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MacBook release builds confidence in Apple's quarter

post #1 of 37
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The arrival of Apple's new MacBook this month came as a surprise to analysts for American Technology Research, who say the immediate availability of the notebooks is sure to strengthen the company's current fiscal quarter.

"MacBook is shipping 1-2 months ahead of our checks (we had anticipated the June/July timeframe)," analyst Shaw Wu told clients in a research note issued on Thursday. "We thus have a higher degree of confidence that Apple is on track to hit the upper-end, if not exceed, its guidance of $4.2 to 4.4 billion in revenue and 39 to 42 cents in earnings-per-share."

Wu sees the timing of the MacBook launch as important because it comes well ahead of Apple's critical back-to-school buying season, which begins around the July timeframe. He believes the notebooks are on their way to becoming the company's second highest volume Mac computer behind the iMac Core Duo, possibly making a run for the No. 1 spot.

"Pricing and specifications appear very competitive and a vast improvement from [the] iBook, its predecessor," the analyst wrote."We believe the entry-level system from $1099 is a particularly good deal that includes a 1.83GHz dual-core Intel processor, 13-inch widescreen LCD, 512MB of memory, 60GB HDD, iSight video camera, Front Row with Apple remote, GigE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Mac OS X Tiger, the iLife suite and the option to run Windows XP through Boot Camp."

Wu says the new MacBook "screams iPod companion and portable digital media center." While it's clear that Apple is targeting students and the education markets with the notebooks, they also make "a lot of sense for mainstream consumer, particularly switchers," he said.

Unlike Apple's professional line of MacBook Pro notebooks, Wu said the availability of the new MacBook appears fairly good in its first week on the market. "Our checks indicate strong orders and pent-up demand as many customers have been waiting for this low-cost Intel mobile Mac," he wrote. "In fact, on Amazon.com, the top three selling PCs are MacBooks, beating out Toshiba, HP, Sony and Acer."

Still, the analyst has his share of concerns. He believes the the $1499 high-end version with a black matte finish may be a bit overpriced. "Apple appears to be confident that some customers will pay the $200 premium for the black color," he wrote.

Another concern is that the MacBook's feature set and attractive price points could deter users from purchasing the company's higher-priced MacBook Pro offerings. "The MacBook is so powerful that we fear it could cannibalize sales of its high-end MacBook Pro," Wu told clients. "The only difference between the models are the screen size (15-inch and 17-inch vs. 13-inch) and graphics capability (ATI vs. embedded Intel graphics)."

Overall, Wu remains bullish on Apple. He believes the risk-reward on the company's shares remains attractive, trading at 25 times his 2007 calendar year earnings-per-share estimates of $2.59. "We remain firm believers that the move to digital entertainment is a multi-year trend and that Apple is well-positioned to capitalize with its unique and defendable iPod + iTunes and Macintosh franchise," he wrote.

American Technology Research maintains its Buy rating on shares of Apple with a price target of $101.
post #2 of 37
Just a bite overpriced?
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post #3 of 37
This is the same guy that said the MacBook would not appear until June/July......... why don't they just give it up, clearly they don't know what they're talking about.
post #4 of 37
Quote:
We remain firm believers that the move to digital entertainment is a multi-year trend and that Apple is well-positioned to capitalize with its unique and defendable iPod + iTunes and Macintosh franchise.

I love how analysts can make nothing sound like something... just by using a certain vocabulary and sentence structure
post #5 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by xflare
This is the same guy that said the MacBook would not appear until June/July......... why don't they just give it up, clearly they don't know what they're talking about.

They usually know just a bit more then the street which is the difference between making a fortune and taking a bath on wall street.
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post #6 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by theapplegenius
Just a bite overpriced?

Exactly.. grrrrrrrrr.
post #7 of 37
Quote:
The arrival of Apple's new MacBook this month came as a surprise to analysts for American Technology Research, who say the immediate availability of the notebooks is sure to strengthen the company's current fiscal quarter.

Oh yeah...the MacBook was one HUGE surprise. NOBODY expected this release.

Who is this analyst and from what rock did he crawl under from? Was it really a surprise to him or is it a deformed interp.
post #8 of 37
"The MacBook is so powerful that we fear it could cannibalize sales of its high-end MacBook Pro," Wu told clients. "The only difference between the models are the screen size (15-inch and 17-inch vs. 13-inch) and graphics capability (ATI vs. embedded Intel graphics)."

