Apple's Macs are about to take the ascendant in the Mac/iPod product matrix, analysts claim.

Analysts at Cowen and Co surveyed over 1,000 US consumers in early April. They found that 50 per cent of those surveyed won't buy a computer in the next 12 months - but many who do plan to buy a PC won't be buying a PC, but a Mac.

Analyst Richard Chu believes that Apple still faces some challenges as it moves its systems to Intel processors, but describes the platform's prospects as "strong".

"A substantially higher percentage of respondents (8 per cent) indicate that they are more likely to buy a Mac over the next 12 to 18 months as a consequence of Apple's decision to migrate to Intel," Chu told MacCentral.

He also believes Apple's newly revealed Boot Camp software will attract new users to Apple's platform.

However, he sees demand in the digital audio markets weakening across the next 12-18 months, which will impact against Apple's iPod sales.

The analyst does believe Apple's music player will hold its lead against the competition, but warns that iPod growth may be stabilising.

"Given the twin visible axes of its game plan, the Mac and iPod, there can be little question that the stock will tend to fare best when there is perceived to be relatively clear sailing on both fronts," he told Forbes.