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Will Apple ever make this machine? - Page 4

post #121 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by fisha View Post

But that is making an assumption that anyone wanting a medium tower style machine is looking for it to be the absolutely cheapest option on the market . . . which isn't the case.

Really? Because the market spoke definitively on IBM's desktop and Sony's VAIO desktops. Notice the complete lack of any IBM PCs at all? And Sony is just doing AIOs and notebooks?

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Most folk acknowledge that in some cases, a premium on a product is acceptable.

Evidently not the demographic that buys tower PCs. The demographic that buys AIOs and SFF computers seem to agree a premium is acceptable.

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Apple are often viewed in that of category.

So is Sony.

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So if they were to release a mid-sized desktop that placed itself inbetween the mini and the macpro, then if it were more expensive than the equivalent from the commodity manufacturers, then i dont think that many folk would be surprised or even bothered provided that the premium was reasonable.

They might not be surprised or bothered but other than current Mac owners they aren't going to be that inclined to buy either. If that's the case then all it means is lower ASPs, lower revenue, lower mobile part volume and higher costs for Apple notebooks.

The truth is somewhere in between but the downsides appear to be real enough that Apple isn't going to change its mind anytime soon. IF they DO change their mind dump your Apple stock...because Jobs wont be at the helm when it happens.

Vinea
post #122 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag View Post

It is painfully obvious that posters trying to defend Apple's desktop strategy have to go to extraordinary, often irrational lengths to explain this oddity.

This "oddity" is the same decision that every non-commodity PC maker made in the past. Not one still makes towers.

Explain that. No IBM, Sony, Toshiba, NEC, Fujitsu, etc...

Apple has bucked the trend in finding a premium desktop strategy that actually sells 600K units/qtr in the face of $300 towers. Yeah, that's a little odd...but in a good way.

Vinea
post #123 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

No. Dell's margins are comparable to Apples in the workstation market. Dell's volume sales in Conroe based machines and motherboards are much higher than their volumes in servers and workstations that are Xeon based. This is pretty well accepted. THIS is why the Mac Pro is competitive. Mac Pro volumes are not so much lower that Dell can have a huge cost advantage.

Apple is NOT sacrificing margins for sales in the workstation market. Its just that all the competitors have the same or higher margins within that bracket and don't have a huge cost advantage.

That Apple is using Merom vs Conroe in the iMacs are I think a combination of heat and the ability to maximize Merom buys. It makes them appear much larger to Intel when ordering mobile parts.



Of course. Dell and HP aren't stupid...they know the notebooks are the next battleground and they will use their corporate strengths to their advantage. When you see folks like Toshiba, NEC, etc drop from the plain jane notebook market expect Apple to follow not too distantly.

Folks wonder what Apple is going to do with that huge warchest. I think they know that they need to get multi-touch tablets or something that will diffentiate them from Dell and HP within one or two generations. Notebooks are approaching commodity items but moving into the commodity tower market is not helpful.

Edit: No I misread your comment. Sony DROPPED OUT OF THE TOWER MARKET. How is that hard to miss? They TRIED THE STRATEGY YOU WANT WITH MANY OF THE SAME ADVANTAGES THAT APPLE HAS AND FAILED MISERABLY.

Sorry for yelling but I've made this point several times and somehow you keep not reading it.

Vinea

That's all good for Apple's profits (then again, they would be making more profits at 10%) and people who use Macs as some kind of religious crusade, but it doesn't quite do for those of us who are looking a superior computer, it doesn't quite cut it. You're trying to use value companies like Dell and extremely overpriced value companies like Sony as an example that nobody wants a tower.

Look at the end of the day fanatics aren't going to change the minds of reasonable people or vice versa, so there isn't much point of arguing.
post #124 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

Yes we are looking for a premium product at a premium price. Companies like Alienware, Velocity Micro, Polywell, etc. also offer premium products at a premium price.

Alienware...purchased by Dell.
Velocity Micro, Polywell...premium brand? Hardly.

Folks have heard of Sony, Apple, Toshiba, IBM, Porsche, BMW, Lexus, Rolex, Cartier, Pellegrino, Prada, Perry Ellis, Hilfiger, Versace, Lear, Gulfstream, H&K, Beretta, Nordstroms, etc

Who the heck is Velocity Micro? Whitebox maker with pretensions. At least folks had heard of Alienware.

Again, find me a premium brand maker that still sells a tower.

Vinea
post #125 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post


Apple is not a commodity manufacturer and therefore wisely avoids the commodity tower market.


Vinea

I missed this statement until fisha highlighted it. Normally I dislike car analogies, but:

Following this logic, since BMW is not a commodity manufacturer, BMW wisely avoids the commodity sedan market!

post #126 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

That's all good for Apple's profits (then again, they would be making more profits at 10%) and people who use Macs as some kind of religious crusade, but it doesn't quite do for those of us who are looking a superior computer, it doesn't quite cut it.

