Apple is to dismantle its Claris software subsidiary with the loss of 300 jobs. Apple will take back the Mac OS and ClarisWorks suite, to be developed inhouse at Apple in future. The remainder of Claris will be renamed FileMaker, and will focus on developing the FileMaker Pro database line for both PCs and Macs. ClarisWorks is likely to be renamed MacWorks. Claris' manufacturing plant in Dublin will close at the end of July. Apple refused to say how many of the 120 jobs at the plant will go. The decision could foreshadow moves to sell off FileMaker altogether, according to Input analyst Jamie Snowdon: "FileMaker is probably the most popular database for the Mac. It would help Apple's biggest problem, which is revenue." James Silcock, Claris's UK marketing manager, said the move will allow Apple to focus on its core education market and make FileMaker sharper in the commercial sector. "After two years of growth in the Mac OS, Apple wants to bring it back under its control as part of a strategy to build on its strength in the education market," he explained. "We have found that FileMaker Pro and Claris Home Page information management databases are popular with business." Claris, which was spun off from Apple in 1987, posted revenues of $91.1 million (#54.9 million) in the last quarter. In the same quarter Claris sold $24 million (#14.4 million) worth of FileMaker Pro, half of which were PC sales. Sales of the Windows version of FileMaker have more than tripled in the last two years, according to Apple. STEVE JOBS: STAYING OR GOING? Despite insisting that his position as Apple CEO is temporary, Steve Jobs continues to reshape the company with the decision to dismantle Claris down the middle. Jobs is believed to have a strong personal interest in Apple's operating systems, and was keen to have the Mac OS back under the direct control of Apple. In the past, Claris engineers working on the Mac OS, continued to work on features Apple had cancelled. Jobs would like to see more co-ordinated work on the OS in order to promote the development of Mac applications.
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