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Better Value Macs - Page 3

post #81 of 110
Thread Starter 
A lot of misunderstanding about who is the customer. Many valid issues brought up apply to a particular market, but not all markets. What interests or excites one group or people means little or nothing to another. A manager who simply needs network computers isn't going to value the same features as someone wanting to make home movies or work with digital photography.

Also, Apple does not need to go head to head with Dell on price. They cannot. But when a manager gets fed up with something about good old MS, Apple's prices need to be close enough to justify purchasing Macs. The difference needs to be small enough so the pain of switching is less than the pain of continuing with a Windows network.

Also, there is misunderstanding of the Mac I proposed. I suggested an optional monitor that could be somehow attached to the top of this Mac. This idea was a minor point, just frosting on the cake for someone who likes the AIO. The Mac might have a standard video connector. The optional special monitor would include a short cable (just long enough) that would reduce cable clutter. The monitor would have to be designed for attaching to the top of the Mac. It would be a way Apple could entice customers to spend more on the whole purchase if the end result was cool enough. If not, scrap the idea.


Quote:
Originally posted by SideShowBob


. . . How are you going to have this special Apple cable hanging out of the back for video output? Is it going to be hard wired or removable. In either case people will not like it. If you lose the cable what do you do, walk down to your local shop and buy another one? If it is hardwired and it breaks you would have to send it off for repair. Really it is going to have to have ADC and DVI ports on the back and a VGA adaptor. . .

post #82 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by snoopy
A lot of misunderstanding about who is the customer. Many valid issues brought up apply to a particular market, but not all markets. What interests or excites one group or people means little or nothing to another. A manager who simply needs network computers isn't going to value the same features as someone wanting to make home movies or work with digital photography.

Also, Apple does not need to go head to head with Dell on price. They cannot. But when a manager gets fed up with something about good old MS, Apple's prices need to be close enough to justify purchasing Macs. The difference needs to be small enough so the pain of switching is less than the pain of continuing with a Windows network.

Also, there is misunderstanding of the Mac I proposed. I suggested an optional monitor that could be somehow attached to the top of this Mac. This idea was a minor point, just frosting on the cake for someone who likes the AIO. The Mac might have a standard video connector. The optional special monitor would include a short cable (just long enough) that would reduce cable clutter. The monitor would have to be designed for attaching to the top of the Mac. It would be a way Apple could entice customers to spend more on the whole purchase if the end result was cool enough. If not, scrap the idea.


...Apple needs to stay away from porprietary in the business market. The ADC is bad enough. t least they give you standrad DVI/VGA port as well. But proprietary + small market = high cost to recoup R & D.

Apple needs to stick with plain simple tray loading CD-RWs, USB2, FW800, standard AGP all in an industry standard type enclosure.

Apple needs to KISS (keep it simple, stupid). Apple pissed off a lot of school and small business customers with the iMac. Monitors started fritzing out (actually, the A/D power supply board) out of warranty and it was costing as much as a new iMac to fix the damn things.

Not to mention the batch of iMacs with bad ethernet ports. Until very recently there was no USB/Eth adapter for OS X. So when people lost their ports it was a $450 mobo replacement for a 3 year old computer to get LAN connectivity back.

Hardly the way to creat happy customers.

PCI slots. AGP slot. Keep It Simple. The software and OS is, now give us a consumer/business Mac that is as well.
post #83 of 110
The argument that the a lower price machine will take away sales from the higher end machine is false.

People who want a powerful expandable box will still buy them. People looking for affordable boxes will still buy those, only not from Apple if Apple doesn't offer them.

People looking for an affordable box and thinking about switching will definitely not buy Apple.

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post #84 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by tink
The argument that the a lower price machine will take away sales from the higher end machine is false.

