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Isn't it time for a plain old Macintosh again? - Page 31

post #1201 of 1658
A 15" AIO with integrated graphics and Celeron processors is possible for $399.

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most people with $399 to $799 to spend on a desktop computer would go buy a tower from HP.

I see no evidence this would happen.
post #1202 of 1658
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I think it goes without saying that a $399 AIO would sell at least reasonably well, but nobody is building it. Why? Likely, no profit, that is my guess.

As though the current situation is so profitable. At some point they will have to rethink the way they do things.

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Why not be realistic in your examples?

It basically the same as Apple's business model.

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Now you have a realistic comparison. Above, you obviously stacked the deck in favor or the AIO, grossly so.

Well I was stacking the deck to assess the monetary value of expandability.

Will people buy a computer without expandability?
post #1203 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy

I didn't say that.

Then what does this line mean?

"To do well in business, a company must make those products that people want most."

The implication is that without servicing the majority then Apple cannot do well.

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Some successful companies do make wonderful and expensive products that appeal to relatively few buyers. You mentions several. Yet none of these companies has aspirations of becoming a giant in these markets. (Some are big because they have other products with higher sales.)

You do not necessarily need volume to be a giant in a market. Apple enjoys large mind share in the market and volume wise it's #4 in the US using its current strategy. Can you show where Apple has indicated that it wishes to be volume leader over thought/innovation/style leader within the market?

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Apple may decide to remain a niche computer maker and be a big player with the iPod and iTunes. Several people have suggested this strategy, but it is a bad idea for a company that is promoting it own OS to run on its computers. Apple must continue to make progress in market share to remain successful. If market share becomes stagnant or begins to fall, there will be hell to pay with the investors.

There will be hell to pay with investors if their profit and growth drops. Market share has been so low that any investor scared away by that metric alone is long gone.

I have posted a press release from a software maker as to the reasons why they entered the market. Those factors have not been refuted as much as simply ignored because it doesn't agree with the market share must be X% for Apple to survive assertion.

Never mind that Apple has survived a decade of low market share but millions of installed base.

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You may feel complacent about Apple's market share growth now, but this can sink a company, complacency. A company may appear to be doing well, so it does nothing to change.

So, let me get this straight...in the year that Apple transitions from PPC to Intel you wish to make the case that they are being complacent and unwilling to change?

And one should always bang the gong of doom in years when Apple is actually gaining market share lest they suddenly become complacent?

Or perhaps your opinion is that Apple is only APPEARING to do well?

These are your words. Don't pretend that by writing what you write that this is not what you imply within the discussion. Not making towers=complacency=doom.

Sorry but apple can be responsive without making towers and still grow market share and not just appear but ACTUALLY do well.

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It pays no attention to the grumbling of "some malcontents."

Who want the equivalent of Porsche churning out cars priced like Toyota Corollas...

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Has this never happened before? When Apple runs out of the niche markets for Macs, all that is left is the Walmart crowd, as you refer to them. If Apple does not see the need to serve that market and everything in between, dangerous curves lie ahead I fear.

FUD. Pure FUD. Apple has shown it doesn't NEED to serve the Walmart crowd of computer buyers to survive.

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Maybe it isn't in Apple's current strategic plan, but Apple cannot really break out of it niche player role without producing the most popular computer type being sold today.

Most popular computer type...which is...what was that? Laptops?


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What I said was, "It does not have to be a work of art, but can be better looking than most of the Windows side. A lot of those people do care some about looks, quality and reliability, . . ." Apple can keep it image as a maker of quality and good looking products, and still make something that is economical to build.

That doesn't mean that Apple should pass that economy on to the consumer. Do you really believe that Porsche, Rolex, B&O products cost THAT much more than cheaper cars to build? Or perhaps they simply make more profit per item? Do you think it helps or hinders their image when they make less expensive products?

Let me guess...Porsche's least expensive car is what? $50K Note that they don't make 924 class cars anymore.

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I understand that the first iMac was economical to build and addressed the needs of the masses, exactly the market you want Apple to avoid now. The iMac got more and more expensive with the G4, but the new one is pretty good. It's a keeper, but isn't what the masses are buying today.

You understand what? The first iMac MSRP'd for $1,299 in 1998. Never mind that the Performa 450 was $750 and there were far cheaper PCs available.

Somehow I don't think Steve was thinking the iMac should compete with the eMachine eTower @ $499 in 1998...

Note that the iMac is now $999 which is less expensive than $1,299...tho' in reality that model replace the eMac. Effectively the iMac is still the same price...one reason that Apple is very profitable. But it didn't get more expensive except relative to the bottom bottom end which is now around $300.

Vinea
post #1204 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea

So, let me get this straight...in the year that Apple transitions from PPC to Intel you wish to make the case that they are being complacent and unwilling to change?

And one should always bang the gong of doom in years when Apple is actually gaining market share lest they suddenly become complacent?

Yeah, how come everyone forgets what a major sea change Apple just weathered without even a real hiccup? Amazing. And they're making more bucks than ever. Man, people sure have short memories.

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Originally Posted by vinea

Sorry but apple can be responsive without making towers and still grow market share and not just appear but ACTUALLY do well.

Who want the equivalent of Porsche churning out cars priced like Toyota Corollas...


Let me guess...Porsche's least expensive car is what? $50K Note that they don't make 924 class cars anymore.

And let us not forget the lowly 914 for the VW crowd (gone). Or the 928 -- the Cube of the Porsche set -- which didn't work eventually from styling problems, and some handling glitches.

Me, I prefer companies that have mindshare, well-thought-out products, maybe even a little rarefied. I LIKE having something special and tailored more for my tastes. Wal-Mart has its uses, very much. But for the "finer things in life" -- and my computers are some of these, as are my cars, my clothes and my spirits -- I like those companies that aren't simply the lowest common denominator.