WRONG ... there is no ExpressCard Slot for the MacBook, it only exists in the MacBook Pro. That's a major difference between the systems.

On the timing of the release, I think the MacBook release was Strategic and Just In Time as it will help Apple's current quarter numbers and Mac unit sales.
post #9 of 37
The graphics on the new Macbook are gonna suck bigtime!!
Doesnt enen have a proper video card and video memory is shared with system memory!? Phil Schiller said its not suitable for games like Doom3. What students dont want to play the odd game or two?
If it had dedicated graphics instead of that Intel junk it might cannibalise MBP sales but this is where Apple crippled them. I'm surprised there isnt a bigger debate about this issue.
I definitely wont be in a hurry to buy till I read some reviews.
post #10 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
The graphics on the new Macbook are gonna suck bigtime!!
Doesnt enen have a proper video card and video memory is shared with system memory!? Phil Schiller said its not suitable for games like Doom3. What students dont want to play the odd game or two?
If it had dedicated graphics instead of that Intel junk it might cannibalise MBP sales but this is where Apple crippled them. I'm surprised there isnt a bigger debate about this issue.
I definitely wont be in a hurry to buy till I read some reviews.

What students only game on a computer and won't buy a next gen console or don't own a current gen console?

I mean if they "play an odd game or two" isn't is way more likely it'll be a console?
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post #11 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
The graphics on the new Macbook are gonna suck bigtime!!
Doesnt enen have a proper video card and video memory is shared with system memory!? Phil Schiller said its not suitable for games like Doom3. What students dont want to play the odd game or two?
If it had dedicated graphics instead of that Intel junk it might cannibalise MBP sales but this is where Apple crippled them. I'm surprised there isnt a bigger debate about this issue.
I definitely wont be in a hurry to buy till I read some reviews.

First, the Macbook with integrated graphics beats the iBook with graphics card hands down (per Macworld benchmark). And over a million iBooks were sold. Maybe those students didn't want to play the odd game or two?

The Macbook beats the latest Powerbook in everything except possibly games where it lags but not by that much (per Macworld Unreal Tournament benchmark). And only fools buy a Celeron or cheapie laptop to play games. And why PC people buy premium-priced Alienware computers to play games.

And that so simply explains why there is little debate about it.
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post #12 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by mark2005
First, the Macbook with integrated graphics beats the iBook with graphics card hands down (per Macworld benchmark). And over a million iBooks were sold. Maybe those students didn't want to play the odd game or two?

To be exact, the benchmarks showed that the iBook beat the Macbook at running ... Photoshop. But there's little doubt that when Photoshop becomes Universal, that the Macbook will clobber the iBook at that too.
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post #13 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by xflare
This is the same guy that said the MacBook would not appear until June/July......... why don't they just give it up, clearly they don't know what they're talking about.

Because, during the conference call, all Apple would say about the delivery when repeatedly asked, was that it would be in time for the July quarter back to school buying season.
post #14 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by kim kap sol
Oh yeah...the MacBook was one HUGE surprise. NOBODY expected this release.

Who is this analyst and from what rock did he crawl under from? Was it really a surprise to him or is it a deformed interp.

Apple hinted strongly, during the conference call, that it would be ready for the July quarter. While they wouldn't say, they brushed aside any idea that it would be available sooner. Analysts can only go by what they are told. If Apple had said that they were trying to get it out as soon as possible, it would be different, but they didn't. Wolf, and others, pushed them on that, but they stuck to the ready by July quarter, and can't...competitive reasons.
post #15 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by mark2005
To be exact, the benchmarks showed that the iBook beat the Macbook at running ... Photoshop. But there's little doubt that when Photoshop becomes Universal, that the Macbook will clobber the iBook at that too.

When Merom comes out, if Apple moves to that on the MB's, as they likely will on the MBP's, that will make a big difference as well.
post #16 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
The graphics on the new Macbook are gonna suck bigtime!!

And why did you choose to post this on the article about an analyst, instead of one of the *many* articles about the computer...?
post #17 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by ecking
What students only game on a computer and won't buy a next gen console or don't own a current gen console?

I mean if they "play an odd game or two" isn't is way more likely it'll be a console?

