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Macinchat's MWSF rumors - Page 2

post #41 of 159
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Comprende?

Jesus Christ, Eugene, lighten the **** up! Is it really worth getting that worked up over? You're damn near as bad as HOM... Is price the only factor that matters with differentiating lines? I really don't think so.

Besides, you missed the point-- if Apple is so damn concerned about lines not overlapping, don't you think they would have dropped the 12" Powerbook when the iBook went to the G4? Is there really that much differentiation between the two lines? Not really-- but Apple doesn't seem too concerned about it... That is, unless the 12" Powerbook gets dropped in a couple of months. Do you think that'll happen? I doubt it. I think all of the laptop models sell enough to justify the existence of every damn one of them-- never mind the fact that there's precious little to distinguish between a 12" iBook & 12" Powerbook. Why couldn't the same thing apply to a cheap, small, headless box? Arguably, it'd have more differentiation from the iMac & Powermac than the iBooks do from the Powerbooks.

(Who was it that said a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds?)

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Apple's been keeping steady in sales ~800,000 units per quarter while their total marketshare slowly dwindles. There's no reason to dilute this number by offering more computers with even smaller differences between them in both price and specs.

Right, their market share dwindles because they don't have machines with competitive price/performance ratios (except for the Powermac G5s). Do you think that'll be the case when the G5 gets rolled out across the line? We've already seen a pretty hefty boost in Powermac sales because of the G5. Won't the same thing happen with the iMacs & eMacs? Won't there then be room for some overlap, like there is with the laptops?
post #42 of 159
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Lemon Bon Bon, how many people do you know with 14" iBooks? Frankly, I hate the 14" iBook for the very reason you cite. It offers marginal advantages over the 12" because its screen is STILL 1024x768px.

And yet, Apple STILL offers it, and has for what, nearly two years now? It would seem that they can sell enough of them to justify keeping that form factor around. Why couldn't the same thing apply to a CSHB (cheap, small, headless box-- I'm getting tired of typing it out)?

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Not only do they have to add manpower to support these, they have to find a place to manufacture them. They have to stock shelves with them and advertise them. They have somehow convince NEW buyers, not just old buyers.

Right-- just like they had to do all that stuff when they went from one iBook and one Powerbook to two iBooks and three Powerbooks. Apple's been there, done that. They can damn well do it again.
post #43 of 159
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene
There's no reason to dilute this number by offering more computers with even smaller differences between them in both price and specs.

Yup, I agree. The biggest problem with all these headless iMac/pizzabox/Cube ideas is that they really don't create a new market segment for apple unless you go below $1000. The only reason for Apple to worry about that segment is for edu sale, and they can attack that with the iBook. Apple would need to grow their sales much higher to add another cpu to the list and still maintain the advantages of asssociated with selling at the volumes they are now selling at. The original cube made sense for Apple becuase they were trying to make really high margins from it, so if it cut into sales of other CPU's they ended up making more money. The consumer figured this out and didn't buy enough. Did Apple release a cheaper Cube? No.

I wouldn't mind an aniversary limited edition G5 Cube, just to keep all the Cube fans happy and quite for a few years. However, a "MAC" aniversary doesn't sound like a good tiem for a "CUBE."
post #44 of 159
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by imacFP
... when I talked to her about Macs the two things that most put her off were the lack of an internal floppy drive and Office not coming pre-loaded.

I can't beleive floppy drives are still being used by anyone. I hated and stopped trusting them nearly 10 years ago. Now zip drives are, at least with me, starting to go the way of the floppy. I think that as the technology gets older and the price pressures increase, the quality goes down. Never had problems with 100mB zips in the early days. Now we are having failures all the time-and it sucks. Same was with floppies. didn't have much problem tossing them in backpacks when they first came out, but by the time AOL was sending them every other day in the mail they became utterly untrustworthy. There are so many other option to a floppy. Get her a usb flash drive or an iPod!

Office, on the other hand, will cost you-but remember if she really doesn't have to use all of its functions, there are options. TextEdit, keynote and old-man AppleWorks. Hopefully, MWSF will introduce iWrite.
post #45 of 159
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Apple would need to grow their sales much higher to add another cpu to the list and still maintain the advantages of asssociated with selling at the volumes they are now selling at.

How about doubling sales? If the rumor of >500k Powermacs sold is true that means about 300k sold for Q1 04, since they sold about 220k in Q4 03. in Q1 03, they sold 158k, so they'd be at damn near doubling their sales over the year ago quarter for the Powermacs.

I think there's going to be plenty of room to start diffrentiating their desktop offerings, once the G5 gets rolled out across the entire line.
post #46 of 159
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Originally posted by Gamblor
Besides, you missed the point-- if Apple is so damn concerned about lines not overlapping, don't you think they would have dropped the 12" Powerbook when the iBook went to the G4? Is there really that much differentiation between the two lines?

There's plenty of differentation. DVD-RW, 200 MHz and 256K L2, aluminum vs. plastic, video, DVI out, etc.

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Not really-- but Apple doesn't seem too concerned about it... That is, unless the 12" Powerbook gets dropped in a couple of months. Do you think that'll happen? I doubt it.

I think the PowerBook will soon see major upgrades.

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I think all of the laptop models sell enough to justify the existence of every damn one of them-- never mind the fact that there's precious little to distinguish between a 12" iBook & 12" Powerbook. Why couldn't the same thing apply to a cheap, small, headless box? Arguably, it'd have more differentiation from the iMac & Powermac than the iBooks do from the Powerbooks.

In what form-factor would this be? What magical new customer base would be tapped here? You have to prove to me these customers aren'considering the LCD iMacs first.

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(Who was it that said a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds?)

Spindler perhaps?

