Parallels Desktop 7 and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion on a MacBook Air

Apple is pushing its business-focused Apple Retail salespeople to sell Macs to businesses currently running in Windows environments, according to Apple retail employees briefed on the new initiative. Apple Retail Stores, in their business/professional sections, will now have a 27-inch iMac prepared with the Parallels Virtualization Software and Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system.

Select Apple Retail employees will also be trained on the Parallels and Windows software, and special Parallels demos have been created for Apple Stores. The goal of this new initiative is to push employees to be able to show businesses that currently work on Windows that all purposes of Windows could either be replaced or used (with Parallels) on a Mac computer.

For a number of years, Apple has pushed reasons how a Mac could replace a PC. This was heralded mainly via Apple’s Mac vs. PC ads. This new retail campaign, instead, focuses on the Mac operating system and Windows working together. Apple wants to leave no room for business customers to not know that they could switch to a Mac computer…

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Apple’s website has long had a webpage that discusses how users could run Windows applications on Macs. In the mid-2000s, Apple featured Windows on Macs in its stores to promote OS X’s then-new Boot Camp feature. Boot Camp allows Mac users to install Windows and fully run the operating system without OS X being visible. Parallels, instead, lets the Mac and Windows operating systems run side-by-side simultaneously. Over the past few years, these in-store Macs with Windows and Boot Camp have been removed.

This fall, Apple plans to release a slew of new Macs that could see interest from business and professional users. These launches include a redesigned Mac Pro, and faster MacBook Pros and iMacs. In the near future, we previously reported, Parallels will upgrade its software with new features. A tipster, today, has also let us know that a reference to the new Parallels has appeared on MacMall. Also of potential interest to Mac business and professional users, OS X Mavericks will be released this fall with improved file management and application window sorting tools.

In addition to this Mac push, Apple is moving to heavily promote iPhone sales in its stores. Apple, this week, has also begun a new business apps-focused iPad campaign.

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18 Responses to “Apple Stores to push Macs to businesses with new Parallels/Windows 8 demos”

  1. drtyrell969 says:

    Parallels is a truly incredible Windows emulator. I only recently started playing 3D games on it. It’s like I’m on a PC without rebooting. They always claimed that, but I never expected it to work.

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  2. Laughing_Boy48 says:

    It’s a terrific way to sell a few more Macs to those who absolutely have to have Windows.

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  3. This is a good idea. I use Parallels on my Mac Mini.

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  4. I have been using Parallels Desktop for Mac past 2 years; it’s just a terrific product. I can say plenty about it’s pros and I can’t think about one legit con. I have successfully converted 4 PC users to MacBook Pro in the past 6 months by one mere Parallels demo. It’s just right time, Apple realized this product’s potential and started using it for their Mac sales.

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  5. Good two-for-one idea here. For businesses that absolutely must run Windows applications (usually CNC controllers or some weird proprietary software), it can put prospective customer’s minds at ease. However, for those business customers that are not tied down to proprietary software (new businesses, or where OS X software equivalents exist that Business Teams and SEs can formulate a solution for the prospect), this is a great opportunity to shame Microsoft Windows and help secure a Macintosh sale.

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  6. Adas Weber says:

    To be honest, unless you specifically need software which is only available for OSX, you’re better off getting a Windows PC if you run Windows software, especially if you get one with a high performance SSD. I honestly can’t see the point in spending more money on a Mac PC (which is also a PC anyway BTW) when a similar spec Windows PC will cost less and do what you need.

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  7. I may be behind but macs don’t come with boot camp anymore?

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  8. @Robert Rooney All Microsoft really would care about is people using Windows 8 and buying Apps, or just using Microsoft software in general. Except for the Surface and XBox, Microsoft is not directly in the hardware business, so someone buying a Mac doesn’t matter to Microsoft if you are still using Windows.

    @Jose Guitian Cicero Yes, OS X comes with boot camp, but you have to restart the computer and boot into the OS directly. With Parallels, you run it side by side at the same time.

    @Adas Weber It’s a good idea if you’re a developer.

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  9. Earth to Apple! Businesses use VMware. Many large businesses and enterprises already own existing virtualization solutions through VMware with their vSphere ESX/ESXi solutions. They likely have existing VMware contracts that would make them eligible to receive volume discounts. VMware Fusion Professional has mass deployment solutions already in place and where images can be built, packaged and deployed to both physical and virtual solutions.

    I’m in no way promoting just VMware. I think Parallels is a terrific product and have used it myself, but if you’re planning to sell Macs to businesses, you need to provide them with a solution that easily integrates with some of their existing systems. Businesses won’t buy Macs just because they can run Windows too…deployment needs to be easy, cost effective and work with their existing infrastructure.

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  10. I’ve always thought of Parallels, and VMware as security blankets that allow Windows users to switch to the Mac without having to lose some Windows only functionality. While this is a good idea for the most part, I think Apple needs to be careful not to push Windows virtualization so much that they lose focus on getting developers to create Mac versions of their software. On both of the Macs where I have Parallels, I have 16GB RAM installed. This lets me give Windows 4GB of RAM, which enables it to run a lot faster, and more smoothly. Since my MacBook Pro has an SSD, Windows runs even better. I hope that the sales people at the Apple stores remember to suggest memory upgrades, and suggest that customers buy a Mac with more storage to allow for the Windows VM, which can grow to a large size if there are a lot of apps installed in Windows. Lately, I’ve found the knowledge level of Apple store sales people to be rather limited when it comes to anything beyond iLife, iWork, and basic tasks on the Mac. I hope Apple beefs up the training. When I worked at an Apple store, I also worked full time as a Mac tech in the I.T. department of a commercial printing company. Because of that, I had more knowledge of how Macs can integrate into business environments. Most Apple store employees don’t do I.T. work.

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    • “I think Apple needs to be careful not to push Windows virtualization so much that they lose focus on getting developers to create Mac versions of their software.”

      It’s a terrific point, Howie. I am running Parallels on my MBP, but have limited it’s usage only to the extent of “Windows Only” applications such as Microsoft Dynamics, SQL Server, etc. Rest all are natively on Mac OS. We need to draw a line between usages of these two OSes; to achieve maximum utilization of power of Mac & Mac OS.

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  11. RP says:

    A great to time for a massive Mac advertising campaign. The typical home user has no real NEED for full blown windows when they have a tablet. AND, businesses do not need the massive malicious threats posed by the Windows ecosystem.

    It’s funny how it worked out that way, that a pro user, or a business user is now better suited to a Mac, and with Windows 8 and it’s terrible user interface that panders to the home user, is not suitable for anyone.

    Home user, iPad, Iphone, professionals, Mac. Where does that leave Windows? Eventually gone.

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    • thejuanald says:

      Hahahaha if you think any home user can get even close to the same experience as a desktop or laptop with a tablet you’re living in a dream world.

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      • RP says:

        That’s where Google’s Chromebook comes in. The “dream world” you speak of is one where Windows doesn’t suffer the same fate as Blackberry/

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  12. As an occasional web site designer, on a Mac, the standout feature of Parallels is the ability to start up different versions of Windows, with different versions of Windows web browsers, to test out my web sites. Plus if Windows becomes corrupted or whatnot, just revert to a Snapshot pre-dating the problem. Goodbye reinstalling. It’s a remarkable app, and very well supported with frequent updates. And I get to keep my Mac with iLife, iWork, and a superior computing environment, IMHO.

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  13. I’ve worked in the PC industry for more than 20 years but have never seen any push to move from PC to Macs. I think Apple have pretty much given up on this now.

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