Thanks to the move to Intel, Apple is no longer dismissed by broadcast facilities. Autodesk senior product marketing manager Rob Hoffman has revealed that his company, the maker of 3D animation software Maya, is seeing more and more interest from Mac using professionals.

According to the figures, Apple's Mac business is indeed growing. The Mac has enjoyed increasing popularity over the past year and figures from IDC show that Apple's PC shipments in the US grew 30.9 per cent to 1.06 million during the fourth quarter of 2007, with a 6.1 per cent market share, behind Dell, HP and Acer. But these figures don't necessarily reflect growth in the broadcast market.

Apple, however, has identified growth in the pro segment. Apple chief operating officer Tim Cook told analysts: "The Macintosh business is on fire. The pro segment itself, the part that we can measure the best - around pro audio software and video - pro audio was up very significantly year over year and the video business continued to perform very well."

"If you'd have gone to any broadcast facility four years ago and asked them if they wanted a Mac they'd have looked at you like you were mad because despite the elegant hardware and beautiful solutions, the performance just wasn't there," Autodesk's Rob Hoffmann explained.

"But now that that argument is gone. With the move over to the Intel side, the performance is on par with anything you can get anywhere else. And the operating system is better than anything you can get because it's based around Unix core. Facilities are now purchasing Macs and as a result we are seeing our sales increasing with the adoption rate of the Intel based hardware. Apple is selling a lot more computers and it trickles down to us," he added.

Looking to the future, Hoffman said: "Adoption has moved from a very design centric market to broadcast and it won't be long before you see film and games companies and other non traditional markets, utilizing Mac hardware. It's not a matter of if, but when."