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Apple plans mystery "product transition" before September's end - Page 16

post #601 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

He knows that more is better. And that's all he needs to know, really.

By your logic, Average Joe would likely buy the most expensive computer in the store.

In reality, stores like Best Buy stack the shelves with computers that have very similar, competitive specs, some with slightly faster processors but less RAM, others with more HDD space but less impressive video cards. Some are even bundled with crummy displays that the buyer may not have a use for, nor wants to pay for.
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post #602 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

By your logic, Average Joe would likely buy the most expensive computer in the store.

Not at all. He has an amount of money he's willing to spend. He knows that if machine "A" and machine "B" cost around that amount of money, and that machine "A" gives him bigger numbers than machine "B", he'll buy machine "A". Why choose the one that gives you less for your money?

Ah ha! You cry, it's because machine "B" is tiny! But Joe doesn't care that it's tiny. He's buying a desktop. A computer that tiny must just be a toy, not a real computer.
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post #603 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

Not at all. He has an amount of money he's willing to spend. He knows that if machine "A" and machine "B" cost around that amount of money, and that machine "A" gives him bigger numbers than machine "B", he'll buy machine "A". Why choose the one that gives you less for your money?

Ah ha! You cry, it's because machine "B" is tiny! But Joe doesn't care that it's tiny. He's buying a desktop. A computer that tiny must just be a toy, not a real computer.

Being honest here, I wasn't trying to prove my point about the mini in that instance.

The problem with this bigger=better mentality is which bigger is better? As I noted, stores like Best Buy line up similarly speced, competitive mini-towers. Average Joe generally can't make a simple comparison because each computer has different advantages and disadvantages. What does Joe do when he realizes that while the Dell has a faster processor than the HP, it has 50GB less storage and 1GB instead of 2GB on the HP, yet the Dell also comes with a better video card (but not that much better) and the HP is $100 less after those annoying rebates....

Right, now Joe is stuck. He wants something new, he has a budget, but which computer is really "better?" They ALL LOOK THE SAME. THEY'RE ALL AROUND THE SAME PRICE. THEY'RE ALL RUNNING VISTA, which he's heard about being a horrible operating system and he plays around on the Dell and HP and finds that Vista is strange and different, not better than XP. What ta do, what ta do?

One thing you do have to remember is that Apple generally requires resellers to separate their Macs from everyone else's computers. So while a Mac mini doesn't look, spec-wise or price-wise, that impressive next to the familiar mini-towers from Dell and HP running Windows Vista, when connected to a 20" Apple Cinema in a way that shows off its few chords and low price in comparison to Apple's higher-end computers nearby, it suddenly has the effect of making Apple's entire line of computers seem more affordable and most customers would recognize there's a reason it's a tad more expensive than the ugly competition: its small size AND exquisite operating system.

Would they then buy it? I'd say more often than not, no. They either find it too much for too little and buy a PC from Dell, HP, etc. Or, they say "interesting" and then they take a gander at Apple's full-fledged computers and end up walking out with an iMac, a MacBook, or maybe a MacBook Pro.

With that said, I think there is a catch 22 with the mini. You say they don't sell well because there's no demand. I say there's no demand due to there being very few SFF computers to begin with, thus many are hesitant to buy such a different looking computer.
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post #604 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

most customers would recognize there's a reason it's a tad more expensive than the ugly competition: its small size AND exquisite operating system.

If it was "most customers", then Apple would sell way more Minis. As it is, that's just not how most desktop purchasers come to their decision.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

The problem with this bigger=better mentality is which bigger is better? As I noted, stores like Best Buy line up similarly speced, competitive mini-towers. Average Joe generally can't make a simple comparison because each computer has different advantages and disadvantages. What does Joe do when he realizes that while the Dell has a faster processor than the HP, it has 50GB less storage and 1GB instead of 2GB on the HP, yet the Dell also comes with a better video card (but not that much better) and the HP is $100 less after those annoying rebates....