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Right, their market share dwindles because they don't have machines with competitive price/performance ratios (except for the Powermac G5s). Do you think that'll be the case when the G5 gets rolled out across the line? We've already seen a pretty hefty boost in Powermac sales because of the G5. Won't the same thing happen with the iMacs & eMacs? Won't there then be room for some overlap, like there is with the laptops?

I think that G5s will help the bottomline, but that wasn't what people here seem to be asking for. They seem to think a headless iMac equivalent and/or cheaper towers will somehow magically tap the market.

What magical boost in Power Mac sales? You're freakin' comparing the past quarter to the previous few....of course there's a boost. Power Mac sales hit ROCK BOTTOM in the previous quarters.

There isn't much overlap with the Apple laptops like I previously stated in this post and before.
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post #47 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamblor
How about doubling sales? If the rumor of >500k Powermacs sold is true that means about 300k sold for Q1 04, since they sold about 220k in Q4 03. in Q1 03, they sold 158k, so they'd be at damn near doubling their sales over the year ago quarter for the Powermacs.

Doubling anemic numbers just makes them suitable numbers.

500,000 Power Macs sold isn't particularly amazing. They were introduced in June. Also consider all the hold-outs.
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post #48 of 159
...Christ, I've never seen such hard headedness. Are you sreriously suggesting that if you want to buy a Mac that you can simply add a PCI card in or swap out the video card or even CHANGE THE MONITOR ON!!! that you should have to pony up $1800 + tax? I mean, I know you have to spend almost 4 bills in PC land to get that kind of OUTRAGEOUS expandability. I mean, who would use that?

.../looks at his G4 with upgraded Radeon, USB2 card, SCSI card, FireWire 800 card..../shrugs...shakes head.

Wow. Nice to see all the liberated Apple users are into landfilling their computers to get the newest video cards and connectivity options. No wonder most people think Apple users are drinking the kool-aid.
post #49 of 159
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Originally posted by Eugene
Doubling anemic numbers just makes them suitable numbers.

500,000 Power Macs sold isn't particularly amazing. They were introduced in June. Also consider all the hold-outs.

500,000 isn't a bad number, it's all in what time period it takes place in. Going by O.S. #'s, not amazing at all. When looked at as Apple Branded Hardware, it's better than where we were in '97.

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post #50 of 159
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There's plenty of differentation. DVD-RW, 200 MHz and 256K L2, aluminum vs. plastic, video, DVI out, etc.

Sorry. All that's really just gravy. Both machines are 12" laptops with G4 processors, and those simularities are a hell of a lot more important than a minor differentiation like aluminum vs. plastic, or anything else you listed (or all of them together, for that matter)...

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In what form-factor would this be? What magical new customer base would be tapped here? You have to prove to me these customers aren'considering the LCD iMacs first.

Eugene, you have to prove to me that they're not looking for a CSHB + monitor, and are simply settling for an iMac because that's the only thing Apple offers, or going with a PC. The customers who go with the PC are the new market, as are the ones who buy an iMac and hate it because they really wanted a separate monitor (do you really think they'll buy another mac if the only one that suits them is $1800 before they throw in a monitor?).

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What magical boost in Power Mac sales? You're freakin' comparing the past quarter to the previous few....of course there's a boost. Power Mac sales hit ROCK BOTTOM in the previous quarters.

What the hell should it be compared to then? The simple fact is the Powermacs are seeing a HUGE boost in sales. Why are you trying to gloss over that? Don't you think the boost is pretty damn significant?
post #51 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by mooseman
...Christ, I've never seen such hard headedness. Are you sreriously suggesting that if you want to buy a Mac that you can simply add a PCI card in or swap out the video card or even CHANGE THE MONITOR ON!!! that you should have to pony up $1800 + tax? I mean, I know you have to spend almost 4 bills in PC land to get that kind of OUTRAGEOUS expandability. I mean, who would use that?

Yes, I am suggesting that because it's what makes most sense to the consumer and to Apple. As low-end PCs become even more like commdity hardware than ever before they will become even more closed.

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Originally posted by mooseman
What the hell should it be compared to then? The simple fact is the Powermacs are seeing a HUGE boost in sales. Why are you trying to gloss over that? Don't you think the boost is pretty damn significant?

Compare that share (in percentage) to other keystones like the G3 intro, the original Power Mac intro, etc. It's not a huge boost. It's a decent recovery.
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post #52 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamblor
Eugene, you have to prove to me that they're not looking for a CSHB + monitor, and are simply settling for an iMac because that's the only thing Apple offers, or going with a PC. The customers who go with the PC are the new market, as are the ones who buy an iMac and hate it because they really wanted a separate monitor (do you really think they'll buy another mac if the only one that suits them is $1800 before they throw in a monitor?).

*sigh* Ok, before we get too far into this "prove it! no you prove it!" game lets look at this for a second. The new market for this CSHB that you talked about is either the elusive switcher or someone that is going to buy an iMac anyway. As for the switchers, expandability only matters to geeks and gamers. Let me say that again expandability only matters to geeks and gamers. For the others what matters is software compatibility. Let's look at a recent example:

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Originally posted by imacFP
My fiance's friend wants a Mac because she liked the 23" display, but when I talked to her about Macs the two things that most put her off were the lack of an internal floppy drive and Office not coming pre-loaded.

Any mention of CSHB? Nope switchers aren't buying Macs because they don't get it like we get it. Want some proof? Apple spent $75 million on an ad campaign designed to get pc users over to the Mac. Did they mention expandability once? Nope, what they talked about was compatibility and ease of use. I guarantee that Apple has spent a ton of money to find out what is keeping pc users from switching and if a CSHB was it Apple would have one by now. I know this because I can see how Apple has listened to its customers for all the other occasions. The executives are not stupid if there was this pent up demand for a CSHB there would be one.

Lets look at it from a different angle. Where is the market for a CSHB? Consumers are concerned with ease of use, compatibility, and general home usage. How are any of these better served with a CSHB? Pro users are concerned with speed, expandability, and flexibility. How are any of these better served with a CSHB? Cheap geeks are concerned with price, expandability, and tinkering ability. These are clearly served by a CSHB.
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post #53 of 159
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Compare that share (in percentage) to other keystones like the G3 intro, the original Power Mac intro, etc. It's not a huge boost. It's a decent recovery.

I think you need to expand on this, because I'm unclear what you mean. Care to provide numbers for those keystones? I'm not sure I see how doubling numbers could merely be considered a decent recovery...
post #54 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamblor
I think you need to expand on this, because I'm unclear what you mean. Care to provide numbers for those keystones? I'm not sure I see how doubling numbers could merely be considered a decent recovery...

If you listen to the most recent analyst conference call Fred Anderson says that PowerMac sales are up to their historical average. They were down for so long by a combination of speed and a general slowdown of spending in Apple's traditional pro customers print and design. This doubling of sales is a good start, but PowerMac sales won't really start to show some growth until the economy for design starts to pick up.
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post #55 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamblor
I think you need to expand on this, because I'm unclear what you mean. Care to provide numbers for those keystones? I'm not sure I see how doubling numbers could merely be considered a decent recovery...

First of all, the figures aren't "double."

Let's say you have the following hypothetical numbers:

Y1: 1.4M units
Y2: 1.3M units
Y3: 1.2M units
Y4: 1.3M units
Y5: 1.0M units
Y6: 800K units
Y7: 700K units
Y8: 950K units

Is that really something to be impressed with? That graph is not pretty, and it's basically what the pattern is. We won't know the true strength of a full year cycle of PMG% sales for another 6 months. Do you think they will once again break 1,000,000 units?
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post #56 of 159
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Let me say that again expandability only matters to geeks and gamers.

It also matters to people who want at least some form of future proofing in the machine they buy. A CSHB would allow someone with an existing computer to keep their monitor & just buy a new box. Not possible with the iMac. It's all or nothing. It also allows them to upgrade said monitor when they see fit to do so. Again, the iMac offers no such luxury. It's about options-- a CSHB has them, the iMac doesn't.

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Did they mention expandability once? Nope, what they talked about was compatibility and ease of use. I guarantee that Apple has spent a ton of money to find out what is keeping pc users from switching and if a CSHB was it Apple would have one by now. I know this because I can see how Apple has listened to its customers for all the other occasions.

I think you're putting the cart before the horse. It wouldn't surprise me to find out that Apple tailored the switch campaign to the hardware they were already selling... would that surprise you?

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The executives are not stupid if there was this pent up demand for a CSHB there would be one.

I don't think that's the case. When all Apple had were anemic G4 based machines and sales were correspondingly low, it made sense to keep the models offered to a minimum in order to prevent them from canibalizing one another. With the G5 and the increased sales a competitive price/performance ratio gives, Apple will be able to diversify their desktop lines in ways similar to what they've done with the laptops.

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Lets look at it from a different angle. Where is the market for a CSHB? Consumers are concerned with ease of use, compatibility, and general home usage. How are any of these better served with a CSHB? Pro users are concerned with speed, expandability, and flexibility. How are any of these better served with a CSHB? Cheap geeks are concerned with price, expandability, and tinkering ability. These are clearly served by a CSHB.

All of the above customers are better served by having more options, which is precisely what the CSHB gives to people in the market for a $1k - $2k machine. What if a person wants a mac, but would be happy with the monitor they've got with their existing PC? The iMac won't work for them. What if a person wants better video than they can get in an iMac, but doesn't want to spend more than say $1300 for a machine? Neither the iMac nor the Powermac would serve them. The bottom line is, options are good. With increased sales due to the G5 being rolled out across the line, Apple will be in a better position to provide more options.

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If you listen to the most recent analyst conference call Fred Anderson says that PowerMac sales are up to their historical average. They were down for so long by a combination of speed and a general slowdown of spending in Apple's traditional pro customers print and design.

And what was Apple offering the last time Powermac sales were at their "historical average"? Beige G3s? I seem to recall there was a desktop G3 that sold right along side the original iMac, and for the same price ($1300). Would it be so bad to offer something like that again?
post #57 of 159
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First of all, the figures aren't "double."

Did you read what I wrote? I thought it was pretty clear I was talking year over year quarterly results, not yearly figures.

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We won't know the true strength of a full year cycle of PMG5 [sic] sales for another 6 months.

That's right-- so it's a little early to be predicting doom and gloom, isn't it?

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Do you think they will once again break 1,000,000 units?

Yes, I do. Don't you? If IBM keeps Job's promise of being at 3GHz by the end of next summer, the Powermacs will remain competitive from a price/performance standpoint. I think that's what it will take to keep Powermac sales at, or perhaps slightly below the levels for the current quarter. If they sell 300k this quarter, that puts them at 1M at the end of the year, easy. I also think they'll start to roll out the G5 to lower end machines, either in a CSHB, or the iMac will get it, or both. That'd help boost sales (across the board sales, obviously, not Powermac sales), too. It's also possible they'll add another single proc Powermac, possibly starting at $1599 or better yet $1500. That'd probably be an easier option in the short term than introducing a CSHB, and would at least partially fill the market.

Also-- The G5 may have been anounced in June, but not all models were available until September. I'm sure that had some effect on sales in Q4 03. If you want a real complete picture of the G5's impact, it'd probably be better to use the 04 numbers, which means waiting until Feb 05 to see the complete picture.
post #58 of 159
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Originally posted by Gamblor
Did you read what I wrote? I thought it was pretty clear I was talking year over year quarterly results, not yearly figures.

