In his recent keynote Steve Jobs was quick to point out that 50% of the customers buying Macs at the Apple Stores are new customers. Now that is cool and Mac sales are obviously good, but one thing has been puzzling me. I only buy a new Mac once every 3 years or so and most Mac owners I know are at the same, or an even slightly longer, buying pace. Apple reported a 20% increase in Mac sales year over year for the 2nd quarter of 2006. So who is buying all these Macs? What is going on here?
One theory I have for this trend comes from an experience I had just last night, but the same scenario has played itself out many times over the past year. While at the Apple Store checking out the new Mac Pro there was a guy next to me doing the same. We got to talking over specs and other stuff and I soon discovered he was a recent switcher and was considering purchasing the Mac Pro for his business. He told me his first Apple purchase was an iPod and because of his experience with the iPod, plus the arrival of the Intel Macs and BootCamp, he felt comfortable enough with Apple to buy a MacBook Pro. After the MacBook Pro he picked up an 23″ HD Apple Cinema display to use with his aging PC, but the graphics card was not compatible with his old motherboard. He was now at the Apple Store to return the display and while there decided to just replace the old PC with a new Mac Pro and 30″ HD Cinema display. He also told me he may pick up a Mac Mini for his wife sometime in the near future.
So you see what is going on here?
This guy switched and in the course of a few months went from a PC user to the owner of (potentially) three Macs. And this is not the only story like this I have heard over the past year. Both Victor Cajiao (Typical Mac User) and Tim Verpoorten (Mac Reviewcast) switched and became owners of multiple Macs rather rapidly.
Macs are a disease (and I mean that in a good way). The Mac infects you and spreads like a virus. There is no cure and it will quickly be passed to family and friends. I myself have three Macs in my household which are all in active use and my immediate family, save one, are all own Macs. Now, I am not saying PC users don’t have multiple systems in their homes too, but often times their second PC is more of a toy for the kids and is used to keep real viruses out.
So I guess it’s true. Apple does have viruses. The good news is, the viruses are the Macs themselves.