What? The Playstation and iPhone? You bet. First, some background and reference material for that background. Now using the same information linked above, I can logically say that the iPhone may be killing the Playstation. After all, this comparison can be drawn…both have browsers right? Both are on platforms that aren’t PC’s. I draw this conclusion of course to show the fallacy represented in the article above.
I love market share studies. They’re ultimately inaccurate. Yet many websites quote them and use them in drawing conclusions to appeal to readers. Good idea to get your click through rate to soar and score some cash on the old advertisements…
Most market share studies are most likely based on two things:
- Computers that are sold and what operating system is pre-installed on the computer
- Browser statistics
I’m going to assume that NetApplications, who published the chart, were using browser statistics…because it makes more sense than the pre-installed sales figures…which I would rate Linux much lower on since most OEMs do not feature pre-installed Linux. Browser statistics are inherently biased toward someone using a browser that communicates operating system data to the webhost. I have Konqueror at home set to display no operating system data (I can provide a reason for those that wonder why in comments…just ask). I could also set Konqueror to display FALSE data telling any host that I’m running Mac or Windows. So what’s the margin of error with possibilities existing like this? HUGE of course. Should we trust a “study” like this? Heck no. Would you trust a financial graph that was this accurate? You’re a brave soul if so.
Look at the perspective. The numbers are slanted. If you examine the growth of Linux and the growth of Mac quoted by Apple Matters:
“However, as is also being noted, it is the trend of these figures that bears consideration. In the last two years, OS X has seen continual growth, from 4.21% in Jan 2006 (the first month of figures), to 5.67% in December 2006, to 7.31% in December 2007.
In the same time, Linux’s percentage has risen from only 0.29% to 0.63%.”
So, Mac has just about doubled…almost. Notice that Linux HAS doubled. Interesting eh? So if this study is correct, Linux has seen more growth in the same time than Mac has by more than doubling. Most likely, this results in less users overall…but who cares?
I don’t care whether Linux takes over the world or not. I don’t care if the desktop is never ruled by Linux. I just like the freedom and choice it gives me.
I’m not against using Macs…I just think that Mac fans sometimes are more rabid than even open source zealots. Linux isn’t going anywhere. Linux doesn’t care about market share. Linux will always be used Linux is the future…whether we want it or not…because it’s open, free, and social and that appeals to people of all demographics regardless of income. Proprietary software will ALWAYS cater only to those that can afford it.
In closing, it’s my opinion that market share studies involving Linux should never be quoted. Linux has continually shown that it cannot be measured by the same means that proprietary operating systems are measured. Perhaps someday someone will devise a way to do this…until then the iPhone is sure kicking butt and taking names on that Playstation eh? Sony should be VERY afraid.
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