Partly playing logical nitpicker, partly Devil's advocate, but we don't really know that. A few people in my peer group have found that Apple no longer represents enough of a value proposition to justify the fairly hefty (okay, "enormous") cost premium and have purchased Windows machines instead. Apple's numbers don't reflect how many people have simple said "Screw Mac" altogether.
We do know that because they still sell millions of iMacs. Of course there is some threshold where Apple will readjust if iMac sales decline too much but working harder for the same amount of money isn't in Apple's DNA.
Frankly Windows 7 is a good enough OS that Apple sales will always be limited because of the Apple Tax. It's Honda vs BMW.
The knee-jerk response is "Mac buyers went with iPads instead" but that doesn't make any sense because Windows buyers could just as easily do the same thing.
What you are seeing is the difference between consumer confidence and enterprise confidence. Enterprise sales had an uptick. That doesn't help Apple all that much.
The 21" monitor is rather meh. The 27" monitor is good enough that you'd have to pay more than $500 to beat it unless you want to do the dead pixel dance with cut rate 27" monitors.
The reason there's no 24" iMac is because that's a "good enough" size for most pro users. 21" is just too tiny. So instant upsell.
The question is whether a Mac Medium would sell in sufficient numbers to offset any loss of iMac sales. If the ASP were half what it is now but resulted in three times the sales, it's a win (assuming comparable margins).
That's key right? And I don't disagree. What an xMac proponent has to do is show that reducing ASPs by X will increase sales by more than a factor of X or it's a loss. But that's hard to prove.
Instead its a whole lot of handwaving about how they know how to build a more effective product lineup than Apple and of course sales will increase by more than a factor of X and Apple is just being stupid.
Imagine the Lennon-esque PR shock wave it would produce if Tim Cook stepped outside and announced "Okay, we've now got more money than Europe and Asia combined so we're gonna ease up and lower the price of everything we sell." I'm definitely no economist and there are at least a million ways I could be wrong, but something in my gut insists it would be a better approach than the current strategy of making buyers choose between a Mac or food! :)
Everyone's cost benefit analysis differs and there's no right or wrong answer. Apple generally remains a half-decent value if you buy at launch and they do last a long time. I still have a Core Duo 2006 Mini and a 2009 Core 2 Duo Mini in active duty with the kids.
Windows 7 is pretty decent on a modern machine but man, I'd hate to be running it on that older Core 2 Duo machine much less the Core Duo.
The Core 2 Duo Geekbench is 2768. The iPad Air is 2643.
Mavericks isn't teh snappy but it's not half-bad either.