Well, that is not necessarily fact either. Take a look at the iPod mini, Apple wont release sales figures of the regular, higher priced iPods. Why? I bet the sales of them pale in comparisson to the smaller, less expensive model. Is it just product launch hype? Some of it could be, maybe the whole sales explosion is, but I tend to doubt that.
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post #85 of 110
I talk to people about their computers everyday, it is my job. There are still some people on the pc side that will gladly spend 2500+ to get a top of the line machine. These are the people that Apple wants. They are not going after Joe Blow who can only afford a 500 pc that will be obsolete in 6 months... I know I enjoy Apple's quality even though it costs more. cheapness != quality
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post #86 of 110
Well I'm a loyal mac user and own several Macs at home, however at work I ended up purchasing Dells over macs a couple of years ago largely because of price. I'm planing on upgrading to a G5 but I'm not sure at all how my boss is going to take it price wise and in our current economic climate.

In addition I know quite a few Joe Blows who are very price conscious and don't really understand the nuances between platforms. There are and have been quite a few Joe Blows who are Apple users and have left Apple for PC's and there are a lot of Joe Blows I would welcome open armed into the Apple fold.

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post #87 of 110
With the iPod Mini I don't think the price argument holds out. I do think the lower end takes away sales from the higher end models. I definitely bought the cheapest iPod I could get my hands on. I am completely satisfied with the a referub first generation 20 GB.

However, If I didn't have the choice of getting that cheaper model, I wouldn't have bought my wife or myself one at all.

If there was a cheaper Mac my wife would have been using it rather then the emachine she bought.

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post #88 of 110
Sorry, double post.

All my life, I always wanted to be somebody. Now I see that I should have been more specific.
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post #89 of 110
Which imac are you talking about mooseman?

As for Tink's argument that a cheper mac wouldn't take sales away from the towers.. That depends on what it is and when and if it comes out!!!!

Not all the towers are in rendering farms, video editing or HIGH end graphics departments. If I can plug a monitor in, make my layouts in Quark or Indesign and get some average photoshop work done then I am not going to spend 3 or 4 times as much buying 100 Towers, am I. If I can stick a bigger drive and more ram in then I have a machine that will last me until the next Creative Suite release, which is probably 1.5 - 2 years from now. Having saved 3 or 4 x the price I can then buy the next cheap machine instead of a tower.


Snoopy I am fed up with MS because of officex but I still have to support it.

Lots of IT people are scared s**tless by macs. There needs to be more done to make Mr PC IT-MANAGER think of macs as more than a nice looking luxury toy.

Sideshow

I guess we should say which sectors we work in.. Mine is advertising.
post #90 of 110
Thread Starter 
When my retired neighbor was shopping for a computer, he wanted to know the cheapest Mac he could buy, which was a $799 eMac. He discovered that Windows PCs had much lower entry level prices, and he never consider the Mac again. He ended up buying a Dell. Yesterday, I asked what he paid. Well it started out much lower, but by the time the order was finished he paid about $700. This represents a typical consumer buying scenario. Attracted by initial low price, they often end up paying more. Because Apple didn''t have a low entry point, they were never even considered. So a low price model is important for consumer behavior as well as for business and classrooms.

If Apple had a $499 entry point, without monitor, my neighbor would have kept them in the running as he weighed the differences. He may have bought a Mac too. I certainly would have kept encouraging him in that direction. Few consumers would buy a $499 entry Mac, however. Sure there are those who know how to work the system and they upgrade selectively afterward, but the majority do not. A typical consumer would see the benefit of paying an extra $149 for the high end model if it provides a software bundle (including iLife), more RAM, FireWire (for which Dell charges $50), a modem and possibly a couple extra USB ports.

If Apple can get a much cheaper G4, when IBM starts making the Mojave chip, I think Apple can achieve the $499 point with reasonable profit and without sacrificing their standards of reliability and quality. Remember, most buyers will pay more, if only to add more RAM, get a larger hard drive or upgrade the optical drive beyond a CD-ROM.
post #91 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by SideShowBob
I guess we should say which sectors we work in.. Mine is advertising.

