Intel Takes on Apple M1 with New Series of “Go PC” Ads

Posted on February 12, 2021 by Paul Thurrott in Hardware, Mac and macOS, Mobile, Windows 10 with 84 Comments

Having recently suffered the fate of all Apple partners, Intel is firing back against Apple Silicon in a new series of “Go PC” advertisements.

“If you can flip through Photoshop thumbnails with your actual thumb, you’re not on a Mac,” one ad reads. “If you can power a rocket launch and launch Rocket League, you’re not on a Mac,” another reads. You get the idea.

As many readers probably know, Intel has finally started firing back against Apple and its M1 chipset, which now powers Apple’s lower-end Macs. Most reviews of the new Macs have been overwhelmingly positive, but most also gloss over its compatibility issues and missing features. Some are new to the M1, and some are just general disadvantages of any Mac.

The most public part of Intel’s strategy to date has been its engagement with tech reviewers, and it’s been interesting to see the output from others who were also asked by Intel to make honest comparisons between Intel Evo-based portable PCs and the M1-based MacBook Pro. I’ve been working through my own comparisons, the most recent of which is Intel Evo vs. Apple M1: Preliminary Head-to-Head.

To me, the Intel ads are vaguely reminiscent of Apple’s “I’m a Mac, I’m a PC” ads from long ago. But so far, at least, they’re also more honest.

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Comments (86)

86 responses to “Intel Takes on Apple M1 with New Series of “Go PC” Ads”

  1. crunchyfrog

    I have yet to see these ads but it seems like Intel just graduated from the same 'defensive marketing' course that Microsoft went to in saying that they're better than Apple by exaggerating the truth.

  2. dftf

    In reply to lvthunder:

    AMD are clearly further-ahead in scaling-down their CPUs than Intel.

    Integrating RAM into the CPU could easily be done, and I'm sure they could make some internal-efficiencies to the internal layout, yes.

    But remember that all CPUs for Windows devices have to retain the 32-bit instruction set and circuitry, as unlike macOS, 64-bit Windows still offers 32-bit app support, and there is also the 32-bit versions of Windows, with a 32-bit kernel, that run 32-bit drivers, and 32-bit and 16-bit apps.

    So with that support having to remain, don't expect as-dramatic changes as with the M1

    • MikeCerm

      In reply to dftf:

      AMD still has a way to go in terms of scaling down. Intel has Y-series (formerly Core M) and N-series (formerly Atom) CPUs that with TDPs under 10 watts, that can run fanless in tablets and other ultra-low power devices. These Intel CPUs don't offer the amazing performance that Apple has managed to achieve, and but they're good enough for the average user in a lot of scenarios. AMD doesn't have anything like these CPUs. AMD has probably decided that it's not worth trying to compete with ARM in the ultra-high efficiency game, but the fact that AMD doesn't care to make anything smaller than the 15W Ryzen 3 4300U leaves a pretty big hole in their lineup. Is the Surface Pro 7 an awesome tablet? Not really, but it's pretty good for some stuff, and AMD doesn't currently make CPU that Microsoft could use for that.

      • Greg Green

        In reply to MikeCerm:

        Amd have the Ryzen 5 5600U and Ryzen 7 5800U, also at 15 watts. Reviews for them are good. Don’t these fill the holes?

        • MikeCerm

          In reply to Greg Green:

          No, because my point was that AMD doesn't make a CPU what runs on less than 15W, and Intel does. They have cheaper "small core" CPUs like the N4500 (which I haven't seen in any shipping products yet, but it's a replacement for the N4020), which has a TDP of just 6W, and, and all of Intel's Core lineup is configurable from 15W down to 7W. Perhaps it's just not directly comparable, but the Ryzen 5600U is configurable from 10-25W, but 10 is more than 6 or 7.

          Actually, I was wrong. AMD does have the Athlon 3050e at 6W. Benchmarks say it's a bit slower than the N4500 (which is not exactly fast). but the integrated GPU on the Athlon is likely significantly better (though neither would be powerful enough for any kind of gaming).

