Still more pundits are giving their opinion on whether now’s a good time for Mac users to jump into the Mac OS X waters now that version 10.1 is here and native applications are arriving.
Jon Fortt of the
Mac OS X is “ready for mass adoption.”
He praises the enhanced features that were lacking in earlier versions and likes what he sees in such OS X native programs as Office 10 v. X beta (“the best-looking piece of software I’ve ever seen”), Internet Explorer 5.1 (“the original browser now performs better” though still slower than IE under Mac OS 9.x), Quicken 2002 (“which can do everything that other versions could, and also has features for downloading information from a couple of brokerages), WorldBook 2002 Encyclopedia (which may “encourage some education customers to try OS X”), Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 (“the game’s 3D graphics are eye-popping and game play is responsive”), and Connectix’s Virtual PC OS X Test Drive (“better than the OS 9 version”)
Fortt finds that Mac OS X 10.1 is as fast as Mac OS 9 in most functions. He describes it as “the operating system Apple has been trying to build since 1987,” one that can handle complex networking, multiple programs running at once, and rich 3D graphics and video. Fortt also thinks that Mac OS X is “probably the best-looking PC operating system ever, with its jewel-like Aqua interface and its photo-realistic icons.”
If your Mac has plenty of memory and your peripherals have been cleared for Mac OS X compatibility, jump right in, he recommends. Those who shouldn’t take the plunge yet are professionals who depend on such software as Photoshop.
Meanwhile, in a
article, Greg Chang praises Mac OS X 10.1, but notes that Apple is still waiting for some basic software programs tailored for the new system. This means folks should be cautious about making the plunge, he says.
The columnist says that some programs are slow making the transition because “they must be rewritten almost from scratch to work with OS X.” Of course, that goes against Apple’s official line about Carbonization, so it seems all things are relative.
Chang thinks that a lack of Mac OS X native software, including Apple’s own Final Cut Pro, has kept Apple from getting the sales boost from the next generation operating system that it could.
“It’s not contributing in any meaningful way to hardware sales because of the lack of third-party software support,” David Bailey, an analyst with Gerard Klauer Mattison, who rates Apple “neutral” and owns the shares, told Bloomberg. “Until the critical mass of applications are out there, we wouldn’t expect to see people rush out and buy a new Mac or install OS X.”
Some software companies have found the new system more difficult to work with than expected, according to Chang.
“It’s definitely a new animal for us, so it’s been a challenge from a development standpoint,” David Loomstein of Symantec, is quoted as saying.
Loomstein added that things probably would get easier with Mac OS X 10.1, because the system will be changed less frequently.
Apple may see increased interest in its new computers once programs such as Office are released, and if the programs are improved over previous versions, analysts said.
“Typically, new applications would stimulate demand,” Rob Enderle, a computer industry analyst for Giga Information Group, told Chang. “At least it keeps them from slipping further. With the market the way it is, you’re going to take what you can get.”
The release of Microsoft’s Office for Mac, which works only on the new system, may be a marquee event for OS X, Chang writes. Unfortunately, Photoshop for Mac OS X isn’t due until 2002.