Is Microsoft's Vista behind Apple's alleged 'Leopard' delay?

Is Microsoft's Vista behind Apple's alleged 'Leopard' delay?

Summary: How much does Vista compatibility matter to Apple and current/future Apple buyers? With a number of existing Microsoft customers holding off from upgrading to Vista for a variety of reasons, does Vista compatibility really merit Apple delaying a new product release by several months?

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TOPICS: Apple
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DigiTimes is reporting that Apple's Mac OS X 10.5 'Leopard' release has been delayed from April to October. The reason, DigiTimes claims: Windows Vista.

Apple is holding off on the Leopard release in order to make "BootCamp" -- its software allowing Windows to run on Mac OS X -- Vista-compatible, according to the report. (Currently, BootCamp supports Windows XP only.)

I have asked Apple for comment on DigiTimes' report. So far, no word back. A company spokesman provided the following statement:

"We don't comment on rumors and we've made no announcements about Leopard availability more specific than Spring 2007. "

(So all that means is Apple hasn't yet officially updated folks on Leopard availability.)

Back to the original premise. If DigiTimes is right, it will be interesting to see how Apple plays this. Will Apple blame Vista for Leopard being several months late? (Ditto with Mac fans.)

If so, Apple wouldn't be the first vendor (including some of Microsoft's own software units) to claim that Vista's slips resulted in its inability to release Vista-compatible software in a more timely manner.

But how much does Vista compatibility matter to Apple and current/future Apple buyers? With a number of existing Microsoft customers holding off from upgrading to Vista for a variety of reasons, does Vista compatibility really merit delaying a new product release by several months?

What's your take? If Leopard is, in fact, delayed, is making sure BootCamp is Vista-compatible a good enough reason?

Topic: Apple

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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