Sunday, March 22, 2009

Why Apple Might Be Screwed (or Why Psystar May Have A Case)

Anyone who knows me (or this blog) knows I'm a "dyed-in-the-wool" Apple fan.  Yes, I drank the Kool-Aid, it didn't kill me, and I actually LIKE grape Kool-Aid.
That being said, I've been thinking on the Psystar v. Apple case and wonder if they might not have a real case.  Yes, I realize that Apple doesn't sell hardware without an OS, that they sell "systems" of hardware combined with the OS to "make it go."  But they DO sell the OS by itself, without any hardware.
But...does anyone remember back in the 90's when Microsoft released Windows 98?  And they said that they Internet Explorer browser was "part of the OS" and couldn't be removed without damaging the OS?  There were legal challenges both here and in Europe.  Microsoft was forced to open it's API to third party developers.
And recently, in Europe, Microsoft was forced to provide Windows without bundling Windows Media Player.
So, Apple's "bundled system" argument may not fly, the EULA not withstanding.  I've always thought that, as users, we should try to break the EULA stranglehold anyway.  Once I buy an OS or other piece of software, what business is it of the manufacturer what I do with it?  As long as I know that I'm using it in an unapproved way, and don't sue them if it destroys my system or data, who cares?
I'm anxious for the real arguments to begin in the case, and settle this once and for all.

No comments: