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Mac Marketshare at Universities Booming?

The DailyPrincetonian reports on a growing trend amongst at least some universities.

The Princeton University newspaper reports that Princeton's Mac marketshare has been rising dramatically, with 40 percent of students and faculty currently using a Mac as their personal computer. This number is up from only 10% of Mac users on campus only 4 years ago. And this number could still be growing. This year, the University's Student Computer Initiative reportedly sold more Macs than PC's, with 60 percent of students choosing a Mac, up from 45 percent just last year. Students were offered a choice of Dell, IBM and Apple computers.

This follows a recent report that looked at a similar trend at many other colleges. According to a separate Pioneer Press survey, Dartmouth is up to 55% freshman with Macs (up from 30% in 2005), University of Virginia with 20% of freshman with Macs (up from 17% in 2006), and Cornell with 21% dorm network users with a Mac (up from 5% between 2000-2002).

PioneerPress attributes the uptick in sales to the popularity of the iPod, security of Mac OS X, design and ease of use.

These numbers are much higher than the general population, in which Mac marketshare numbers have been hovering around 5-6%. (All of these figures may not be directly comparable, as marketshare numbers typically represent new sales in a particular time-period rather than the installed base. Regardless, the numbers are still significantly higher than would be expected.)