market).

Most businesses that have 'We only allow PCs in our corporate fiefdom' are moving to 'Our apps are in the cloud' in either a true web app, or in a Virtual Desktop Instance (VDI). As Business move understand the cost of provisioning PC hardware is crazy expensive, they will stipend their worker bees to get their own laptops. Most will be program discounts at dell, hp, or lenovo... but some people will buy Macs.

In the end... Only the corporate elite, and the critical few power users [Real power users will have an AWS farm at their disposal, gone is the day where I need a 16core processor on my desk, when I can buy 128 cores the 3 days a month when I need them... a Macbook Pro and a couple TB screens is all I need to do my job from work and home] will have corporate owned hardware... and even there, the Mac Pro and the iPad Air will carve into PC sales.

[disclaimer... I work in corporate consulting focusing on transformation of IT into a secure, fully extensible model... part of what I say may be marketing;-)]
post #7 of 51

For corporations and for most home users, isn't it about dollars and cents.   Corporations look at the laptop or computer as a tool to produce work (i.e. spreadsheets, docs, etc.)  They want a reliable platform to do that work.  They don't see the return for the additional cost of a Mac.  It is that simple.   We tried some Apple products at our corporation.  The results were a lot of extra cost on monitors and devices and productivity no different.  In fact, many people used the iPads for virtual desktops for Windows.    If money is no object, Apple products are fun and useful!!!  

post #8 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by SudoNym View Post

I never trust analysts.  They just rely on guesswork.
And you make this brilliant comment on what authority and what proof to substantiate it?

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post #9 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kibitzer View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SudoNym View Post

I never trust analysts.  They just rely on guesswork.
And you make this brilliant comment on what authority and what proof to substantiate it?

Analysts are always wrong. 

post #10 of 51
Wolf thinks the negative effects tablets have on PC sales is overstated.

Then how does he explain the decline in PC sales?

I would argue that PC sales are declining due to the rise of tablets AND smartphones. BOTH these devices are used for stuff that could be done previously only on desktop hardware.
post #11 of 51
I'm more interested in why they are still graphing the data with Lotus 1-2-3.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SudoNym View Post

I never trust analysts.  They just rely on guesswork.

It's analysis which is using historical models and there are estimates so there is a margin of error but it's not guessing.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #12 of 51
and that is with zero advertising. I would have thought that with the Windows 8 fiasco and rave reviews of Mavericks they would have pounced at the opportunity.
post #13 of 51
I love how analysts just can't believe that Apple continues to do well and that it MUST be an anomaly...

"Apple's successful holiday quarter was highlighted this week by analyst Charlie Wolf with Needham & Company, who questioned whether the strong performance by the Mac is "a one-quarter blip" amidst a sinking PC market."

Successful holiday quarter? Wait a minute, Charlie%u2026I thought Apple had a disappointing holiday quarter and didn't meet the "inflated" expectations by you and your manipulating cohorts?
post #14 of 51
Great news for Apple. I really like Apples current Mac lineup. Will certainly get a retina display Macbook Pro once may 15inch Macbook Pro dies on me. Good news for me is, it still has couple of years for sure. The high quality of Apples Macs is a blessing for customers but also a little bit of curse for the company itself. Makes Mac-users hold on to their products longer and slows sales growth of the company. Great to hear they still outpacing PC sales by quite an amount.
post #15 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I'm more interested in why they are still graphing the data with Lotus 1-2-3.
...
It's analysis which is using historical models...

Just answered your own question, I guess.
post #16 of 51
It absolutely *IS* guessing. History is not a reliable predictor of what will happen in financial markets. There are too many variables. The extent to which guesswork is involved varies from analyst to analyst, but there is always guesswork involved.
post #17 of 51
"The allure of an iPad is undoubtedly far greater when it is in close proximity to a MacBook than it is in other shopping venues."

Yes, those Dell cr*pbooks compare much more favorably to an iPad at Best Buy than MacBook Airs at the Apple Store. How do these "analysts" even stay employed?
post #18 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by dreyfus2 View Post

Just answered your own question, I guess.

That's really scary if they are using Lotus 1-2-3.

Quote:
Originally Posted by djbeta View Post

It absolutely *IS* guessing. History is not a reliable predictor of what will happen in financial markets. There are too many variables. The extent to which guesswork is involved varies from analyst to analyst, but there is always guesswork involved.

In this context they aren't the same.

