The number of businesses planning to add Apple Mac desktops and laptops to their corporate mix has doubled since earlier this year, part of what an analyst calls the "consumerisation" of IT.
In a just-published survey, 68 percent of some 700 companies polled said they will allow their end users to deploy Macs as their work systems in the next 12 months.
"And Apple hasn't done anything to actively promote this," DiDio said. Instead, faced by users "begging to use a Mac," IT managers are reacting to the "consumerization" of technology in the enterprise.
"It used to be that business computers were more powerful than the ones at home," DiDio noted, "but just the opposite is happening now. The computers at home are more powerful than those in the office." And users want that power where they work.
DiDio pointed to other factors that have sparked an uptick in Mac acceptance, ranging from more competitive pricing by Apple, the popularity of Apple's iPhone and the ability of Intel-based Macs to, with virtualiaation software from the likes of Parallels and VMware and run Windows alongside Mac OS X.
Approximately 30 percent of the IT professionals polled said that the Macs in their organisations are running Windows XP or Vista in virtual environments, up two percentage points since the earlier 2008 survey DiDio conducted when she was at Yankee Group Research.
"After watching this for the last two years, I can say this is a steady, sustained trend," said DiDio, of the overall trend of Macs moving into business.
"I see no sign of it abating. I'm not going to proclaim that Macs are going to sweep Windows away in a tidal wave, but this is clearly Apple's best showing in the enterprise in the last 20 years."
Speaking of Windows, DiDio said that while many of the IT managers polled were lukewarm on Vista, only a small number plan to dump Microsoft and switch to the Mac.
"About 46 percent said that their companies were planning to skip Vista and move [from Windows XP] straight to Windows 7," DiDio said. Another 38 percent said they had no definite migration plans at the moment, while only 8 per cent said that they were moving to Vista currently.