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Make Mine A Mac

Year over year, Apple has been selling more Macs. 2007 was no exception; the Mac's market share continued to grow. The surge might have seen more sales thanks to Vista or the release of Leopard. Either way, there is some kind of iPod "halo" effect going on.
Year over year, Apple has been selling more Macs. 2007 was no exception; the Mac's market share continued to grow. The surge might have seen more sales thanks to Vista or the release of Leopard. Either way, there is some kind of iPod "halo" effect going on.Be it the iPod, Leopard, or iPhone, Apple is getting its name out and people are moving to the Mac. For me, it's interesting to watch a new generation of switchers come to the platform, after having used a Mac my entire computing life. Many new switchers seem to be mesmerized by Photo Booth or iChat videoconferencing, which my cousin and I laugh at, since we were doing this almost 5 years ago. The new switchers seem to neglect some of the founding principles of the Mac platform because, face it, they've been using Windows.

Other converted PC users rejoice that they no longer have to run antivirus or spyware programs anymore on their Mac, which is something that I still do not do on my PCs or Macs (yes, I own 4 PCs). The shift of the Mac user base from the generally more computer literate to the less literate will be interesting. The iPod is simple, powerful, and successful. Although the Mac is built around the same concept, it's a computer.

I have found, working with other people who aren't very computer literate, that they prefer a static setup, be it Windows or Mac OS. They want everything to look the same, nothing to change. All they want to do is check their e-mail (or whatever it is). So you can (or can't) imagine how a switch to a Mac from a PC can become traumatic for those accustomed to Windows.

The same can be said about the switch from VHS to DVD. Other than video geeks, it takes a couple years for the masses to make the switch. The switch usually comes with a hardware replacement. For example, our VHS player stopped working so we bought a DVD/VHS combo about six years ago. When that dies, we will probably just get another DVD player, especially considering the status of the new formats. So, Vista is what is bringing PC users to the Mac OS. Their XP machine needs replacement, and fearing Vista (or after experiencing it), they get a Mac.

Matt Dodd runs The iLife Apple blog and will share his Gen Y tech insights with the InformationWeek audience via occasional posts.