But what meaningful information could you derive from such a small slice? Big announcement momentum and upgrade cycles skew the numbers like these. So if Apple will ship one million Power Mac G5s in 2004, how many total PCs do you think they will have shipped by then?

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That's right-- so it's a little early to be predicting doom and gloom, isn't it?

I am neither predicting doom nor gloom. I'm predicting Apple makes the right moves and ignores the vocal geek minority's request for a SFF headless Mac or an ultra-budget tower. A $1599 tower is not a budget tower, and it is somewhat likely a tower at that price will be available in January as Apple finds itself with a surplus of those "Yikes G5" boards.

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Also-- The G5 may have been anounced in June, but not all models were available until September.

This didn't only apply to the G5s.
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post #59 of 159
Quote:
But what meaningful information could you derive from such a small slice? Big announcement momentum and upgrade cycles skew the numbers like these. So if Apple will ship one million Power Mac G5s in 2004, how many total PCs do you think they will have shipped by then?

The information I get from it is the fact that the G5 has had a major impact on Powermac sales. The initial impact may fade a bit, but I doubt seriously it'll drop back to what it was last year. How much of an impact it'll make remains to be seen, but I don't think 1M units sold in 04 is out of the question.

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I'm predicting Apple makes the right moves and ignores the vocal geek minority's request for a SFF headless Mac or an ultra-budget tower.

Ultra-budget tower? What the hell is that? I'm suggesting cube-like machines (albeit preferably with one PCI slot) starting at $1299, or better yet, $999. Is that really ultra-budget? At this point, I'd define ultra-budget as $299, and I'm certainly not suggesting Apple chase that market.

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A $1599 tower is not a budget tower, and it is somewhat likely a tower at that price will be available in January as Apple finds itself with a surplus of those "Yikes G5" boards.

Perhaps, but $1599 would be an improvement over what's available now, and it's addition will certainly make the Powermacs appealing to more people than the current lineup. We'll see for certain what Apple is planning in a couple of months.

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This didn't only apply to the G5s.

I'm not sure I understand what your point is, here. My comment was specifically about the G5s.
post #60 of 159
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Originally posted by Carson O'Genic
[B Get her a usb flash drive or an iPod!

Office, on the other hand, will cost you-but remember if she really doesn't have to use all of its functions, there are options. TextEdit, keynote and old-man AppleWorks. Hopefully, MWSF will introduce iWrite. [/B]

No I agree with you but my larger point was many PC users think like that. They want exactly what they have in PC land what their friends have.
post #61 of 159
We don't need a 'headless mac', we already have a powermac ffs.

What Apple needs to do is to bring in a lower price point for the base G5, and also, try to get down the price of the 17" LCD. This is obviously for the price performance issue. At the moment, Apple actually holds the crown for price/performance at the high end, that being the Dual 2Ghz G5 vs Intel and AMD offerings. What Apple does not have is the price/performance in the lower range (this includes the iMac etc).

You could argue that this has little to offer, as most iPods, despite their relatively high expense have been selling out (all of them are sold out in the UK at the present moment). However, this is a cheap product compared to a computer.

It is about cost. To those switchers, when they look at an iMac, they nearly all think it's a great bit of kit, in the way it looks, the OS, and everything else (iLife etc). Then comes in the reality check. Yes it may have a flat panel screen and it may have a low price, but due to the switchers never having the 'Macintosh experience' they'll probably buy the still far cheaper and probably more powerful Intel competition, despite it being ugly etc. The iMac is the big seller for Apple. Lets not forget it saved them back in 1997(?)...

Like Glambor wrote, if anything, Apple needs to introduce a mac at a very low price point. $999 would be the mark, but to be honest I can never see Apple doing this with the iMac due to the LCD. If Apple could introduce an iMac FP at the £700 price range it would be great, at the moment it is £999 exactly. A PowerMac at the price of $1399 would be amazing, even if it was a 1.8Ghz G5 when new higher speed G5 processors are released.

The problem is a combination of things, but it is mainly the lower end price/performance issue. Apple could also state that Appleworks comes as standard on macs and has full compatability with office, which NEVER comes as standard with windows boxes, it just doesn't happen. Unless you get some lame arse PC which comes with half the hardware it should just because it costs £300 for office. Ahem.
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post #62 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene

But, watching TV of any sort on your computer doesn't really sound like such a huge selling point.

I agree with qualifications large enough to (I think) drive an iMac thru.

I just got back from Sears the other day, and they were displaying a 20" something LCD TV for some insane price, something like $3000 ... just for the TV.

Huh?

if you can get an iMac for less than half that price, and watch HDTV on it ... we might have something here.

Obviously, I also think the nature of TV is changing. Truism? Sure ... but I think it's changing away from big family room viewing, to more of a narrow cast variety. The family room is for movies and big events ... but your iMac, well, it's for you.

Gosh, I oughta be in marketing - Ahhhhhhhhhh!
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post #63 of 159
Isn't Dell starting to sell Home Electronics (besides their Whore Electronics of Computers) to the public? And, I believe that they are lower prices than average. Still, storing HDTV is even larger than DV because of all the lines of resolution, I believe, although I don't think storage could be a problem in all of this.

If they are making a new iSoundtrack, when are they going to get around to make iShake!
post #64 of 159
I'm a switcher. I switched from Mac to PC when my 240 mhz 603e became a tad slow. I'm still a mac fan...that's why I visit this forum regularly. But until Apple offers a non-AIO consumer desktop for under $1000, I won't be buying another Mac.

