Apple could get $900 Million Boost from CS3

From Macworld

Apple will likely profit nicely from the launch later this spring of Adobe System’s first design suite built from the ground up for Intel-based Macs, a financial analyst said Tuesday.

CS3 also has a major halo effect for Apple, said Gene Munster, a senior research analyst at Piper Jaffray. “Since CS3 will be optimized for Intel Macs for the first time, many pro users have been waiting for this launch to upgrade from their PowerPC-based systems,” he wrote in a note to clients.

Munster said that a 2006 survey of Mac users in the creative fields put the estimated market for Adobe’s top-of-the-line tools at 3 million users. Assuming a 15 percent upgrade rate by those users to a new Intel-based Mac Pro or MacBook Pro machine, Apple will likely sell an additional 450,000 systems based on CS3 alone.

Although Adobe said Monday only that it would ship CS3 “later in spring 2007,” Munster pegged the actual release around April 21, three weeks after the March 27 launch. Three weeks is Adobe’s typical launch-to-ship time frame, he said.

Munster also pooh-poohed the talk by other analysts that Apple will debut the next Macintosh operating system—Mac OS X 10.5 “Leopard”—this month. “We think Leopard will be [in the] May time frame,” Munster said. “I don’t know where this March talk is coming from.”

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