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Cloning News...
Whats going on with the competition between Apple and the Clones? -

By:David K. Every
©Copyright 1999

7/5/97 -- Press Still Bashing Apple over business - I responded to one article about this in DarkSideZDNET - Nero Fiddles while Rome Burns. The issues are complex, but basically the press wants Apple to look like the bad guy in all this. There has to be a balance between Apple making money and the clone makers -- why is the press too daft to realize this?

4/11/97 -- Apple cloning fee's. - Now the press is trying to spin Apple and IBM as fighting tooth and nail over cloning fees. <Yawn>. Talk about sensationalism. Show me a company that doesn't negotiate hard and try to get proper value out of its products, and I will show you a doomed company! The Press is over playing it.

  • WSJ [Paid] , MacWorld (4/10), Wired <- Being more moderate about it, and spinning that Apple "All of a sudden" has decided to be reasonable. (Unlike Markoffs claims of 4/9 to the contrary).
  • MacWeek, MacWorld (4/9), Edmonton Journal, Dallas Morning News <- Sensationalizing the story. Apple is trying to destroy the clones or causing a rift between Apple and IBM.
  • NYT by Markoff (4/9) - where the latest rumors started (again). Everyone else was just running with another Markoff "story". Spun (as usual) in the most sensational and negative way possible. Another example of Markoff spin and idiocy (see DarkSide for more info on Markoff).

What is more reasonable? That Apple management had their heads up their butts, and suddenly saw the light (the next day). Or that the press had their heads up their butts, was sensationalizing or running with bad rumors (coincidentally started by Markoff in the NYT) and got it wrong?!?

  • Apple Recon has some good insights (as usual) on what is more likely going on.

Also note that the press is backing down a bit on the stories of Apple trying to put the clones out of business. Apple is now suddenly talking more reasonably. All of a sudden they came to their senses -- yet many involved claimed they were OK all along.

Read MacUser interview with the CEO of PowerComputing for more insight. Does this seem like someone getting screwed over by Apple as the press was spinning? Try this quote from PowerComputing -

We believe that Apple is committed to licensing over the long term...I think much of what we've heard about very recently in terms of Apple changing its thinking about licensing is...<snip>... As we all move to CHRP, the way that Apple extracts its licensing fees and executes its licensing program naturally has to change, and we're all expecting to see that. That's not a negative thing. I actually see that as a positive, evolutionary step. Because licensing has to work for everyone. It has to work for the clonemakers. It has to work for the customer. And it also has to work for Apple.

It is interesting that while the press is claiming that Apple is trying to screw the clone-makers, the largest Mac clone maker doesn't see it that way.

So what is most likely to have happened? Apple is increasing their fees for MacOS 8 and Rhapsody to compensate for phasing out their Hardware licensing profits (big surprise), and they used fees to help motivate clone makers to cooperate with Apple instead of trying to pirate Apple's markets. No shocker there. This sounds like what I was saying a month ago, and nothing like what the press was saying a month ago.

3/8/97 -- Apple Raising the cloning fee's? That what there is a lot of babble about --the Press has worked themselves up and getting all bothered - and is trying to convince people that Apple was trying to choke out the clones (started with NYT?). Turns out it was just garbage sensationalism - the facts seem to be that Apple is just trying to compensate for lost hardware licensing revenue, and most of the Clone makers aren't very upset.

  • PCWeek, CRN <- where the story originated. There are a few other CRN parrots, but so far the story has only come from CRN and some statements likely taken WAY out of context. MacWeek - Gets down to the brass tacks on the issue.

Created: 07/05/97
Updated: 11/09/02

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