See You At The Movies?


An open letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs:

Dear Steve, I had a free afternoon last week and was thinking about staying home and watching the Pixar picture "Finding Nemo" on DVD. Instead I decided to make the trip downtown to check out the Macworld show here in Boston. Wish you could have been there.
It would have been great to see you, and you would have been out of your mind with joy to see Apple solution providers promoting Apple products and solutions. These guys dominated the show. In fact, the Apple Specialists, a marketing co-op of Apple solution providers that brought 65 partners to the show, had the largest booth, and it was consistently packed with clients. The passion, and there is no other word to describe it, of the Apple partners was truly impressive. They love the products, the company and you. And they all report that their business is growing. Their biggest problem in a lot of cases is getting enough products.

STEVEN BURKE
Can be reached at (781) 839-1221 or via e-mail at sburke@cmp.com.

That's the good news. Now let's talk about what you can do better. Clearly, this passionate partner community could be nurtured to produce even more dramatic numbers. These partners want to hear from you personally, and they want your vote of confidence.
Lou Giovanetti, co-owner of CPU Sales and Service, which averages about $50,000 a month in Apple business and was in a booth with security vendor SonicWall, compared the prevailing Apple partner sentiment to that felt by Boston Red Sox fans, who have suffered through strings of near-championship seasons. "Even though Apple has kicked us," he said. "We still love them. I can't explain it."

Steve, we all love the Pixar movies and the iPod and the iTunes store. But the Apple computer business is at risk. Apple's market share is now under 2 percent.
What will happen if it drops below 1 percent? Wouldn't it be great to increase that share number? Without more partners selling Apple solutions, you are in danger of becoming a footnote in the history of computing.

Steve, in the early days you made a decision not to license the Macintosh OS and build a bigger platform.
That decision has haunted you for years. I hate to say it, but you're making the same mistake all over again. Get more partners involved, Steve. And if you do end up driving the Apple computer business into the ground, then I guess I'll see you at the movies.

What do you think of Apple? Let me know at (781) 839-1221 or via e-mail at sburke@cmp.com.