Support for Apple's Mac hardware continues to climb. According to a recent report published by JAMF Software, a company that provides enterprise management solutions for Apple products, 96% of the 500 IT professionals surveyed in September 2015 say their teams support Mac. Additionally, 81% support iPad and 84% support iPhone.
IT professionals recognize tangible benefits to switching to a Mac. Compared with a Windows-based PC, IT professionals say that the move to a Mac could result in an increase productivity, more employee engagement and a reduction in costs. These sentiments echo IBM's finding that switching to a Mac resulted in a saving of $270 (£177, AU$373) per user.
Additionally, 75% of those surveyed said Macs provide better security compared to rival platforms.
Mac support in the enterprise is higher than support for Windows PC. Only 92% of IT professionals say their internal teams support PCs, and 28% of those surveyed say they support Chromebooks. Support for Windows tablets is at 46%.
The JAMF report only cited support numbers, and the survey doesn't provide specifics about Mac adoption and deployment rates.
Sixty-four percent prefer Macs because Apple's computers are easier to manage than other computer platforms. As Apple standardizes on common protocols, less maintenance is required and supporting the platform becomes easier.
"While a lot of the attention of Apple's success has been on its iOS devices, the survey results also show that Mac will continue to replace the PC at an unprecedented rate because it empowers users to be creative, productive, and happier in their jobs," said Dean Hager, CEO of JAMF Software, in an interview with ComputerWorld.
With virtualization software like VMWare Fusion and Parallels Desktop, Mac users can run OS X and Windows apps on the same computer side-by-side. Running two OSes on a single device could result in big savings for businesses in terms of hardware, support and software costs. Macs also ship with basic productivity software, such as Apple's Pages, Numbers and Keynote apps.
However, it's not just IT departments that prefer to support, manage and deploy Macs. Users are also choosing Macs because of their own familiarity with the platform at home.
"As organizations continue to implement user choice programs, more and more employees are choosing Apple devices for work because this is what they prefer in their everyday lives," David Alampi, JAMF Software Vice President of Product Management and Marketing, told ComputerWorld. "As a result, Apple is seeing increased adoption in the enterprise because employees demand Apple."
Apple is still strong in the education market, with 94% of K-12 and 97% of higher education organizations supporting Macs.
Apple's growth comes at a time when the PC market as a whole is contracting. PC sales are expected to rebound in late 2016, according to a recent IDC report, as businesses begin to upgrade their commercial systems.
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