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Apple's number of 'new-to-Mac' buyers growing

post #1 of 21
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A recent survey of twenty Apple Specialist retailers shows that approximately 25 percent of customers buying Macs are new to the platform and that the figure is likely to keep rising due to the iPod "halo effect" and Apple's Boot Camp software.

The survey, conducted by PiperJaffray analyst Gene Munster, also found that the majority of the value added resellers (VARs) are expecting to sell more Macs during the current quarter than they did during the three-mond period ending late September.

Although Apple has stated in recent quarterly conference calls that over 50 percent of Mac buyers at its own retail chain are new to the Mac, the analyst pointed out that Apple Specialist stores "have a lower new-to-Mac average given they typically serve more of the professional users and existing Mac faithful customer base."

"We see, therefore, the 25 percent new-to-Mac number at these stores as a fairly high number," he told clients in a summary of his survey findings on Monday.

Munster also reported that 60 percent of the 20 Apple Specialists indicated that they expect Mac sales in the December quarter to be up from those during the September quarter. Only 10 percent of the retailers were anticipating a drop-off in sales, while the remaining 30 percent said they expect sales to be flat sequentially.

"Not surprisingly, the iMac and Macbook were mentioned most often (mentioned by 70 percent and 65 percent, respectively) as the best selling Macs so far this quarter," the analyst wrote.

In his own model, Munster has been anticipating a 1 percent decline in Mac sales for the December quarter. However, he notes that a 5 percent increase in Mac shipments would add approximately $0.03 to $0.04 to his $0.73 earnings-per-share estimate for the quarter.

Meanwhile, the analyst said his survey of the Apple Specialists turned up "decent" supply of iPods and "good" supply of Macs.

"Apple's VARs indicated that iPod supply has been somewhat patchy in the Dec-06 quarter, while Mac supply has been very solid," he wrote. "Specifically, 75 percent of specialist stores said that they have had good supply of iPods, while 95 percent said they have had good supply of Macs in the quarter."

Those resellers that were missing iPods were typically missing the iPod shuffle or the iPod nano, Munster said. While the new iPod shuffle has been scarce over the last several weeks, he said 85 percent of the Specialist stores said they now have the player in stock.

PiperJaffray maintains an "Outperform" rating on shares of Apple with a price target of $99.
post #2 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider

A recent survey of twenty Apple Specialist retailers shows that approximately 25 percent of customers buying Macs are new to the platform and that the figure is likely to keep rising due to the iPod "halo effect" and Apple's Boot Camp software.

The survey, conducted by PiperJaffray analyst Gene Munster, also found that the majority of the value added resellers (VARs) are expecting to sell more Macs during the current quarter than they did during the three-mond period ending late September.

Although Apple has stated in recent quarterly conference calls that over 50 percent of Mac buyers at its own retail chain are new to the Mac, the analyst pointed out that Apple Specialist stores "have a lower new-to-Mac average given they typically serve more of the professional users and existing Mac faithful customer base."

"We see, therefore, the 25 percent new-to-Mac number at these stores as a fairly high number," he told clients in a summary of his survey findings on Monday.

Munster also reported that 60 percent of the 20 Apple Specialists indicated that they expect Mac sales in the December quarter to be up from those during the September quarter. Only 10 percent of the retailers were anticipating a drop-off in sales, while the remaining 30 percent said they expect sales to be flat sequentially.

"Not surprisingly, the iMac and Macbook were mentioned most often (mentioned by 70 percent and 65 percent, respectively) as the best selling Macs so far this quarter," the analyst wrote.

In his own model, Munster has been anticipating a 1 percent decline in Mac sales for the December quarter. However, he notes that a 5 percent increase in Mac shipments would add approximately $0.03 to $0.04 to his $0.73 earnings-per-share estimate for the quarter.

Meanwhile, the analyst said his survey of the Apple Specialists turned up "decent" supply of iPods and "good" supply of Macs.

"Apple's VARs indicated that iPod supply has been somewhat patchy in the Dec-06 quarter, while Mac supply has been very solid," he wrote. "Specifically, 75 percent of specialist stores said that they have had good supply of iPods, while 95 percent said they have had good supply of Macs in the quarter."

Those resellers that were missing iPods were typically missing the iPod shuffle or the iPod nano, Munster said. While the new iPod shuffle has been scarce over the last several weeks, he said 85 percent of the Specialist stores said they now have the player in stock.

PiperJaffray maintains an "Outperform" rating on shares of Apple with a price target of $99.

25% new to mac sales? Apple should have switched to Intel years ago.
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post #3 of 21
All these percentages. I only understood 70 percent of it.
post #4 of 21
The more important number is how many customers are buying macs. If they have 10 customers and 2 are new to the mac, then that is not as exciting. If they now have 100 customers compared to only 50 before, then the 25% suddenly becomes much more relevant. The question still remains. Are the increase in mac sales due to increase in new customers while mac consumers are flat, or is the increase due to an increase in upgrades from old customers with a slight increase from new customers as well?
post #5 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by AquaMac

25% new to mac sales? Apple should have switched to Intel years ago.

Not really. For the longest time all Intel had going for them was their ability to jack up MHz and GHz, and the only good that would give Apple was the Intel name. Now they have real performance, so this was the perfect time.
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by g5man

Are the increase in mac sales due to increase in new customers while mac consumers are flat, or is the increase due to an increase in upgrades from old customers with a slight increase from new customers as well?