But, hey, I'm a snob.
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post #1205 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea


Then what does this line mean?

"To do well in business, a company must make those products that people want most."

The implication is that without servicing the majority then Apple cannot do well.

Well, so sorry. It's true I didn't say it well, but should have said "to be a market leader" or "to have a high share of the market," or something like that.

You might have caught the general idea if you had considered the very next line in my reply, which says you can do well with low market share -- "Some successful companies do make wonderful and expensive products that appeal to relatively few buyers." But then, you wouldn't have anything to zing me for, would you?



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Apple enjoys large mind share in the market and volume wise it's #4 in the US using its current strategy. Can you show where Apple has indicated that it wishes to be volume leader over thought/innovation/style leader within the market?

Large mind share isn't much good if it does no more than give Windows hardware vendors something to copy and sell. How much revenue does that bring in for Apple? Also, being number four with low market share doesn't help, if Apple needs growing market share to keep OS X viable.



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I have posted a press release from a software maker as to the reasons why they entered the [OS X] market. Those factors have not been refuted as much as simply ignored because it doesn't agree with the market share must be X% for Apple to survive assertion.

I did not ignore your reply. I even complimented you on it, saying you have a very good point. For some software developers, installed base can be the most important factor, and 16 percent is pretty good. Yet, installed base does not give the whole picture. Sales are an indicator of future installed base, so for many others, they look at sales.

I suspect that market share is your main gripe with those of us who want to see Apple build more popular desktop Macs. So let's ask just how important is it for Apple to keep selling more Macs, and how high of a market share is enough? At what point do we say the Mac platform can safely stop growing market share? In my opinion, Apple's market share is far from high enough.



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So, let me get this straight...in the year that Apple transitions from PPC to Intel you wish to make the case that they are being complacent and unwilling to change?

Certainly not. Apple could never be accused of "marketing myopia." It's a great innovative company and has had vision beyond being a computer maker. Apple saw itself as being in the digital lifestyle business and has done well at it. I don't think any of us who want more choice of desktop Macs would accuse Apple of not being willing to change. You may stop bringing it up. We agree on this.

What I am challenging is Apple's desktop offerings, which I say are inadequate. I think that is what the discussion is all about. I don't really care to know why Apple is not building those desktop products, and maybe Apple will eventually build them. However, Apple is already tardy in bringing them out. I don't think any of us here "bang the gong of doom" about this point, as you claim.

Now, before you begin typing 10 of our statements that say Apple is in trouble, continue to read. Once Apple has enjoyed some more gains in laptops and in workstations, the desktop market will still not be there to continue the growth in market share. At that point Apple's sales could begin to stagnate again, as buyers perceive the platform as incomplete. By that I mean an organization cannot completely transition to the Mac, because there are no acceptable desktop models. This is not banging the gong of doom. Stagnation need not be permanent, and it may take such a setback for Apple to wake up to this deficiency in the product line.

Now, before you begin typing 10 reasons why Apple's desktop offerings are really good enough and quite acceptable, I am talking about how customers see it and what people actually want and buy. That is what counts -- what people buy, not what Apple wants to sell.



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These are your words. Don't pretend that by writing what you write that this is not what you imply within the discussion.

Two points:

First, if we are to stick to the discussion and not make this a forum on semantics, we must cut each other a little slack. In my first statement, at the beginning of this post, you made a big deal about my improper usage of a word and what I implied by doing so. Yet, you did not take into account my very next sentence, which should have clarified what I mean.

Second, are you perfect in this regard?
post #1206 of 1658
Forgive me, forgive me, I'm getting way off topic, but since this is the thread I have been posting in most I wish to break a little news. For any of you that are following the Netflix contest, tomorrow may be the day that some big entries are made. So far, the improvement has been small, only 4.96 percent at last reading. Tomorrow, this may change. We might see big improvement, from a few who have been developing up to the last minute. It could get exciting.

Personally, I'm on pins and needles to see how well the team "Viking" does. A million dollars would be nice to have, for the winner, and I believe Viking has a good chance.

If you have not heard of it, read about it at:

http://netflixprize.com/

Go Viking!
post #1207 of 1658
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Originally Posted by snoopy

Well, so sorry. It's true I didn't say it well, but should have said "to be a market leader" or "to have a high share of the market," or something like that.

Apple is a market leader within subsets of the market and will never be a total market leader because its missing two key volume segments: business and entry level commodity machines.

However, it is a market leader in AIOs and SFF machines. It could be a market leader in Tablet PCs (a $1.2B business) and grow it.

The point is that Apple is better off pursuing emerging markets that it can dominate rather than ones lost in the 80s against entrenched market leaders. Can Apple fight in the tower/entry markets? Sure, but the opportunity costs in both $$$ and branding is better spent elsewhere if you're looking for long term growth and stability.

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You might have caught the general idea if you had considered the very next line in my reply, which says you can do well with low market share -- "Some successful companies do make wonderful and expensive products that appeal to relatively few buyers." But then, you wouldn't have anything to zing me for, would you?

No, your contention is that Apple NEEDs towers and MUST address these market segments. I'm zinging you for what you write and I specifically addressed that statement anyway. Its not as if I was quoting you out of context and ignoring what you write.

In any case you downplay the "success" of these companies with your, now omitted, final comment in that paragraph. You imply they are successful only because they are giants in other markets OR have no aspirations of being a giant (and presumably limiting their success).

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Large mind share isn't much good if it does no more than give Windows hardware vendors something to copy and sell. How much revenue does that bring in for Apple? Also, being number four with low market share doesn't help, if Apple needs growing market share to keep OS X viable.

Large mind share leads to profitiable retail outlets (in comparison to say those of Gateway that failed), partners for innovative products (like say Nike), and amazingly...higher margins and prices. So it brings in tons of revenue.