Right, now Joe is stuck. He wants something new, he has a budget, but which computer is really "better?" They ALL LOOK THE SAME. THEY'RE ALL AROUND THE SAME PRICE. THEY'RE ALL RUNNING VISTA, which he's heard about being a horrible operating system and he plays around on the Dell and HP and finds that Vista is strange and different, not better than XP. What ta do, what ta do?

Yes, maybe he's in a bit of a conundrum there. But show him a machine that gives lower numbers (for all specs) than all the other options he's looking at, he's going to dismiss that machine out of hand and get back to his conundrum.

To put numbers on it, if he's trying to choose between:

Dual Core 3 GHz, 500 GB HDD, 1 GB RAM, Crappy Video card
Quad Core 2.4 GHz, 400 GB HDD, 2 GB RAM, middling Video card
Quad Core 2 GHz, 420 GB HDD, 2 GB RAM, beefy video card

He's not going to care about

Dual Core 2 GHz, 160 GB HDD, 1 GB RAM, crappest video card on the market

Because its numbers are worse across the board.
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post #605 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

The xMac wouldn't cost $300 more. More like $100 more. A $100 premium for OS X seems reasonable enough.

Not if you argue they get to keep their current margins.

Quote:
I find it deeply ironic that you think that an xMac would be so appealling that it would destroy Mac Mini, iMac and Mac Pro sales, yet don't think it would attract any new customers to the platform. How does that work?

It works because you misstate my opinion. The point isn't that it wont attract new customers. The point is that it wont attract ENOUGH new customers. You need to double sales to JUST BREAK EVEN when you halve ASPs while keeping the same margins.

Assuming you can keep the same margins.

Quote:
I think you're trying to have your cake and eat it too. You're saying: "xMac not good enough to attract new customers but still a much better option than all other Apple desktops". That doesn't make sense.

Only because you continue to deliberately misunderstand. How can I make it more clear? If you double sales while cutting price in half, all you've done is increase the amount of work needed to make the same amount of money.

Quote:
The platform is seriously marginalised, especially outside the U.S. Do you live in the U.S.? Look at Apple's sales figures, only about 42% of their sales are outside the U.S. despite the U.S. being the third largest computer market (EMEA and ASIA are both larger markets).

And Apple has very healthy share in western europe in the education and home markets.

So where does apple have decent and growing share? Industrialized 1st world nations with the notable exception of Japan.

So, that precludes most of the middle east, africa and asia...and I don't think that Apple minds given the target demographic: people with money.

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There's a variety of web services (e.g. 4OD, BBC iPlayer downloads), software (e.g. UK taxes) and hardware (TV tuners, graphics cards) that are Windows-only. Please spare me my head exploding by picking on the things I've put in brackets, they are mearly examples out of a plethora of possibilities.

Yes, let me list examples of OSX "marginalization"where there are Mac solutions and equivalents but not let you rebut any because...well...then my position that Apple is in danger of marginalization without an xMac would make no bloody sense.

Quote:
Where did I say anything about their mindshare being in decline? I did say it was an upward spiral. Apple is already on said upward sprial, I just think they could have traversed it more rapidly by releasing the xMac four years ago.

Please. You're STILL claiming that OSX is "marginalized". They obviously had zero need for the xMac 4 years ago and still have zero need for the xMac today.
post #606 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

If it was "most customers", then Apple would sell way more Minis. As it is, that's just not how most desktop purchasers come to their decision.

Even considering that Macs are always separated from the Dells and HPs?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

Yes, maybe he's in a bit of a conundrum there. But show him a machine that gives lower numbers (for all specs) than all the other options he's looking at, he's going to dismiss that machine out of hand and get back to his conundrum.

He's not going to care about

Dual Core 2 GHz, 160 GB HDD, 1 GB RAM, crappest video card on the market

Because its numbers are worse across the board.

Agreed.