Almost every Apple computer is best in class (or danged close). They don't offer many or the one you want but almost the entire product line is a "superior computer".

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You're trying to use value companies like Dell and extremely overpriced value companies like Sony as an example that nobody wants a tower.

Lots of folks want a tower. Never disputed. They buy them from Dell and HP and very few from a non-commodity maker. Apple, and other premium brands, are by definition "overpriced".

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Look at the end of the day fanatics aren't going to change the minds of reasonable people or vice versa, so there isn't much point of arguing.

Nope. But if you don't want the discussion don't ask WHY Apple doesn't have a mid-tower as people have repeatedly. Don't get all surprised when folks answer.

If nothing else the xMac folks have been far more fanatic about thier position. You've been saying you're not going to buy a Mac because none fit your needs. Fine. Non-fanatics would have moved to a PC site by now because what PC you own and use really isn't all that big a deal.

The position of most folks that don't see the xMac in the cards don't mind if it appeared but just don't think its likely AND there are good reasons why. Its not just a whim of Jobs and Apple. Its the same decision every other major player in the market made after the price wars started in the desktop market. Consumers are conditioned to pay very little for quite a lot of capability in that form factor.

Vinea
post #127 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

I missed this statement until fisha highlighted it. Normally I dislike car analogies, but:

Following this logic, since BMW is not a commodity manufacturer, BMW wisely avoids the commodity sedan market!


It does avoid the commodity sedan market. It's in the sports and luxury sedan market. Notice this is a different market than the Civic or even Accord? Even the Mini Cooper is marketed as a "premium" brand in the US.

Vinea
post #128 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Alienware...purchased by Dell.
Velocity Micro, Polywell...premium brand? Hardly.

Folks have heard of Sony, Apple, Toshiba, IBM, Porsche, BMW, Lexus, Rolex, Cartier, Pellegrino, Prada, Perry Ellis, Hilfiger, Versace, Lear, Gulfstream, H&K, Beretta, Nordstroms, etc

Who the heck is Velocity Micro? Whitebox maker with pretensions. At least folks had heard of Alienware.

Again, find me a premium brand maker that still sells a tower.

Vinea

So, what your saying here is Apple is the only premium maker in your mind.
post #129 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

It does. It's in the sports and luxury sedan market. Notice this is a different market than the Civic or even Accord? Even the Mini Cooper is marketed as a "premium" brand in the US.

Vinea

We're not debating the premiumness

A Sedan with a better interior is still a sedan. What Apple is trying to do is make us choose between a 3-door hatch and the X5.
post #130 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Almost every Apple computer is best in class (or danged close). They don't offer many or the one you want but almost the entire product line is a "superior computer".



Lots of folks want a tower. Never disputed. They buy them from Dell and HP and very few from a non-commodity maker. Apple, and other premium brands, are by definition "overpriced".



Nope. But if you don't want the discussion don't ask WHY Apple doesn't have a mid-tower as people have repeatedly. Don't get all surprised when folks answer.

If nothing else the xMac folks have been far more fanatic about thier position. You've been saying you're not going to buy a Mac because none fit your needs. Fine. Non-fanatics would have moved to a PC site by now because what PC you own and use really isn't all that big a deal.

The position of most folks that don't see the xMac in the cards don't mind if it appeared but just don't think its likely AND there are good reasons why. Its not just a whim of Jobs and Apple. Its the same decision every other major player in the market made after the price wars started in the desktop market. Consumers are conditioned to pay very little for quite a lot of capability in that form factor.

Vinea

Exactly who are these major players who don't make a tower again? Better yet, where are these cutting edge designs that they're replacing them with? You say Apple is not a commodity maker, then when countered with boutique companies you dismiss them as irrelevant and counter with companies like IBM, Toshiba, and Sony who were never premium computer makers and in the case of Toshiba never to my knowledge ever made a desktop. Look, if AIOs were really want prosumers wanted, they'd be all over the place and if everyone who wanted a premium tower needed a workstation the premium boutique makers wouldn't sell conroe machines. This is justify another attempt to justify a belief that Apple is perfect and cannot make mistakes. If they can't make mistakes, therefore everyone who doesn't agree with Apple must be in the wrong.
post #131 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

So, what your saying here is Apple is the only premium maker in your mind.

What I'm saying NOW is that you aren't even reading my posts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

Exactly who are these major players who don't make a tower again?

It's in the post you quoted. IBM, Sony, Toshiba...none sell into the mid-range tower market. IBM might have a workstation buried in their line somwhere but they sold their PC business to Lenovo including their valuable ThinkPad brand. Sony's last VAIO tower is no longer linked on their site or sold in their SonyStyle (online) store. Toshiba stopped making desktops in 2001.

These aren't "major" players. The major players are Dell and HP. These are "premium" players that have high margins and good branding.

Fujitsu-Siemens and NEC surprisingly still have towers. Where the heck you would buy them in the US beats me. Evidently the Fujitsu is still available for enterprise customers and NEC has some presence in Europe. Both tout the greeness of their computers. I guess that's a selling point in Europe.