Not all games are availble on the consoles. WoW, and many other MMO's aren't availble on the consoles. I also disagree with the benchmarks quoted concearning graphics. Dedicated cards are better then intergrated even when they are a bit behind.
post #18 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by mark2005
First, the Macbook with integrated graphics beats the iBook with graphics card hands down (per Macworld benchmark). And over a million iBooks were sold. Maybe those students didn't want to play the odd game or two?

The Macbook beats the latest Powerbook in everything except possibly games where it lags but not by that much (per Macworld Unreal Tournament benchmark). And only fools buy a Celeron or cheapie laptop to play games. And why PC people buy premium-priced Alienware computers to play games.

And that so simply explains why there is little debate about it.

Here's a vid to prove how the video lacks behind and stutters while loading a simple iMovie theme:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnO5uJIvZG8
The user also performs an Xbench test and shows that the video card sux.
Still the machine itself is pretty sweet.
Just a pity about the graphics card (if it can even be called that).
post #19 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by amac4me
WRONG ... there is no ExpressCard Slot for the MacBook, it only exists in the MacBook Pro. That's a major difference between the systems.

That's barely usable at the moment. Apart jpennington's report of using the SIIG flash reader adapter, I haven't heard of anyone having an ExpressCard and putting it to productive use. Even then, the report is that the MBP won't sleep properly with the reader installed.

The MacBooks don't have a backlit keyboard either. That was one of the deciding factors for me, I assumed the MacBook would not get that feature.
post #20 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
Here's a vid to prove how the video lacks behind and stutters while loading a simple iMovie theme:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnO5uJIvZG8
The user also performs an Xbench test and shows that the video card sux.
Still the machine itself is pretty sweet.
Just a pity about the graphics card (if it can even be called that).

If you read what he said in his video, he said that the graphics chip was fine for everything except heavy gaming, and he, correctly, attributed the stuttering to the lack of RAM, which can be a problem. 1 GB certainly does help.
post #21 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by melgross
If you read what he said in his video, he said that the graphics chip was fine for everything except heavy gaming, and he, correctly, attributed the stuttering to the lack of RAM, which can be a problem. 1 GB certainly does help.

So does everyone then agree that the video capability of this new MacBook is far superior to that of the previous iBook with its dedicated video card which it replaces?
I was led to believe that intel shared graphics would suck under pressure especially using Quartz Extreme and CoreImage.
post #22 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
So does everyone then agree that the video capability of this new MacBook is far superior to that of the previous iBook with its dedicated video card which it replaces?
I was led to believe that intel shared graphics would suck under pressure especially using Quartz Extreme and CoreImage.

I think it is a little more complex than that.

But I don't think Quartz Extreme or CoreImage necessarily taxes a graphics chip. The Transition Development Kits had Intel integrated graphics and the word was that the graphics speed was surprisingly good.
post #23 of 37
Quote:
I'm surprised there isnt a bigger debate about this issue.

The reason you are "surprised" is that you didn't check out the eleventy-bazillion threads in this forum already discussing the integrated graphics.
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post #24 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
So does everyone then agree that the video capability of this new MacBook is far superior to that of the previous iBook with its dedicated video card which it replaces?
I was led to believe that intel shared graphics would suck under pressure especially using Quartz Extreme and CoreImage.

To say that it's "far" better, would be pushing it. But, indeed, it is better. That may not be saying all that much, but it is a welcome improvement.
post #25 of 37
Originally posted by kim kap sol
Oh yeah...the MacBook was one HUGE surprise. NOBODY expected this release. Who is this analyst and from what rock did he crawl under from? Was it really a surprise to him or is it a deformed interp.



Totally. WTF. Duhh..... MacBook Pro.... umm... hmmm... let's see, what would be next.... hmmm... iBook has gone 290 days at least without a replacement... hmmm... what other powerpc machine has no intel in it... hmmm... when is the back-to-school prep time.... umm... what does Apple need to boost this quarter.... ummm... Asus is already manufacturing the MacBook...ummm....

OMFG MacBook!!! WTF? WHAT? WHAT HAPPENED? WHY? WOW, TOTALLY UNEXPECTED

Bloody analysts. Good for a laugh, that's what these analysts are useful for.
post #26 of 37
Originally posted by lundy
The reason you are "surprised" is that you didn't check out the eleventy-bazillion threads in this forum already discussing the integrated graphics.