As for the historical data we're talking about maths here. Graphing a chart that shows a pattern and predicts a model doesn't say you're beholden to that prediction as fact but simply that the pattern shows a particular sequence. That sequence is always subject to change when new data (i.e.: facts) are presented but you can't simply say that these mathematical models are simply guesswork because it's not accurate.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #19 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

That's really scary if they are using Lotus 1-2-3.
In this context they aren't the same.

As for the historical data we're talking about maths here. Graphing a chart that shows a pattern and predicts a model doesn't say you're beholden to that prediction as fact but simply that the pattern shows a particular sequence. That sequence is always subject to change when new data (i.e.: facts) are presented but you can't simply say that these mathematical models are simply guesswork because it's not accurate.

It's an educated guess but it's still a guess.
post #20 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by SudoNym View Post
 

I never trust analysts.  They just rely on guesswork.

 

What would you prefer they rely on, a crystal ball?

 

Any predictions for the future will rely on a fair bit of guesswork.  It's the quality of the information used to backup the guesswork, and the shrewdness of the analyst that makes the difference.

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post #21 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

It's an educated guess but it's still a guess.

1) Qualifying the word guess with educated changes the meaning from simply calling a guess.

2) In finance terms like guess, estimate and predictive modeling are not interchange. One can't say that graphing historical data then drawing a line to show change into the future is a guess, educated or not, because at that point you haven't made any guesses, you've only extrapolated the facts to determine probability.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #22 of 51

LOTUS 1-2-3 

They use VisiCalc correct?

Originally by Rickers - 2014 : Cook & will bury Apple.  They can only ride Steve's ghost so long.



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Originally by Rickers - 2014 : Cook & will bury Apple.  They can only ride Steve's ghost so long.



 Originally Posted by  thataveragejoe :  Next week  Korea Times, "I'm gay too"-Samsung



 



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post #23 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

Doomed. Rules of Apple punditry:
1. Apple is doomed.
2. Bad news for others is actually worse news for Apple
3. Good news for Apple is actually bad news
4. Only Apple needs revolutionary products
5. Apple must maintain margins AND sell no-profit phones.


6. Good news for others, even those who have nothing to do with Apple, is bad news for Apple.

7. Any news, whatever the subject, is bad news for Apple.

8. Only Apple needs to innovate.

9. Bigger is always better.

10. More is always better.

post #24 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by phalanx View Post
 

For corporations and for most home users, isn't it about dollars and cents.   Corporations look at the laptop or computer as a tool to produce work (i.e. spreadsheets, docs, etc.)  They want a reliable platform to do that work.  They don't see the return for the additional cost of a Mac.  It is that simple.   We tried some Apple products at our corporation.  The results were a lot of extra cost on monitors and devices and productivity no different.  In fact, many people used the iPads for virtual desktops for Windows.    If money is no object, Apple products are fun and useful!!!  

 

The big problem is that the people buying and using Macs still only see the world painted PC.  Where you see the cost savings on Macs is when you stop using PC software and use Apple software.

 

For example, people will get a Mac and then demand that MS Office is installed when, in many cases, they could switch to using iWork + Mac Mail + Calendar + Contacts (which integrate just fine with MS Exchange nowadays).  Or worse, they'll get a Mac and then just use MS Windows on it (and thus have to pay for all the same software as PCs).  But most don't know this and/or aren't willing to learn something new.  And the IT support staff are simply trained to support MS products (MCSE-heads), so they can't help either.


Edited by auxio - 2/21/14 at 10:07am
 
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post #25 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by auxio View Post
 

 

The big problem is that the people buying and using Macs still only see the world painted PC.  Where you see the cost savings on Macs is when you stop using PC software and use Apple software.

 

For example, people will get a Mac and then demand that MS Office is installed when, in many cases, they could switch to using iWork + Mac Mail + Calendar + Contacts (which integrate just fine with MS Exchange nowadays).  Or worse, they'll get a Mac and then just use MS Windows on it (and thus have to pay for all the same software as PCs).  But most don't know this and/or aren't willing to learn something new.  And the IT support staff are simply trained to support MS products (MSCE-heads), so they can't help either.


iWork isn't competitive enough with Office for the professional world. Word has a lot more features and integration with the rest of the suite. Excel can manage a lot bigger spreadsheets without slowing down like Numbers does. Powerpoint... well, from what I know, that one is a lot inferior to Keynote.