Vinea
post #132 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

We're not debating the premiumness

A Sedan with a better interior is still a sedan. What Apple is trying to do is make us choose between a 3-door hatch and the X5.

The Mac Pro is a tower. Just one you don't like the price or the "sport/luxury" aspect with the Xeon engine and FB-DIMM suspension.

Vinea
post #133 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post


The Mac Pro is a tower. Just one you don't like the price or the "sport/luxury" aspect with the Xeon engine and FB-DIMM suspension.


Vinea

Analogies break down, which is why I don't like them generally. Most of us make a distinction between a Workstation and a Tower, which may be closer to comparing an SUV and Sedan, and you can buy a luxury or cheap model in either case.

The point is simply that Apple could offer a better tower at a higher price, and people would buy it.

post #134 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea
No. Dell's margins are comparable to Apples in the workstation market. Dell's volume sales in Conroe based machines and motherboards are much higher than their volumes in servers and workstations that are Xeon based. This is pretty well accepted. THIS is why the Mac Pro is competitive. Mac Pro volumes are not so much lower that Dell can have a huge cost advantage.

Apple is NOT sacrificing margins for sales in the workstation market. Its just that all the competitors have the same or higher margins within that bracket and don't have a huge cost advantage.

That Apple is using Merom vs Conroe in the iMacs are I think a combination of heat and the ability to maximize Merom buys. It makes them appear much larger to Intel when ordering mobile parts.

Apple's Workstation, the Mac Pro, is less expensive than Dell's, in some price comparisons done online it is as much as $1000 less expensive in certain configurations. That's huge. Apple can accomplish this in one of two ways. Either their manufacturing efficiency is that much greater or they are sacrificing margins. Your argument is wrong.

You said it and I quote," Its just that all the competitors have the same or higher margins within that bracket and don't have a huge cost advantage.. So Apple lowers their margins in order to sell workstations, yes or no? And I completely dispute your statement that Dell's dont have a huge cost advantage, heck, the aluminum tower alone gives them a huge cost advantage.

Makes them appear much larger to Intel, what you think Intel can't add? I don't presume to know the price breaks that Intel offers, as you do, but there are computer manufactures out there smaller than Apple that compete very well. Alienware, Velocity Micro, Polywell were mentioned by BenRoethig. You think Dell bought Alienware because their margins were low? Did Alienware sell more computers than Apple? I don't know but I'll bet their volume discounts were closer to what Apple may be getting than what Dell does.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea
Of course. Dell and HP aren't stupid...they know the notebooks are the next battleground and they will use their corporate strengths to their advantage. When you see folks like Toshiba, NEC, etc drop from the plain jane notebook market expect Apple to follow not too distantly.

Folks wonder what Apple is going to do with that huge warchest. I think they know that they need to get multi-touch tablets or something that will diffentiate them from Dell and HP within one or two generations. Notebooks are approaching commodity items but moving into the commodity tower market is not helpful.

Edit: No I misread your comment. Sony DROPPED OUT OF THE TOWER MARKET. How is that hard to miss? They TRIED THE STRATEGY YOU WANT WITH MANY OF THE SAME ADVANTAGES THAT APPLE HAS AND FAILED MISERABLY.

Sorry for yelling but I've made this point several times and somehow you keep not reading it.

I didn't miss anything and I read it. It makes no sense, unless you subscribe the "milk the faithful reasoning."

It is the IMPLICATION that YOU BROUGHT UP that Sony has decided to target the upscale AIO market, that Apple currently only offers in higher end consumer computers, that is relevant to my statement,"So now there is possibly a huge corporation that is going to try and go head to head against Apple's target market AND IS WILLING TO DO SO AT LOWER MARGINS. Not a good thing.".

Sony's AIO may survive. But their RM series will be still born. $3500 for a Intel Core 2 Duo processor and no FireWire 800 port. This product is priced for the professional but is configured for the hobbyist. The only thing I can gather is that Sony is so screwed up now as to be useless for discussion.
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 #135 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

...
If nothing else the xMac folks have been far more fanatic about thier position. You've been saying you're not going to buy a Mac because none fit your needs. Fine. Non-fanatics would have moved to a PC site by now because what PC you own and use really isn't all that big a deal.
Vinea

This is so totally wrong. No, people that have Macs do so for the OS and many settle on the hardware. Milk the faithful strategy that you are so good at pointing to, but in obtuse wording as to hide it.
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
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 #136 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

Exactly who are these major players who don't make a tower again? Better yet, where are these cutting edge designs that they're replacing them with? You say Apple is not a commodity maker, then when countered with boutique companies you dismiss them as irrelevant and counter with companies like IBM, Toshiba, and Sony who were never premium computer makers and in the case of Toshiba never to my knowledge ever made a desktop. Look, if AIOs were really want prosumers wanted, they'd be all over the place and if everyone who wanted a premium tower needed a workstation the premium boutique makers wouldn't sell conroe machines. This is justify another attempt to justify a belief that Apple is perfect and cannot make mistakes. If they can't make mistakes, therefore everyone who doesn't agree with Apple must be in the wrong.

