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Isn't it time for a plain old Macintosh again? - Page 29

post #1121 of 1658
Quote:
The items on my list mean higher sales for the Mini. Did I forget to add that? It's true that I'm speaking of a low cost Mac Mini replacement, not a much higher performance machine.

That's a broad assumption.

But for the sake of argument lets say this does happen. Its not very likely Wallstreet will be to thrilled about Apple selling more numbers of less expensive computers. Wallstreet wants Apple to sell more numbers of expensive computers.
post #1122 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

You guys described a computer you want. That did not explain how it would benefit Apple.

Incorrect. I have no interest in a desktop Mac. I'm talking about a machine that I believe would help (in conjunction with other suggestions I have made) Apple to, over a period of a couple of years, significantly increase its user base by (for the trillionth time): lowering the cost of entry to the platform (the $399 config of my suggestion) and providing a real desktop computer in the mid-range space (the $799 + configs)

Since both of these things can be achieved with the same form-factor, that lowers the development and manufacturing costs for Apple.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

You are speaking of the slowest cheapest Conroe options. I'm my $1699 config I'm talking about the E6700 2.67 Ghz Conroe with an ATI X1650XT.

OK, so why not have a $1099 option with the 1.86 GHz Conroe and a slightly less powerful GPU?
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post #1123 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

But for the sake of argument lets say this does happen. Its not very likely Wallstreet will be to thrilled about Apple selling more numbers of less expensive computers. Wallstreet wants Apple to sell more numbers of expensive computers.

And so we are back at the cannibalisation argument. Perhaps Apple are approaching a hard limit on the number of purchasers willing to buy "expensive computers"? I believe that on the desktop side, this is true and in order to expand the user base, a lower cost of entry and a real mid-range desktop are required.

I'm saying keep the iMac, add this config. Some iMac sales will be cannibalised by the cheaper systems, but I think not that heavily. You (seemingly) and others disagree. So be it.
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post #1124 of 1658
$1099 be a great price! let us drooool...

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post #1125 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H

Why would anyone pay $1699 for that when you can get the same specs from Dell or HP for half the price (that's not an exaggeration, it really is half the price)? A more reasonable price point for your suggestion is $1099. It's $300 (instead of $850) more than the PC competition, but, it's smaller, more elegant, runs OS X and is made by Apple. I can see those things being worth $300 to a potential switcher, but worth $850? Not likely.

$1099 Mac Cube, i guess then Mac Mini should go back to original price of $499, $599

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post #1126 of 1658
doubt it would be as low as $1099, maybe $1299...
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post #1127 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy

I'll start a list:
5. Internal power supply. For some reason, Sony touts its PS 3 built-in supply over the xBox 360's external.

I think that might have something to do with the fact that the 360's power brick is about 3 times the size of my PS2.
post #1128 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregmightdothat

I think that might have something to do with the fact that the 360's power brick is about 3 times the size of my PS2.

Whoa, I didn't know that. On the other hand, maybe the Mini's supply is too small for some of the performance upgrades folks seem to want for the Mini.
post #1129 of 1658
Looking at a $799 computer from Dell and looking at the Mac mini. When you pull both machines out of their boxes and you are looking at them.

What is the glaring difference between those two computers?

Once you figure that out is when you will see the reason why Apple does not sell a $999 desktop
post #1130 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

Looking at a $799 computer from Dell and looking at the Mac mini. When you pull both machines out of their boxes and you are looking at them.

What is the glaring difference between those two computers?

Once you figure that out is when you will see the reason why Apple does not sell a $999 desktop

The fact that you and others keep on posting arguments like this indicates that you just don't understand what I am talking about.

1.) The proposed "mini tower" is still a lot smaller than your average PC.

2.) How many people are buying the Mini specifically for its size rather than its price? How much bigger could the Mini be and still be considered small?

3.) Are you suggesting that if Apple were to replace the Mini with a "mini tower", that they would actually loose current Mac users to AOpen (who make a "PC Mini") and Dell?

