Windows 10 Copies OS X and Innovates

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I'm Sticking with My Mac

I Will Stick With the Mac

Windows 10 doesn’t have me feeling envious at all. At its core, Windows is still a rattle-trap of various technologies. It is usable, but does not offer he stability and performance of OS X, which is a rock solid Unix operating system. Early adopters of Windows 10 are having problems. It’s best to wait for the dust to settle before upgrading.

I do think Windows 10 will be successful. For a few hundred bucks, you can pick up an ersatz Mac at Costco, along with a Polish sausage and soda. Tim Cook pointed out that the slump in iPad sales will change, as users upgrade their iPad. This might not happen, as Windows 10 is hitting the market before new iPads are released.

Windows will also be able to run iOS apps, using the Windows Bridge for iOS. This isn’t an emulator or virtual machine. Instead, iOS developers will be able to easily recompile their apps into native Windows code. Microsoft already has this technology for Android. A cheap Windows machine can run Windows, iOS and Android apps and costs about half the price of an iPad.

Keep in mind, it is up to developers to recompile the iOS or Android app to work on Windows. You can’t just use the same iOS app you bought in the App Store. I expect many developers will deliver their iOS and Android apps onto the Windows platform.

Apple fans need to get used to being owners of a luxury product. Even the most successful Apple product, the iPhone, has been supplanted by the multitudes of Android devices. Fanboys may claim these devices mostly run an older operating system. That’s not the point. Most consumers will buy the inexpensive version. They don’t care if it is a copy. They don’t care if it is better or worse. They will take a free phone or $200 notebook computer over a $700 iPad or iPhone. In the case of Windows 10, an inexpensive notebook computer can do much more than an iPad. Fanboys may applaud the iPad’s new Slide Over or Split View multitasking. These are features that have been available on real computers since the 1980s. If anything, it underscores the cult-like adulation of Apple fanatics.

I own a Mac, iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod classic and even an Airport Extreme. I am not an Apple fanatic. That may seem surprising, given how many Apple products I own. I can’t get excited about Split View multitasking on a device that costs $500-700. At best, it is slightly more portable than a notebook, if you don’t opt for a cover and external keyboard. For an extra $100 you can turn your iPad into an ersatz notebook computer that runs watered down apps and can now run two apps on the same screen. If you opt out of a physical keyboard, half of your screen disappears any time you type something.

Windows 10 will not affect Mac sales, but it will recharge the upgrade cycle for Windows PCs and detract from the tablet market. Tim Cook contends that iPad sales are slumping, but an upgrade cycle is coming too. (Is this why iOS 8.4 has rendered my 2G iPad virtually unusable?) Windows 10 will also usher in an upgrade cycle. Windows PC consumers are not known for camping out to get the next PC. If you show them something new and offer it to them at a low price, they will buy it. People will overwhelmingly choose a $200-300 Windows notebook over a $700 iPad. Corporations will do the same. Windows is good enough for most people and the price is right. I will likely replace my obsolete (after just three years) iPad with a Windows 10 notebook computer.

For your viewing pleasure, please enjoy this demo of the 1982 Xerox Star computer system. Notice how so much of what we do today is based on this design. Modern computers are far more capable, but the basic design of user interfaces is over 30 years old. In the grand scheme of things, everyone copied Xerox, yet this system never saw the light of day. Split View and Slide Over multitasking on an iPad in 2015 is not very exciting.

 

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