OSX is viable, was viable even with far lower market share and that has been, if not debunked, at least shown that not as dire as folks in this thread makes out.

Apple is selling a million machines a quarter. Whine about OSX not being viable when that isn't happening.

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I did not ignore your reply. I even complimented you on it, saying you have a very good point. For some software developers, installed base can be the most important factor, and 16 percent is pretty good. Yet, installed base does not give the whole picture. Sales are an indicator of future installed base, so for many others, they look at sales.

Million machines a quarter...the other part of the "whole picture".

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I suspect that market share is your main gripe with those of us who want to see Apple build more popular desktop Macs. So let's ask just how important is it for Apple to keep selling more Macs, and how high of a market share is enough? At what point do we say the Mac platform can safely stop growing market share? In my opinion, Apple's market share is far from high enough.

And you have no basis for that opinion and no supporting evidence to show that OSX is in any danger not being viable. Hence the comment about gong of doom. You continue to speak of viability and safety and that's just pure FUD. Would more share be good? Sure. Would it help OSX? Sure. Would current sales lead to stagnation and the death of OSX? Only if you're selling something. Like the need for towers.

Nor can you show (with some measure of confidence) that you can really improve desktop sales or share with a cheaper tower strategy but I've shown how cannibilzation can hurt Apple's revenues.

However, if Apple elects to compete in the much pooh-pooh'd tablet market I believe they could be a market leader in that segment and if they grow that segment they could more profitably expand share and build their branding.

Lets say a tablet with a dock that has a couple slots in it like my old Dell dock. Or perhaps the dock doubles as a NAS for wireless operations. What need for a clunky old tower then?

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Certainly not. Apple could never be accused of "marketing myopia." It's a great innovative company and has had vision beyond being a computer maker.

So why is engaging in a head to head battle to be the PC market leader against Dell and HP such a great idea?

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What I am challenging is Apple's desktop offerings, which I say are inadequate. I think that is what the discussion is all about. I don't really care to know why Apple is not building those desktop products, and maybe Apple will eventually build them. However, Apple is already tardy in bringing them out. I don't think any of us here "bang the gong of doom" about this point, as you claim.

You aren't tardy if you've never said you'd show up to the party.

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At that point Apple's sales could begin to stagnate again, as buyers perceive the platform as incomplete. By that I mean an organization cannot completely transition to the Mac, because there are no acceptable desktop models. This is not banging the gong of doom. Stagnation need not be permanent, and it may take such a setback for Apple to wake up to this deficiency in the product line.

First, there are AIOs and SFF desktops that "complete" the product line. My boss has a AIO iMac on his desk. Second, Apple doesn't sell to business except as a secondary effort so transitioning organizations to the platform is an afterthought. Third, I contend (for the third time now I think) that Apple is better off looking for new markets to avoid stagnation than competing in a market the lost a good decade ago.

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Now, before you begin typing 10 reasons why Apple's desktop offerings are really good enough and quite acceptable, I am talking about how customers see it and what people actually want and buy. That is what counts -- what people buy, not what Apple wants to sell.

And what people are buying are mobile solutions so perhaps Apple's current line up isn't a daft as you guys make it out to be.

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Two points:

First, if we are to stick to the discussion and not make this a forum on semantics, we must cut each other a little slack. In my first statement, at the beginning of this post, you made a big deal about my improper usage of a word and what I implied by doing so. Yet, you did not take into account my very next sentence, which should have clarified what I mean.

Second, are you perfect in this regard?

It would just be semantics if you wrote something and argued differently. What is mildly annoying is that you state something, strongly argue for that statement, then when called on your logic and examples (I would say evidence but I don't recall any) in support of that statement you say that it isn't what you wrote but go ahead as restate it again word for word and re-iterate the same arguments in support of that statement...which is basically for Apple to do WELL (in whatever way you mean THAT word) they MUST have towers.

So it isn't a semantic argument to say Apple IS doing well and they don't HAVE to have towers now or in the future. Perhaps they will have towers, perhaps not but frankly we (or at least I) like Jobs' current towerless strategy.

Am I perfect in this regard? Certainly not, but I'm not whining that folks misunderstand me or my position either.

Slack? Dude, how can you possibly expect anyone to convert "To do well in business" into "to be a market leader"?

Vinea
post #1208 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea

...
However, it is a market leader in AIOs and SFF machines. ...Vinea

Whopee. As laptops sales surge, desktop sales stagnate, I'm not impressed. Yes, it is time for a plain old Mactintosh again.
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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 #1209 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag

Whopee. As laptops sales surge, desktop sales stagnate, I'm not impressed. Yes, it is time for a plain old Mactintosh again.

Heh...I almost said laptops too but I doubt they would be a market leader there either vs Dell and HP. Tablets still command a premium and to some extent ultra portables so perhaps there Apple has a chance.

Vinea
post #1210 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea


Apple is a market leader within subsets of the market and will never be a total market leader because its missing two key volume segments: business and entry level commodity machines.

First of all, I sense you have a keen interest in marketing, but it appears we shall never agree. You make a pretty strong statement here saying Apple will never be a total market leader because it is missing business and entry level Macs. I agree that this set of products is missing, but differ in that I'd like to see Apple offer such products. With them, Apple could have much higher market share, IMHO, closer to HP and Dell than Apple is today. I believe this is very doable with five years, with the right product offerings. You obviously disagree. So be it.



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However, it is a market leader in AIOs and SFF machines. It could be a market leader in Tablet PCs (a $1.2B business) and grow it.

We'll have to wait and see whether these are truly emerging product categories. They sell fairly well because Mac users have little else to choose from in a desktop Mac. If Windows hardware vendors only offered this choice in low and mid range desktops, they would sell better there too. But those folks have a choice on the Windows side.



