Print 63 comment(s) - last by crystal clear.. on Mar 27 at 3:52 AM

"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town."

The battle between Microsoft and Apple in the computing market has raged on for decades. While Microsoft has a commanding lead in the operating system market with Windows, Apple isn't exactly backing down with OS X -- in fact, the Cupertino-based company continues to grab market share and a large portion of the $1,000+ computing market.

When Windows and OS X users get into arguments on the web, Windows users often point to OS X's tiny market share while OS X users point to how vulnerable Windows operating systems have been in the past to exploits. However, according to security guru Charlie Miller, OS X users should subscribe to the idea that "people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones".

Miller claims to have found no less than 20 zero-day exploits within OS X. Miller will present the exploits at CanSecWest next week in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Miller told Heise Security, "Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town."

"They sell lots of computers and nobody [shies away from] Apple computers because of a perceived lack of security," Miller added. "So in their minds, they don't have a security problem until it affects their bottom line, which hasn't been the case, yet"

OS X has made the news plenty of times over the past year for security holes. Last June, Apple finally fixed a Java exploit which went unpatched for nearly a year. In late August, Apple shipped Snow Leopard with a version of Flash that was susceptible to outside attacks.

Miller also took Apple to task last year saying that security protections in OS X weren't quite up to par with Windows 7. He noted, "It's harder to write exploits for Windows than the Mac, but all you see are Windows exploits. That's because if [the hacker] can hit 90% of the machines out there, that's all he's gonna do. It's not worth him nearly doubling his work just to get that last 10%."

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: Reader1!!!
By retrospooty on 3/19/2010 2:09:09 PM , Rating: 2
"Apple does not want a large share, they have proven they can make a large amount of money without it"

Not really. Apple is making money hand over fist, but its mostly ipod/iphone. Thier PC business isn't terribly profitable. Sure it makes money, becasue of its high profit margins but not like thier handheld products. You also have to factor in the money they spend to develop, support and maintain OSX. It cant be cheap.

RE: Reader1!!!
By omnicronx on 3/19/2010 2:44:55 PM , Rating: 2
I don't see how this invalidates my statements.. As of december 09, Mac revenue was pegged at around 10 billion, while iphone/ipod touch revenue was pegged at 16 billion. While you are correct in saying that margins are surely higher on the handheld products and as such iPhone OS device profits will most likely be in the double or more that of Mac profits, they are still making a pretty penny from Mac sales. More than ipod sales, more than itunes, more than the app store.

Retaining a small PC share does not hurt Apple, quite the contrary actually. They still have their 'elite status' as they are still a niche product, and as a result they retain security through obscurity while charging a premium for their 'superior' product.

RE: Reader1!!!
By retrospooty on 3/19/2010 3:36:36 PM , Rating: 2
I was not trying to invalidate you, just stating that Apple's PC's are not as profitable as you might think. When it was just PC's they nearly went out of business altogether.

Revenue is not profit. Revenue is simply money taken in. It doesn't count materials, labor , logistics, warranty, support, or R&D.

RE: Reader1!!!
By someguy123 on 3/19/2010 7:40:46 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't say they spend too large of an amount on R&D considering they basically just incrementally update their OS every so often with slight tweaks and their platform is closed. The low market share also allows them to get away with having vulnerabilities without having to put extra resources into fixing them quickly, if at all.

Their handhelds are clearly more profitable, but their PC profit is probably high especially considering their obscene premium in price. Apple nearly went out of business back then because their older designs didn't manage to attract the hipster crowd as well as they do now, and because they didn't have the ipod to spread brand recognition.

RE: Reader1!!!
By Focher on 3/20/2010 6:27:30 AM , Rating: 2
The margin on Macs is quite high. There are plenty of analysts that do cost breakdowns of every Apple product, and the Mac line holds its own in margin compared to Apple's other products.

RE: Reader1!!!
By SPOOFE on 3/20/2010 4:19:48 PM , Rating: 2
When it was just PC's they nearly went out of business altogether.

Oh, come on. Your comment is technically true but not very descriptive of the situation; Apple managed their turnaround (the return of Jobs, his "$1 a year" token salary, etc.) just based on their computers and a hefty repolishing of the company image. The iPod/iTunes dominance came after their fortunes were already rebounding.

RE: Reader1!!!
By KoolAidMan1 on 3/19/2010 8:32:31 PM , Rating: 2
This is incorrect. Looks over their quarterly filings, even with the successful and highly profitable iPod and the iPhone, their biggest source of gross and net revenue is still the Mac.

RE: Reader1!!!
By retrospooty on 3/19/2010 10:45:15 PM , Rating: 2
revenue is NOT = to profit

RE: Reader1!!!
By KoolAidMan1 on 3/20/2010 1:27:50 AM , Rating: 2
I understand. Net profit from Mac sales makes up the bulk of their profits, believe it or not. iPod sales are actually down year-over-year, something that the Mac had always made more money than anyways. This surprise (OMG Apple isn't just an iPod company!) was a big reason for AAPL's insane run in 2006-2007. iPhone profit margins are the highest of any product that Apple sells, but for the time being the Mac's net profits are still higher. This can absolutely change when the iPhone starts selling more, maybe even this year, but for now that isn't the case. The iPad can also change things since they have only slightly smaller profit margins than the iPhone. Any cannibalization from low end Macbook sales will draw more net profit away from the Mac side of the fence.

In any case, to say that profit from the Mac doesn't matter is incorrect. Apple has three hugely profitable product lines at the moment, but their notebook business (and to a lesser extent their desktop business) still brings in the most money (net profit after gross revenue :) ).

"A lot of people pay zero for the cellphone ... That's what it's worth." -- Apple Chief Operating Officer Timothy Cook

Most Popular Articles5 Cases for iPhone 7 and 7 iPhone Plus
September 18, 2016, 10:08 AM
No More Turtlenecks - Try Snakables
September 19, 2016, 7:44 AM
ADHD Diagnosis and Treatment in Children: Problem or Paranoia?
September 19, 2016, 5:30 AM
Walmart may get "Robot Shopping Carts?"
September 17, 2016, 6:01 AM
Automaker Porsche may expand range of Panamera Coupe design.
September 18, 2016, 11:00 AM

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki