Microsoft continues to stick with the Surface PC line despite falling sales. The entire Windows PC industry has experienced falling sales for a few years, thanks to the post-PC era and mobile devices– a segment Microsoft missed entirely. The only bright spot in the PC industry is cheap tablet-cum-notebook hybrids; basically inexpensive notebooks with a touchscreen hardly any customer uses as a tablet.
Microsoft is missing the boat.
The latest Surface Book 2 is the perfect example. It comes with the latest Intel Inside CPUs, new NVIDIA GTX GPU, up to 16GB of RAM, up to 1TB of SSD storage and great battery life. It’s also priced about the same as comparable MacBook Pro hardware, but has a touchscreen.
What’s missing? Mac compatibility.
While Microsoft’s marketing minions stretch the truth to say Surface Book 2 is twice as powerful as a comparable MacBook Pro– it’s not– the company misses a marketing opportunity staring it in the face.
There once was a time when Apple’s Mac hardware was among the finest you could get with Intel Inside. Mac notebooks were the de factor leader of mindshare and premium marketshare. Alas, those days are gone. Today’s Mac notebooks remain a generation or two behind purveyors of premium Windows PC hardware which comes makes even Mac users drool a bit.
So, here we are with new Microsoft Surface notebooks which have hardware that tops the premium models in the MacBook Pro line but they’re missing one thing. They don’t run macOS High Sierra.
…a portmanteau of the word “hack” and the name of Apple’s main brand of computers, Macintosh.
Or, put another way:
…a collaborative “hacking” project to run the Mac OS X computer operating system on non-Apple personal computers with x86 architecture and x86-64 compatible processors.
In other words, macOS running on what would normally be Windows PC hardware. Why? Two reasons come to mind. First, Windows PC hardware can be had for less than half the price of a new Mac notebook. Or, in the case of MacBook Air, and old Mac notebook. Second, Windows PC hardware with specifications that exceed those offered by Apple.
A Hackintosh gives Mac users all the advantages of macOS but at the price of a far less expensive Windows PC or notebook. Or, all the advantages of macOS on hardware that is better than Apple’s own.
What boat is Microsoft missing?
Making it drop dead easy for Apple’s Mac customers to install macOS High Sierra on a Surface Book 2 (or, any of the other Surface models). If any company could make a PC notebook run macOS it would be Microsoft. Search for surface book hackintosh on Google and you’ll find a few die hard Mac folks who gave it a try, but as always, a Hackintosh installation is fraught with potential problems.
With some tweaking to Surface Book firmware, Microsoft could make their own Windows-based PC hardware more attractive to Apple’s Mac customers who prefer to run macOS High Sierra on, 1) superior hardware, or, 2) less expensive hardware.
Legal issues aside, I see win-win for customers, a win for Microsoft because it sells more hardware and makes Apple and the Mac look anemic, and an embarrassed Apple because the company has fallen behind competitor hardware offerings. Microsoft has missed this boat. Again.
That seems to be a habit in Redmond these days.