4.) You must have missed the part where I said that if the "mini tower" were introduced, Apple wouldn't have to immediately discontinue the Mini. It's just that I would expect Mini sales to dry up to a point where it's not worth producing any more.
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post #1131 of 1658
This is not a computer but has the name right:



A 8" x 8" x 8" enclosure could contain:
ONE optical drive,
TWO 3.5" HDs,
THREE 7" PCIe slots,
FOUR DDR2 RAM slots.
post #1132 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H

The fact that you and others keep on posting arguments like this indicates that you just don't understand what I am talking about.

1.) The proposed "mini tower" is still a lot smaller than your average PC.

Say cube sized? Or Shuttle sized since that's more common than the Cube ever was.

Perhaps there would be a viable one for Apple at $1499. Perhaps even a little less.

Quote:
2.) How many people are buying the Mini specifically for its size rather than its price? How much bigger could the Mini be and still be considered small?

The thing is rather cool in its form factor. Yes, its a combination of both price and size but it is a little more elegant than the larger Shuttle. Note many of the Shuttle barebones retails for more than your proposed $399 price. The mini-sized Shuttle X100 (core duo) retails for around $999, has 3.5" drives and a mxm vid card. Its a little deeper and larger than the mini. But it certainly is no cheaper.

The conroe based XPS SD37P2 barebones kit retails for $581.

http://global.shuttle.com/Product/Barebone/SD37P2.asp

The XPC SD32G2 barebones kit is cheaper at $293.99...but is drive, CPU and OS less (and IMHO kinda ugly but that's neither here nor there).

Quote:
3.) Are you suggesting that if Apple were to replace the Mini with a "mini tower", that they would actually loose current Mac users to AOpen (who make a "PC Mini") and Dell?

No, but you would likely lose a lot of iMac purchasers to the new mini tower. And a few Mac Pro buyers.

And you'd have to show that OSX is so compelling that more folks would buy it over the OS they are used to. There are a number of "really nice apps" for the OSX platform. No "killer apps" that I'm aware of.

The only thing IMHO that would bring significant share to OSX is a UMPC or Tablet that didn't suck. A mini-tower isn't compelling.

Quote:
4.) You must have missed the part where I said that if the "mini tower" were introduced, Apple wouldn't have to immediately discontinue the Mini. It's just that I would expect Mini sales to dry up to a point where it's not worth producing any more.

And arguably you could lump the AIOs into that category as well.

Vinea
post #1133 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjteix

This is not a computer but has the name right:



A 8" x 8" x 8" enclosure could contain:
ONE optical drive,
TWO 3.5" HDs,
THREE 7" PCIe slots,
FOUR DDR2 RAM slots.

Unless it picked up some techniques from the TARDIS, that's impossible given the proposed space.
post #1134 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea

Note many of the Shuttle barebones retails for more than your proposed $399 price.

How large a company is Shuttle relative to Apple? Do they have anything like the economies of scale? On top of that, I think their margins are huge. And I agree, most of their "mini towers" are rather ugly.
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post #1135 of 1658
Quote:
The fact that you and others keep on posting arguments like this indicates that you just don't understand what I am talking about.

The obvious of what I was attempting to point out. Is that a $799 Dell computer comes with a monitor, keyboard, and mouse. The Mac mini for the same price does not.

If one were to buy a mini along with a monitor, keyboard, and mouse, you will pay more than if you purchased the lowest cost iMac. This clearly shows Apple is all about maximizing the profit of its products.

If Apple were to introduce a middle tower. It would likely follow along the same pattern in its relationship to iMac.

Which is why Apple would more likely launch a $1699 tower than a $999 tower.
post #1136 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

If one were to buy a mini along with a monitor, keyboard, and mouse, you will pay more than if you purchased the lowest cost iMac. This clearly shows Apple is all about maximizing the profit of its products.

If Apple were to introduce a middle tower. It would likely follow along the same pattern in its relationship to iMac.