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post #92 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by SideShowBob

Not all the towers are in rendering farms, video editing or HIGH end graphics departments. If I can plug a monitor in, make my layouts in Quark or Indesign and get some average photoshop work done then I am not going to spend 3 or 4 times as much buying 100 Towers, am I. If I can stick a bigger drive and more ram in then I have a machine that will last me until the next Creative Suite release, which is probably 1.5 - 2 years from now. Having saved 3 or 4 x the price I can then buy the next cheap machine instead of a tower.

Exactly. I've been getting lots of graphics work done with a 350Mhz G4 for years. Photoshop, Quark, Illustrator; all work just fine at that speed. I don't do a lot of high-end work on multi-megabyte files, but still... I think there are fewer people who really need wicked-fast computers than some folks here think. There had been a lot of pent-up demand for fast Macs before the first G5s. If sales of the duals have been better than sales of the cheaper singles, this may be why. We'll see if that continues.
post #93 of 110
CErtain segements fo the pro market will always go for the fastest of what ever Apple makes. The issue with the G5 Towers is or was that the top of the line model represented very good value relative to the others. AT this time the G5's top of the line model is likely to remain a best seller.

The trick at the lower end is delivering a machine that appeals to people with more modest needs. These would be the same people that give the world of PC's a serious look. Like it or not pricing is a big consideration here, selling 2 year old technology at a large premium does not cut it.

Sure it is poosible to get reasonable work done on a 350MHz machine, but I think we can agree that buying a new machine that runs at that clock rate is not smart. Around my house I still have a 400MHz machine sitting in the basement, sure it is still usefull but I'd be the first to admit that I wouuld not go back to using it on a permenant basis. The additional speed of my new machine allows me to do more things and to do things differrently than I could with the old geezzer.

So do I really need the faster computer that currently sits on my desk? Well yes, it was responsiveness issues with the old one that resulted in its replacement. Will I upgrade in the future to an even faster machine - yep it is almost a given. That will probally happen when the frustration level ratchets up or a kick ass software package comes out that demands it. Eventually every one finds limitations with their hardware.

Dave


Quote:
Originally posted by iDave
Exactly. I've been getting lots of graphics work done with a 350Mhz G4 for years. Photoshop, Quark, Illustrator; all work just fine at that speed. I don't do a lot of high-end work on multi-megabyte files, but still... I think there are fewer people who really need wicked-fast computers than some folks here think. There had been a lot of pent-up demand for fast Macs before the first G5s. If sales of the duals have been better than sales of the cheaper singles, this may be why. We'll see if that continues.
post #94 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by wizard69
CErtain segements fo the pro market will always go for the fastest of what ever Apple makes. The issue with the G5 Towers is or was that the top of the line model represented very good value relative to the others. AT this time the G5's top of the line model is likely to remain a best seller.

The trick at the lower end is delivering a machine that appeals to people with more modest needs. These would be the same people that give the world of PC's a serious look. Like it or not pricing is a big consideration here, selling 2 year old technology at a large premium does not cut it.

Sure it is poosible to get reasonable work done on a 350MHz machine, but I think we can agree that buying a new machine that runs at that clock rate is not smart. Around my house I still have a 400MHz machine sitting in the basement, sure it is still usefull but I'd be the first to admit that I wouuld not go back to using it on a permenant basis. The additional speed of my new machine allows me to do more things and to do things differrently than I could with the old geezzer.

So do I really need the faster computer that currently sits on my desk? Well yes, it was responsiveness issues with the old one that resulted in its replacement. Will I upgrade in the future to an even faster machine - yep it is almost a given. That will probally happen when the frustration level ratchets up or a kick ass software package comes out that demands it. Eventually every one finds limitations with their hardware.

Dave

True but it's just how they do it that makes us wonder. The single G5 is not a bad machine it is just one that we would all avoid because the savings are not really there to be made. If we think well ok for $700 more we get a much much better machine that will last us much much longer then we will avoid the single cpu one. If it is reduced in price even more then a whole lot of us would really consider it.