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So why is engaging in a head to head battle to be the PC market leader against Dell and HP such a great idea?

Here we go again. Giving Mac users more choice in desktop Macs is not in not "engaging in a head to head battle to be the PC market leader." Apple would be appealing to Mac users. Dell and HP appeal to Windows users.

Also, Apple needs greater market share, in my opinion. It's an opinion shared by many others. No, I do not have documented evidence for this opinion, but then neither do you know for sure that Apple's market share is high enough.

Apple need not lead the world in market share either. I've said this many times and often tossed out the suggestion that 20 percent would be plenty. Yet I have a feeling you will now come back with the one spot I mentioned the term "market leader." So before you zing me here, please note I was using that a term, along with other possible terms like "high share of the market" to indicate alternate ways a company could be "doing well." Just another of our semantics battles.



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In any case you downplay the "success" of these companies with your, now omitted, final comment in that paragraph. You imply they are successful only because they are giants in other markets OR have no aspirations of being a giant (and presumably limiting their success).

This was regarding companies with low market share, but who make high quality products, which sell at a higher price. I left off that final comment because it was not necessary to answering your point. Sometimes too many words cloud the issue. I did not downplay their success at all, but made an issue of how well such a company can do, in my original post. The comment about being a giant in the market was off topic. It was pointing out that companies like Mercedes may have a low market share, doing well in the luxury market, but also produce other stuff that gives them a higher market share. Go back and read it. I'm not in training to be a lawyer, so I don't enjoy having to wrestle with word this way.



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It would just be semantics if you wrote something and argued differently.

And I thought semantics was the branch of linguistics and logic concerned with meaning of words. Silly me.



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Slack? Dude, how can you possibly expect anyone to convert "To do well in business" into "to be a market leader"?

I didn't expect you to convert it to anything in particular, but you could have picked up that it was a poor choice of words from the rest of what I was saying. Now this is semantics as I understand it. A better choice of words to convey the intended meaning would have been "to have a higher market share." That's where you need to cut some slack, especially when it is made clear by reading a sentence or two further on.

On another forum, there where two people in great disagreement. Then the one completely misused a word, totally blew it. What did his opponent do? Jump all over him and point out the illogic of his statement? No, he simply said something like, "dude, I think you wanted to say . . ." That is cutting slack.

Just to let you know, I quit -- I quit replying to you. These forums are generally interesting, but I'm sure our disagreements have not interested anyone else. Go ahead and have the last say.

post #1211 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy

First of all, I sense you have a keen interest in marketing, but it appears we shall never agree. You make a pretty strong statement here saying Apple will never be a total market leader because it is missing business and entry level Macs. I agree that this set of products is missing, but differ in that I'd like to see Apple offer such products. With them, Apple could have much higher market share, IMHO, closer to HP and Dell than Apple is today. I believe this is very doable with five years, with the right product offerings. You obviously disagree. So be it.

I'm saying that Apple made a consious decision not to pursue the business market after Jobs returned to concentrate on the markets they have. Thus far, it hasn't turned out to be a bad plane.

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We'll have to wait and see whether these are truly emerging product categories. They sell fairly well because Mac users have little else to choose from in a desktop Mac. If Windows hardware vendors only offered this choice in low and mid range desktops, they would sell better there too. But those folks have a choice on the Windows side.

AIOs and SFF computers are niche and will remain so. That wasn't the point but that Apple should view emerging markets as more important than tower sales. Not that towers would take that much effort except for the impact to the current product line.

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Here we go again. Giving Mac users more choice in desktop Macs is not in not "engaging in a head to head battle to be the PC market leader." Apple would be appealing to Mac users. Dell and HP appeal to Windows users.

Mkay. Than I guess it depends on if there are sufficient Mac users to buy enough towers to justify the reduced sales of AIOs. Other argue that towers would increase share...

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Also, Apple needs greater market share, in my opinion. It's an opinion shared by many others. No, I do not have documented evidence for this opinion, but then neither do you know for sure that Apple's market share is high enough.

High enough for survival? Given that Apple still exists and is very profitable it seems that there is sufficient evidence that Apple could exist if it maintains current share.

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Apple need not lead the world in market share either. I've said this many times and often tossed out the suggestion that 20 percent would be plenty. Yet I have a feeling you will now come back with the one spot I mentioned the term "market leader." So before you zing me here, please note I was using that a term, along with other possible terms like "high share of the market" to indicate alternate ways a company could be "doing well." Just another of our semantics battles.

Its not a semantic battle to say that market share isn't the only or best measure of succcess. Well, perhaps at the very extreme.

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This was regarding companies with low market share, but who make high quality products, which sell at a higher price. I left off that final comment because it was not necessary to answering your point. Sometimes too many words cloud the issue. I did not downplay their success at all, but made an issue of how well such a company can do, in my original post.

So then why does Apple need to pursue share if they are already successful if pursuing share dilutes their branding and potentially margins?

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The comment about being a giant in the market was off topic. It was pointing out that companies like Mercedes may have a low market share, doing well in the luxury market, but also produce other stuff that gives them a higher market share. Go back and read it. I'm not in training to be a lawyer, so I don't enjoy having to wrestle with word this way.

I'm perfectly willing to cut you slack on wording but its wasn't apparent it was off topic.

It appeared that you were saying that since M-B is part of Daimler Chrysler and they have all kinds of benefits as a unit of a much larger company to let them succeed as a niche company. Which they do.

However, a counter example is Porsche AG. They also claim to be the most profitable car company on a margin per unit sold. Daimler Chrysler of course dwarfs Porshe AG on an absolute profit level.

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And I thought semantics was the branch of linguistics and logic concerned with meaning of words. Silly me.

Yes. I guess I didn't make myself clear either. I'm saying that its not a semantic debate when I disagree with the reason that you put forth specific wording and with the underlying logic and argument you make rather than the specific wording.

