Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The "Real" Plan Behind Safari For Windows

OK, OK, so like the rest of the world - when Safari for Windows was announced - I let out a HUGE yawn. Then I thought "Ummm... safari is crappy on the Mac, why would it be good on Windows?" Followed by "Hmmmm... Steve Jobs is a smart guy - so why waste money and time on a stupid browser for Windows?"

Then two things occurred to me:

  1. iPhone Development. He's trying to get non-Mac companies to build applications for iPhone and since they can only build browser-based applications - they need a way to create and test them without buying a Mac. Smart!

  2. Take over the world. Now, this one is a bit of a stretch - so hang in there - but if Steve made his own browser, and he built his own virtualization software (rumored to be in development) - he could then just ship an OEM version of Windows Vista that was tweaked for the Mac.

The iPhone development thought isn't rocket science - by giving people a Windows version of the browser that's on the iPhone - it will help to ensure that more people develop cool software for it - thus making more people want to buy the thing.

The "take over the world" part - once I got to thinking about it - makes total sense. I would venture to say that at least 50% of people with MacBooks are running Windows on Parallels. This means that they have to buy the virtualization software, buy a copy of Windows, install and configure everything - and then "give away" 1/2 of their system to run it.

Now, if Apple came up with their own virtualization (or licensed one, or used an open source one) - and pre-loaded Vista - they can tweak it however they want. They could replace the default browser with Safari, Windows Media player with iTunes, Windows Movie Maker with iMovie, Windows Photo Gallery with iLife... then they would only need to port Mac Mail and they're all set.

They could even include custom drivers, tweak the settings, add the Apple logo everywhere inside the environment, etc.

That's a machine that I would definitely buy...


Kevin Darling said...


Safari on Windows might help make more websites Safari-friendly.

That doesn't translate to iPhone friendly unless they're also pared down in size. No one wants to scroll all over looking for the piece of the website you want, no matter how much fun it looks at first.

It also doesn't necessarily mean iPhone "apps", since you'd need plugins and simulators to act like the device.

Blogger Bob said...

I agree that more site would become "Safari-friendly" - but I would disagree about the need for simulators and plug-ins to act like the device.

If you have a touch screen interface - you can easily make graphics and other "normal" html elements that can do stuff. The disappointing thing, in my opinion, is that there doesn't seem to be a way to interact with the phone itself.

I guess we'll just have to wait and see - hopefully Apple will provide a validated way to allow developers to interact with data on the phone.

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