I am certain that Apple is waiting until they have a big enough variety of chips and hardware to make the move into the cheaper market (if they are going to). This still makes me think that the 970fx based machines will be the same price as the current towers when they come out. Then it will happen with each speed bump that things cost less.
Still I cant see anything happening until the Powerbooks are G5 based and there is more variety in their available desktop chips. Atleast this is something IBM is working on pretty quickly. Intel did take much longer to update the P4 range than IBM are taking with the 970 so we all have hope.


Sideshow

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post #95 of 110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by SideShowBob

. . . I am certain that Apple is waiting until they have a big enough variety of chips and hardware to make the move into the cheaper market (if they are going to). . .

I agree.

I believe the processor is a key element in achieving better value Macs. I'm very pleased with what is happening with the IBM 970 and successors. The prices are so good, if we can believe reports, that people are suggesting Apple use it in all Macs. Hopefully, IBM can keep these prices below similar performing chips from Intel. If so, Apple could be more price competitive with the Power Macs, despite Apple's other cost disadvantages.

At the low end, however, these high performance chips are not a good choice. They will always cost more than a chip designed with low cost as one of the primary goals. For the 970 and 970FX, lower than expected cost is just a happy side effect for now. IBM, Apple and most Mac users would gladly sacrifice some of that low-cost advantage if it means we can get significantly more performance.

The bottom line: Apple needs a really low cost G4, which should be low power too for the iBook. When Apple gets such a chip, a low cost desktop Mac is possible. Mojave?
post #96 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by SideShowBob
Which imac are you talking about mooseman?
Sideshow

I guess we should say which sectors we work in.. Mine is advertising.

....the Rev A-D CRT iMacs.

In fact, I have an iRack courtesy of one of the power supply issues. Had an iMac DV go bad and popped the mobo in one of the Marathon iRacks and now have a nifty little 400MHz G3 1U server.
post #97 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by mooseman
....the Rev A-D CRT iMacs.

In fact, I have an iRack courtesy of one of the power supply issues. Had an iMac DV go bad and popped the mobo in one of the Marathon iRacks and now have a nifty little 400MHz G3 1U server.

Is the video output a vga connector on the converted iMac?

Sorry, OT.
post #98 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by oldmacfan
Is the video output a vga connector on the converted iMac?

Sorry, OT.

...yep.

I wish there was some sort of S-video out on those iMacs, it would make the perfect entertainment center Mac, well, except for the noisy ass PS fan.
post #99 of 110
dude the fan is not at all that loud... whats up with you people? turn on any dell any of them... and get back to me.
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post #100 of 110
Thread Starter 
If it's not too far off topic, I'd like to hear some opinions about why Apple selected a 1 GHz G4 with 256K of L2 cache for the iBook, rather than going with the IBM 750 GX, the G3 Gobi that everyone was looking forward to. It is also 1 GHz but with 1 M L2 cache, four times as much, and dissipates less than 10 W. It likely costs less and would have been an easy and good value upgrade for the iBook, which was already a G3. The iBook could have moved to a G4 when the IBM Mojave is here. I'm pretty sure Mojave will be lower cost than a Motorola G4, probably significantly so.

Apple's decision to ignore the Gobe has puzzled me, but evidently no one else. The only comment I've seen are like, "Great, the iBook has a G4." With the larger L2 cache, I would think the G3 would perform as well as the G4 overall. Gobe would be faster on everything except AltiVec accelerated applications. From a value standpoint, it looks to me like Apple jumped to a G4 too soon. Comments?
post #101 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by mooseman
...yep.

I wish there was some sort of S-video out on those iMacs, it would make the perfect entertainment center Mac, well, except for the noisy ass PS fan.

I assume the noisy fan is the one provided with the iRack?
I have looked at this option and thought that $300+ was a bit much for converting 5 year old hardware. Can/Will you share more thoughts on this?
post #102 of 110
Quote:
Originally posted by snoopy
If it's not too far off topic, I'd like to hear some opinions about why Apple selected a 1 GHz G4 with 256K of L2 cache for the iBook, rather than going with the IBM 750 GX, the G3 Gobi that everyone was looking forward to. It is also 1 GHz but with 1 M L2 cache, four times as much, and dissipates less than 10 W. It likely costs less and would have been an easy and good value upgrade for the iBook, which was already a G3. The iBook could have moved to a G4 when the IBM Mojave is here. I'm pretty sure Mojave will be lower cost than a Motorola G4, probably significantly so.

