Apple Lost the First Battle. Apple is Kicking Bootie in the Second.

Jean-Louis Gassée:

Two central points: 1. History doesn’t repeat itself. The Mac lost the first battle, not because of licensing issues but for lack of maturity. In its second act, the Mac has been gaining market share for 20 quarters and is now the most profitable personal computer line.

2. iOS/iPhone/iPad is in a much stronger position at birth than the Mac ever was. This said, I have no doubt the sum of all Android (and mutant) devices will inevitably become larger than the sum of all iOS devices. But, one or two iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, Apple TV?) will dominate their category and reap large (or the largest) profits.

What is a for-profit company in the business of doing? At the very core: generating profits. Market share is important but not when incremental increase in market share does not result in incremental increase in profits. Apple is generating profits, lots of it, more than Microsoft even. And way more than Google. In PC-Mac Battle 1.0, Apple lost, but was never this successful. Not even close. I’m with Gassée on this one: I don’t think history will repeat itself. PC-Mac Battle 2.0 started in 1997 and since then, for 14 years, Apple has been kicking bootie. And I think Apple will keep kicking bootie for quite some time.