My current machine is a Dell Optiplex with a 867 Mhz PIII. It cost me less than $900 when I bought it 3 years ago. I've added multiple hard-drives and an extra CD-R. I've yet to have any "reliability" problems from this cheap piece of Dell junk.

I WANT an Apple. But $1300 for an entry level non-aio w/ a single 1.25 ghz G4 is ridiculous.

Clearly Apple COULD build an entry level non-aio for under the price they sell the eMac ($799). The fact that they don't is clearly a marketing choice. It's also a choice I don't get.
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post #65 of 159
Making a CSHB with one PCI slot isn't interessting for anyone. The difference in costs between making it have one or three slots is minimal. I remember seeing a how-to on adding the slot itself to a motherboard from an old 9600, where that PCI plastic slot had not been added.
IMHO, Apple's offerings aren't so bad for the moment. As I see it 95 % of Mac users, either have no need for PCI or use 2 or more PCI-cards. The entry G5 is ideal for people who use cards, but don't need the power delivered by the dual procs.
post #66 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by HOM
*sigh* Ok, before we get too far into this "prove it! no you prove it!" game lets look at this for a second. The new market for this CSHB that you talked about is either the elusive switcher or someone that is going to buy an iMac anyway. As for the switchers, expandability only matters to geeks and gamers. Let me say that again expandability only matters to geeks and gamers. For the others what matters is software compatibility. Let's look at a recent example:



Interesting comment but I'd have to say you have this a bit backwards Gamers are not that concerned about expandability except possibly in the case of a video card. Even with video, by the time an improved card comes out the computer you plug it into will be outdated. Often one finds gamers replacing both the motherboard and the video card at the same time.

Now hardware hackers are another thing along with a certain sub set of geeks, but these guys don't deserve to be grouped in with the gamers.
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Any mention of CSHB? Nope switchers aren't buying Macs because they don't get it like we get it. Want some proof? Apple spent $75 million on an ad campaign designed to get pc users over to the Mac. Did they mention expandability once? Nope, what they talked about was compatibility and ease of use. I guarantee that Apple has spent a ton of money to find out what is keeping pc users from switching and if a CSHB was it Apple would have one by now. I know this because I can see how Apple has listened to its customers for all the other occasions. The executives are not stupid if there was this pent up demand for a CSHB there would be one.

All one has to do is look at the current PC market to see that there is a pent up demand. The size of the G5 will only fuel this demand. While I agree that the executives running Apple aren't stupid, they are also in a situatuion now of makeing a major transiton as far as processor mother board chips sets. It is one thing to have knowledge of a market demand or to see the need and to be able to respond to it. How Apple responds to the need is an open question, an improved iMac could certainly meet the demand if the price could be controlled and a few bothersome issues addressed.

So while a CSHB a Imac may not be it could fill the role of such a machine, if costs could be lowered and the issues that a CSHB solve be addressed. Chief among these issues is servicability - the current IMac looses big time here. The lack of expansion slots is not the major failure of the IMac, it is the overwhelming barriers to low cost up grading that have doomed the machine in many eyes. The fact that the machine is a generation behind, processor wise, is another issue but even with a 970 in the box the unit is pretty hopeless when it comes to addressing some CSHB issues.

I suspect that we will see soon from Apple a machine that addresses the low cost expandabilty market and the IMac (All in one) market. Maybe not a true headless design that many want to see but amybe something a little more end user servicable with an expansion slot.
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Lets look at it from a different angle. Where is the market for a CSHB? Consumers are concerned with ease of use, compatibility, and general home usage. How are any of these better served with a CSHB? Pro users are concerned with speed, expandability, and flexibility. How are any of these better served with a CSHB? Cheap geeks are concerned with price, expandability, and tinkering ability. These are clearly served by a CSHB.

Well I think that average home user is also concerned about space and cost. The G5 does not win on either of these accounts.

Pro users are often more concerned about buying a PC that is economical for the task at hand. For many tasks the G5 just is to expensive and big, the alternatives are to outdated. For many pro uses the cheap PC offerings are almost ideal considering price performance and the application. To get the same results from Apple often requires looking at the high prices G5 line. We are not talking absolute performance here but rather the sum of the features offered.

So from my perspective I would have to say that it is pretty clear that Apple would be well served by entering the CSmHB. That is a Cheap Small maybe Headless Box market. This market is defined as having a a need for good pefromance, seviceability and modest expandabilty. The IMac doesn't serve this market at all.
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post #67 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by imacFP
If this rumor is true I beat the new application is based upon Sound Studio, which Apple seemed to be promoting as a good app to work with iMovie. I got it and it's pretty slick.

Or after Spark ME edition which recently disappeared from T.C. Electronics website:

http://www.tcworks.de/home/content/e...E_X/render_doc
post #68 of 159
Quote:
Making a CSHB with one PCI slot isn't interessting for anyone. The difference in costs between making it have one or three slots is minimal. I remember seeing a how-to on adding the slot itself to a motherboard from an old 9600, where that PCI plastic slot had not been added.

You're right, but Apple doesn't think that way. Witness monitor spanning on the iBooks & iMacs. It would cost Apple nothing to enable it, but they don't in order to differentiate those products from the Powerbook and Powermac. If Apple comes out with a CSHB, you can bet that it'll sacrifice something w.r.t. the Powermacs. What's in the powermac that could be given up? Space for a second processor, space for the PCI slots, and space for the second hard drive, along with the fans to cool all that. I think giving up the PCI slots is a given, but it would be nice to have one in there for some future proofing.

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The entry G5 is ideal for people who use cards, but don't need the power delivered by the dual procs.

I think the entry G5 is a pretty poor value, and the fact that it doesn't sell well in comparision with its siblings says that most Powermac buyers agree with me. Apple needs machines that provide better value in the market segment the single proc G5 is trying to serve.