Apple's decision to ignore the Gobe has puzzled me, but evidently no one else. The only comment I've seen are like, "Great, the iBook has a G4." With the larger L2 cache, I would think the G3 would perform as well as the G4 overall. Gobe would be faster on everything except AltiVec accelerated applications. From a value standpoint, it looks to me like Apple jumped to a G4 too soon. Comments?

They might have had the G4 ibook waiting in the wings for a while. This might explain why they stuck to the Moto G4.. There might be other reasons too.. Maybe the Gobe kicks the crap out of the cpu's in the powerbook's.. Without having any realworld benchmarks I can only guess. I think MOTO let Apple down in such a way that it has held them back with the exception of the G5 tower. Like I said before IBM seem to be working overtime to give them the goods...


Sideshow
post #103 of 110
Alt-Vec has become very important to the applicaitons that Apple wants to deliver. I believe this is the overriding consideration. If Gobi had a vector capability it probally would be in the ibook right now.

From my perspective the ibook lost a bit with the G4. I would have liked to seen battery life as the overwhelming design consideration. I believe it is a markatable a feature as ultimate performance, and frankly is one of the reasons for the iBooks success. But I do understand Apple a bit with respect to this issue. When Alt Vec can be used it is almost always a significant advantage that the G3 series had no way of overcoming.


Thanks
Dave

Quote:
Originally posted by snoopy
If it's not too far off topic, I'd like to hear some opinions about why Apple selected a 1 GHz G4 with 256K of L2 cache for the iBook, rather than going with the IBM 750 GX, the G3 Gobi that everyone was looking forward to. It is also 1 GHz but with 1 M L2 cache, four times as much, and dissipates less than 10 W. It likely costs less and would have been an easy and good value upgrade for the iBook, which was already a G3. The iBook could have moved to a G4 when the IBM Mojave is here. I'm pretty sure Mojave will be lower cost than a Motorola G4, probably significantly so.

Apple's decision to ignore the Gobe has puzzled me, but evidently no one else. The only comment I've seen are like, "Great, the iBook has a G4." With the larger L2 cache, I would think the G3 would perform as well as the G4 overall. Gobe would be faster on everything except AltiVec accelerated applications. From a value standpoint, it looks to me like Apple jumped to a G4 too soon. Comments?
post #104 of 110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by wizard69
Alt-Vec has become very important to the applicaitons that Apple wants to deliver. I believe this is the overriding consideration. If Gobi had a vector capability it probally would be in the ibook right now. . .


I have a feeling you are right. Except for lack of AltiVec, Gobi would have been a better choice than a Motorola G4 in every way, battery life (as you point out), performance (1 MB L2 cache), power (under 10 Watts) and price, most likely.

I've been wondering about something else regarding a good value, low-end Mac, but I doubt there are many who have an answer to this question. Does HyperTransport add cost to a system? That is, how does its cost compare with the standard way of connecting system components, before the G5? I was wondering whether it made sense to use HyperTransport in low-end products?
post #105 of 110
HyperTransport is not at all expensive to implement. That's one of its design goals, and they appear to have succeeded.