You forgot to say "...already discussing the integrated graphics to death".
post #27 of 37
Quote:
So does everyone then agree that the video capability of this new MacBook is far superior to that of the previous iBook with its dedicated video card which it replaces?
I was led to believe that intel shared graphics would suck under pressure especially using Quartz Extreme and CoreImage.


To say that it's "far" better, would be pushing it. But, indeed, it is better. That may not be saying all that much, but it is a welcome improvement.

On Ars benchmark tests and MacWorld benchmarks MB smokes the iBook G4 on every graphics test. Excluding Photoshop obviously, that would be remedied with PS UB.

In the Ars test the MB beat the MBP in OpenGL test. That's more than likely because of drivers though.
post #28 of 37
I'm wondering if the pricesof the MB and MBP, and the cpu upgrades in the MBP already reflect these pricecuts.

If so, what can we expect for the iMac, and the Mini shortly.

http://www.tgdaily.com/2006/05/19/intel_price_cuts/

Also, there was an interview on Marketwatch this afternoon, which was interesting.

In it, he said that Apple's US marketshare was about 5%, depending on which company's estimate you read. He also made the point that if just 5% of PC owners bought a Mac, Apple's marketshare would go to 10%. He didn't talk about the numbers of machines sold, just marketshare.
post #29 of 37
I imagine Apple will take full advantage of pent up demand and excitement for the new MacBook right now and lower prices over time as the excitement and newness wanes.

I would be surprised if the lowest end MacBook were not $999 by the back to school period.
post #30 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by rinnin
Here's a vid to prove how the video lacks behind and stutters while loading a simple iMovie theme:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnO5uJIvZG8
The user also performs an Xbench test and shows that the video card sux.
Still the machine itself is pretty sweet.
Just a pity about the graphics card (if it can even be called that).

Actually, that probably has very little to do with the graphics card, and more to do with the way iMovie is coded and the nature of the task.

Graphics cards capabilities differ in their rendering of 3D polygons and shaders. Integrated graphics are often not good for games for this reason, as many modern games rely on rendering complex scenes of polygons and textures, and having the bandwidth to update these many times per second.

However, the iMovie theme is a task involving overlaying bitmapped graphics onto video, and has more to do with memory management and video caching at the application level than the graphics card.

As such, you'd find something like using a 7200rpm drive would have more impact than a dedicated graphics card.
post #31 of 37
"MacBook release builds confidence in Apple's quarter"

That hasn't translated into the stock pricing, so I wonder how widely this confidence is shared. This product might be pretty popular, but people apparently aren't buying enough of the stock. This Monday's average price was around $68, this Friday, it was averaging $64.
post #32 of 37
Keep in mind for the last 2 weeks the entire stock market was pretty crappy. Personally I want Apple to drop farther.
post #33 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by scavanger
Keep in mind for the last 2 weeks the entire stock market was pretty crappy. Personally I want Apple to drop farther.

I don't.
post #34 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by scavanger
Keep in mind for the last 2 weeks the entire stock market was pretty crappy. Personally I want Apple to drop farther.

Something I didn't say before, but if you looked at last week's pricing, the Tuesday pricing dropped pretty quickly (in the first couple hours) from the day before and held pretty stable through the week.

Why, I don't know, it doesn't make sense to me. The only change between the two days was the MacBook announcement, it would seem to show that investors in general don't have the confidence that the article tries to portray.
post #35 of 37
Buy on the rumor; sell on the news. That's what it sounds like to me.

Quote:
Originally posted by JeffDM
Something I didn't say before, but if you looked at last week's pricing, the Tuesday pricing dropped pretty quickly (in the first couple hours) from the day before and held pretty stable through the week.

Why, I don't know, it doesn't make sense to me. The only change between the two days was the MacBook announcement, it would seem to show that investors in general don't have the confidence that the article tries to portray.
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post #36 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by lundy
Buy on the rumor; sell on the news. That's what it sounds like to me.

The way the prices are going, I would suggest that anyone that buys on news and sells on rumor would be the one making money here.
post #37 of 37
$63.38 ... Hmm... I think there will be more hype ($70-ish) going into Apple's July financial results announcement. Till then, the product portfolio looks pretty stable and investors seem to be laying low. Maybe a new iPod product will kick up some interest, but that has to be announced soon as we are almost in the last month of the Apr-May-June quarter
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