  3. curtisspendlove

    I was just going to say, after seeing that first slide, is that it’s a lot like the “I’m a Mac, I’m a PC” but without the underlying “computer nerds are fat guys with glasses” subtext.

    I always hated those ads, even though I liked both platforms. I always felt they were awful demeaning to IT pros.

  4. a_lurker

    For my purposes, an M1 Mac is very intriguing as the software I need has Mac versions already. If I was looking at a Windows box I would be looking at AMD not Intel for the CPU.

    The ads are a sorry attempt to blunt Apple and AMD. Most people know a couple of knowledgeable nerds who will tell them Intel is a sorry laggard.

  5. neosar

    The argument I’m seeing here about business app compatibility is a little short sited. I manage a mixed environment and while there have certainly been times in the past where I wished everyone was just using windows it’s not as clear cut as “app compatibility is an issue”. In my case it’s more of a management simplification thing.

    Compatibility is already manageable in a business environment, and in a few years it will be a total non-issue. Tech like remoteapp or Citrix coupled with cloud services like azure will (if they haven’t already due to COVID) become more and more the norm. Microsoft’s own products can literally squash this argument today for any organization willing to spend the smalll amount of time and effort it takes to set it up. The benefits go far beyond “so that guy can use his Mac” too. A centrally-managed, easily controlled environment with the same user experience everywhere will make life easier in the long run anyway. Cloud services largely eliminate up front costs and reliability concerns so it becomes an even easier thing to sell to management.

    • dftf

      In reply to neosar:

      Well, there are still enterprises who have incredibly-old 16-bit Windows 95/98/Me apps, or 32-bit apps from Windows NT 4.0/2000 era, which you might not be able to use App-V, Citrix or similar for. Or maybe physical devices which use a 16-bit or 32-bit driver, and require a local parallel or serial connection (and where a USB dongle doesn't work) so a physical-machine is necessary.

      Though I still cannot understand for-the-life-of-me why such machines would need to run a 32-bit version of Windows 10, rather-than an old version of Windows, and run in their own segmented LAN, with no Internet connectivity.

      It continues to puzzle me as to why we still need current 32-bit kernel versions of Windows 10...

      • neosar

        In reply to dftf:

        That’s security-induced psychosis. ?

        I see your point, but those are edge cases. If you’re (not you specifically, but a company) still running nt4 apps with 16 bit code then macs are not the issue. We have a couple legacy windows 7 only things for really expensive attached hardware, but no one is using these machines for their day to day stuff. They have a separate computer for that.

    • curtisspendlove

      In reply to neosar:

      Yup! I know a lot of people hate the whole “Windows 365” ... rent Windows ... concept.

      But I actually want that from a consumer level. I’d pay $5 a month or whatever for a decent Cloud PC with Windows 10 on it. Even better if I could spin it up on demand (with all the updates and such applied). I’d love to be able to spin up a nice VM from a consumer level account and run some workloads on it every once in a while.

      It won’t replace my gaming rig, but it would be so nice not to have to have all my dev and other production crap on my gaming rig.

      I absolutely love being able to spin up a pretty powerful, customized Linux VPS (or a few) to run some targeted tasks on them, push the artifacts to block storage or such, and tear them down.

      It’s a total game changer for software development projects.

  6. dftf

    In reply to Bob_Shutts:

    Of course... the M1 may be good, but I don't see why any Windows user would suddenly move to an Apple device just-because of it?

    Given the current pandemic, many people are working-from-home, where an increase of battery-life isn't a big-sell, given you can remain plugged-in!

    Being able to run iOS and iPad OS apps on an Apple laptop or desktop might become a big thing (maybe?), but nothing is stopping Microsoft from adding the ability to run Android apps in Windows 10 as a response, if so. Especially on the "Windows 10 on ARM" edition, given those devices run ARM CPUs, as-is used in most Android phones and tablets...

