Apple Is Getting Stronger On Microsoft's Home Turf

The latest IDC report has the Mac outpacing PC growth by seven to one — Mac unit growth was 23.5% versus 3.4% for the whole PC market. But that’s not the amazing part.

The amazing part is that the Mac is growing fastest among very large businesses — the enterprise customers that have been Microsoft’s core area of strength for years. The following chart from AllThingsD, based on IDC data, tells the tale:

Mac growth by segment

Photo: IDC/AllThingsD

Some of this is because of simple maths: there were fewer Macs by percentage in enterprises to begin with, so a relatively low number in absolute sales looks huge when you translate it to a percentage.

Even so, until recently Macs were not even considered in most enterprises outside the art department. Now, thanks to the halo effect from the iPhone, they’re taking their place alongside PCs.

This is why Microsoft is investing so heavily to get a foothold in the smartphone market, even though it only earns about $15 for every phone sold — as users bring non-Microsoft mobile devices into the enterprise, they start to question the assumption that every desktop needs a Windows PC with Microsoft Office. It’s a small wedge, but that’s how Microsoft toppled the mainframe 25 years ago.

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