Really true, and the anti xMac posters continue to dance around the Apple must protect margin argument yet never just come out and say it for what it is - milk the faithful.
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
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 #137 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

Analogies break down, which is why I don't like them generally. Most of us make a distinction between a Workstation and a Tower, which may be closer to comparing an SUV and Sedan, and you can buy a luxury or cheap model in either case.

The point is simply that Apple could offer a better tower at a higher price, and people would buy it.


I'm not the one that trying to show that BMW competes directly with Honda because they both make sedans.

Your analogy...too bad it doesn't support your thesis very well.

The point is that other manufacturers have offered better towers at a higher price and not enough people bought it.

If the tower market is so lucrative as you guys keep insisting then explain why IBM sold it off to Lenovo, Sony only has AIOs in its remaining desktop lineup and Toshiba bailed entirely?

Are IBM, Sony, Toshiba and Apple all idiots for missing such a golden market? Or maybe those guys have put a little more analysis into it than you guys?

Vinea
post #138 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

...
The point is that other manufacturers have offered better towers at a higher price and not enough people bought it.

If the tower market is so lucrative as you guys keep insisting then explain why IBM sold it off to Lenovo, Sony only has AIOs in its remaining desktop lineup and Toshiba bailed entirely?

Are IBM, Sony, Toshiba and Apple all idiots for missing such a golden market? Or maybe those guys have put a little more analysis into it than you guys?

Vinea

If Alienware was in such dire straits, please please explain to me why Dell bought them.

You keep bringing up IBM, yet it doesn't fit. Lenovo bought IBM's desktop computer line and is doing quite well thank you very much.

And yes Sony is a bunch of idiots and seems to be run by the content side of the business right now, to the extreme detriment of the manufacturing side of the business.
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
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 #139 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag View Post

Apple's Workstation, the Mac Pro, is less expensive than Dell's, in some price comparisons done online it is as much as $1000 less expensive in certain configurations. That's huge. Apple can accomplish this in one of two ways. Either their manufacturing efficiency is that much greater or they are sacrificing margins. Your argument is wrong.

You said it and I quote," Its just that all the competitors have the same or higher margins within that bracket and don't have a huge cost advantage.. So Apple lowers their margins in order to sell workstations, yes or no? And I completely dispute your statement that Dell's dont have a huge cost advantage, heck, the aluminum tower alone gives them a huge cost advantage.

Apple does not "sacrifice" its margins on the Mac Pro. Dell simply cannot be profitable without having some high margin items in its lineup. It has high margin items in its workstation and servers. Apple competes with Dell only in these areas. Not where the margins are thin. Why? Because it fits their corporate strategy and strenghts.

How is this hard to understand? Apple targets 28% margins across the entire lineup, higher ASPs and smaller volume. Dell shoots for higher volume, low ASPs and margins that range from razor thin in the $300 PC market all the way beyond Apple levels at the high end.

It is highly unlikely that Apple (or anyone) can get 28% margins in the $1000 tower market and it sure as hell is true that Dell ISN'T getting 28% margins in their $1000 towers. Yet most if not every proponent of the xMac INSISTS that Apple can magically make $1000 towers at 28% margins and gain share.

Quote:
Makes them appear much larger to Intel, what you think Intel can't add? I don't presume to know the price breaks that Intel offers, as you do, but there are computer manufactures out there smaller than Apple that compete very well.

It has been documented that Intel has stated they make no discounts except on volume to avoid any more legal entanglements.

Intel can add. That's the entire point. They can see that 2M units of mobile parts is larger than 1.5M units of mobile parts. They don't CARE if Apple uses them for notebooks or AIOs. All they care about is volume.

Dell and HP make more notebooks than Apple. Their notebook growths are also no anemic. The 500K notebooks/qtr only helps level the field and delay the inevitable.

Quote:
I didn't miss anything and I read it. It makes no sense, unless you subscribe the "milk the faithful reasoning."

It is the IMPLICATION that YOU BROUGHT UP that Sony has decided to target the upscale AIO market, that Apple currently only offers in higher end consumer computers, that is relevant to my statement,"So now there is possibly a huge corporation that is going to try and go head to head against Apple's target market AND IS WILLING TO DO SO AT LOWER MARGINS. Not a good thing.".

Sony has had an AIO in their line up for a long time. Thier AIO is far less capable than the iMac and more expensive. That's hardly "willing to do so at lower margins".

The article does not speak to the AIO but rather the towers they had and their media centric strategy.

The point is that only the AIO remains and not the towers...not even the Sony faithful purchased Sony towers and they were actually pretty nice.

