Apple may make some gains in the enterprise market, but Microsoft shouldn’t be too concerned, according to an analyst.
Info-Tech Research Group senior research analyst Carmi Levy told IT World Canada that Microsoft has nothing to fear from Apple, particularly in the enterprise market.
"The reality is, long term, Apple will always be a niche player. Even with the switch to Intel, Apple is not threatening the hegemony of the Intel-based Windows PC," he said.
Levy claims enterprises aren't going to swap their PCs for Macs in large numbers, but he does concede that thanks to Boot Camp, Apple may gain ground with small and medium-sized businesses less tied to the Windows operating system.
"[SMBs] might be more predisposed to looking at Apple architecture on the desktop and being a little more comfortable moving lock, stock and barrel over to it," he suggested.
He also noted firms may move to Macs if they "have less of an investment in Windows machines", and where, "with less support resources, they’re more sensitive to some of the security issues around PCs vs Macs."
However, Levy also noted that Apple’s traditional enterprise niches - graphics, advertising and creative departments - have been weakening in recent years.
"The Windows alternatives have gained maturity and IT managers have been pushing for greater standardisation, " he said.
Apple Canada strategic development manager Willi Powell told IT World that the move to the Intel chipset has sparked a lot of interest from the enterprise sector. He noted that the Unix heritage and low support requirements appeal to the enterprise.
Powell confirmed that Apple has no plans to market to the enterprise desktop market, however. "If they’re interested, we’re not going to turn them away, but we’re not going to aggressively market to them," said Powell.