Friday, September 26, 2003

Another bite of the Apple. Media Log is all blogged out after yesterday's two-hour Democratic extravaganza. Be sure to see my Phoenix colleague Adam Reilly's take on the proceedings. Click here.

LS sent a fascinating e-mail responding to yesterday's item on the slow-motion breakdown of the Apple-Microsoft alliance. He writes:

Just read your media log entry about Apple and wanted to comment on a couple things:

First, it's my view (as an IT manager myself), that the IRM technology is going to be a very slow starter, if it gets off the ground at all. Why? Because not only will it break compatibility with Mac Office, but it will also break compatibility with older versions of Office for Windows. At several hundred dollars per desktop, many companies are going to put-off upgrading to Office 2003 as long as possible.... IRM won't be useful until a majority of users have a version of Office capable of dealing with IRM-encoded files. The free viewer MS is offering will only be useful for viewing those files, not creating them, thus creating a one-way communication. Might as well send a fax…

Also, MS is working on another version of Office for Mac OS X. I think that if they are serious about IRM taking-off, MS will have to add it to the Mac version as well. I doubt that MS expects people to dump their Macs just so they can use IRM.

Second, at the same time MS announced they weren't going to develop IE for Mac anymore, they also announced that they were ceasing production on a standalone IE for Windows. Basically they are embedding IE even deeper into the Windows OS. Apple has similar plans for Safari, embedding the core technologies into OS X so that any application can be programmed to take advantage of the Safari rendering engine. The one difference between MS and Apple, is that Apple is building all their core tech around open standards, vs. Microsoft which keeps inventing their own closed systems.

Apple is as strong as it's been in a long time, with an amazing line-up of products and a killer OS. As we start to exit the recession, I think Apple is poised to grow significantly.

I hope LS is right.

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