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January 10, 2006

.Mac Lives!

Peter Burrows

OK, I spent yesterday thinking about the implications of Apple's big Macworld news--the new Intel-equipped Macs, the ungodly 14 million iPods shipped (If any of you have any insights on how they pulled that one off, I'm all ears), and last but certainly not least, the iPod Radio Remote. Now, if I decide to fork over the $49, I can toss the ancient Walkman I still take on runs when I want to listen to baseball games.

Such news--and the torrent of free publicity it has generated from we in the media--is sure to help the company woo more Switchers. But I think the increasing integration of .Mac with the iLife applications could also be a powerful tool in that regard. That's because a number of new features use .Mac to give non Mac owners a recurring window into the Apple experience. Take "photocasting." Now, .Mac owners can set up subcriptions so friends and family can get access to photo albums that are automatically updated every time new photos are added--say, so grandma will automatically have new shots of the grandkids, without having to beg for them. Or using iWeb, .Mac users can create and then send podcasts to non Mac owners, who would view them in iTunes.

This may not be a major factor in the grand scheme of things. Jobs revealed that .Mac just passed one million subscribers--not bad, but not great given that it's been out for nearly a half decade. I think the $99 remains pricey, and the marketing for this service is nowhere near as crisp or as easy to understand as it is for many other Apple offerings.

But to the extent that it can give more people more ways to experience the iLife apps, I think it will give PC owners more reasons to consider switching to the Mac.

10:20 PM

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When you think back that Mac OS X was been compiled for Intel from day 1... 6 years ago...

I do try to imagine what "a 5 years old" .Mac service can become in the future.

Posted by: Luis Alejandro Masanti at January 12, 2006 02:18 PM

Unfortunately for the author (and me), very few baseball games are carried on FM, and I believe this thing only receives FM radio

Posted by: Dennis at January 13, 2006 07:26 AM

Actually OS X had been compiled for Intel since around 1993 when OS X was called OPENSTEP.

Posted by: Metalligoth at January 13, 2006 02:20 PM

I always hated a culture that thinks that the more expensive, the better. Totally un-american!

We will soon see the comparison between linux vs windows vs mac in the same hardware!

And we don't need to go against numbers. Statistics are already out there, just see the proportion of each system in the market and wait for the system of the future! the fabulous next!

Posted by: Guang at January 13, 2006 05:48 PM

There is no doubt about it. .Mac is actually a hidden treasure of Mac computer. I do agree that Apple is not doing as a great job promoting .Mac membership. One way to do it is to lower the price from $99 to say $59.

Another thing is that Apple has to come up with a stronger Mail program. It seems to me that Mail has been neglected for quite some time. There is no updated new features. Some one must be sleeping.

Posted by: paulchsieh at January 28, 2006 02:11 AM


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