What Adobe's CS3 will mean for Apple

What Adobe's CS3 will mean for Apple

Summary: With Adobe's latest Creative Suite ready for lift-off March 27 the prognosticators are trying to figure out what it means for Apple. Apple's enterprise customers (read creative pros) have been holding off on upgrading to new Intel-based Macs until Adobe's new products get rolling.


With Adobe's latest Creative Suite ready for lift-off March 27 the prognosticators are trying to figure out what it means for Apple.

Apple's enterprise customers (read creative pros) have been holding off on upgrading to new Intel-based Macs until Adobe's new products get rolling. Given the timeline given by Adobe it's likely Apple will get some boost in its June quarter.

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster says Adobe's CS3 is likely to ship three weeks after the announcement date. By the time it's in the sales channel it'll be April 21 or so.

Munster says:

"Our September 2006 survey of 50 Apple pro users suggested 50 percent of pro users would upgrade to an Intel-based pro-level Mac within six months of the CS3 launch. Since CS3 will be optimized for Intel Macs for the first time, many pro users have been waiting for this launch to upgrade from their PowerPC-based systems. We estimate there are 3 million Adobe professional users."

Munster adds that that 50 percent rate is most likely too optimistic. Applying a conservative 15 percent upgrade rate to a Mac Pro or MacBook Pro would add another 450,000 additional Mac units.

Meanwhile, there's a lot of chatter about Apple's new Leopard OS driving Mac sales. Prudential analyst Jesse Tortora said Monday that he expected a late March launch of Leopard. If Tortora is right Leopard would combine with CS3 to drive sales.

Shannon Cross, an analyst at Soleil Securities, doubts Leopard is coming that early.

"We note that Apple management has consistently held to a Spring 2007 launch time frame. Based on prior releases, we believe it takes three to four weeks at least for an OS release to go from golden master to public availability. Compounding this, the "top secret" features of Leopard have not yet been announced or made available to the beta testing Apple developer community. We think existing known bugs, plus the time required to beta test the "top secret" features make it very unlikely Leopard will benefit F2Q07 results and instead look for an April or May release with benefit in F3Q07."

Couple Leopard with CS3 and the iPhone and AppleTV launches and the Apple will have multiple product cycles driving it to the end of calendar 2007.

Topic: Apple

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  • The other missing product...

    ...is Microsoft Office. Add that to your list of things Apple users are waiting for before upgrading.
    tic swayback
    • Office isn't really a conern...

      Office isn't really a concern because it's not dependent on performance. You don't need a super fast optimization to write up a word document. You [i]do[/i] want optimization when applying filters to a 100-layer Photoshop document.
      • Generally true...

        ...but there are those who want everything nice and tidy before switching over. The less emulation one has to do, the better.
        tic swayback
    • I use NeoOffice.

      I could care less about Office.
      • I drive a Ford

        I could care less about Chevy.

        Wow, that was relevant!!
      • For most of what the average person does with Office,

        iWork is just fine. Pages beats Word and loads Word .DOCs, and KeyNote stomps PowerPoint into the dust and loads .PPTs just fine. The main thing missing is an Outlook clone, and really, only people using an Exchange server really need that. Apple Mail and iCal do most of what Outlook does [i]sans[/i] its Exchange Server client functionality.

        Excel and Access are only used by people crunching numbers or storing data and wanting to do forms and reports, and the Mac has equivalents of those available as well.

        And, of course, there’s always Office Mac 2004 (still no Outlook clone, though, but Entourage does do much of what Outlook does, including the Exchange client functionality). In many ways, the Mac versions of Office beat the Windows versions. Excel for Windows didn’t get the wonderful Lists feature until Excel 2003, whereas the Mac Office version had it since Office 2001 or maybe even ’98 (would have to check on that). (If you haven’t used the Lists feature in Excel, you’re making working with Excel [i]much[/i] more difficult than it needs to be if what you do has anything to do with rows of similarly-structured columns, which is what 95+% of most spreadsheets are.)
        Joel R
    • Some Creative users have been holding back

      CS2 is slower on Intel Macs than a G5 and maybe a really fast G4, but if you have a
      mirror door G4 or something like that and you've been waiting for Adobe, you've
      been missing out. CS3 Beta flies on Intel Macs and seems to be pretty polished for a
      Beta. It has definitely been missing. The prediction that Mac Pros and MacBook Pros
      will fly off the shelves may be slightly overblown. I think we'll see more Mac sales due
      to this, but some will be iMacs. A 24" iMac is a pretty nice tool and costs
      considerably less than a Mac Pro. Depending on how much customization you need
      and how long of a shelf life you need, an iMac might do the trick for a lower cost.
  • A win for both Apple and Adobe

    It should be a win for both Apple and Adobe.

    Adobe CS2 sales have been hurt by
    incompatibility with intel macs, the availability
    of CS3 AND intel macs should be a boost for
    both. I make my living with creative suite. I
    don?t know of one outfit that has bought intel
    macs, simply because of the CS2 problem. On
    the other hand, I know very few who have gone
    from CS1 to 2 because CS1 is superb and they
    didn?t see any real need to go to 2, especially
    since 2 would have problems with Intel macs.

    The one possible hiccup for Adobe is how well
    CS3 works with G4s and 5s. Companies don?t
    just dump a bunch of money willy-nilly on new
    machines and both G4s and 5s work superbly
    with the current flavors of CS.
  • Apple's expected to make an announcement...

    Apple's expected to make an announcement during NAB in early April, shortly before CS3 release. It'll probably cover the new nVidia workstation video cards ($4000+ 128-core beast, yes, cores) and the release of CS3.

    Should be an exciting month for design professionals!