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Sony's AIO may survive. But their RM series will be still born. $3500 for a Intel Core 2 Duo processor and no FireWire 800 port. This product is priced for the professional but is configured for the hobbyist. The only thing I can gather is that Sony is so screwed up now as to be useless for discussion.

Sony had mid-priced VAIO towers. Just look at reviews for them in the 2000-2004 timeframe.

Vinea

PS Don't like being "milked"? Don't buy. Let the market decide. Somehow though, it seems Apple is doing awesome with its current strategy.
post #140 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag View Post

If Alienware was in such dire straits, please please explain to me why Dell bought them.

Dell was looking for a strategy to not suck. It wasn't the greatest aquisition for them but not the worst. For whatever reason they couldn't seem to get their XPS brand as cool as Alienware.

Why they cared...I dunno. Read the Alienware interviews. They had always been undercapitalized and only moved like 50K units a year.

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You keep bringing up IBM, yet it doesn't fit. Lenovo bought IBM's desktop computer line and is doing quite well thank you very much.

As a commodity PC maker with thin margins yes. As a "premium" brand like IBM or Apple? No, don't think so even if they still have the powerful ThinkPad brand.

Quote:
And yes Sony is a bunch of idiots and seems to be run by the content side of the business right now, to the extreme detriment of the manufacturing side of the business.

Mkay. So what of IBM, Toshiba and Apple? No clearly these guys have no clue about the PC markets.

Vinea
post #141 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag View Post

This is so totally wrong. No, people that have Macs do so for the OS and many settle on the hardware. Milk the faithful strategy that you are so good at pointing to, but in obtuse wording as to hide it.

So why are you being dumb and getting "milked"? Do you REALLY think OSX is that much superior to Ubuntu or Vista that you're a willing rube?

Apple is no more "milking" the faithful than BMW or any other premium brand. Yes, you do pay more for an incremental gain over commodity items. Do you really think the 3 series is actually twice the car as the civic? Or designer clothing, while better made with better materials, is really worth the premium of the label?

No.

These are luxury items for most and if you're buying it for professional reasons then you are only doing so because it represents good value vs their competitors.

Vinea
post #142 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post


The point is that other manufacturers have offered better towers at a higher price and not enough people bought it.


These other manufacturers were not Apple. These other manufacturers were competing with other Windows PC makers. No one competes with Apple in Mac OS X space. (Beside that, as someone pointed out, better quality tower makers may not do so badly in Windows world either.)


Quote:

If the tower market is so lucrative as you guys keep insisting . . .


Well, you messed that one up right off the starting block. I don't remember anyone claiming it is a lucrative market. It's just a very big market. There are lots of customers for a consumer/prosumer tower, so competition is fierce, and it is NOT lucrative. Everyone wants a piece of this Windows market.

On the Mac side, however, there is no one making such a tower to satisfy customer demand. The market is there, but no one to fill it so far. You could argue that Mac users don't want a mini tower, but who will believe you?

Can you give any reason why Mac users would not want the same sort of product that is so popular among Windows users? When we move from Windows to the Mac, we do not have some sort of transformation that changes our preferences for hardware features. Of course many of us want a mini tower, and it doesn't take market research to figure that one out.


Quote:

Your analogy...too bad it doesn't support your thesis very well.


I said analogies break down. They are a poor way to try to prove anything. Yet, an SUV = Workstation, and a Sedan = Consumer/Prosumer Tower. It works well enough for me. BMW makes high quality sedans. Apple could make high quality mini towers.

post #143 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

These other manufacturers were not Apple. These other manufacturers were competing with other Windows PC makers. No one competes with Apple in Mac OS X space.

Apple competes in the larger market. Folks complain that the lack of a $1000 tower means that Apple is not competitive vs the Windows PC makers.

Therefore any Apple tower offering would be compared to their equivalent PC offerings if the objective is to get more switchers (increase share).

We have seen that premium brand towers have not fared well in the larger market with the significant premium brand makers exiting the market.

Within the OSX space the towers would compete with the iMac and Mac Pro. Given that only the edu iMac is priced at $1000 AND AIOs are not very attractive vs towers then the only reasonable conclusion is that within the OSX space the towers would eliminate the majority of iMac sales.

This would reduce ASPs and revenue even if margins were maintained.

Call it milking the faithful if you like but the bottom line is that it would be a bad business decision.

Quote:
Well, you messed that one up right off the starting block. I don't remember anyone claiming it is a lucrative market. It's just a very big market. There are lots of customers for a consumer/prosumer tower, so competition is fierce, and it is NOT lucrative. Everyone wants a piece of this Windows market.

If the tower market is not lucrative why pursue it? I get the impression you don't know that lucrative means profitable...

http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/lucrative

I'll agree that the low and mid end tower market isn't all that profitable.

Quote:
I said analogies break down. They are a poor way to try to prove anything. Yet, an SUV = Workstation, and a Sedan = Consumer/Prosumer Tower. It works well enough for me. BMW makes high quality sedans. Apple could make high quality mini towers.