[Wizard69: nice post]
post #69 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene
Yes, I am suggesting that because it's what makes most sense to the consumer and to Apple. As low-end PCs become even more like commdity hardware than ever before they will become even more closed.

...I hate to be the one to break it to you, but computers are already commodity items. I use to sell Macs back in the days of Sculley/Spindler. Adjusted for inflation, Apple's entry level machine was damn close to 2g's. And that was for a 4 generation old 68000 chip (it'd be like selling the eMac with a 601 processor) in an AIO with a 9" B/W screen.

So, adjusting for inflation, what woulda been a $500 or less eMac with not even a full generation old chip in it. It would be, in their terms, proof that even Apple is forced into selling computers as commodities.

Apple needs to quit telling the consumer what they want and start giving them what they ask for.

Apple is getting ready to introduce a low cost iPod, going after the low end. Why? To get more people using their products and buying music from their store. The more people are using Apple products the greater the mindshare Apple gets. Mindshare is a precurser to marketshare.

Wow, that sounds like genius. Broadening the market for your products to increase revenue and profits. Someone hit me in the head with an Economics 101 text book, I'm flabbergasted.
post #70 of 159
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Lemon Bon Bon, how many people do you know with 14" iBooks?

How many people do I know who have Macs would be a better question.

And the answer?

'Not many.'

As for branching out. Apple already is. They have been doing so for a good many years.

I don't think Gamblor, Matsu and myself are asking for too much. A price cut here...and nip and tuck there...y'know, a consumer tower (consumers do buy towers...Dell probably sells way more towers in a week to consumers than Apple does computers for their entire line per quarter...)

There's no real need a 'prosumer' cube tower when you can drop the 1.6 and 1.8 into the current G4 tower slots come the 2.2-2.6 speed boosts. Apple have already shown latitude over the 1.6 price. And with speed bumps it could soon replace the G4 tower in price. It's only a few hundred away...

There IS a need such a mini-tower beast in the sub K market. I think Apple cuts itself off from alot of potential customers...who DO go with PC towers for a grand or less. The irony is...who better than Apple to design such a consumer tower than the same Apple that gave us the unequalled (suck on that Alienware!) G5 chassis?

In answer to your original question, everybody I know? Dey got PC towers...

Lemon Bon Bon
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We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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post #71 of 159
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Right, their market share dwindles because they don't have machines with competitive price/performance ratios (except for the Powermac G5s). Do you think that'll be the case when the G5 gets rolled out across the line? We've already seen a pretty hefty boost in Powermac sales because of the G5. Won't the same thing happen with the iMacs & eMacs? Won't there then be room for some overlap, like there is with the laptops?

Agreed. 50% boost in PowerMac sales..? If Apple could get ahead of the curve with the G5 in Powerbooks and iMacs then 50% boost in sales would be nice there also!

The dual 2 gigger was in the top ten sellers. People know value when they see it. So what does that tell us about Apple's consumer desktops? Or the 1.6 PowerMacs?

And the PowerMac sales have slackened off out of the top ten of the Apple store for a reason. Imminent speed boost rumoured to the PowerMacs. People KNOW Apple update them every six months.

And it is no surprise the 1.6 and 1.8 were no where near the dual 2 gigger in sales. Apple have to replicate that kind of '2 gig' value across their line. Drive th G5 into the consumer range ahead of schedule.

Look at what the G5 has done for PowerMac sales. The customer has spoken. A similar spike in iMac sales might occur when it goes G5.

Most people I know...a decent PC can be had for around 1K-ish. If Apple want to do more than run to stand still with their marketshare...they have got to be more aggressive on price. A single 2 gig G5 for £999 inc Vat would sell well. So would dual G5s above it.

There's no escaping the '3 gig' Pentium PC towers that can be had for a 1K ish. Oh, and Half Life 2 pending. Lots of PC people think like that. Apple have got to keep working hard...erroding the myths and REAL limitations that prevent PC users coming to the Mac. They have to be the Apple we know and love...and yet...distance itself from the Apple that drove themselves into the precarious position they find themselves in. 2% and counting an' all.

Take away iPod and 'other product' sales/profits from the last quarter and you'd see what I mean.

C+. Must try harder.

Lemon Bon Bon
We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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post #72 of 159
Quote:
o, adjusting for inflation, what woulda been a $500 or less eMac with not even a full generation old chip in it would be, in their terms, proof that even Apple is forced into selling computers as commodities.

Apple needs to quit telling the consumer what they want and start giving them what they ask for.

Apple is getting ready to introduce a low cost iPod, going after the low end. Why? To get more people using their products and buying music from their store. The more people are using Apple products the greater the mindshare Apple gets. Mindshare is a precurser to marketshare.

Wow, that sounds like genius. Broadening the market for your products to increase revenue and profits. Someone hit me in the head with an Economics 101 text book, I'm flabbergasted.


I like what this guy said.

It's so true it aint funny. But, with the iPod...is Apple at last ready to slay the ghosts of the past?

Will they actually release cheap iPods to destroy the opposition..? Could Apple, gasp, actually be on the way to achieving critical mass (their nemesis!) with the iPod? And the resultant shockwave in Mac mindshare?

Perhaps there is hope afterall. How strange, perhaps it is the iPod and not the G5 that is going to be the Apple doomsday machine...

Lemon Bon Bon
We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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We do it because Steve Jobs is the supreme defender of the Macintosh faith, someone who led Apple back from the brink of extinction just four years ago. And we do it because his annual keynote is...
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post #73 of 159
Quote:
Making a CSHB with one PCI slot isn't interessting for anyone. The difference in costs between making it have one or three slots is minimal. I remember seeing a how-to on adding the slot itself to a motherboard from an old 9600, where that PCI plastic slot had not been added.