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I didn't expect you to convert it to anything in particular, but you could have picked up that it was a poor choice of words from the rest of what I was saying. Now this is semantics as I understand it. A better choice of words to convey the intended meaning would have been "to have a higher market share." That's where you need to cut some slack, especially when it is made clear by reading a sentence or two further on.

No...you are arguing FOR increased market share right? Sure increasing market share leads to...higher market share but that doesn't make as much sense as saying increasing market share leads to success.

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On another forum, there where two people in great disagreement. Then the one completely misused a word, totally blew it. What did his opponent do? Jump all over him and point out the illogic of his statement? No, he simply said something like, "dude, I think you wanted to say . . ." That is cutting slack.

I cut you slack just like this several pages ago. Did I jump on your case over the SFF thing? No. I simply told you about it. You lost your slack thereafter when you took me to task about how to define the word "markets".

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Just to let you know, I quit -- I quit replying to you. These forums are generally interesting, but I'm sure our disagreements have not interested anyone else. Go ahead and have the last say.


Well sorry if I hurt your feelings. Frankly, this thread isn't all that interesting EXCEPT as a debate. In general I think most folks agree that a tower would be nice but disagree on the price. Sometimes by as little as a couple hundred bucks.

Heck, I started more or less as a devil's advocate and then got annoyed. Then amused as one of the few defenders of the beaten horse.

Buh bye.



Vinea
post #1212 of 1658
One additional word on the topic. If Apple truly targets only the niche computer markets for the AIO and the ultra SFF, then why the new ad campaign pitting the PC guy against the Mac guy?

Why not an ad campaign targeted at the AIO and ultra SFF virtues?

It seems obvious to me that Apple really does cultivate the switcher campaign, but it currently is only working with laptops. Why not desktops?
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post #1213 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag

One additional word on the topic. If Apple truly targets only the niche computer markets for the AIO and the ultra SFF, then why the new ad campaign pitting the PC guy against the Mac guy?

Why not an ad campaign targeted at the AIO and ultra SFF virtues?

It seems obvious to me that Apple really does cultivate the switcher campaign, but it currently is only working with laptops. Why not desktops?

Simple!

They want people to switch from PC Desktops to Mac AIOs, SFFs, and laptops. That's why at the end of the ad, you've often got an iMac, sometimes a laptop, never a Mac Pro. It's a question of semantics, but I don't think Apple is "targeting the niche computer markets" as much as it is attempting to draw people into those markets by creating more appeal for them among desktop users who do not necessarily have a good reason for wanting a traditional desktop.
post #1214 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by meelash


They want people to switch from PC Desktops to Mac AIOs, SFFs, and laptops.

It's difficult enough to get people to switch away from something they are accustomed to using and try something different. Regarding low and mid range desktops, if Apple really wants switchers, and I think Apple does, why make it harder? Going from familiar Windows to Mac OS X is a venture into uncharted territory for many. Why add the necessity for folks to also give up their familiar tower and buy either the tiny Mini or the iMac? Does this make sense? Personally, I think not.



Quote:

. . . I don't think Apple is "targeting the niche computer markets" as much as it is attempting to draw people into those markets by creating more appeal for them among desktop users who do not necessarily have a good reason for wanting a traditional desktop.

It's a valiant goal, but it is a whole lot easier to just sell the type of hardware people want. People do not need "a good reason for wanting a traditional desktop." If people want it, they simply want it. Lecture them all day and likely they will not change their mind. Some people have used the term "beating a dead horse." I guess we can all make up our own minds about who, or what company, this fits -- Apple or its critics.
post #1215 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by meelash

Simple!

They want people to switch from PC Desktops to Mac AIOs, SFFs, and laptops. That's why at the end of the ad, you've often got an iMac, sometimes a laptop, never a Mac Pro. It's a question of semantics, but I don't think Apple is "targeting the niche computer markets" as much as it is attempting to draw people into those markets by creating more appeal for them among desktop users who do not necessarily have a good reason for wanting a traditional desktop.

You want to convert the solider, it's much easier if you convert the officers first. The officers are the prosumers.
post #1216 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by meelash

Simple!

They want people to switch from PC Desktops to Mac AIOs, SFFs, and laptops...

Simple! Then the commercials should be tauting the virtues of AIO and ultra SFF over towers, no?
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 #1217 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag

Simple! Then the commercials should be tauting the virtues of AIO and ultra SFF over towers, no?

They do showcase the single advantage which is it simple out of box and go nature. They're good machines, but they're not a right for for everyone as Meelash believes.
post #1218 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy

It's difficult enough to get people to switch away from something they are accustomed to using and try something different.

Perhaps its easier to convert them to something really different than something slightly different. There's always resistance to change and you need to get folks excited about the change.

Quote:
Why add the necessity for folks to also give up their familiar tower and buy either the tiny Mini or the iMac? Does this make sense? Personally, I think not.

Because the slogan is Think Different not Think Slightly Different. Steve as a design goal wants to make computers more of an humane appliance than computer. Hence a different form factor from the pack.

Vinea
post #1219 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig

You want to convert the solider, it's much easier if you convert the officers first. The officers are the prosumers.

There is no direct relationship between prosumers and consumers unlike officers and soldiers.

Some consumers do get information from their more geek family members and friends but these are not necessarily prosumers. The most IT capable person in one family I know is grandma that makes DVDs from all the home movies of the grand kids and she already uses a mac for iLife.

Here's a question for you: How do you define prosumer?

