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Apple Store customer receives upgraded Mac mini

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
A European Apple store customer who ordered a single-core Mac mini desktop computer this past weekend was surprised to find that he was shipped a dual-core system at no additional charge.

In a post to MacBidouille, the customer said he ordered a 1.5GHz Core Solo Mac mini, which typically comes standard with a 60GB hard drive and a Combo drive capable of burning CDs and reading DVDs.

Much to his surprise, the order arrived in the form of a 1.66GHz Core Duo Mac mini with a 100GB hard drive and a SuperDrive capable of writing both CD and DVD discs.

"On the box, the specifications are those of a Mac mini Core Solo," the customer said.

Recent reports indicated that Apple's Mac mini inventory levels had been run down and that the company was refusing to fill bulk orders of the petite desktop computers. Availability of the computers was said to improve in early September when "new models" would become available.

It's yet unclear whether the Apple store customer's order was a mistake or the start of a silent update to the Mac mini line. Representatives at Apple's US-based online store said they had no knowledge of a silent upgrade to the Mac mini line, nor had they heard of any similar instances of such orders being received.

Quietly slipping upgraded Mac minis into retail boxes designed for their predecessors is not new for Apple. Around this same time last year, the Cupertino, Calif.-based company began shipping 1.33GHz and 1.5GHz models inside retail boxes designed for 1.25GHz and 1.42GHz models. The updated models also featured several other under-the-hood enhancements.

It's believed that Apple uses such tactics clear inventory without having to offer price reductions. Instead, it promises customers that they will receive a system with specifications that equal to or greater than those listed on the retail boxes. This allows it to exhaust inventory of previous models in some locations, while supplying other locations, which may be void of stock, with the new models.
post #2 of 49
nebbermind
post #3 of 49
It's like winning the lottery. Good for that customer.
Apple should use this as a business model... start randomly filling some computers with ram.
post #4 of 49
What he got IS possible under the old models (take the top Mini and choose the next HD size up), so I wonder if the BTO people just put the someone else's machine back into his box?
post #5 of 49
known as a 'cock up' in the industry
"i find that if you keep talkin', your mouth comes up with stuff..." Karl Pilkington
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"i find that if you keep talkin', your mouth comes up with stuff..." Karl Pilkington
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post #6 of 49
maybe one day i'll order a mac mini and there will be a mac pro in the box.
post #7 of 49
*Napoleon Dynamyte* DANG! Lucky!
post #8 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme

What he got IS possible under the old models (take the top Mini and choose the next HD size up), so I wonder if the BTO people just put the someone else's machine back into his box?

I believe this would be the case. The mentioned system does not sound like a likely upgrade.
post #9 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by cactus

maybe one day i'll order a mac mini and there will be a mac pro in the box.

post #10 of 49
Is this guy under any obligation to notify Apple of their mistake? Or is he allowed to keep the upgraded mini?
post #11 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme

What he got IS possible under the old models (take the top Mini and choose the next HD size up), so I wonder if the BTO people just put the someone else's machine back into his box?

But the buyer originally ordered a Mini with a single processor (or so they claim).
post #12 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by dansgil

Is this guy under any obligation to notify Apple of their mistake? Or is he allowed to keep the upgraded mini?

if he'd kept his mouth shut no one would have ever known........

so i supose the person who had the blokes lower powered machine will find the lower powered one in the box, speak to apple, and then get the one he ordered, everyones happy
"i find that if you keep talkin', your mouth comes up with stuff..." Karl Pilkington
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"i find that if you keep talkin', your mouth comes up with stuff..." Karl Pilkington
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post #13 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by dansgil

Is this guy under any obligation to notify Apple of their mistake?

Doubtful. It probably won't even be a problem to register it or get support for it.
post #14 of 49
I'm not buying this. Someone probably ordered a 1.66ghz Mini with a 100GB hard drive option and somebody switched the boxes. No way prices have dropped enough to justify a $250 price drop on that configuration.
post #15 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by dansgil

Is this guy under any obligation to notify Apple of their mistake? Or is he allowed to keep the upgraded mini?


Moral obligation yes, but so few people in the world today live by such a code of conduct.
onlooker
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onlooker
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post #16 of 49
How many people do you think are at store.apple.com right now trying buying mini Core Solo's in hopes they too will Win Big?
post #17 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig

I'm not buying this. Someone probably ordered a 1.66ghz Mini with a 100GB hard drive option and somebody switched the boxes. No way prices have dropped enough to justify a $250 price drop on that configuration.