Dell and HP are like Honda and Toyota.

BMW does not directly compete with Honda and Toyota except with their luxury divisions: Acura and Lexus.

Likewise Apple does not directly compete with Dell or HP except within their high end lines/divisions.

What you are complaining about is that BMW doesn't make a sedan like the Civic but only cars that compete with the luxury and sport sedans/SUVs in the Acura line.

That's the whole point of a premium/high end brand! Low volume, high margins. Quality over quantity. Better performance for a lot more money.

Vinea
post #144 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

I said analogies break down. They are a poor way to try to prove anything. Yet, an SUV = Workstation, and a Sedan = Consumer/Prosumer Tower. It works well enough for me. BMW makes high quality sedans. Apple could make high quality mini towers.

I look at it this way:

iMac: Subaru Baja
Conroe Mac: Pickup
Mac Pro: 18-wheeler.
post #145 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Apple competes in the larger market.

Yes and no. If the user wants Mac OS X over the crapshoot called windows, they have no choice but to take what Apple gives them or just not come at all. With Apple were to let others sell Mac OS X on more suitable hardware that would be a different matter, but they don't.

Quote:
Folks complain that the lack of a $1000 tower means that Apple is not competitive vs the Windows PC makers.

As for the not being competitive, the 5% for the platform speaks for itself. I would expect a company with Apple's advantages to be closer to 15-20%. Also, When did we say we were looking a $1000 tower? Once again you're confusing prosumers with budget users and making assumptions based on your own biases.

Mac Pro Core 2 Duo
P965 chipset.
2.4ghz core 2 Duo (2.13, 2.67 BTO)
1GB DDR2 667mhz RAM (4 slots, up to 8GB)
250GB hard drive (3 extra slots)
16x superdrive
256mb GeForce 8300GT (256mb 8600GT, 640MB 8800GTS BTO)
3 PCI-E x1 slots.
Bluetooth/Airport Extreme-N BTO
$1499-1699.
post #146 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post


If the tower market is not lucrative why pursue it? I get the impression you don't know that lucrative means profitable...


According to the Mac dictionary, lucrative means:

producing a great deal of profit

This is how I used the word. In my example, the Windows consumer/prosumer tower market is not what I'd call lucrative. It is profitable only because it does not operate in the red, and I'm not so sure of that from remarks on this forum.

Why should Apple pursue it? Because Apple should make a prosumer mini tower and ignore the very low end tower, like below $700 or there about. A prosumer Mac tower could be as profitable as any other Mac.

post #147 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

Also, When did we say we were looking a $1000 tower? Once again you're confusing prosumers with budget users and making assumptions based on your own biases.

Ben read the thread. Page one starting as early as post #16.

As far as "prosumers" a single Xeon BTO in the $1499-$1699 range would work. Never argued against that.

Vinea
post #148 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Ben read the thread. Page one starting as early as post #16.

As far as "prosumers" a single Xeon BTO in the $1499-$1699 range would work. Never argued against that.

Vinea


You're still looking at a CPU and RAM that is twice as expensive as the desktop versions.

You can get xeon machine at that price, but you're looking at a 2.0ghz machine that because of memory latency might not be all that much faster in non-graphic intensive programs than the $1299 Macbook I'm buying next week. That's a pretty horrible deal for $1500. Then again, that is why Intel developed actual desktop parts and every other computer company on the planet uses them.
post #149 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post


Apple competes in the larger market. . .

Therefore any Apple tower offering would be compared to their equivalent PC offerings if the objective is to get more switchers (increase share).


Not so in my opinion. Your statement would be true if a Windows user was looking at a Mac mini tower to run Window, only. Few would suggest such a scenario. Rather, we speak of a prosumer Mac tower in regard to two groups, existing Mac users, and those interested in switching from Window OS to Mac OS X.

In these cases, a Mac costs a little more, usually, and this is true whether it is an iMac or the mini tower that many of us have been promoting. I believe this point gets overlooked or ignored over and over in criticizing a Mac mini tower.

Why is it that you say a Mac mini tower cannot compete with Windows products, while an iMac is competitive? This notion make no sense, especially in light of the popularity of towers on the Windows side, and the low sales of Windows AIOs.

post #150 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splinemodel View Post


Really, you guys have to realize that the market for the computer you want is small unless the price is very low, in which case there's not a lot of incentive for Apple to get into that market.


We are speaking of the consumer/prosumer tower market, which is a very big Windows market, even if we count just those priced above say $700. How can you say a market for a prosumer Mac tower would be s small? When we become Mac users we don't automatically alter our hardware preferences.

post #151 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

Not so in my opinion. Your statement would be true if a Windows user was looking at a Mac mini tower to run Window, only. Few would suggest such a scenario. Rather, we speak of a prosumer Mac tower in regard to two groups, existing Mac users, and those interested in switching from Window OS to Mac OS X.