I have to continue to go against the Dell-with-an-Apple-badge thinking going on here. The more I think about my little appliance, the more I like it.
  • It can be integrated to a degree that a PC can't, adding "sex appeal" and reducing cost (expansion through PCI adds cost).
  • Since it's designed for light, general use, it's better at that than the PCs are, and it can come near the advertised cost for the PC box alone, except that you get a whole system.
  • It's not a Mac, so it carries none of the baggage that the Mac carries. It is an Apple, so it has all the cachet that the Apple name has.
  • Dell can't compete with it. Their whole model is based on the idea that the customer knows going in that they're going to get a bog standard tower and monitor that are identical to anyone else's except for little plastic bits here and there, so ordering them blind is no big deal. But accessories have to be seen first. This is the genius of iPod, and one reason why it's outselling the Dell DJ by about 20:1. Apple has turned their dependence on retail into an asset, and Dell's direct advantage into a liability.
  • No PC maker can compete with it (not even Sony, because they have to design for Windows CE, or PocketPC, or whatever MS is calling that failure this week). It plays to all of Apple's strengths: Engineering, integration, design, and desirability. It also makes the PCs look huge and clumsy and antique, and completely overdetermined for what's expected of them (which they are).
  • It would be able to work alone, or in concert with a Mac, so like the iPod, it's a reason to get a Mac without the requirement that you get a Mac. Perhaps Apple can convince some third party to write software to sync with a Windows PC.

Face it: Apple isn't going to out-Dell Dell. Where the market plays to their strengths, they can and do beat the PC makers - soundly, in some cases - so what they have to do is define the low end market in terms favorable to them. This would do that. A Dell wanna-be box would not (and it would cost a whole lot more than $500).
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post #106 of 110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Amorph
HyperTransport is not at all expensive to implement. That's one of its design goals, and they appear to have succeeded. . .



That is what I was hoping to hear. Thank you.

I reread the post about your little appliance idea. (The middle of page one if someone is looking for it.) I don't know what you have in mind regarding hardware, but my neighbor wanted a good size screen (17 inch CRT) and a standard keyboard. He also needed a hard drive to store the documents he creates and a connection for his printer, to print his word processor output. If your appliance can provide all that, it would be a great product and would suffice for many folks I know. If it is anything less, I'm pretty sure my neighbor would not buy it, nor would I.

Thinking about your idea, if it is an accessory for broadband internet service it does not need a CD-ROM drive. It only needs an Ethernet port and two USB ports. Since it doesn't have a conventional OS, Apple could have a basic set of free applications, on the hard drive and available on line. Obviously, these would only work for the appliance. There needs to be email, an internet browser and a simple word processor minimum. If the hard drive crashes, there must be a built in way to download another copy of the appliance's simple OS from Apple. This appliance might sell with six months free .Mac usage, for backing up documents and bookmarks.

Just a thought.
post #107 of 110
Hypertransport has the potential to lower system costs. I do not believe that potential has been reached with the current 970 / Northbridge combo.

For Apple to obtain maximum savings through Hypertransport, I suspect that they will have to implement the port on the CPU die. You also have the cost of the other Hypertransport based components that Apple uses on the G5 motherboard, I simply don't know what Apple is pay for these. They could be cheaper than the PCI equivalent or not hard to say other than they will be in the future.

Thanks
dave

Quote:
Originally posted by snoopy
I have a feeling you are right. Except for lack of AltiVec, Gobi would have been a better choice than a Motorola G4 in every way, battery life (as you point out), performance (1 MB L2 cache), power (under 10 Watts) and price, most likely.

I've been wondering about something else regarding a good value, low-end Mac, but I doubt there are many who have an answer to this question. Does HyperTransport add cost to a system? That is, how does its cost compare with the standard way of connecting system components, before the G5? I was wondering whether it made sense to use HyperTransport in low-end products?
post #108 of 110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Amorph


. . . I have to continue to go against the Dell-with-an-Apple-badge thinking going on here. . .



Many here feel the same and express it in many way. It's often stated that a Mac must meet certain standards, usually involving quality, I/O ports and performance. Anything less is not a Mac, would hurt Apple's reputation and would take too many sales away from better Macs. Performance of a really cheap Windows PC is also cited as a major source of customer dissatisfaction. Such points all have merit, which makes it really difficult to offer an opposing view. I will try, because I believe there are other issues that are equally important, if not more so.

Apple must begin to increase market share significantly, and a low priced entry level computer is a good way, maybe the only way, to do it and do it noticeably so. A definite upward trend in market share builds confidence, and Apple's developers, business partners and potential customers need this confidence. If market share stays where it is, or moves up very weakly and inconsistently, it will begin to erode confidence in Apple. I believe this point alone is reason enough for Apple to offer a low price computer that runs Mac OS X. The exact price is debatable, but the oft stated "under $500 US without monitor" is a good mark in the sand.

