Survey: Macs to make significant enterprise gains in 2011

Following the upbeat comments about gains of Macs and iPads in the enterprise and corporate environments by Apple executives on Monday at its quarterly analyst call, survey results released on Tuesday by the Enterprise Desktop Alliance claim that Macs will be the fastest growing systems in the enterprise through 2011.

Following the upbeat comments about gains of Macs and iPads in the enterprise and corporate environments by Apple executives on Monday at its quarterly analyst call, survey results released on Tuesday by the Enterprise Desktop Alliance claim said that Macs will be the fastest growing systems in the enterprise through 2011.

According to the survey of IT managers, Macs will comprise 5.2 percent of enterprise seats in 2011, up from 3.3 percent in 2009. More than 25 percent of all net new systems added in the enterprise will be Macs, the report said.

However, much of the growth in Macs will be found in organizations that already have Macs, it admitted.

The median percentage of Macs in those organizations will double from 5 percent to 10 percent. In addition 65 percent of the respondents had at least some Macs in their organization, and the number of organizations with a measurable proportion of Macs will grow to 70 percent by the end of 2011. While growth in computers overall is softening from 6.1 percent in 2010 to 2.9 percent in 2011, Macs will show 40 percent and 23 percent growth in those same years.

At the Apple quarterly conference call on Monday, Tim Cook, Apple chief operating officer, answered questions about the Mac and iPad in the enterprise.

The Mac is also increasingly getting pulled into an enterprise where the employees are able to select. And of course, this is a trend that we like to see, and that we think will continue in larger ways. But when people are given the choice, they would prefer a Mac, so Macs are being pulled in as well.

Earlier in the call, CFO Peter Oppenheimer said that more than half of the Fortune 100 companies were already deploying the iPad or now testing with pilot releases.

Cook added that Apple was building out sales and support operations to handle the new customers, as well as educating its carrier partners.

We're also enabling in training our carrier partners to do the same. You probably saw a announcement last week with AT&T, and that's a direct result of customers wanting to buy the iPad on a postpaid type plan. And so we're putting a lot of energy in those. iPhone has followed a trajectory that gets into same kinds of numbers as I pointed on iPad where, or a little bit higher by now, is 85 percent of the Fortune 100 are deploying are deploying or piloting iPhone.

And so this isn't a hobby or something we're doing lightly. We put enormous energy in the company, in engineering, in software to build a number of enterprise features in the OS. You've seen that, it gets better and better as we step through the different OS releases. And we're building the sales capability for those groups as well. It's clear that both the phone and the iPad have an enormous opportunity.

A theme of the call was that Apple eyes the enterprise market differently than the makers of commodity hardware. It offers a tested, elegant and integrated package of hardware and software. A solution, rather than a checklist.

Cook said that Apple wasn't going to develop different lines of hardware and software for consumers and the enterprise, as its competition does.

"This is another part of our simplistic approach to things that I think will pay us great dividend and is already starting to do so," Cook said.

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