Apple has done just that in previous models, like the 6400/6500. It may not be much cost savings to eliminate one or 2 slots, but when you are saving that, say 10¢ per slot, over the range of a years production of say 200,000 units you save $20,000 a year in production. And your savings is not just in the cost of the slot, but also in the increased size that the circuit board and the labor to solder those connectors to the board. Now if Apple is contracting the production out they might be able to match that cost savings by buying the single mother board in higher volume, but if it is produced internally any cost savings in production means that they can either increases their profit margin or they can pass that savings on the the consumer.

Good post Moosman.

The fact is that the iMac 2 did not energize Apple's sales like when they introduced the original iMac. It is also lacking the price/performance value that the original iMac held, yet it costs more across the board than its predecessor. With the current trend in 15" LCD demand it doesn't look like we will see a price drop in them either. It is good to come out with "revolutionary" products, but at the same time it is foolish to ignore the realities of the market. Right now the market is not embracing AIO designs and Apple can't offer one with the value that the original iMac had for the consumer (not even the eMac, because it's processor and specs are even further behind the price/performance curve than the entry iMac 2's), so Apple should at least have an option that is not an AIO for the consumer market.

Now, to the computability issue, Apple needs to do a better job of educating people on this subject. It's not easy to do in a 30 second TV add, they need to get people into the store where they can look at Apple's computers and talk with sales people. A consumer bundle with Word would be a good idea as well. The only problem is that it is hard to get non-Mac users in to look at Macs when your prices are considerably higher than the competition.

Case in point, in today's CompUSA ad the first page has a Toshiba laptop and a Compaq Pentium 2.4 Ghz tower with 17" monitor for $749.97. Apple's offerings are shown in the middle of the flier, but the only computer listed is the 20" iMac at $2199.97. In the add there are no other AIO designs beside the iMac. Now if I were your average Jo looking at this I would think that Apple doesn't offer a computer for less than $2199 so I wouldn't even consider looking at them.

Now admittedly the advertising may be better in cities that actually have Apple stores in them (if they do local print ads), but that covers a small percentage of the cities in the US.
post #74 of 159
Hi Guys;

Just thought I'd add a few more thoughts on IMacs and the desired small form factor headless machine.

From my perspective the IMac in its current configuration is beautiful and I would mind having one on my desk, but it won't happen any time soon. The reasons are expense and servicability. While part of the expense issue is related to the problem of paying a high price for outdated hardware you also have to consider what you are getting with that closed machine. For me the sum of the parts does not even come close to justifying the present price of an IMac. A few years ago the equation wasn't that bad but todays machines however is just to expensive. They are good machines if $$$$ mean nothing to you.

AS far as a replacement machine, headless or not, we need to see a couple of significant changes.

First is a substantial performance increase from the processor. At this point I'm not convinced that 64 bit is needed though that day is coming, what I do see is a need for a doubling of processor performance. Personally I think Apple realizes this and will deliver that much of an increase come the new year. They be crazy not to.

The second issue is the form factor. SMall is very important for many reasons especially considering the mass of the G5. Ideally we are talking about something the size of a thick book. That is something that could literally sit on a book shelf and not look out of place. Obviously a bit thicker than your average novel, but this should give you an idea of what I have in mind.

The third issue is expansion. The GPU will have to be soldered in. Sorry but I just don't see a lot of rational graphics card upgrades going on in the world. The important thinkg is to make sure the graphics memory allocation is adequate. What is really needed is a PCI slot or similar standardized slot for one or more expansion cards. Even here standard PCI is not a requirement, though it is probally the only logical choice, the goal is to work with in the small form factor. I do flirt with the idea of Apple offering a machine that takes Compact PCI expansion cards. Even one or two would offer an incredible size advantage.

Lastly and maybe the most important is servicability. It should be a snap to get to the Hard disk and expansion memory. I also think it is about time for Apple to move away from the 3.5 inch disk form factor and lead the market to much smaller drives. By the way I do hope that the memory bus is fast, also there needs to be support for a large addressable memory system.

Much of the speculated hardware would be very easy to deliver if Apple where to move to a SOC device. That is a processor with a built in memory interface and a Hyper-transport interface. I'm not sure if Apple is pushing its suppliers in this direction but it should be.

Thanks
Dave
post #75 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene
Lemon Bon Bon, how many people do you know with 14" iBooks? Frankly, I hate the 14" iBook for the very reason you cite. It offers marginal advantages over the 12" because its screen is STILL 1024x768px.


Older people like my father get the 14" iBook. He could not read the type on the 12" one.
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post #76 of 159
Wizard,

I agree with most of what you said. But on the GPU I don't. First off, there aren't that many graphics cards for the Mac because there are few options to put them in. If there is a consumer level computer with the slot then there will be a larger market for Mac Graphics cards. Since most of the development for these cards is done when Apple orders the OEM cards it won't take much for ATI to come out with consumer level cards. And people do upgrade the graphics, and pay a premium for Mac compatible cards when they can get them (look at eBay) and flash PC cards when they can't get them. I think that there is a market for computers with this expansion option, and if Apple had a more consumer oriented computer that could be expanded then ATI would be more likely to offer cards that worked in them.

As for the PCI slot, I see it more as a marketing thing than something that people will actually use. About the only card that I could see selling right now would be a 3'rd generation FW or USB card, or a new ethernet card if the onboard port goes bad.
post #77 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by Res
Older people like my father get the 14" iBook. He could not read the type on the 12" one.