Both. Strong Mac sales overall plus a high (50 or 25% depending on source) "new to Mac" ratio implies old Mac and new Mac custom are both in very good health.

By the way, I find a bigger factor in the new to Mac movement in 2006 than the iPod halo effect or Bootcamp is in fact just Intel plain and simple. Many people suddenly got interested in January in my own circumstantial evidence, and were pleasantly surprised when Bootcamp came out for their already purchased first Macs. My folks are one real example, and the gamer webcomics over at Penny Arcade too. Intel gave the Mac a kind of credence PowerPC people like me never could convince them about ... even without Windows virtualisation / native booting.
post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by nmcphers

Not really. For the longest time all Intel had going for them was their ability to jack up MHz and GHz, and the only good that would give Apple was the Intel name. Now they have real performance, so this was the perfect time.

Hear hear. Intel suffered while the Athlon and Athlon 64 were strong competition. The P4 stunk. But their comeback was the Core and from this January on they have been dominant, making Apple's own switch the most perfect of opportunities.

Power and quiet running. What more could you want? Oh yes, the scope for Parallels!
post #8 of 21
I have been interested in Macs for a while but it was the ability to run Winblows that finally swayed me to buy. Last month I got my new Imac and have loved every minute of it. The funny thing though is that while I have installed Bootcamp and Windows I have not had to use them.
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post #9 of 21
Same reason I switched. The Transition to the Intel and ability to do bootcamp/parallels was enough for me to purchasae a Mac Pro tower vs building a new PC this year to replace my aging PC desktop.
post #10 of 21
Sales *always* spike during the Christmas quarter. This is not actually uncovering something noteworthy, though that's hardly surprising for an analyst's report.
post #11 of 21
I'd say more users switched thanks to Parallels, not just BootCamp.

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post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich

I'd say more users switched thanks to Parallels, not just BootCamp.

My wife's co-worker did just that. The whole office will transition to Mac in the next three years. Boot Camp and Parellels will entice even more folks. All is good for Apple.
post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by nmcphers

Not really. For the longest time all Intel had going for them was their ability to jack up MHz and GHz, and the only good that would give Apple was the Intel name. Now they have real performance, so this was the perfect time.

Yeah but you have to understand which side of that is the side the end user understands (or thinks they understand).

Hint: it's the not the performance side!
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post #14 of 21
Bootcamp was a huge factor in my latest buy. Design rules though. Compare a macbook to a dell or sony. Nothing worthy of it actually. You have to admit, my black macbook just looks sexy. Add in C2D 120gb hd, SD, and all the other crap this thing has, it makes me wonder why people would buy a pc besides price.
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post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by hugodrax

Same reason I switched. The Transition to the Intel and ability to do bootcamp/parallels was enough for me to purchasae a Mac Pro tower vs building a new PC this year to replace my aging PC desktop.

I see you joined this forum Jan. 2005 and the Mac Pro, which was released Aug. 7, made you switch. You were sitting on the fence for quite awhile then? Welcome aboard.
post #16 of 21
Switched full time last year but has been eyeing it since 2004, but only with the intel swtich was I able to switch my family and gf, and it's funny because bootcamp sold them and they don't even have it installed!

I guess it is the comfort for them of "if I need to I can whip out my windows disks".
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post #17 of 21
What I see from customers are folks who are rather interested in the iMac or MacBook saying that they want to try out the Mac side because a friend or family member has finally convinced them to make the jump. I would say that most of the people I talk to at the Apple Store are PC users. And no one ends up buying the mini. Apple either needs to upgrade the sucker to the Core 2 Duo and drop the price, or see it go the way of the Cube.
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Idle

What I see from customers are folks who are rather interested in the iMac or MacBook saying that they want to try out the Mac side because a friend or family member has finally convinced them to make the jump. I would say that most of the people I talk to at the Apple Store are PC users. And no one ends up buying the mini. Apple either needs to upgrade the sucker to the Core 2 Duo and drop the price, or see it go the way of the Cube.


I think the mini is really just mena to get people into the store, rather than be a significant part off the line-up. Apple will tempt more people into the store with a line up starting at $599, rather with a line up starting at $999. However once people get into the store, they leave with an iMac.

Stu
post #19 of 21
As a Mac developer, we've seen a 100% increase in interest from Windoze users since the availability of Intel Macs. I have more details here: http://www.marketcircle.com/blog/?p=15.

AJ
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by AquaMac

25% new to mac sales? Apple should have switched to Intel years ago.

They would have, if OS 9 would run on Intel. It won't. Steve had to wait until OS X had enough users to flush those losers at Scrotorola for good.

He was quoted as saying to the Scrotorola execs, "I can't wait until we don't need you guys any more!" and we all thought he meant IBM was going to magically come up with a G5 for a laptop.

LOL, he was talking about Intel.
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post #21 of 21
I am in the same camp. The move to Intel with the option of Bootcamp and Parallels left a safety net for what is a rather expensive purchase. If it turned out I didn't like Mac OS X I could still very easily run Linux (or Windows) on the same hardware. But now that I've switched (to a Macbook Pro) I find that I have no need to run Windows at all (except for games), and most of my Linux apps will run natively with a recompile on OS X with X11 using Fink.

I switched my wife first actually, back in June, to a Macbook. I just switched last month (finally convinced the office to give me a MBP to replace my ancient Dell). So we are both new to Mac users.
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