Another argument is that from next week there litterally is no more mini, as we know it, so what ever is left is what you get...
post #18 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by OfficerDigby

Another argument is that from next week there litterally is no more mini, as we know it, so what ever is left is what you get...

Mac Nano ... shiny black or white clear plastic frontage (scratchable), with stainless steel (scratchable) on all the other sides. Even slimmer than the mini, but same footprint. Dual-core throughout.

Okay, they're not going to do something so obvious, they'll keep a successful product like the iPod Mini, sorry, I meant Mac Mini on the market.

I expect that when the Mac Mini is updated they will go dual-core throughout the product line. 60 and 120GB hard drive options, 160GB BTO. Same price lineup. Current Mac Minis that are unsold will drop by $100 or so until they sell out.
post #19 of 49
They accidentally shipped 2 dual 2.5 G5s to my friend last summer. He said he very seriously considered giving me the other, but he called them up and they sent FedEx to pick it up.

It was the right thing to do, but the next day my Single 867 G4 just didn't seem as fast anymore.
post #20 of 49
I agree that this looks much more like a "someone else's machine" than a "upgrade accidentally slipped out early".

Quote:
Originally Posted by onlooker

Moral obligation yes, but so few people in the world today live by such a code of conduct.

I agree.

But...

If he did contact Apple, they should let him keep the upgraded machine, as taking it back and sending him the right one would probably cost more than the difference between their costs for assembling the two different machines.
it's = it is / it has, its = belonging to it.
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it's = it is / it has, its = belonging to it.
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post #21 of 49
Bigger hard drive in the mini.. sounds like a prep for a media center
post #22 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by onlooker

Moral obligation yes, but so few people in the world today live by such a code of conduct.

Whats immoral here? Its the company's responsibility to deliver the correct product. Thats their cost of doing business in a free soceity. If you keep messing up, you end up out of business. But if you get it right, you get rich and have people bitch at you for being too rich. Such is the world we live in.
post #23 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by crees!

Bigger hard drive in the mini.. sounds like a prep for a media center

I was thinking the same thing, if Apple is serious about a media center than adding more HD to the Mini is only logical and add a BTO option for the 160GB version then you can possibly consider the Mini to be Media Center ready...

Btw did I mention I want one
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MacBook 1.83GHz, 1GB of Ram --> A more elegant notebook, for a more civilized age

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post #24 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbaynham

so i supose the person who had the blokes lower powered machine will find the lower powered one in the box, speak to apple, and then get the one he ordered, everyones happy

My sister bought a Dell last year, spent all day setting it up (which was a big thing for her), and then a guy rang her asking if she'd just bought a Dell and whether she'd got it. He said he'd received her box instead of his own... sure enough she checked her packaging and it had his name. He called Dell (since his machine was better). Dell called her and told her to pack it up and they'd collect it.

She refused... eventually agreeing to do it as long as they packed it, and wiped the hard disk and re-installed all her programs for her on the new machine... and they decided to let her keep it.

edit: The other guy got sent a brand new computer from Dell.
post #25 of 49
One data point doesn't make a pattern. Even speculation on a stealth update is premature, so I'm with the side that says this is probably just a mistake.
post #26 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by onlooker

Moral obligation yes, but so few people in the world today live by such a code of conduct.

I totally agree. I'm the Customer Service Mgr. at a large retail location. If we shipped the wrong (better) product to a customer and they notified us, we would more than likely let them keep it, or give them something (gift card, free shipping on their next order, etc.) to show our gratitude. Like another poster said, sometimes it's just not worth the trouble and cost to pick up the wrong item, send the correct item, and reship the better order to the correct customer once we figure out who received the lesser order by mistake.

[ edited: damn, does all that make any sense? :-) ]
post #27 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM

One data point doesn't make a pattern. Even speculation on a stealth update is premature, so I'm with the side that says this is probably just a mistake.

I agree. My prediction, which like always will never come true, is that they will be refreshed on Tuesday along with MacBooks and iMacs. Then on the 12th its all iPods (this is a huge sales item for the Holiday season).
post #28 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeState

I agree. My prediction, which like always will never come true

If we're moving to predictions... I'll predict a release of iPod Video, Mac Mini "Video", & iTMS movie store all at once, this month (September).