The reviews of the Mac Pro tend to discuss performance and price vs their Dell counterparts. The OS is a non-factor in many comparisons.

This would likely also be the scenario with any Apple tower since a direct apples to apples comparison is possible.

Quote:
In these cases, a Mac costs a little more, usually, and this is true whether it is an iMac or the mini tower that many of us have been promoting. I believe this point gets overlooked or ignored over and over in criticizing a Mac mini tower.

It is NOT ignored. The point is that an Apple tower in the price points that have been discussed ($1K) would compare very poorly against their Dell counterparts. Apple can be competitive in the $1499 region if it chooses the battleground. In other words with a Mac Pro and NOT a Mac mini tower running Conroe.

The comparison vs Dell would be Xeon vs Xeon and Apple would compare well. Apple pushing a mid-priced Conroe tower plays directly into the strengths of Dell and HP and into the weaknesses of Apple.

Quote:
Why is it that you say a Mac mini tower cannot compete with Windows products, while an iMac is competitive? This notion make no sense, especially in light of the popularity of towers on the Windows side, and the low sales of Windows AIOs.


The notion makes no sense because I never said that and it's a strawman. Find where I say an iMac is competitive vs a tower? In fact I say the exact opposite.

What I DO say is that the AIO (and SFF) form factor hides this disparity better since a direct comparison is not as easy and the form factor provides real value for those that an AIO works well either from an aesthetic or space perspective.

But from a pure functionality vs price (ie bang for the buck) comparison perspective a tower wins. Fortunately an AIO and SFF computer is not judged as heavily from a pure functionality (spec) perspective.

Vinea
post #152 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post


The reviews of the Mac Pro tend to discuss performance and price vs their Dell counterparts. The OS is a non-factor in many comparisons.

This would likely also be the scenario with any Apple tower since a direct apples to apples comparison is possible.


Here you talk about critique of hardware, where a Mac workstation or tower is compared with a Windows counterpart. The topic, however, is viability of a Mac prosumer tower as a choice for "customers," Mac users and potential switcher from the Windows side.

Now, I cannot see why Apple, which is so successful with the Mac Pro, would fail if it offered a smaller prosumer tower. What is the great strength of Dell and HP in the mid-range tower market, except for low price do to small markup?

Apple would still compare favorably with a mid-range tower, however, since this is what customers want. $200 more for a Mac isn't unreasonable, since it comes with iLife applications and a professional OS, not a cut down Home Edition.


Quote:

Apple can be competitive in the $1499 region if it chooses the battleground. In other words with a Mac Pro and NOT a Mac mini tower running Conroe.


I don't see why you think this is so. A cut down Mac Pro would have higher component cost and have to sell for more than a comparable Conroe mini tower. I don't think the bigger enclosure and Xeon name on the CPU makes a difference to customers. It's performance and features. A $1500 Mac Pro would not do as well as a $1200 Mac mini tower with the same performance.


Quote:

What I DO say is that the AIO (and SFF) form factor hides this disparity better since a direct comparison is not as easy and the form factor provides real value for those that an AIO works well either from an aesthetic or space perspective.


This is likely so, but it does not change the fact that many computer users want a mid-performance tower. Simply switching from Windows to Mac OS does not change our preference for hardware.

post #153 of 362
About a mid-range (think Shuttle size) cannibalizing Mac Pro sales. I really don't think it will. The people who are buying Mac Pros have a specific reason on why they are buying one. They are usually video editors/photographers/etc; they are not going to buy a mid-range tower instead of a Mac Pro.
post #154 of 362
Quote:
Really? Because the market spoke definitively on IBM's desktop and Sony's VAIO desktops. Notice the complete lack of any IBM PCs at all? And Sony is just doing AIOs and notebooks?


Thats because they are simply offering the same product as all the cheaper ones . . . thats different from Apple. Apple offer a compeltely different OS and the advantages of that that go with it . . . iLife etc. Nowadays . . . which is different from the past, as an out of the box solution as a mid-tower, an apple system offers more compared to straight Windows pre-load machine, and so could reasonably attract a premium.

All the parts to make it are already there and if they continued to use the Merom setup in a mid-tower, then that only helps to their leverage against Intel.

Quote:
I don't see why you think this is so. A cut down Mac Pro would have higher component cost and have to sell for more than a comparable Conroe mini tower. I don't think the bigger enclosure and Xeon name on the CPU makes a difference to customers. It's performance and features. A $1500 Mac Pro would not do as well as a $1200 Mac mini tower with the same performance.


but it doesn't have to be a cut-down MacPro on the hardware level . . . why cant it just be the iMac internals, put in a MacPro style case. If they can turn a profit on an iMac, they could just as easily turn a profit on the same hardward, without display, in a silver box.
post #155 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

Here you talk about critique of hardware, where a Mac workstation or tower is compared with a Windows counterpart. The topic, however, is viability of a Mac prosumer tower as a choice for "customers," Mac users and potential switcher from the Windows side.

