Microsoft claims Windows licensing gains are chipping into Apple's 'premium' computer mark...

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Licensing of Windows to PC makers was up 5 percent in the December quarter, according to Microsoft CFO Amy Hood, driven in part by sales of "premium" devices over $900 -- a category Apple's Macs have traditionally enjoyed a comfortable position in.




"Non-pro" licensing was up 5 percent in its own right during the quarter, outdoing the general shrinkage of the PC industry, Hood said during a results call on Thursday evening, overheard by Business Insider. Microsoft's partners "continued to see growth and share gains in the Windows premium device category," she noted.

Apple has increasingly focused its Mac lineup on wealthier shoppers, letting the Mac mini and MacBook Air fall by the wayside in favor of more expensive models. The cheapest Mac with modern specifications is now either the 12-inch MacBook or the 13-inch MacBook Pro, both of which cost at least $1,299 before any upgrades.

In recent years PC makers have typically aimed at low- to mid-range systems to compete on cost, with some exceptions, but Microsoft itself has been aiming to lead the market back into premium devices with the likes of the Surface Book and the Surface Studio, as well as more expensive versions of the Surface Pro 4.

The market for similar hybrid tablets is growing, Business Insider observed, and PC makers are increasingly releasing VR-ready computers, which demand more performance. No Mac is powerful enough to support either of the two leading VR headsets, the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift.

In December Microsoft claimed that more people were switching from MacBooks to Surface devices than ever, driven partly by "the disappointment of the new MacBook Pro," particularly among professionals.

Apple though has so far been upbeat about Pro sales, in November saying that "our online store has had more orders for the new MacBook Pro than any other pro notebook before." Hard numbers should appear in Apple's December-quarter financial results, due to be announced on Tuesday.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 42
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,577member
    IMO, devices over $900 are not considered "premium".  Microsoft can adjust these numbers anyway they want to make it look good for them and not so good for Apple. What's next, $800 and above devices are now considered premium so they can say the same thing down the road? 

    I'd rather wait and see Apple's numbers before saying customers are switching from MacBooks to Surface devices because of the disappointment of the MacBook Pro. I'd like to know the actual numbers for Microsoft's hardware lineup instead of just spewing out numbers with no facts to back it up. 

    If I were Microsoft, I wouldn't be getting overzealous here. One good quarter doesn't particularly mean anything, nor does one bad quarter for Apple. 
    SoliStrangeDaysfirelockwilliamlondoncalijahbladewatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 42
    NY1822NY1822 Posts: 518member
    Sales of Surface tablets and computers increased 11 percent to $223 million in the fiscal second quarter, Microsoft reported on Thursday. Meanwhile, phone sales plunged 76 percent, and devices as a whole dropped 35 percent to $1.4 billion in revenue.

    $223 Million ...lol
    king editor the gratesteyounwatto_cobrabadmonkcornchip
  • Reply 3 of 42
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,559member
    Apple makes premium products and damn good ones. Everyone knows well. But, there is important aspect to product is, you want to increase the bottom base so when their need increases, they upgrade to higher expensive versions. Highschool, college students and casual users are most important and large category that Apple needs to focus on.with decent performance and reasonable price Macbook Pros. Apple don't let Windows evil take over world.
    edited January 2017 baconstangcaliwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 42
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,399member
    Gotta try to be relevant again.
    dewmeStrangeDayscornchip
  • Reply 5 of 42
    ChrisMarshall3DChrisMarshall3D Posts: 4unconfirmed, member
    With no meaningful upgrade to the desktop or workstation Mac lineup, this news is hardly a surprise. As a Motion Graphic company looking to reinvest in new kit that traditionally would've been Macs without even thinking about it, we're now looking at Windows. Apple clearly are targeting the consumer market now, not the professional. I really can't run my high-end applications from a laptop, I need good workstations with a guarantee of future commitment from Apple.

    mtefre1983nottylerdurdenwilliamlondonblastdoortechprod1gybitmod
  • Reply 6 of 42
    I am not surprised. Although the Surface Studio may not sell well, it gave Apple a run for its cool edge
    xzu1983cornchip
  • Reply 7 of 42
    I use both a new MacBook 12 as well as a Surface Pro 4.  Love my MacBook, but the SP4 is really pretty good too.  Microsoft finally realized if they can control both the OS and the hardware, a decent product will be the result.
    icoco3
  • Reply 8 of 42
    doggonedoggone Posts: 164member
    M$ will never make any money out of hardware.  It is the OS and office sales that drive them.  The subscription / cloud offering is saving their butts and it appears to make it easier for IT to transition better.  I know at my small company they have moved to Office 365 but still typically install windows 7.  Win10 is around but still limited. Security is another reason why IT is having to move off legacy platforms.
  • Reply 9 of 42
    dewmedewme Posts: 1,687member
    Clever spin doctoring, but since Microsoft abandoned its smartphone efforts this is rather meaningless since Mac sales are such a small percentage of overall PC sales. They're not hurting Apple nearly as much as they're punishing their former hardware partners who were sold a bill of goods about the value of commodity hardware built for the Windows operating system. "Umm, we forget to tell you that your profits will be in the toilet part of the story."