Yes, I agree. If Apple do come out with a mini-tower, I'd expect it to be more expensive than an iMac. What I've been trying to explain is why I think that's not a good idea and why I don't think that it's the best way to maximise profit over the long term.
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post #1137 of 1658
I can't remember whose sig used to read "Still waiting to be included in Apple's target market," (Eugene?) but with a nod to them, I've thrown in the towel. After nearly four years of waiting for a mid-range tower (still using my old Sawtooth G4), I just bought the 24" iMac/2.33/7600. Lemon Bon Bon's link to the Barefeats framerate specs pushed me over the edge. Now I just have to figure out what to do with my two 19" LCDs.
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post #1138 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H

Yes, I agree. If Apple do come out with a mini-tower, I'd expect it to be more expensive than an iMac. What I've been trying to explain is why I think that's not a good idea and why I don't think that it's the best way to maximise profit over the long term.

This is based on the fact that Apple has been struggling to be profitable over the last 10 years of pursuing the current strategy vs the "Golden years" profitability of the previous market share strategy? Yes, it struggled a bit in 2002 (and in 2001 when the cube sucked).

Meh...I dunno...seems to be working over the long term well enough.

Vinea
post #1139 of 1658
Why not just sell the OS with a Dongle for $300? Everyone gets the computer they want and the margin on the software is huge...
post #1140 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by neumac

I can't remember whose sig used to read "Still waiting to be included in Apple's target market," (Eugene?) but with a nod to them, I've thrown in the towel. After nearly four years of waiting for a mid-range tower (still using my old Sawtooth G4), I just bought the 24" iMac/2.33/7600. Lemon Bon Bon's link to the Barefeats framerate specs pushed me over the edge. Now I just have to figure out what to do with my two 19" LCDs.

You can connect a second monitor to an iMac...
post #1141 of 1658
Quote:
What I've been trying to explain is why I think that's not a good idea and why I don't think that it's the best way to maximise profit over the long term.

I think you are making price too important of a factor. Apple ultimately needs to keep introducing sexy and desirable machines. Any object desirable enough people will pay for it.

The marketshare race is running out of steam and profits. Apple is a small computer company. Why not sell to the richest niche.

Quote:
Why not just sell the OS with a Dongle for $300? Everyone gets the computer they want and the margin on the software is huge...

We've already had long discussion about that. It wouldn't work.
post #1142 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by ldtowers

Why not just sell the OS with a Dongle for $300? Everyone gets the computer they want and the margin on the software is huge...

Very true, the software is made and paid for just sell last years version for PC use and if you want the new fancy stuff you must by a new Mac. Apple is hell bent in running off people with its sillyass hardware gimmicks. Mini games,Imac all in one games and of course workstation MacPro that has no games Only not everyone has $2500-$5000 to blow on a computer. Their line up minus Macpro is marketing gimmicks.
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post #1143 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by neumac

I can't remember whose sig used to read "Still waiting to be included in Apple's target market," (Eugene?) but with a nod to them, I've thrown in the towel. After nearly four years of waiting for a mid-range tower (still using my old Sawtooth G4), I just bought the 24" iMac/2.33/7600. Lemon Bon Bon's link to the Barefeats framerate specs pushed me over the edge. Now I just have to figure out what to do with my two 19" LCDs.

That would be me

I will say that I have purchased an iMac, and it is a great machine, but I feel I settled on the hardware, not what I wanted, but I do like the OS.
just waiting to be included in one of Apple's target markets.
Don't get me wrong, I like the flat panel iMac, actually own an iMac, and I like the Mac mini, but...........
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just waiting to be included in one of Apple's target markets.
Don't get me wrong, I like the flat panel iMac, actually own an iMac, and I like the Mac mini, but...........
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post #1144 of 1658
Quote:
Their line up minus Macpro is marketing gimmicks.

Apple keeping its software and hardware tied to together is the reason why I can load OS X onto my 7 year old iMac.
post #1145 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

I think you are making price too important of a factor. Apple ultimately needs to keep introducing sexy and desirable machines. Any object desirable enough people will pay for it.

The marketshare race is running out of steam and profits. Apple is a small computer company. Why not sell to the richest niche.



We've already had long discussion about that. It wouldn't work.

We've already had long discussion about that. It wouldn't work.

Oh yes that settles it right? The fact is that it could work very well and only Jobs desire to remain a niche player keeps it from happening
post #1146 of 1658
Quote:
The fact is that it could work very well and only Jobs desire to remain a niche player keeps it from happening

How would it work?

Apple offers OS X to the general public and magically Apple is as large as Microsoft?