  7. spiderman2

    if you can power an ultrawide monitor you are not on a mac

    if you can power two external monitors you are not on a mac

  8. 2ilent8cho

    If intel are getting this salty over Apple's entry level, low power processor they are in for a shock when Apple release the stuff to compete with i5, i7 and Xeon Workstations. Maybe Apple should run some adds back with tag lines like 'If you can fry an egg on it, its not a Mac' or 'If you remain stagnant for 10 years, you're on PC' or 'If you have't had to plug your laptop in all day, you're on Mac' .

    Really Intel should be worried about AMD, because for the first time in ages, if I was after a non Mac, I would be eyeing up the AMD stuff.... Intel has just lost a premium customer who would typically buy 20 million of their higher end non Xeon processors a year because since Skylake Intel has been awful.

    • illuminated

      In reply to 2ilent8cho:

      Competition is good.

      Now from the other side. When one works from home what the difference does it make if laptop runs 2 or 20 hours on a charge.

      • ivarh

        In reply to illuminated:

        The big problem with the 2 hour laptops is that they are no longer lappable. If I put my 16" MBP in my lap and play a game or do some thing taxing on it I can serve cooked [email protected] afterwards. The same happens with my work provided dell latitude 7480. I can't use the new M1 based Macs due to my sw needs but I look forwards to the day when I can. Not so much because all day battery life but mostly because it will be truly lappable.

      • Paul Thurrott

        Because not everyone will be working from home forever?
    • dftf

      In reply to 2ilent8cho:

      It will be interesting to see if they do have chips that will beat Core i9 Extreme Edition, Intel Xeon and AMD ThreadRipper CPUs, yes.

      But the other question will be: what of their own integrated GPUs? There won't be a discrete GPU option on future "Apple CPU" devices, I read... but do they still support the use of an external GPU (eGPU)?

  9. Greg Green

    In reply to ianbetteridge:

    Go into a Best Buy and see how big the pc section is vs the apple section. Most consumers buying a computer are buying PCs, not iMacs. The cost is probably the biggest factor. iMacs start at $1000, and before the M1 chip you could get a similar pc for half the price. It’s the same for laptops.

  10. Truffles

    In reply to ianbetteridge:

    I do wonder about the future of desktop OS price-based lock-in. The software complexity (measured as lines of code) for desktop software isn't likely to be appreciably different than on iOS, but the price per line of code is an order of magnitude cheaper on mobile.

    How about this scenario: macOS M1 users start wondering why they shouldn't just run an iOS app that costs $1 instead of buying the $40 equivalent built for macOS. iOS devs see that macOS users are running their software so they start to tweaking their iOS app to work better on macOS. As the iOS devs start to squeeze the macOS market, the mac-only devs need to cut prices to compete, and to make that worthwhile they develop iOS versions to sell at iOS prices. Soon macOS and iOS have application ecosystems that are significantly cheaper than Windows applications. Suddenly switching to Apple is a lot cheaper for Windows users, but it'll be much more expensive going in the other direction.

  11. dftf

    In reply to ianbetteridge:

    Well, you could also argue the reverse: I'm told that for corporate enrolments of devices into MDM solutions, like Airwatch or InTune, the vast-majority (in Western countries) iOS devices.

    So aren't businesses purchasing iOS devices on-behalf-of their users, when an Android device would be cheaper, and likely do all they need it to? (Which for many users is simply: access their cloud files; read and compose e-mail; use a handful of apps, including perhaps a few in-house developed ones; and of course, make and receive calls, texts and the odd video-chat)

  12. dftf

    In reply to ianbetteridge:

    Yeah... have to agree.

    I'm sure there will be a surge in new sales, as there will be many running older Mac devices who will find the M1 shift a good-reason to do an upgrade. But as that's existing users upgrading, that means market-share doesn't move.

    And for most average-people out-there: if using an iPhone or iPad didn't move them into also getting a macOS device, I see no-reason the M1 CPU suddenly will. Like your average person really cares about what's inside the machine, beyond the basics of "this much GB memory" (by which they mean "storage"), "this much GB RAM", "the screen is this size" and perhaps "I think an i5 would be better-than an i3 as it's a bigger-number".

  13. Greg Green

    In reply to lvthunder:

    And maybe Wall Street’s pc analysts.