I edited my post again before you responded, so I'll post that extra bit of reasoning here for you to consider (I'm quoting a bit of what you read for anyone who missed it; the bolded part is new):

Quote:
One thing you do have to remember is that Apple generally requires resellers to separate their Macs from everyone else's computers. So while a Mac mini doesn't look, spec-wise or price-wise, that impressive next to the familiar mini-towers from Dell and HP running Windows Vista, when connected to a 20" Apple Cinema in a way that shows off its few chords and low price in comparison to Apple's higher-end computers nearby, it suddenly has the effect of making Apple's entire line of computers seem more affordable and most customers would recognize there's a reason it's a tad more expensive than the ugly competition: its small size AND exquisite operating system.

Would they then buy it? I'd say more often than not, no. They either find it too much for too little and buy a PC from Dell, HP, etc. Or, they say "interesting" and then they take a gander at Apple's full-fledged computers and end up walking out with an iMac, a MacBook, or maybe a MacBook Pro.

With that said, I think there is a catch 22 with the mini. You say they don't sell well because there's no demand. I say there's no demand due to there being very few SFF computers to begin with, thus many are hesitant to buy such a different looking computer.
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post #607 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

It works because you misstate my opinion. The point isn't that it wont attract new customers. The point is that it wont attract ENOUGH new customers. You need to double sales to JUST BREAK EVEN when you halve ASPs while keeping the same margins.

I find it odd that you think the xMac so compelling a machine that it would destroy all Mini, iMac and Mac Pro sales and yet would not do more than double sales. You would have thought if the xMac were great enough to obliterate the entirety of Apple's current lineup of desktop machines, that it would attract enough new customers to lead to at least quadruple units shipped.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Only because you continue to deliberately misunderstand. How can I make it more clear? If you double sales while cutting price in half, all you've done is increase the amount of work needed to make the same amount of money.

I understand that. What I don't understand is as I said above, if (according to you) xMac was superb enought to destroy Mini, iMac and Mac Pro sales why would it only double the number of computers sold?

Let's not forget that I think that Apple would sell about the same number of iMac and Mac Pro machines as they currently do and that the vast majority of xMac sales would be additive.


Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

And Apple has very healthy share in western europe in the education and home markets.

It could be better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

Yes, let me list examples of OSX "marginalization"where there are Mac solutions and equivalents but not let you rebut any because...well...then my position that Apple is in danger of marginalization without an xMac would make no bloody sense.

Marginilisation doesn't necessarily mean that there are absolutely no options. Often it can mean that the only options are very expensive or hideous after-thoughts ported from a Windows version. There is no 4OD for OS X. There are no iPlayer downloads for OS X. The vast majority of UK Taxes programs are Windows only. The vast majority of TV tuners are Windows only. The vast majority of graphics cards are Windows only.

You didn't answer my question about whether you live in the U.S.

Trust me, OS X is marginalised outside the U.S. I would like to see the day when no software developer, no web service provider, no hardware manufacturer would contemplate for even a second not supporting OS X. We are a long, long, long way from that situation.

Hopefully you agree that as market share increases, marginalisation is likely to decrease and that reduced marginalisation increases the attractiveness of the platform which is likely to lead to an increase in market share for said platform?

I wasn't claiming that without the xMac Apple are doomed. That would be rediculous. They are clearly not doomed.
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post #608 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

The vast majority of graphics cards are Windows only.


Trust me, OS X is marginalised outside the U.S. I would like to see the day when no software developer, no web service provider, no hardware manufacturer would contemplate for even a second not supporting OS X. We are a long, long, long way from that situation.

That reminds me of another strike against the xMac: expandability, or namely, the lack there of.

For starters, the average consumer rarely if ever upgrades their computer's components, even when doing so would be rather painless and cost effective than a completely new system. More often, though, they just say "time for a new computer."

An xMac wouldn't change that thought process. For the minority of xMac owners interested in upgrading its processor, video-card, or sound card - components that would provide the most dramatic and visible performance increases - they'd be SOL for the most part, considering how few third-party components are Mac compatible. Most people buying a budget Mac mini-tower aren't going to be interested in paying for the small selection of premium-priced Mac Pro parts.

