. . . Tuesday January 1, 2008

2008: The PG-Spot, Burritos, and Dog Fights

Here are my predictions for 2008.

Apple Gains Market Share

The Mac Guy has made about 7 major motion pictures since his role opposite Bruce Willis in the latest Die Hard blockbuster. The Dell Dude is currently plating burritos at Tortilla Flats in New York and trying to figure out how he became the only white man ever busted for scoring weed in a major metropolis.

Think of that as a metaphor for PC/Mac marketshare trends in 2008.

I bought Apple’s stock at a split adjusted price of about seven bucks (though I’ve managed to drive most of the associated profits into a remarkable NFL parlay losing streak) so I’ve been bullish on the company for a while. While the last few years have been great for Apple (largely due to the iPhone and iPod), 2008 could be the year their computer business crosses the chasm.

Why now? First, more of one’s existence is online (email, apps, photos, etc) so prior (and long unwarranted) concerns about compatability are disappearing. Second, millions of consumers have had a taste – mostly via iTunes – of what a good software experience can be. Third, Vista sucks. Fourth, Mac users are more likely to buy and consume media on their computers. Mac users are the customers you want the most. They’re no longer a fringe-group afterthought. Fifth, (pretty much) everyone cool uses a Mac. Sixth, Apple stores continue to improve on the simplicity of the purchase experience. Seventh, Mac desktop and laptop sales have been growing at a faster rate than PCs.

I just feel we’re approaching a tipping point. You’ll see an unprecedented jump in market share in 2008.

The PG-Spot

Family movies rocked the box office last year. And family entertainment scored massive television hits like High School Musical 2 which debuted to a cool 17.2 million cable TV viewers. Hollywood bean-counters definitely noticed this trend. It will continue – like it or not – in 2008.

It won’t just be family entertainment. I sense a whole lot of “family values” picts coming from the Christian Right where organizers realize that they can profitably target young audiences. And we’ll see a growing number of pro-life themed pictures now that Judd Apatow has proven one can make such a movie without sacrificing a single stoney porn reference. We get it, Judd. You get high and jerk off to porn like the rest of us do. Congrats.

TV Storms Online

Television content owners and distributors will pour new and old content onto the web at an incredible pace in 2008. The writers know this is coming (hence the current strike). Of course, this is a great move for the TV business. Are TV executives jumping in to avoid the bloodbath that the music industry manufactured out of a mountain of opportunities? Partially, yes. But there’s another reason that’s really obvious to anyone who’s ever watched TV content on the web. You can’t skip the commercials when you’re watching online. They can disable the fast-forward button on your flash video player, but not the one on your couch’s armrest. So they want you online and they’ll be doing everything they can to get you there in 2008.

Electoral Surprise

An as yet unnamed candidate will storm onto the national stage and take the presidential election after constantly repeating his campaign slogan: “It might as well be this asshole.”

Seriously, for a the last year or so I have been predicting that none of the current crop of candidates will make it to the White House. That prediction sounds crazier now than ever. But, on principle (and because of web caching), I will stick with prediction and call attention to it once again.

Canine and Abel

Dog fighting, less popular.

(And that one will please just about everyone other than sociopaths and postal workers who have delivery routes anywhere south of Newark.)

Football

My son will receive his first letter of inquiry from a college football recruiter (he’s nineteen months old).


Concentration is important!