 

And Apple has nothing close to Exchange. It's one of the main reasons people use other MS products. Active directory, Exchange, SQL Server, and Windows Server. Apple doesn't offer all that unfortunately.

post #26 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by ClemyNX View Post
 


iWork isn't competitive enough with Office for the professional world. Word has a lot more features and integration with the rest of the suite. Excel can manage a lot bigger spreadsheets without slowing down like Numbers does. Powerpoint... well, from what I know, that one is a lot inferior to Keynote.

 

But the vast majority of people using Office aren't using the advanced features.  I'll give you Excel being far superior to Numbers, but not everyone works in finance.  Pages is just fine for what most people do with a word processor.  And Keynote is much better than Powerpoint.

 

Quote:
And Apple has nothing close to Exchange. It's one of the main reasons people use other MS products. Active directory, Exchange, SQL Server, and Windows Server. Apple doesn't offer all that unfortunately.

 

And that's fine, use MS Exchange on the server side.  I agree, Apple doesn't do server-side well.

 

However, on the client side, Mac Mail + Contacts + Calendar can interact with the Exchange server just fine for the vast majority of people.  For people on iPads/iPhones within an organization, that's essentially what they're using.  The only time I ever need to go back to Outlook personally is for 3rd party meeting resources which use an Outlook plugin (voice bridges, etc).  Avoid those types of things, and you're ok.

 
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post #27 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by SudoNym View Post

I never trust analysts.  They just rely on guesswork.

Unless they say something one already believes, then it's Truth, with a capital T. 1wink.gif

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #28 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by macxpress View Post

Either way, Apple is doomed. I haven't seen any signs of doomness, but Apple is still doomed somehow. 

I prefer Doominess as the noun version of Doomed.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #29 of 51
"which has not been immune to consumer adoption of touchscreen tablets such as the iPad"

Odd locution. Apple caused that adoption and benefits from it.
post #30 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

Doomed. Rules of Apple punditry:
1. Apple is doomed.
2. Bad news for others is actually worse news for Apple
3. Good news for Apple is actually bad news
4. Only Apple needs revolutionary products
5. Apple must maintain margins AND sell no-profit phones.

 

jungmark nailed it.

post #31 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by auxio View Post
 

 

But the vast majority of people using Office aren't using the advanced features.  I'll give you Excel being far superior to Numbers, but not everyone works in finance.  Pages is just fine for what most people do with a word processor.  And Keynote is much better than Powerpoint.

 

 

And that's fine, use MS Exchange on the server side.  I agree, Apple doesn't do server-side well.

 

However, on the client side, Mac Mail + Contacts + Calendar can interact with the Exchange server just fine for the vast majority of people.  For people on iPads/iPhones within an organization, that's essentially what they're using.  The only time I ever need to go back to Outlook personally is for 3rd party meeting resources which use an Outlook plugin (voice bridges, etc).  Avoid those types of things, and you're ok.

 

I agree that a vast majority of Word users use it for baby stuff. They could even benefit from using Pages which motivates people to use better and different fonts. It's just that in my company we REALLY need stuff to work seamlessly. And I think it would be very difficult to move away from the integration of Office with Exchange, and change the whole infrastructure.

Apple has to make an effort, if it's not already, in entering in the small businesses. It's already installing itself in schools. This is a pretty slow process compared to how fast the tech world moves usually. We'll have to wait a few years to see how that influences the market. But some people have accused Apple of being slow to react to business and that it doesn't always give all the tools people need in the work space. In the end, the pro world doesn't really need something that works intuitively and is beautiful, even if it does the work. They need something that gives them everything they want, immediately. And Apple doesn't know how to do that. It goes against the way they work. And that's fine. That's why I perfectly see a world with Apple products being used mostly at home, and MS still being the main provider for enterprise. MS has become obsolete for the mass market, but will remain in the pro world.

I know what I'm saying is nothing new and lots of people have said the same before.

post #32 of 51
I went to a meeting the other day. The computers used at the meeting were two windows laptops, a MacBook Air 13" and an iPad. Both windows laptops were constantly connected to the mains whilst both Apple products went through the whole meeting on their battery. That is why Apple products are being used more and more by business as well as consumers.
post #33 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by phalanx View Post
...Corporations look at the laptop or computer as a tool... want a reliable platform... don't see the return for the additional cost of a Mac.  It is that simple.....

 

Last time I needed to buy hardware to run Win7, I compared the specs of available units, and the iMac came out $50 cheaper. Bought it, installed Bootcamp and a legal copy of Win7, and was off to the races. Hardware has been supremely reliable. And we got MacOS and affiliated software free, allowing us to boot into MacOS occasionally for other purposes. The Apple hardware was thus cheaper and far more flexible than any comparably-equipped competitor.  Period.  It was that simple.

post #34 of 51
"In fact, many people used the iPads for virtual desktops for Windows."