  14. Greg Green

    In reply to lvthunder:

    That M1 is amazing. I’m waiting for them to put it in an iMac to replace my already too old one.

  15. cavalier_eternal

    The problem with ads like this is you are ceding that whomever you are attacking is, at a minimum, perceived to be better than you and you are trying to elevate yourself to or above the benchmark. That is what the Mac vs. PC ads were doing. Apple was trying to position itself as good or better as what was accepted as the standard to beat, Windows. So this is one hell of an admission by Intel.

    What is even stranger is there is exactly one product in the Mac line that is completely dependent on the M1. So if intel is suggesting the problem with Mac’s is the processor then they are talking smack about their own processors because the mini and MacBook Pro still have intel options and the iMac, Mac Pro are completely intel dependent. So is intel suggesting that they are the issue with Macs?

    Lastly, Apple is still their customer and will be for the next year or so, it’s super tacky to talk sh!t about your customers.

    Overall, it just kinda leaves me at WTF is intel thinking and to what end? Does anyone really think Apple is going to take over the PC market or have some sort of massive impact on market share? The move is mostly likely going to be great for Apple but I don’t think it’s going to happen at the detriment of intel. This is just all kinds of dumb.

    • Jeffsters

      In reply to cavalier_eternal:

      Exactly! The fact Intel even is bothering to spend the money shows, if they were honest, they are very afraid, not if the M1, but M2, M3, MX…

    • Truffles

      In reply to cavalier_eternal:

      Intel's advertising campaign is defensive: At best it'll fractionally slow the drift to Apple, at worst it will actively create curiosity that'll cause people to move to Apple. Either way, it won't sell a single new PC customer from an existing Apple customer. In the event there is a miracle and causes an Apple customer to switch, there's a 50/50 chance the customer will go to AMD anyway.

      Comparison ads worked back in the day for Apple because Apple was the plucky underdog with zero marketshare, so it couldn't lose customers and might even pick up a few. But when Intel does it, casual PC users start thinking, "Huh, what's Apple doing that's got Intel worried? I better go and find out".

      Then there's the question of what Intel does in a few months when Apple launches M2 CPUs or higher core M1 systems. Intel has revealed their existing benchmark suite and it'll be difficult for them to credibly complain when reviewers use it to compare x86 vs M2.

  16. reason42

    In reply to ianbetteridge:

    I was in the market for a new laptop for my daughter. Most important requirement - battery life. The MacBook M1 Pro delivers in spades. For her usage - 2 days without charge. This includes school work, Teams, watching Netflix, internet browsing. We went for this because of the very positive reviews on the battery life. She doesn't care about the OS one jot.

  17. ivarh

    These benchmark result reminds me from a campaign by compaq back in the 90's where they showed a benchmark chart of Oracle TPS numbers among different PC vendors showing Compaq on top. Then a a little later Sun used the same benchmark showing the same graph but this time including the unix servers from IBM, HP, Alpha and Sun all scoring more than double than Compaq.. Compaq had just cropped the chart after the pc vendors...

  18. retcable

    We will see how effective these ads are over the coming months as Apple releases more of their M1 machines that are more capable, more compatible, and more powerful, across their entire line of computers. We have only seen the very first of the M1 line, there are many more to come.

  19. Jorge Garcia

    If you appreciate that "delete" and "backspace" are two different things, and that having dedicated keys for both is not a're not on a Mac :-)

    • pecosbob04

      In reply to JG1170: So help me here. When I press delete the cursor moves left and deletes the character that was passed over. When I press the left arrow key the cursor moves left and leaves the character intact. Is this what is being cited here or am I missing some larger functionality?

      ETA: I am aware of the requirement to use two keys (function + delete) to delete text to the right on a Mac. I do this so infrequently (maybe never) that I tend to forget. If I am deleting to the right it is almost always a block of text that I highlite then use delete or spacebar. Enabling auto-correct eliminates (for the most part) the need to right delete 1 or 2 characters.