How would it work?
post #1147 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea

This is based on the fact that Apple has been struggling to be profitable over the last 10 years of pursuing the current strategy vs the "Golden years" profitability of the previous market share strategy? Yes, it struggled a bit in 2002 (and in 2001 when the cube sucked).

Meh...I dunno...seems to be working over the long term well enough.

Vinea

I have already discussed why Apple's pursuit of more market share didn't work before:

1.) Apple were severely constrained by being the only company on the PPC platform, having to develop their own motherboard chipsets. This coupled with the lack of chip diversity (relative to x86) meant that price/performance was poor relative to the WinTel platform.

2.) The low-end machines that Apple had at the time were also very low margin (by Apple's standards). I am not advocating a reduction in gross margins (although obviously I accept that if there is a large shift to cheaper models, that will lower operating margin).

3.) Apple's product line up then was seriously complicated. I'm talking about adding but one desktop model (and as part of the "market share expansion plan" and ultra-mobile laptop and better screen options on MacBooks (pro and non-pro), but laptops are beyond the scope of this thread) - this would take us no where near to the complexities of the mid-90s Apple line-up.

4.) There wasn't really anything that compelling about the MacOS back then. It had several usability pros against Windows, as long as you could get it not to crash! Now we've got an OS that's much more stable than Windows and with better usability.

5.) The industrial design wasn't that compelling, either. Apple have now built-up an amazing industrial design team.

6.) Apple's brand wasn't as strong then as it is now.
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post #1148 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

I think you are making price too important of a factor. Apple ultimately needs to keep introducing sexy and desirable machines. Any object desirable enough people will pay for it.

Again:

1.) The "mini tower" isn't just about lowering the cost of entry. If someone has their own monitor with several years of life left in it, and want a real desktop with real desktop performance, and are unwilling to spend more than $2000, Apple currently provide no option for these people. The vast majority of desktops sold on the PC side have desktop components and cost less than $2000. I'm saying that whilst the iMac appeals to a niche of users (and should be kept), a real desktop would be interesting to far, far more potential switchers, because it is what they want and/or expect out of a computer.

2.) I stand firm in my belief that Apple could make my proposed "mini tower" "sexy".

3.) The Cube proved that form-factor alone isn't good enough.
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post #1149 of 1658
The only part I disagree with you on is price.

I agree Apple needs to have another desktop with expandability. I don't see it benefiting Apple if it costs $999 or lower.

Other than that I totally agree with you.
post #1150 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

I agree Apple needs to have another desktop with expandability. I don't see it benefiting Apple if it costs $999 or lower.

You seem to think that a $799+ tower* would severely cannibalise iMac sales.

1.) Do you accept that with the right specifications, Apple can build a $799 "mini tower" with 28% gross margins?

2.) If you think a $799+ "mini tower" so compelling that it will completely destroy iMac sales, why do you think that it won't attract more switchers?

* to recap, my proposed "mini tower" would be Conroe-based for prices of $799 and above, with the $799 version having:
  • 1.86 GHz Conroe
  • 512 MB RAM
  • 160 GB HDD
  • DVD-ROM/CD-RW combo drive
  • Integrated graphics
  • One (maybe two) free PCIe slot(s)
  • One free HDD bay
  • No wireless
  • FrontRow IR receiver but no Apple remote
  • (possibly no keyboard or mouse)
  • The usual ports - five usb 2.0, two firewire, DVI out, analogue & digital audio I/O, ethernet.
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post #1151 of 1658
Integrated Graphics???
1 GB RAM is standard.
Combo Drive?

I guess $999 or $1099 good with a good graphic card in it.
That way it will be better than Mac Mini and has limited expansion when compared to Mac Pro.

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post #1152 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by shanmugam

Integrated Graphics???
1 GB RAM is standard.
Combo Drive?

That's for $799. For $1099 you could have more RAM, graphics card and a DVD burner.
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post #1153 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

How would it work?

Apple offers OS X to the general public and magically Apple is as large as Microsoft?

How would it work?

No one is saying as big as MS silly. But no one ever lost money giving people what they want at a profitable price point.

There are plenty of people who would pay $300-350 for OS X. What do you think the margins are for a computer after all the costs including shipping are considered?