Vinea
post #1220 of 1658
Regarding the iMac AIO, what would be a legitimate reason for a corporation to reject it for their 5,000 secretaries and administrative assistants? Certainly PCIe slots and gee-whiz GPUs would not be a consideration. And they are buying monitors anyway. Why would the corporation insist on the bulky and two-piece tower/monitor setup, with its extra cord and footprint, over the iMac $999 deal? Maybe in lots of 5,000 they could get them for $799.
--Johnny
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--Johnny
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post #1221 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by lundy

Regarding the iMac AIO, what would be a legitimate reason for a corporation to reject it for their 5,000 secretaries and administrative assistants? Certainly PCIe slots and gee-whiz GPUs would not be a consideration. And they are buying monitors anyway. Why would the corporation insist on the bulky and two-piece tower/monitor setup, with its extra cord and footprint, over the iMac $999 deal? Maybe in lots of 5,000 they could get them for $799.

IT. They like pcs better. Go figure.
post #1222 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by lundy

Regarding the iMac AIO, what would be a legitimate reason for a corporation to reject it for their 5,000 secretaries and administrative assistants? Certainly PCIe slots and gee-whiz GPUs would not be a consideration. And they are buying monitors anyway. Why would the corporation insist on the bulky and two-piece tower/monitor setup, with its extra cord and footprint, over the iMac $999 deal? Maybe in lots of 5,000 they could get them for $799.

Consider the monitor breaking / burning out. The machine is toast after that. I suppose they can pull the harddrive out and put it in another one. But Wouldn't it be easier to just switch the lcd?

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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post #1223 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by emig647

Consider the monitor breaking / burning out. The machine is toast after that. I suppose they can pull the harddrive out and put it in another one. But Wouldn't it be easier to just switch the lcd?

Send to Apple and have them swap out the LCD on Applecare. Yes, more annoying as you have to restore onto a temp machine while the machine is out.

But while I can retrieve backups from retrospect on my mac without IT intervention it is more difficult on Windows. Eh, mostly its what IT is willing to do rather than LCD as an issue. TCo should be similar unless you have a heavy MS infrastructure. Somethings just don't run well outside of explorer.

Vinea
post #1224 of 1658
Quote:
It's difficult enough to get people to switch away from something they are accustomed to using and try something different. Why add the necessity for folks to also give up their familiar tower and buy either the tiny Mini or the iMac? Does this make sense? Personally, I think not.

You guys are placing way too much on the notion that people actively choose a separate monitor and desktop.

When you walk into Best Buy, Circuit City, etc the tower desktop is your only option. When you go to Dell's website they don't give equal attention to their AIO as they do their towers. You have to navigate Dell's labyrinth to find its AIO.

Shuttle PC is not sold in mainstream high volume retail channels. Shuttle PC does not advertise in mainstream media. Generally the people who buy Shuttle PC are pretty much people who already know about it or people who seek it out.

These are not options given to the general public as information to enable them to actively choose.

Quote:
Simple! Then the commercials should be tauting the virtues of AIO and ultra SFF over towers, no?

People already understand these advantages.

This is one of the reason I continue to point out laptops. Laptop sales are growing because they are a compact all-in-one.

Quote:
Consider the monitor breaking / burning out. The machine is toast after that. I suppose they can pull the harddrive out and put it in another one. But Wouldn't it be easier to just switch the lcd?

Any disadvantage you can point out with the desktop AIO is basically the exact same disadvantage with the laptop. Yet laptops are outgrowing desktops.
post #1225 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea

Send to Apple and have them swap out the LCD on Applecare. Yes, more annoying as you have to restore onto a temp machine while the machine is out.

But while I can retrieve backups from retrospect on my mac without IT intervention it is more difficult on Windows. Eh, mostly its what IT is willing to do rather than LCD as an issue. TCo should be similar unless you have a heavy MS infrastructure. Somethings just don't run well outside of explorer.

Vinea


I guess you can send it to apple, switch the harddrive or back it up. But it takes more time than just replacing the monitor. I'm probably splitting hairs.

What is TCo?

Edit: Actually the more I think about it, the more I can see why a business would want a machine with expandability over a machine without one. Keep in mind I have only worked in IT one time in my life and that was for a news paper. They had over 50 macs and 40 pcs. And there was 2 IT people. Anyways, I remember doing processor upgrades in those macs and pcs. This was back in the beige power mac days. Adding g3 and g4 cards. Some of the machines that were around at the time were frankenmacs 3-5 years old. Long story short, I can see a business wanting to upgrade a machine along with the times changing, other than replacing the whole thing. It does cost less money... at least in the short term. Only drawback I can see is more IT problems from that machine... but with apple going intel, the processors should be drop in replacements. Especially since all the sockets are pretty modern now (479, 775, 771). I could see IT wanting to swap a lcd and have that machine up and running instead of actually sending in that machine to apple. That is 1 less machine they have, that they otherwise could have had if they replaced the lcd. And why would they want another company fixing their computers? Could be even more of a problem because you HAVE to yank a harddrive out of a work computer when it's being sent in because of sensitive data on the harddrive. Seems like overkill for businesses to me. To me the only machines that are optional for a real business is the mac pro and the xserve.

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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post #1226 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

Any disadvantage you can point out with the desktop AIO is basically the exact same disadvantage with the laptop. Yet laptops are outgrowing desktops.

I'm not an expert on market, so take anything I say with a grain of salt...

But, I don't see the laptop's gaining ground this quickly forever. I think a lot of people couldn't afford laptops until recently. And a laptop is definitely not for everyone. A family isn't going to share a laptop. The screens are too small for elders. Would you trust your 7 year old with a laptop at home? Laptops are popular with school kids. I think they are popular with people on the go. But there will always be market areas a laptop will fail to penetrate. Example, I've been working off of a 1.25ghz g4 15" pb for the last eighteen months (with a 20" samsung widescreen). I can't stand to work on a laptop any more. I'm tired of having to use a 15" screen (or even a 17" screen) as a primary monitor. I really messed up when I sold my powermac g5.

