updated 12:30 pm EDT, Wed April 5, 2006
Boot Camp to help AAPL
Anlaysts believe this morning's release of Boot Camp may have a signficant impact on the industry. American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu said that the release of the software to allow users to install and run Windows XP on Intel-based Macs could hurt other PC makers, while growing Apple's own market by attracting more switchers. "Steve Jobs did not disappoint on the 30th anniversary after all," Wu told clients in his research note, refering to this morning's announcement of the beta of Apple's Boot Camp. Available as a beta download now and expected to ship with Mac OS X Leopard, the next-generation operating system from Apple, Wu believes the release "is a big deal [that] potentially could be a significant game changer." The report noted that Apple's allure to switchers was limited because users were wary without Windows support.
Apple's stock was up more than five percent in mid-day trading, despite lower price targets announced yesterday by Lehman Bros and S&P, as well as UBS. Despite the relatively small cut in AAPL's price target to $95, UBS maintains a 'buy' rating on Apple stock.
"A key reason why Apple has not gotten more 'switchers' has is likely due to a lack of strong Windows compatibility, but now with Intel processors and chipsets, they are able to offer full compatibility with Windows XP on Mac."
The analyst also said that with support for both EFI and BIOS for booting, Microsoft's Vista operating system, now due in January, will also likely be supported on a Mac.
"We view this as an incremental negative for HP, Dell and other PC makers as Apple will be able to garner additional PC market share." The firm reiterated its 'buy' rating on Apple with a price target of $101.