I'd probably get the 14 inch. Despite not having a higher resolution, the screen IS bigger and I prefer that for games and dvds and stuff. TO me it would be much nicer in my dorm as I use my laptop for everything from movies to music to tv to games.

and if you look at the competition. MOST of the low end portables on the PC side are 15 inch screens with low resolutions. People dont really think about resolution, they brag about how big their screen is.
post #78 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by @homenow
I agree with most of what you said. But on the GPU I don't. First off, there aren't that many graphics cards for the Mac because there are few options to put them in. If there is a consumer level computer with the slot then there will be a larger market for Mac Graphics cards. Since most of the development for these cards is done when Apple orders the OEM cards it won't take much for ATI to come out with consumer level cards. And people do upgrade the graphics, and pay a premium for Mac compatible cards when they can get them (look at eBay) and flash PC cards when they can't get them. I think that there is a market for computers with this expansion option, and if Apple had a more consumer oriented computer that could be expanded then ATI would be more likely to offer cards that worked in them.

As for the PCI slot, I see it more as a marketing thing than something that people will actually use. About the only card that I could see selling right now would be a 3'rd generation FW or USB card, or a new ethernet card if the onboard port goes bad.

There is no market for graphics cards on the Mac except a handful of gamers that refuse to believe that Mac gaming is all but dead. Professional Mac users don't need the latest wizz bang graphics cards from ATI or nVidia. Will it speed up Photoshop, Quark, or Illustrator? Didn't think so. Video customers don't need the latest graphics cards either. They use specialty cards designed for SD and HD capture and playback in real time not how many FPS they can push in UT2k4. Same with music pros. The traditional Mac consumer doesn't play games either. They are more concerned with iPhoto, web surfing, and email. Having a Radeon 9800 doesn't improve any of those either.

Dell sells consumer towers, so Apple should sell consumer towers. That seems to be what the CSHB argument boils down too. Therefore Apple should sell CSHB to compete with Dell. Am I getting this right? The problem is the Dell and the others sell consumer boxes not because that's what their customers want, but it is cheapest for Dell to make. It allows Dell maximum flexibility when it comes time to produce the boxes.

Now lets looks at the real issue. People buy Dells because they are cheap. But what they are really getting is a cheap wintel box. That is why people aren't buying Macs. They don't run Windows. 98% of computers sold run Windows. This is so much more important then price/performance. Only geeks and gamers care about price/performance. Consumers are happy to surf the internet send photos, rip cds, and write their documents. A 4 year old Mac or PC would be fine at that.

One last thing. I would buy a CSHB if Apple came out with one as I'm sure a lot of you would too. But I know that it's because I'm a cheap geek. And I don't try to impose my wants upon people that could care less about what I think is important. The vast majority of computer users wouldn't know a computer message board if it hit them in the ass. But if it did hit them in the ass they wouldn't care about it at all. We are the vast minority of a vast minority of computer users. We should realized what we want in a computer is not what everybody else wants.
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post #79 of 159
Quote:
Originally posted by HOM
... One last thing. I would buy a CSHB if Apple came out with one as I'm sure a lot of you would too. But I know that it's because I'm a cheap geek. And I don't try to impose my wants upon people that could care less about what I think is important. The vast majority of computer users wouldn't know a computer message board if it hit them in the ass. But if it did hit them in the ass they wouldn't care about it at all. We are the vast minority of a vast minority of computer users. We should realized what we want in a computer is not what everybody else wants.

This is the most intelligent thing in this entire seemingly endless debate.

I know lots of people with PCs at home. And none of them has ever changed a board, a drive, put in a card, or added memory. A few of them have bought new mice, keyboards, or yes, replaced a dying monitor, but that's it. They are scared to death of opening their computers, because they all seem to know a friend of a friend who tried to put an internal modem in the computer, and it never worked again.

Closed boxes are what 99% of computer purchasers want, both individuals and corporations.
post #80 of 159
Quote:
There is no market for graphics cards on the Mac except a handful of gamers that refuse to believe that Mac gaming is all but dead. Professional Mac users don't need the latest wizz bang graphics cards from ATI or nVidia.

What about people who use 3D apps? They'd benefit from having "the latest wizz bang graphics cards". There are other uses for high end graphics cards than just games.

Besides, upgrading the video card in 18-24 months is a cheap way to avoid obsolescence. If you can't replace the card, you don't have that luxury.

Quote:
Now lets looks at the real issue. People buy Dells because they are cheap. But what they are really getting is a cheap wintel box. That is why people aren't buying Macs. They don't run Windows. 98% of computers sold run Windows. This is so much more important then price/performance. Only geeks and gamers care about price/performance. Consumers are happy to surf the internet send photos, rip cds, and write their documents. A 4 year old Mac or PC would be fine at that.

HOM, can you give me a reason why anyone buys Macs at all? You keep beating this drum about software, but it's rather plain to anyone willing to look that there's plenty of software for the Mac. No, it's not windows software. Who really cares? You can still get your work done with it, as many of us do on a daily basis. Name any type of software you need, and there's most likely a package written for the Mac that fills that need. Hell, in fact, much of it is the same titles available on Windows. I just don't see why this is such a big deal.

You can't brush aside price/performance so easily, especially given how poorly G4s compare with cheap PCs. A lot of that is because of how processor intensive OS X is, but the exact reasons don't really matter. What matters is that a consumer can go into Fry's and check out a $1200 PC (with monitor) that is snappy and responsive, then test a $1800 iMac which has a half second lag in redrawing windows as they're resized. After that, the choice is easy, and the iMac loses. Software availability doesn't even enter into the equation.

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We should realized what we want in a computer is not what everybody else wants.

You're suggesting that there's no overlap between what "cheap geeks" want and what the general public wants. That's just plain silly. Did it occur to you that maybe some of us have formed our opinions based on what our nontechnical friends have told us they want, in addition to our own wishes?
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