  20. SvenJ

    If you are looking at a Blue Screen of Death, you're not on a Mac.

    If you aren't on the latest OS and have no idea why, you're not on a Mac.

  21. toukale

    In reply to lvthunder:

    Sure, but where can those PC makers go if not Intel? AMD is not a solution long term, so they are stuck with Intel for the foreseeable future.

    • dftf

      In reply to toukale:

      Why is AMD not a solution long-term when Intel are currently struggling to get-lower than 10nm for their chips (only lower-end ones currently are at that size; most are still on 15nm) whereas AMD are already shipping 7nm and are due to release 5nm ones this year?

      If you run Windows 10 on an AMD CPU it'll run all the same apps and games... so what makes them not a long-term solution? Have they lost a lot of money recently or something I'm not aware of, or are getting sued?

      • toukale

        In reply to dftf:

        Because AMD's so called advantage is not of a better designed cpu or something entirely different, they just have access to a better process shrink from TSMC and Intel at any moment can access it also if they are willing to pay for it. To top it off, AMD does not have the same volume power/scale as Intel.

    • Greg Green

      In reply to toukale:

      AMD market share is rising not falling. Why do you think it’s not long term?

  22. remc86007

    I like companies going after each other.

    It seems like a clever marketing firm could come up with some 30 second tv ads that would demonstrate the real life annoyances that arise when trying to use a Mac for business in a largely Windows environment. I know that Macs integrate just fine into many lines of business, but not all, and the the excuses and workarounds you hear from Mac fans are really just not practical for the average technically illiterate person. Tech reviewers (who are largely journalists) often gloss over compatibility problems as if they can largely be worked around; but that simply isn't true for most average people.

    I know an older gentleman who spent $2k on a Mac laptop last year. He loves it (not surprising, since he was upgrading from a $400 Windows 8 machine). He called me one day asking how he could get a Windows application running that he had to have for work that he does for a charity. We talked about the idea of setting up Parallels, but, as one can imagine, the time it would take (for me) to set it up and the potential compatibility issues it could have for a fairly critical application were just not worth playing around with. Now he carries a Mac and cheap PC. He probably would have been better off just buying one high-end PC, but somehow the compatibility advantage of Wintel has slipped out of the minds of most non-techsavy people.

    • Saarek

      In reply to remc86007:

      In the future, for that pesky windows only app, especially old ones like the one he is likely using for charity, give PlayOnMac a shot. It's super easy to setup with a nice GUI, is free and works a treat.

    • txag

      In reply to remc86007:

      A VM would work for most programs, and would not be hard to operate.

    • dftf

      In reply to remc86007:

      "[...] annoyances that arise when trying to use a Mac for business in a largely Windows environment."

      That's by-design: the Apple ethos has always been that it's an individual experience. So devices are pretty-much always seen as standalone. I think there is some support for Windows GPOs on macOS, but usually you just use a phone/tablet solution, like VMWare Airwatch or Microsoft InTune, and enrol a mac device that-way. (There did used to be a thing called "macOS Server", which originally was a separate product, on its own CD/DVD; then it became a role you can install as part of a regular macOS install; not sure if it still exists now?)

      "Now he carries a Mac and cheap PC"

      Given you said be purchased the mac laptop last-year, I'd think it likely it would be a non-M1 model, and using an Intel CPU. In which case, Boot Camp would have also been an option, and he could switch between Windows 10 and macOS on the same device...

  23. dftf

    "If you can flip through Photoshop thumbnails with your actual thumb, you’re not on a Mac". No, but you might be on an iOS or Android device... or using a touchscreen laptop (or touchscreen desktop-monitor, attached to a PC) that runs an AMD or ARM processor. This is hardly a feature specific to using an Intel CPU!

    I'd imagine the new M1 isn't affected by Meltdown or Spectre, either...!

    I'm sure Intel are rattled by the new M1, and have good-reason to be, given they are currently stuck on, what, 15nm for most processors, and 10nm only for lower-end ones that don't run too-hot? Whereas AMD are currently on 7nm and working-on 5nm?