Mine never come true either though.
post #29 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider


It's believed that Apple uses such tactics clear inventory without having to offer price reductions. Instead, it promises customers that they will receive a system with specifications that equal to or greater than those listed on the retail boxes. This allows it to exhaust inventory of previous models in some locations, while supplying other locations, which may be void of stock, with the new models.

I find it hard to believe Apple would be using such a big upgrade (1.6GHz dual core, 100GB HD and DVD-RW) simply to clear out inventory to make room for an even bigger upgrade.

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     197619842013  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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post #30 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregAlexander

If we're moving to predictions... I'll predict a release of iPod Video, Mac Mini "Video", & iTMS movie store all at once, this month (September).

Mine never come true either though.

Don't forget that the new iPods will be centered around games. I have it on good authority.
There will also be lots of games to download.
post #31 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1984

I find it hard to believe Apple would be using such a big upgrade (1.6GHz dual core, 100GB HD and DVD-RW) simply to clear out inventory to make room for an even bigger upgrade.

That's not what was suggested. What was suggested that they might do a stealth upgrade such that they don't have to deal with inventory issues such as having to discount the previous models. There wasn't a third tier upgrade when they did this with the previous mini.

Still, the drive upgrades are too excessive to explain away like that. I also don't think that's a good marketing strategy.
post #32 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1984

I find it hard to believe Apple would be using such a big upgrade (1.6GHz dual core, 100GB HD and DVD-RW) simply to clear out inventory to make room for an even bigger upgrade.

The difference between Core Solo and low-end Core Duo was only $50 in the first place. The difference between a ComboDrive and a SuperDrive is at most $20. More likely, the total difference for those two items is somewhere in the $40 range given what Apple likely pays. The HDD, however, is a big deal price wise.
post #33 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by crees!

Bigger hard drive in the mini.. sounds like a prep for a media center

Not in a laptop based machine like the Mini. If they would scale it up for use of desktop parts maybe.
post #34 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme

What he got IS possible under the old models (take the top Mini and choose the next HD size up), so I wonder if the BTO people just put the someone else's machine back into his box?

A simple thing to check is whether the serial number on the packaging matches that on the machine. (Assuming it was addressed to the right person, unlike the Dell story.)

Philip Machanick creator of Opinionations and Green Grahamstown
Department of Computer Science, Rhodes University, South Africa

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Philip Machanick creator of Opinionations and Green Grahamstown
Department of Computer Science, Rhodes University, South Africa

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post #35 of 49
In other news, John Doe from Birmingham received a pair of red socks instead of blue ones, which he ordered. This could mean the socks supplier is silently removing red socks from its offerings, in favour of blue socks.
post #36 of 49
There's an easy way to find out if this is a new model. If the person who got the lottery machine could supply the marketing number, (The M1234LL/A type) we'd know if it was new or not.

Having worked at an Apple Store in the past, for machines that stayed as the same configuration but were part of a new "spread" of a product, the marketing number would still change. For instance, let's say the current, top Mac Mini has a marketing number of M1885LL/A and Apple announces new Mac Minis built on the Core 2. The current top of the line (Core original) becomes the bottom of the barrel. Even though specification-wise the unit is exactly the same, a new marketing number would be assigned to it.

So, if there is a marketing number on this unit that doesn't line up with a current marketing number, it's a new model. Otherwise, he got someone else's machine.

my 2¢
post #37 of 49
Assuming any of this is true. No proof was ever provided.

     197619842013  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

MacBook Pro Retina, 13", 2.5 GHz, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD

iPhone 5 • iPad 4 • CR48 Chromebook • ThinkPad X220

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     197619842013  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

MacBook Pro Retina, 13", 2.5 GHz, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD

iPhone 5 • iPad 4 • CR48 Chromebook • ThinkPad X220

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post #38 of 49
So new iPods, new "home theater" Mac minis and a new movie service!
Should be one exciting keynote.
post #39 of 49
I want to believe this but the hard drive upgrade kills it.

To get a stock 2.5" 100gb drive you need to spend $2400 minimum. To get a that for 599 seems unlikely.

Unless they upgrade the hard disks in the macbook as well.
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post #40 of 49
fry's (a computer chain here in SoCal) is advertising Mac Mini Super's in their ad today.
1.66 GHz Intel Core Duo
80 Gig HD
Dual Layer Super Drive
for 699 dollars

seems wierd that an outside retailer is selling a mac for 100 dollars cheaper than apples website
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