Apple's Mac OS X 10.5 'Leopard' is being pre-ordered at twice the rate Mac OS X 10.4 was in the week before its release, MacObserver reports, with the current anti-Vista movement among the factors encouraging people to sign up to the new Mac OS.

Patrick Brown, CEO of Apple supplier Brown Computer Solutions said: "We’ve probably doubled the backorders of Leopard, compared to what we did with Tiger," he also observed that Apple’s move to Intel has led to an increase of Mac users.

The article also observes that poor reviews of Vista are encouraging people to stick with Windows XP or to move to a Mac for the first time. (See also: Windows shocker: 67 percent would buy XP over Vista.)

Many industry observers also note that Leopard's ability to run Windows in Boot Camp is proving too tempting a proposition for some non-Mac users to ignore.

With Leopard, "Apple has the best ever chance of extending its leadership position with a new class of computing interface, whether pocket size with a 3.5in screen, a 12in widescreen, somewhere in between or even on a larger scale as with Microsoft’s Surface Computer that resembles a coffee table," reports IT Wire.

"What Apple releases next is crucial, but all signs so far point to good that it will build upon the iPhone and take it to the next level, radically changing mobile computing once more," the report continues.

Other reports are far more glowing. Investor website Seeking Alpha's David Werling believes Apple is about to reinvent personal computing: "The world of personal computing is about to be rocked by Apple's Leopard, by core animation and the dumping of Windows as a workspace," he writes.

"The huge benefit of core animation is not iCandy it is about making the small screen manageable. How many document icons can one put in a 7 square inch screen? 27 at best. With core animation's coverflow using the same space - endless. In mockery of the flippant attitude of the Leopard bashers I would say: 'It's a post-PC, post-Windows world babe.'"

In a rare interview with the New York Times last week, Apple CEO Steve Jobs confirmed his readiness to push his company that bit further - with a focus on the interface.

Jobs points out that "he was struck" by the success of the iPhone multitouch interface, saying: “People don’t understand that we’ve invented a new class of interface."

This confluence of circumstance is unlikely to please at least one technology industry professional - Michael Dell.

10 years ago this month on hearing news that Jobs had returned to Apple, Dell advised his competitor to shut Apple down and return the money to shareholders.

Jobs didn't listen. Now, 10 years later, Apple's market capital is double that of Dell, and seems set to exceed that of IBM within months.

'This party is just getting started,” Stephen Coleman, chief investment officer at Daedalus Capital told Bloomberg. Deadalus began buying Apple shares in 2004 and owns about $4m worth. 'My clients smile a lot. So do I," the analyst said.

See also:

Mac laptop reviews