    Let's hope their new CEO can turn-things around, as otherwise I'd struggle to see why you'd want a lower-end Intel CPU (Celeron, Pentium, Core i3 and some Core i5) in a future device instead-of an AMD equivalent (Ryzen 3 and whatever AMD's equivalents to Pentium and Celeron are thesedays) that will use less-power...

  24. toukale

    Not sure what Intel is hoping to accomplish with those ads. Last time I check, Apple is not a competitor of theirs so why bother? I would understand it if Apple ever entertained the idea of selling their chips but we know that's not going to happen (if ever) so why bring more light to it. Who is Intel is trying to convince? Its certainly not going to convince those that want a Mac. Is Intel trying to convince other oem's from going down the same path? Which of those vendors have the expertise, resources and motivation to go on such a journey? I looked around the usual suspect and it makes little sense for any of them to go down that path (right now).

  25. dftf

    In reply to lvthunder:

    Clearly for the younger-generations, touchscreen is an important feature: it won't be long before a physical mouse and keyboard become as alien as a floppy-disk!

    But my point was: sure, Apple's desktops and laptops don't come with touchscreens currently... but of devices that do, there is no-need for them to run an Intel CPU to accomplice that feature anyway!

    • VancouverNinja

      In reply to dftf:

      Apples insistence to not supporting touchscreens is simple pathetic.

    • winner

      In reply to dftf:

      I have a chromebook with a touchscreen. And IMHO more often than not, it's a pain in the ass. I mess things up every time I try to adust the screen tilt because I touch something inadvertently. If I do touch the screen for an actual intended reason I have fingerprints all over it. Over 90% of the time I'd rather do my navigation with keys or a touch pad.

      • dftf

        In reply to Winner:

        It's a pain-in-the-ass for you: but you're not everyone.

        Many young (as-in say age 10 or younger) right-now will be much-more familiar with touchscreen-only devices, like a smartphone or tablet.

        And, of course, you can pair a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse to an Android device (and I'm sure recent versions of iPad OS have introduced support too). And with how many features that were previously only in the "full-fat" desktop versions of apps are getting ported-across to the iOS and Android versions, eventually you may not need macOS or Windows... just use your iOS or Android device in "desktop mode" when needed

  26. winner

    I have a better idea for Intel. Take on Apple by putting out much better CPUs that are actually competitive.

    • dftf

      In reply to Winner:

      Well, first-off, surely AMD would be better-placed to compete against the M1, given they are already working at 7nm, with 5nm chips due by the end of this year?

      But second: I'm not sure for the foreseeable any chips designed for Windows PCs will be able to improve to the same degree, as all 64-bit chips must support both the AMD64 and Intel32 instruction-sets. As of macOS 10.15 "Catalina" (Oct 2019), Apple's OS went 64-bit only. Microsoft's main-version of Windows still supports 64-bit and 32-bit apps, and they even still provide the "32-bit" version of Windows, that has a 32-bit kernel and runs 32-bit apps and drivers, along with 16-bit apps.

      So... while I'm sure it would be possible to integrate the RAM into the CPU to reduce that bottleneck, I'm not sure how-close to the M1 other CPUs can get when the 32-bit instruction-set and circuitry is still mandatory...

      • winner

        In reply to dftf:

        They might not be able to improve to the same degree, but AMD, a much smaller company, managed to exceed Intel's hardware. Intel has been fat and lazy for far too long and it's good that they're facing the competition. I expect AMD to continue to innovate. My latest build was a Ryzen machine, and I'm thinking about picking up an M1 Mac mini just for the fun of it, given the price/performance point.

  27. nbplopes

    The argument here seams to incline toward that any reviewer that puts this new tech clearly ahead of WinTel is somewhat dishonest, or at least lacking in experience. It’s an arrogant strategy and simply plain dumb.

    The war here should not be played with reviewers, reviewers against reviewers, I’m more a honest than you, etc etc, but offering tech than its simply better.