How?
post #35 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by ClemyNX View Post
 

And I think it would be very difficult to move away from the integration of Office with Exchange, and change the whole infrastructure.

 

Apple knows they don't offer anything competitive to Microsoft on the server side, and I honestly believe they're just not interested in server-side for various reasons (margins are low, need to have support staff training programs, etc).  So yeah, no need to make any changes on the server side.

 

However, because of iOS, Apple has put a ton of effort into making their client-side software work well with Exchange.  This has made it's way back to OS X in the past couple of releases.  I've been using OS X in a Microsoft environment for years, and I can honestly say that the integration at this point in time has finally reached the point where it can cover most people's needs.

 

Quote:
In the end, the pro world doesn't really need something that works intuitively and is beautiful, even if it does the work. They need something that gives them everything they want, immediately. And Apple doesn't know how to do that. It goes against the way they work. And that's fine. That's why I perfectly see a world with Apple products being used mostly at home, and MS still being the main provider for enterprise. MS has become obsolete for the mass market, but will remain in the pro world.

 

Those of us in the pro world who have taken the time to learn about all technologies (and the history of them) know that most of Microsoft's server-side technologies are actually based on open standards developed on UNIX systems long before Microsoft became the dominant player in the corporate server market.

 

Admittedly, they certainly have the nicest packaging and best support infrastructure, but if you can find a few experienced UNIX server admins, you could do the same thing for a lot cheaper with a UNIX-based server infrastructure.  Not beautiful, not easy to use, but just as powerful in the right hands (if not moreso in many situations).  This is likely another major reason why Apple got out of the server-side market: given that OS X is based on BSD UNIX, it's hard to be price-competitive with a Linux or free BSD variant server.

 
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post #36 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by rob53 View Post

I'm Apple all the way and am happy Macs are growing faster than PCs (actually growing instead of falling) but graphs like these are why I hate graphs. Going from 2.1% to 5.5% worldwide marketshare in 8 years is the most critical information mentioned in this article. Tons of people are still buying Windows PCs, not Macs, and until Macs are closer to 50% of the mix, Apple is still behind. iOS devices are secondary computers for many people and they are killing Microsoft devices but now they have to fight Android garbage. Twist and turn the numbers any way you want then use them to justify an article just doesn't make it. It's the same garbage analysts use when talking about increases made by Apple competitors. Their sales go up 100% while Apple's only goes up 5% but Apple is talking about millions of units sold while the others are talking about thousands. Statistics are always used to justify someone's position but rarely mean everything.

I am very happy Macs are still selling into every market although I wish they were selling more into the government (one of the largest continuous buyers of PCs).

Apple rules the platinum end of the PC retail market. That's all you need to know. The barrier is price, because Apple doesn't ship junk. Macs are the best the market has to offer, they are also the most PROFITABLE in the PC biz, and they rule consumer satisfaction for nearly a decade now.

Apple won the PC wars by doing a vertical business model RIGHT.

Want a Mac? Great. Be prepared to pay, because quality and attention to detail like THAT doesn't come at Acer or Dell prices. Otherwise, get an iPad and get the best tablet you can get.
post #37 of 51
Analysts are like donuts - fat with a hole in the middle.

They think that Apple will ditch the Mac in favor of iPads. How then, dear analysts, do you think that any iPad or iPhone apps would be developed ?? Would Apple license OS X to run, say, on Dell or HP machines ??

Get a clue, people.

Rule #1: start brain before putting mouth in gear.
post #38 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by plovell View Post

<..>

Rule #1: start brain before putting mouth in gear.

 

 

What if the brain used to be in the hole ?

There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.

Frank Zappa

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There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.

Frank Zappa

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post #39 of 51
Originally Posted by Hydrogen View Post

What if the brain used to be in the hole ?

 

Then it’s either a toad or the kinkiest sex I’ve ever heard of.

post #40 of 51

Our sales guys are taking iPads on the road now and our dealers are using iPads to deliver our in-house content. Our in-house software programmer, who was a PC user for years, tossed his PC in favor of a Mac Mini. There is a halo effect going on. On the other hand, there are a lot of old codgers who won't switch, which means that instead of running Windows on a Mac laptop and running superior Mac-only apps such as Keynote, our creative marketing support folks have to create specially hobbled versions of presentations in PowerPoint format just for them.  

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