“Apple is going in a different direction than we want to go.” That is the statement from a long-term Apple customer (10+ years) we recently talked to. The Apple Store in Palo Alto has recently been revamped to where the iPod and its accessories seem to make up the majority of the new store layout. Media software has been tucked into a little corner in the back. Enterprise software for Small and Medium Enterprises (SME), like FileMaker Pro Server is virtually non-existent, “you can get that online” was the response from an Apple representative.
Did you know Apple is actually making more strides than ever in the enterprise business? Oracle, MySQL, and a lot of other mission-critical software now run on OS X. Apple risks losing SME foothold if it does not carefully balance advertising the iPod trojan horse with the reasons why it created the iPod, selling higher-margin products. Enterprise software may not be bought in a retail store, but providing exposure and demo stations with enterprise and SME solutions are critical to changing a destructive perception. Or does Apple plan to open new Business Stores soon?