Let's consider the argument that a low cost entry level Mac can breed dissatisfaction and hurt Apple's image, as customers try to get by cheap and do not consider future needs. As time goes by they get dissatisfied because their computer cannot do more. Is that so bad? What happens now in the Windows world? Do unhappy customers begin to bash the Windows PC and switch to a Mac? No! Usually they calm down and realize it was their own mistake. When they finally do buy a better computer, it will be one that runs all the new software applications they just bought. If my neighbor ever gets interested in doing more, he will surely buy a much better Windows PC, and pay more than for the eMac he could have purchased a few weeks ago.

Within the last two years, I've know several first time PC buyers who never seriously considered a Mac because of price. Also, two families I know very well switched from Macs to a Windows. Their old Performa 630 and 6400 got replaced with a Dell and HP. Price was the only issue. None of these folks are dissatisfied with their Windows PC. Their standards are not very high. Why shouldn't Apple get this kind of business and increase market share of the Mac OS X platform? Will an entry level model tarnish the Macintosh name? Apple can choose another name. The only real consideration is how to make a profit on entry level computers and not reduce sales too much on better Macs. Do we think it is impossible to achieve such a goal?

Regarding profit, Apple does not need to meet Dell's prices, but just get closer enough so many will consider Apple. If the Apple product is perceived as being better, or happens to be better looking, many will pay a small difference to get it. Only companies like Dell, who try to sell to everyone, need to have rock bottom prices. Now regarding sales of better Macs, it is these better Macs that people will upgrade to when they wish to do more than their little entry box can do. The entry model needs to be limited, by design. You may argue that many will be satisfied with these limitations and will never buy a better Mac. True! However, these folks will not buy an Apple at all if a low priced model is not available. All those mentioned in the paragraph above are satisfied with their limited Windows PCs. Mac was not an option to them simply because of price.

I've only touched on the consumer market here. A low cost computer to run OS X on the desktop is obviously needed for business and schools too. It's difficult for me to understand what is taking Apple so long to provide it. I'm hoping they are simply getting all their other "duck" in a row before adding this one. Technology is now making this "duck" easier to achieve than ever. There are now video chips for $10 and a low cost Gobi, 750GX, from IBM. If it's not a Mac, and it's limited, maybe it does not need a G4. Anyone for iPippin or ePippin?
post #109 of 110
Ok, I have a crazy thought. What if Apple got out of the low-end market all together. What if they do a HP-iPod deal with someone. This company would produce under a very controlled license discounted mac clones. Apple would to some extent would guarantee compatibility with OS X and the producer would guarantee a certain level of quality. The company would be limited in the feature set they could offer under the terms of the license and Apple would have some input as to appearence.

Would this type of deal work?

Would any company go for it?

Would any one here buy one?
post #110 of 110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by oldmacfan
Ok, I have a crazy thought. What if Apple got out of the low-end market all together. What if they do a HP-iPod deal with someone. This company would produce under a very controlled license discounted mac clones. Apple would to some extent would guarantee compatibility with OS X and the producer would guarantee a certain level of quality. The company would be limited in the feature set they could offer under the terms of the license and Apple would have some input as to appearence.

Would this type of deal work?

Would any company go for it?

Would any one here buy one?


You can make a lot of business arrangements work with good contracts. The question is whether it is worth the effort of keeping it under control. Is there a benefit that out weighs the problems? If I understand your proposal, you suggest that Apple give the entire low-end Mac OS X market to a clone maker, for a fee. Now two companies must make a profit on the cheapest of all models. Hard to do. Strike one. Also, Apple and the clone maker would have conflicting goals. Apple will want to limit low end models so better Macs keep selling well, but a clone maker will want to exploit low end models to make as many sales as possible. Strike two. It could be make to work, so it isn't out, but it would cause endless headaches in my opinion.
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