Before we dive into what it means for developers, and in particular Xojo and other cross-platform developers, that IBM is pushing the Mac, let’s look at the recent history of the computer market. 10 years ago, the Mac had market share in the low single digits and was ignored by most of the world. These days the Windows PC market is in decline while the market share for Mac is rising at the expense of Windows.
How does IBM fit into this?
In 2014, IBM announced their MobileFirst initative to build mobile enterprise applications on the iOS platform. They also announced that they would let IBM employees choose a Mac for their work computer if they so desired. At that time, IBM believed they would be purchasing about 50,000 Macs each year. MacRumors reported on an IBM internal memo stating that IBM will likely be purchasing 3 to 4 times that number per year and expects 50% to 75% of IBM employees to choose a Mac. If that’s not enough, IBM announced that they are offering a new service helping large corporations deploy Macs into their existing infrastructure. Think about that for a minute. IBM is not only adopting the Mac in mass internally, but they are promoting the Mac into the enterprise.
Why are these policy changes good for cross-platform developers like Xojo users? Simple: the more level the desktop playing field is, the more important cross-platform becomes. This creates more opportunities for Xojo users to benefit from being able to easily create cross-platform solutions.