Again take these comments with the grain of salt... but I kinda predicts that there will be a big spike in desktop sales in the next year. I think businesses are ready to get the next generation of hardware (single core out, dual / quad core in). And I feel consumers are also in this same boat. Obviously we'll have to wait and see.

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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post #1227 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by lundy


Regarding the iMac AIO, what would be a legitimate reason for a corporation to reject it for their 5,000 secretaries and administrative assistants? . . . Why would the corporation insist on the bulky and two-piece tower/monitor setup, with its extra cord and footprint, over the iMac . . ?

I like the question, since I believe business is one of two markets Apple needs to put more effort into. Possibly too, business may be more receptive to change than say consumers looking at the low and mid price range, but I have to agree with emig647, that interchangeable monitors can be a big plus. Got a secretary with poor eyesight? Give the secretary a larger display. The computer configuration remains the same.

Possibly, business might be receptive to something like a big mini from Apple, which has been discussed before. I think the current Mac Mini is too small, with limited number of I/O ports. Using standard drives in a much larger mini would also lower the manufacturing cost, and let Apple sell it for less, which should appeal to business.

Make the footprint large enough, and folks could place an Apple display on top of it, keeping desk clutter down. I don't think many other displays would fit on top. The Apple display has a fairly small base. Hmmm. It could generate more display sales for Apple.

post #1228 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

Any disadvantage you can point out with the desktop AIO is basically the exact same disadvantage with the laptop. Yet laptops are outgrowing desktops.

Well, laptops are mobile so they do enjoy one major advantage over AIOs.

Vinea
post #1229 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by emig647

I guess you can send it to apple, switch the harddrive or back it up. But it takes more time than just replacing the monitor. I'm probably splitting hairs.

Yes, it is a downside of an AIOs.

Quote:
What is TCo?

Total cost of ownership...should be TCO.

Quote:
Edit: Actually the more I think about it, the more I can see why a business would want a machine with expandability over a machine without one. Keep in mind I have only worked in IT one time in my life and that was for a news paper. They had over 50 macs and 40 pcs. And there was 2 IT people. Anyways, I remember doing processor upgrades in those macs and pcs. This was back in the beige power mac days. Adding g3 and g4 cards. Some of the machines that were around at the time were frankenmacs 3-5 years old. Long story short, I can see a business wanting to upgrade a machine along with the times changing, other than replacing the whole thing. It does cost less money... at least in the short term.

Back then a PC was a larger investment. Today they can be much less expensive. Cheaper to EBay or donate older machines and get new ones from Dell every 3 years.

Quote:
And why would they want another company fixing their computers? Could be even more of a problem because you HAVE to yank a harddrive out of a work computer when it's being sent in because of sensitive data on the harddrive. Seems like overkill for businesses to me.

Nah...cheaper to outsource than maintain your own techs. Where I work we have a large IT staff and they still send stuff out to Dell or Apple for service. Even for fairly benign problems. Of course, given their age I'd say a good 80-90% of our desktops are under warranty as our replacement cycle is 3-4 years.

Vinea
post #1230 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

You guys are placing way too much on the notion that people actively choose a separate monitor and desktop.

I agree with you on this point. Most "average" computer users buy a bundle. They take whatever PC and Monitor combination comes together for the price they want.

That said, there is still an issue that keeps getting lost in this long, long, drawn-out discussion. There are many people -- like me -- who want a desktop computer, with desktop components, at a resonable price.

Mac Mini - All notebook components. Notebook CPU, notebook hard drive, integrated graphics.

iMac - Some notebook components. Notebook CPU, limited upgrade options (No high speed HD, no high speed graphics)

Mac Pro - Server components. Dual Xeon processors. Prices quickly jump over $3,000 when customized.

There is still a glaring hole between the Mini and the Mac Pro for a Desktop PC with desktop components at a consumer (or even prosumer) price. Rather than trying to shoe-horn me into a computer that's not the right fit, why not let me buy a Mac without an LCD? Instead, let me spend that savings on a 2.66 of 3.0 GHz Core 2 Duo, more memory or a 10,000 RPM HDD.

The Mac Pro is over the moon in performance. The iMac is somewhat under the moon. There's still a sweet spot in there that Apple isn't hitting.
post #1231 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy

I like the question, since I believe business is one of two markets Apple needs to put more effort into. Possibly too, business may be more receptive to change than say consumers looking at the low and mid price range, but I have to agree with emig647, that interchangeable monitors can be a big plus.

The monitor and form factor are minor issues in comparison to the IT infrastructure that is very much oriented around MS and OSX is missing major business software. Even the lower TCO on a unit basis doesn't seem to make up for that. We have a handful of mac IT folks supporting several hundred Mac users (maybe even a thousand but I doubt it). We have a bunch more IT folks supporting a few thousand users. The ratios aren't close....it takes far fewer folks to maintain the mac side than the PC side.

The caveat is you can't do everything you need on the mac. Apple made the decision not to compete in the corporate arena and Mac users are certainly 2nd class citizens in most Exchange/LCS shops. The intergration of Entourage w/Exchange vs Outlook still lags greatly. Lack of ActiveX cripples many web based apps common to business. Even Outlook Web Access suffers greatly on the Mac platform. Its going to suck more when we lose VB from Excel.

Parallels (and the additional costs) is a nice change but for the basic business user a $300-$400 Dell is more than adequate. About the only thing you really miss out on is Keynote vs PowerPoint. And perhaps iChat/AV.

Vinea
post #1232 of 1658


Just a couple more thought on a business Mac. The business market can be segmented, just like we segment the overall market for personal computers. Apple is pretty good at picking out those segments where the Mac can shine the most. I'm sure this is the strategy Apple would employ. In time, Apple could develop applications and technology that would help it compete in more and more business market segments. I believe Apple has already started on this course by its offerings in the server market.