    Microsoft should be much more concerned about how it's doing against Amazon and Google in cloud services. Office is still the golden cash cow for Microsoft but if Amazon, Google, or some other player decided to kill the cow, who knows. With all the FUD, mostly perception based, around file format interoperability and corporate subscriptions, knocking off Office is still a tough undertaking. 
    StrangeDaysRayz2016pscooter63watto_cobrabadmonk
  • Reply 10 of 42
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    macxpress said:
    IMO, devices over $900 are not considered "premium".  Microsoft can adjust these numbers anyway they want to make it look good for them and not so good for Apple. What's next, $800 and above devices are now considered premium so they can say the same thing down the road? 

    I'd rather wait and see Apple's numbers before saying customers are switching from MacBooks to Surface devices because of the disappointment of the MacBook Pro. I'd like to know the actual numbers for Microsoft's hardware lineup instead of just spewing out numbers with no facts to back it up. 

    If I were Microsoft, I wouldn't be getting overzealous here. One good quarter doesn't particularly mean anything, nor does one bad quarter for Apple. 
    This is typical of MS. Remember when the Zune launched and they claimed they were the best selling PMP on the market, but they had carefully selected a really odd set of days, not something that conformed to standard calendar-based measurements?
    calipscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 42
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    doggone said:
    M$ will never make any money out of hardware.  It is the OS and office sales that drive them.  The subscription / cloud offering is saving their butts and it appears to make it easier for IT to transition better.  I know at my small company they have moved to Office 365 but still typically install windows 7.  Win10 is around but still limited. Security is another reason why IT is having to move off legacy platforms.
    They don't make money on Xbox?
  • Reply 12 of 42
    evilutionevilution Posts: 1,313member
    Soli said:
    They don't make money on Xbox?
    Not if you believe what you read on some sites. It's like printers, they sell the hardware for a loss and make it back with consumables.
    cornchip
  • Reply 13 of 42
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    evilution said:
    Soli said:
    They don't make money on Xbox?
    Not if you believe what you read on some sites. It's like printers, they sell the hardware for a loss and make it back with consumables.
    Considering how long the HW gets sold I'd think that it should eventually turn a profit.
    cornchip
  • Reply 14 of 42
    If all MSFT can claim is "chipping away" in a declining market, then they have nothing to say. Me thinks, if Apple remains seriously interested in desktop/laptop, a dual multi-core A Series processor powered desktop/laptop is not that far off. The processor cost per system would be less than a single Kaby Lake and out perform it. So what if Macs could no longer run Windows. But then again, 4 to 5 million "professional" units per year may not be worth the investment.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 42
    It is still hurting Apple that they ar not, or veeeery slowly, updating their computer lineup. Others will take advantage however small the piece it is they take.
    williamlondoncaliwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 42
    icoco3icoco3 Posts: 1,454member
    Until they disclose 5% increase from what, the number is meaningless.  Numbers have no meaning without the units attached.
    williamlondonRayz2016watto_cobracornchip
  • Reply 17 of 42
    xzuxzu Posts: 139member
    The Surface Studio looks like such an amazing design, first time I have been tempted to purchase an all-in-one desktop since my iMac debacle(s). Too bad it runs Windows. Hoping the competition will make Apple rethink what they are doing.
    cornchip
  • Reply 18 of 42
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    xzu said:
    The Surface Studio looks like such an amazing design, first time I have been tempted to purchase an all-in-one desktop since my iMac debacle(s). Too bad it runs Windows. Hoping the competition will make Apple rethink what they are doing.
    Apple ripoffs don't impress me at all. At least think of a different color. 

    Soli said:
    doggone said:
    M$ will never make any money out of hardware.  It is the OS and office sales that drive them.  The subscription / cloud offering is saving their butts and it appears to make it easier for IT to transition better.  I know at my small company they have moved to Office 365 but still typically install windows 7.  Win10 is around but still limited. Security is another reason why IT is having to move off legacy platforms.
    They don't make money on Xbox?
    It Apple took Apple TV seriously they can destroy Xbox and make it irrelevant. Nintendo keeps tripping over themselves and PlayStation/Xbox are twins.

    dewme said:
    Clever spin doctoring, but since Microsoft abandoned its smartphone efforts this is rather meaningless since Mac sales are such a small percentage of overall PC sales. They're not hurting Apple nearly as much as they're punishing their former hardware partners who were sold a bill of goods about the value of commodity hardware built for the Windows operating system. "Umm, we forget to tell you that your profits will be in the toilet part of the story."

    Microsoft should be much more concerned about how it's doing against Amazon and Google in cloud services. Office is still the golden cash cow for Microsoft but if Amazon, Google, or some other player decided to kill the cow, who knows. With all the FUD, mostly perception based, around file format interoperability and corporate subscriptions, knocking off Office is still a tough undertaking. 

    I feel like Apple can partner with IBM and make killer office apps but times are changing and there are bigger fish in the sea than Word, Excel etc. 
    edited January 2017
  • Reply 19 of 42
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,203member
    How do they know they're chipping away at Apple, rather than their own partners?
    watto_cobrabadmonkcornchip
  • Reply 20 of 42
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    Rayz2016 said:
    How do they know they're chipping away at Apple, rather than their own partners?
    It seems far fetched that someone would go from being a Mac user back to Windows. As you say, more likely it's just taking a sale from a Win OEM.
    watto_cobrabadmonkcornchip
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