Yes we are talking about the viability of a Mac prosumer tower. Hence the discussion of how it fits in the product line, the impact to Apple revenue, the impact of the prosumer tower to the branding and whether the product would sell in enough volume to bother.

Quote:
Now, I cannot see why Apple, which is so successful with the Mac Pro, would fail if it offered a smaller prosumer tower. What is the great strength of Dell and HP in the mid-range tower market, except for low price do to small markup?

Yes. The primary criteria for the mid-ranged tower market appears to be based on price vs performance. Dell and HP have a business model and corporate culture that excels in producing machines in that price range with excellent value.

Apple's business model and corporate culture is completely different. Steve Jobs would be no more successful in running Dell than Michael Dell would be at running Apple.

Quote:
Apple would still compare favorably with a mid-range tower, however, since this is what customers want. $200 more for a Mac isn't unreasonable, since it comes with iLife applications and a professional OS, not a cut down Home Edition.

It did not help Sony. Sony had their equivalent of iLife and media center software.

The advantage of OSX over Windows is ZERO or negative for the majority of folks. Any UI, stability and inherent OS advantages are far outweighed by Windows market share. You want to play many games? Windows. Interact with many web sites? Explorer.

Quote:
I don't see why you think this is so. A cut down Mac Pro would have higher component cost and have to sell for more than a comparable Conroe mini tower. I don't think the bigger enclosure and Xeon name on the CPU makes a difference to customers. It's performance and features. A $1500 Mac Pro would not do as well as a $1200 Mac mini tower with the same performance.

A $1500 Xeon Mac Pro would be compared to a $1550 Xeon Dell Precision.

A $1200 Conroe xMac would be compared to a $1000 Conroe Dell Dimension.

It is a perception issue. A $1500 Mac Pro is LESS expensive than its competition. A $1200 Conroe tower MORE expensive than its competition.

A $1500 Mac Pro would be perceived as a better value than a $1200 xMac because you cannot go directly to the Dell site and configure a better machine for less.

Quote:
This is likely so, but it does not change the fact that many computer users want a mid-performance tower.

Tell that to Sony and Toshiba.

Vinea
post #156 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoganT View Post

About a mid-range (think Shuttle size) cannibalizing Mac Pro sales. I really don't think it will. The people who are buying Mac Pros have a specific reason on why they are buying one. They are usually video editors/photographers/etc; they are not going to buy a mid-range tower instead of a Mac Pro.

I don't think a Merom based Shuttle would cannibalize Mac pro sales. It would destroy iMac sales unless priced fairly high.

A Conroe based Shuttle could cannibalize some Mac pro sales but not much. Mostly the lower end buys.

I'd love a Shuttle sized Mac...merom or conroe. I would think Merom more likely. I also think it would be in the $1500 range...

Vinea
post #157 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

We are speaking of the consumer/prosumer tower market, which is a very big Windows market, even if we count just those priced above say $700. How can you say a market for a prosumer Mac tower would be s small? When we become Mac users we don't automatically alter our hardware preferences.


Plus, who many people outside of Apple are buying AIOs like the iMacs or low end SFF machines like the Mini. For Apple a "niche" can be very lucrative., especially one where users expect to pay over $1000. The only reason I can see Apple not being here is some kind of unique form factor delusion by Jobs or some desire not to be conventional in any way. Look there are quite a few of us who who care less about this counter culture crap that has been going on since Jobs got back. We do not want to be different to just be different or have some need to feel like we're better than anyone else. We just want the best OS/ computer combination available. When the best OS belongs to Apple and you have to go to the PC ranks to get any kind of practical hardware when it comes to desktops (yes there is a difference between a desktop and a workstation) there is a problem.
post #158 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

I don't think a Merom based Shuttle would cannibalize Mac pro sales. It would destroy iMac sales unless priced fairly high.

A Conroe based Shuttle could cannibalize some Mac pro sales but not much. Mostly the lower end buys.

I'd love a Shuttle sized Mac...merom or conroe. I would think Merom more likely. I also think it would be in the $1500 range...

Vinea

There would still be people who buy iMacs. AKA parents, children, first timers.
post #159 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post


When the best OS belongs to Apple and you have to go to the PC ranks to get any kind of practical hardware there is a problem.


Amen!

post #160 of 362
Quote:
Originally Posted by fisha View Post


. . . why cant [a mid-tower Mac] just be the iMac internals, put in a MacPro style case[?] If they can turn a profit on an iMac, they could just as easily turn a profit on the same hardware, without display, in a silver box.


Desktop components are a little cheaper and have higher performance. Therefore, a Conroe mid-tower Mac would compete better.

Sometimes an argument is raised about getting a better deal on laptop parts because of high volume Mac Book sales. In my experience doing cost estimates for proposed new products, a company can get a discount based on the total order. That is, if Apple orders 900,000 laptop drives and 100,000 desktop drives, Apple can get the 1,000,000 quantity price on all drives.

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