One last thought -- as each particular company switches to the Mac, it will be some small influence on the employees to think about switching too. It is a domino effect. Some employees will switch, to be compatible with their job.

post #1233 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by csi95

There is still a glaring hole between the Mini and the Mac Pro for a Desktop PC with desktop components at a consumer (or even prosumer) price. Rather than trying to shoe-horn me into a computer that's not the right fit, why not let me buy a Mac without an LCD? Instead, let me spend that savings on a 2.66 of 3.0 GHz Core 2 Duo, more memory or a 10,000 RPM HDD.

The Mac Pro is over the moon in performance. The iMac is somewhat under the moon. There's still a sweet spot in there that Apple isn't hitting.

Couldn't have said it any better. All of us can argue until the cows come home. But I think a majority of us agree there is 'something' missing. I'm actually surprised this thread has gone on as long as it has.

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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post #1234 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy

employees to think about switching too. It is a domino effect. Some employees will switch, to be compatible with their job.


YEP!!! That is why a lot of school proposals with macs get shot down. All of the parents of the kids ore board members use pc's because that is what they have to work on. If they have to work on a mac... better support for the mac consumers. Just my 47 cents.

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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post #1235 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by emig647


I'm actually surprised this thread has gone on as long as it has.

We haven't worn down all the opposition yet!

post #1236 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell

You guys are placing way too much on the notion that people actively choose a separate monitor and desktop.

When you walk into Best Buy, Circuit City, etc the tower desktop is your only option. When you go to Dell's website they don't give equal attention to their AIO as they do their towers. You have to navigate Dell's labyrinth to find its AIO.

Shuttle PC is not sold in mainstream high volume retail channels. Shuttle PC does not advertise in mainstream media. Generally the people who buy Shuttle PC are pretty much people who already know about it or people who seek it out.

These are not options given to the general public as information to enable them to actively choose.



People already understand these advantages.

This is one of the reason I continue to point out laptops. Laptop sales are growing because they are a compact all-in-one.



Any disadvantage you can point out with the desktop AIO is basically the exact same disadvantage with the laptop. Yet laptops are outgrowing desktops.

Any disadvantage in AIO is ignored in a laptop because it is portable.

Just what exactly are the advantages in the AIO's favor.
.....I see only one true advantage - space
.....Ease of set up, maybe slightly

People claim it is easier to set up, but really, plugging in one cable to the monitor over an AIO I consider hardly an advantage, but I'll concede this.

Disadvantages in no particular order
....In the rapidly changing world of tech - no upgrades. (USB to USB 2, Firewire to Firewire 800, Bluetooth to whatever is next) If you think this is unimportant ask anyone with an AIO with the older USB when Apple dropped the iPod's firewire port. Windows user bought inexpensive USB 2 cards and were good to go.
....Integrated monitor - rarely do both the monitor and the computer need to be replaced at the same time. Especially with any potential switchers.
....In the current iMacs the use of a more expensive laptop cpu with lower clock speeds than could be used.
....No way to upgrade the video card, even at the time of purchase
....Desktop clutter when adding external hard drive or optical drives.
....Cost - It is more expensive to design AIOs than towers or SFF computers, although I suspect the incremental cost is insignificant.
....Repairs - if the video, USB, firewire or sound goes wonky no just adding a PCI card.
....Repairs - if the monitor goes bad after the first year, send into Apple and be prepared to pay. Of course you could buy Apple's extended warranty for $239. Wonder what kind of monitor that'll buy?
....No up-selling the consumer in faster graphics cards.
....No up-selling the consumer with additional internal hard drive.
....No up-selling the consumer with additional internal optical drive.
....Resistance from video card manufacturers to produce video cards for an artificially constrained market(ony the Pro towers). If all the iMacs sold could use a card, don't you think ATI and Nvidia might offer more?

Now the virtues of AIO may justify Apple's product mix, but consumers are not easily swayed and even though many people here don't think the typical consumer thinks of these things, I'm betting they do and the people they trust to give them advise do.

Oh, I forgot one more advantage for the AIO, only one box to open, as pointed out in the latest Mac guy/PC guy commercials.
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...........
Reply
post #1237 of 1658
Yep.

Lemon Bon Bon

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

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You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply
post #1238 of 1658
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag

People claim it is easier to set up, but really, plugging in one cable to the monitor over an AIO I consider hardly an advantage, but I'll concede this.

I agree with everything you said except this =).

It's actually 2 cables, 1 for power for the monitor and 1 for the i/o for the monitor

Otherwise a perfect score on hitting things I always forget to bring in my arguemtn, such as the more graphic cards avail argument. Good job rickag!

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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post #1239 of 1658
Mac Cube/Tower/Box ...
-----------------------------
Desktop CPU
Desktop HDD
Desktop GPU
Desktop RAM
===
Desktop Performance
Desktop Price (not server price)

Nov '09 | iMac 21.5" C2D 3.06 Ghz | Intel 330 240GB SSD | ATI

Sep '12| Toshiba 14" 1366 x 768! | i5 3rd Gen 6GB| Intel x25-m 120GB SSD | Win 7|  Viewsonic VX2255wmb 22" LCD
iPhone 4S| iPad 2 wifi

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Nov '09 | iMac 21.5" C2D 3.06 Ghz | Intel 330 240GB SSD | ATI

Sep '12| Toshiba 14" 1366 x 768! | i5 3rd Gen 6GB| Intel x25-m 120GB SSD | Win 7|  Viewsonic VX2255wmb 22" LCD
iPhone 4S| iPad 2 wifi

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post #1240 of 1658
What a freaking concept! Desktop parts in a computer? nooooooooooooooooo..... that makes no sense.

Where is Onlooker? I think this is like the only subject we could ever agree on.

 

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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The reason why they are analysts is because they failed at running businesses.

 

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