This is all about Steve wanting to maintain the aura of exclusivity. The only thing special about Apple computers is the OS. Maybe he's afraid that releasing OS X to the world would only prove it to be true. So what. I don't think they net more than $250 from every computer sale. They should just bite the bullet already.
post #1154 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by ldtowers

The only thing special about Apple computers is the OS.

You and I (together with many people I am sure) will have to agree to disagree on that one.

Then there's the issue that dongles are by-passable. And supporting more than just Apple hardware increases OS X development costs.
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post #1155 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H

You and I (together with many people I am sure) will have to agree to disagree on that one.

Then there's the issue that dongles are by-passable. And supporting more than just Apple hardware increases OS X development costs.

Apple hardware? What special about it? The cases? Maybe The power supplies? The rest is intel hardware now. intel doesn't make that many chipsets! There would be negligible additional development costs. I'm sure Intel would love to clear out it's warehouse...
post #1156 of 1658
Quote:
1) Do you accept that with the right specifications, Apple can build a $799 "mini tower" with 28% gross margins?

2.) If you think a $799+ "mini tower" so compelling that it will completely destroy iMac sales, why do you think that it won't attract more switchers?

Yes Apple can build a computer for that much at a 28% gross margin. To do so would sacrifice certain amenities that we know as the full Mac experience.

Not necessarily destroy Mac sales but would definitely eat into Apple's current stellar profits. At this point the only way Apple can stay in accord with WallStreet is to continue with more of the same.

Quote:
This is all about Steve wanting to maintain the aura of exclusivity.

Since you make it sound so easy I don't think you fully understand how complex it would be for Apple to shift gears to general purpose. Its not as easy as boxing a disk and shipping it to stores.

The only way selling OS X would work for Apple is if it nearly instantaneously became a widely used and ubiquitous OS. Apple would have to attract hundreds of thousands of developers to OS X. Windows has a dead lock on most industry-centric software (business, medical, point of sale, manufacturing) that buy and use millions of computers.

To not speak of the fact that Apple would have to support the hundreds of thousands of various hardware configurations. Something that Windows does not completely do successfully.

Like I said we had a long discussion on this and I cannot remember all of the issues cited, but there are a lot.

So is all of this worth Apple selling a $300 operating system that most people don't use over selling $1200 -$2000 computers that more people are choosing to use.
post #1157 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by ldtowers

Apple hardware? What special about it? The cases? Maybe The power supplies? The rest is intel hardware now. intel doesn't make that many chipsets! There would be negligible additional development costs. I'm sure Intel would love to clear out it's warehouse...

{Personal attack removed - JL} This was discussed in this very thread and in multiple other threads on these forums. You will also find it discussed all over the internet. Do some research before you start spouting off like an expert.
post #1158 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by ldtowers

No one is saying as big as MS silly. But no one ever lost money giving people what they want at a profitable price point.

There are plenty of people who would pay $300-350 for OS X. What do you think the margins are for a computer after all the costs including shipping are considered?

This is all about Steve wanting to maintain the aura of exclusivity. The only thing special about Apple computers is the OS. Maybe he's afraid that releasing OS X to the world would only prove it to be true. So what. I don't think they net more than $250 from every computer sale. They should just bite the bullet already.

Mmm...yes, because that strategy really worked well for NeXT...

Vinea
post #1159 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H

2.) If you think a $799+ "mini tower" so compelling that it will completely destroy iMac sales, why do you think that it won't attract more switchers?

Because paying $799 for a $399 computer you spec'd isn't compelling to folks that aren't already Mac users? Its hard to hide that fact when you can compare features 1 for 1. Okay, so the "mini tower" would be a slim tower or perhaps a cube. Even so. With 1 optical drive and 2 HDD bays plus room for 1 or 2 cards it isn't going to be all that small.

The mini and iMac are comfortably outside the comparison range. They use mobile parts for the "design" so they will naturally cost more and bench slower. Eh.

Vinea
post #1160 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by ldtowers

You can connect a second monitor to an iMac...

A) it sucks to work with 2 different size monitors.

B) you can't put your secondary monitor on the right side of the iMac because the superdrive is on the side.

 

 

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