    No reviewer is glossing over M1 disadvantages. Just the other day saw a review from Macrumors about the Razer Book ... it seamed well rounded and balanced. It’s a very good Windows laptop. Surprisingly honest considering the main theme of the site! Yet indeed some seam to be simply excited with its advantages and know by experience that the missing pieces will be quickly put together.

    The disadvantages of using a Macs its mostly due to the fact the Windows is indeed a closed system by cheer volume, aka market share. Linux or any other OS suffer from the same kind of disadvantages. But they are generally minimal today.

    So uninspiring.

    • dftf

      In reply to nbplopes:

      The fair way to put it is: the M1 clearly is a gamechanger for Apple as it means better-performance, better battery-life, less-heat, and, through being an ARM CPU, the native ability to run iOS and iPadOS apps.

      But for Windows users, the only impact it may have is if it spurs AMD and Intel on to make their CPUs better, so future Windows devices will gain similar benefits. But even if that wasn't to happen, I can't see many users suddenly jumping-over to macOS and Apple devices just because of it.

      (Plus... is better battery-life a big-sell right-now when, due to the global situation, more people are working-from-home and therefore plugged-in near-constantly?)

      • nbplopes

        In reply to dftf:

        Yes! I believe that it’s just great. Pushing the industry forward not sideways as its usual when a duo of companies control the monoculture, Wintel.

        Arguing dishonesty of others, or lacking in experience is just plain cynical. It’s a street going nowhere.

        As for users jumping boats ... don’t know. But it’s always a possibility. That is why Intel is making these moves. If they felt that were ahead of the tech game ... the other guy would not get fired! Neither this one would be so fired up with a company with little more than 10% of market share. They feel it as a threat ... technically and commercially.

        That is reality. No matter how much Windows adepts play it down. I have seen this happen before. There is a storm coming, how big, no one really knows. Maybe does nothing to the market share, maybe it does. We will have to wait.

        In the end customers win better products.

  28. shark47

    I don't think anyone can argue that PCs are not important. I think the problem is that people who have a choice --and can afford it-- generally pick Macs (and this was even before the M1 processor came out).

    I hope Intel steps up its game because they're feeling pressure not just from Apple, but also from AMD and (maybe) Qualcomm.

    • Greg Green

      In reply to shark47:

      The price is the biggest excluder for consumers against buying apple computers. For half the price you can get an equivalent desktop or laptop. For equal the price you can get a gaming desktop or laptop.

    • Paul Thurrott

      So, that is absolutely not true. People do have a choice. And they choose PCs 85 percent of the time, not Macs.
    • Jorge Garcia

      In reply to shark47:

      I disagree with that statement. Of course it is at least partially true, probably even mostly true, but it is too close to the lazy "Mac's are the BMW's" of computers argument. I'll never swallow that claim because a BMW can literally do everything that a (same-segment) Ford can do, and then some. With a BMW you are literally paying for the same "item", just with better build quality/design and unquestionably MORE capabilities. But with a Mac, depending on your needs, you can sometimes be paying more for a LESS capable machine (Not just talking about processor performance). Plus a BMW, despite being better in every way, drives on the exact same roads as any Ford and has to obey the same traffic lights, etc. Conversely, Macs come with a platform lock-in aspect that can/should factor in heavily into the purchase consideration (a pro for some, a con for others) in a way that does not factor into the purchase of a BMW. I'll stop :-)

    • dftf

      In reply to shark47:

      "that people who have a choice --and can afford it-- generally pick Macs"

      No, not necessarily: there are plenty of people with lots of money who build a high-end Windows gaming PC.

      The cost of Apple devices will definitely hinder some people from considering them -- but, shocking as I know it is -- some people actually choose to use Windows as they prefer it. Don't assume everyone would be a convert if just they could afford it...!

    • VancouverNinja

      In reply to shark47:

      That is far too general. There are tons of consumers that can afford macs wouldn't want one if you paid them. At well under 10% market share its clearly a choice and not simply down to a lack of affordability. Not to mention Apple has been benefiting from the forced requirement of their Macs to compile apps for their platforms. That has made developers who can't justify having two good pcs (Windows and a Mac) to end up with only a mac as Microsoft doesn't care how or on what platform you develop on for Windows. Thus if you are developer with limited resources you are forced into mac ownership.

