Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Apple announces new software to let users run Windows XP on Macs

Well, this is a very interesting development:
To broaden its appeal in a Windows-dominated world, Apple Computer Inc. unveiled software Wednesday to help owners of its new Intel-based Macs run not only its own operating system but also Microsoft Corp.'s rival software.

Apple's shares surged as Wall Street bet the move would help Apple grow its current worldwide personal computer market share beyond the current range of 3 percent to 4 percent by attracting more business and home users.
The software, which is in beta, is called "Boot Camp". It is available now. Apple says the software will allow users with a Microsoft Windows XP installation disc to install Windows XP on an Intel-based Macintosh computer.

Basically, Boot Camp makes it possible to have a computer that can run both Mac OS and Windows. Users can switch between the operating systems by rebooting their Mac machines. Boot Camp will be a part of Apple's next version of the Mac OS (Leopard).

It's certainly intriguing news. It sent Apple shares soaring in trading today.

Microsoft's response?
"We're pleased that Apple customers are excited about running (Windows), and that Apple is responding to meet the demand." Kevin Kutz, a director in Microsoft's Windows Client Group, said in an e-mailed statement.

Microsoft declined to comment further.
It'll be interesting to see whether Apple can persuade more consumers to buy Macs now that there's software available to run both operating systems on Apple's hardware.

(By the way, if you're wondering, you won't be able to do the reverse - run Mac OS X on a standard, Intel-based PC):
"We will not allow running Mac OS X on anything other than an Apple Mac," Phil Schiller, company senior vice president, said in a June interview. The company has not gone into specifics, but appears to be using a TPM (trusted protection module) chip as part of its authentication mechanism.
So if you don't need or want the Mac operating system, you're better off just buying the typical PC out on the market today from a company like Dell, HP, Gateway, or any of the others.

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