      Microsoft went from the evil company in the 90's to the only tech company that is not trying to leverage developers at this time and Apple has turned into that abusive tech company of this generation.

      • curtisspendlove

        In reply to VancouverNinja:

        Not to mention Apple has been benefiting from the forced requirement of their Macs to compile apps for their platforms.

        I keep hearing this. But please remind me again how I could effectively write an application targeting Windows APIs without Windows installed?

        Also, I think we are closer than ever to a time when iPad has a more full-blown version of Xcode on it.

        • nbplopes

          In reply to curtisspendlove:

          Yup. That is absolutely true. The idea that people use Windows virtual machines on the Mac to build apps targeted to Windows is just not practical. One can do it to some extent, a virtual machine is always a virtual machine. It’s just not as practical and productive as doing it directly on top of the metal.

          The key to Windows success against other options was never technical. In that regard they were mostly behind . Yet MS business model was just better than any other ... disruptive even. That was the key to Microsoft emergence over all others. BUSINESS MODEL! While everyone else was betting on device + os together ... Microsoft was betting on OS on top of OEM Intel machines ... a pure distributed business model. That allowed faster growth, a less production costs and more device choice.

          I really liked BG back than ... and I’m great admire of him now. He and Intel were the ones that put a computer on each household. But times are changing ... people are technically way way more mature now. That was clearly exposed in 2009 with the emergence of smartphones ... people opted contrary to the market share.

          • curtisspendlove

            In reply to nbplopes:

            Yup. That is absolutely true. The idea that people use virtual machines for Mac on Windows to build apps targeted to Windows is just not practical. One can do it to some extent, a virtual machine is always a virtual machine. It’s just not as practical and productive as doing it directly on top of the metal.

            Exactly. In fact, I’m slowly getting rid of my dual boot machines. I simply dislike having to reboot to access something else. I also don’t like running full-screen VMs (nor do I really even like RDP / VNC into other machines although I’ve decided this is the lesser of all evils).

            MS was pretty brilliant to come up with WSL. The one time where I am still pretty happy with VMs, though is VFIO Passthrough.

            I converted my main workstation / gaming rig to a Linux base OS (on bare metal) with a GPU / USB interface dedicated to VFIO Passthrough and I’m *loving* it.

            The benefits of bare metal and the nicety of only having it running when I absolutely want it running.

            That said...can’t really do that on a Mac. ;) However my Mac is pretty much just my portable workstation now. I plan on upgrading my MacBook Pro to an M-series later this year or early next. And it’s basically mobile + dock.

        • dftf

          In reply to curtisspendlove:

          I'm no developer, so could be wrong here, but... there is a thing called ".NET Core" and under "Build apps - SDK" for the newest 5.0 release it offers installers for Windows, macOS and Linux

          So... persumably that would allow you to code a .NET 5.0 Core app on macOS or Linux which would run on Windows 10?


          • curtisspendlove

            In reply to dftf:

            I'm no developer, so could be wrong here, but... there is a thing called ".NET Core" and under "Build apps - SDK" for the newest 5.0 release it offers installers for Windows, macOS and Linux

            I’m pretty sure .NET Core is the “least common denominator” kinda thing. But I could be wrong as I’m not a .NET programmer and haven’t been since about 1.x.

            It’s *possible* that it targets non-specific APIs, or does some sort of native translation layer.

            But then one could argue something like Flutter allows one to build an “iOS App” on a non-Mac machine and run it through a CI/CD chain that supports Mac builds (like CircleCI).

            Same sort of thing, I’d expect. Far from efficient. But possible. :: shrug ::

            Regardless. My point was simply that attempting to demonize Apple due to vendor lock-in is a pretty silly argument to make. *All* computer companies do this.

            Unless someone wants to tell me that Microsoft would be perfectly happy if everyone used OpenOffice on Linux machines.

  29. Jeffsters

    I love looking at the engagement (comments)on this site when you compare Apple articles to all others.

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