That leaves expandable RAM and storage space. Whoop de doo! If Apple follows your instructions and makes the xMac a competitive, capable mini-tower, the few consumers that would be interested in upgrading their computer's components would feel no real need to add another stick of RAM if it came standard with 2GB (which is more than enough for most tasks) and 230GB HDD (tons more storage than the casual user could easily fill up).
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post #609 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

An xMac wouldn't change that thought process. For the minority of xMac owners interested in upgrading its processor, video-card, or sound card - components that would provide the most dramatic and visible performance increases - they'd be SOL for the most part, considering how few third-party components are Mac compatible. Most people buying a budget Mac mini-tower aren't going to be interested in paying for Mac Pro parts that are premium priced, yet are few and far between.

Chicken and egg.

Upgrade parts for the Mac Pro are expensive because there aren't many of that kind of machine out there, not much of a potential market, and not only that, it seems half of those that do upgrade buy the Windows version of a video card and reflashing it for Mac, really reducing the incentive to make products with Mac compatible firmwares.

If, hypothetically, a lot of xMacs were sold, the potential market might expand significantly. As I recall, there used to be a better variety of third party add-ons when a base PowerMac started at around $1500, now the standard Mac Pro is $2800, I think that shows why that market has shrunk considerably.
post #610 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Chicken and egg.

Yeah, just like Mr. H's argument that Mac mini's don't sell because there's no demand for SFF computers, while I say there's no demand due to there being very few SFF computers to begin with, thus many are hesitant to buy such a different looking computer. \
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post #611 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

Yeah, just like Mr. H's argument that Mac mini's don't sell because there's no demand for SFF computers, while I say there's no demand due to there being very few SFF computers to begin with, thus many are hesitant to buy such a different looking computer. \

Well they don't sell well, as they cost more and do less, than standard sized computers. It's simply economics.

If 2 computers are spec'd similarly, but one is smaller, yet costs more, most of the time, people will get the bigger box. A decent SFF PC will run several hundred more than a mid-tower, it produces more heat, can't use the fastest parts in most cases, and usually requires the user to build their own, as Shuttle PCs are typically barebones.

Look at the new Dell Hybrid Studio - costs more, does less than their other desktops, but it looks cool (I like the bamboo cover), but it cost a premium, because it's small.

I have Mini, but it's not what I wanted, and it's not a media powerhouse either, and not to mention, computers shouldn't need putty knives to get at the internals.

With torrents/emule, 3 digital cameras (one a dSLR that I only use in RAW mode), audio and video libraries, I could fill up my 80 GB hard drive in no time. And since more and more people buy computers to run all the multimedia stuff, they can fill them up pretty quick too.

And yes, I know it's easy to add external HDs to computers, but that sort of defeats the whole purpose of buying a small PC, when you have to stick a HD next to, or underneath it. I've placed an external DVD burner underneath my Mini, and it's longer and not much smaller, height-wise than the Mini. I save most of my files to my Windows tower, as I've got 3 HDs in it right now.

Overall, in it's current form, the Mini is great for lightweight users, with lightweight needs, or those looking for a 2nd computer or Mac to compliment Windows PCs, or not wanting/willing to go for an iMac or Mac Pro. The Mini's only real saving grace, is that it's the cheapest 'new' Mac that can run OSX, without doing it illegally.

Apple has a fairly narrow-minded market strategy IMO. Small, low to mid, and then overkill.
post #612 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

If 2 computers are spec'd similarly, but one is smaller, yet costs more, most of the time, people will get the bigger box. A decent SFF PC will run several hundred more than a mid-tower, it produces more heat, can't use the fastest parts in most cases, and usually requires the user to build their own, as Shuttle PCs are typically barebones.

Sure, but nobody seems to acknowledge that Apple's Macs are segregated from PCs, either entirely, as in Apple's own retail stores, or proximity-wise in places like Best Buy, where Apple requires they setup a slick looking Mac Shop area with long wooden tables and a black wall.

When compared to the rest of Apple's lineup, rather than Dell and HP mini-towers running Windws, the Mac mini doesn't seem so expensive and has the effect of making people feel like the entry fee into the metaphorical Mac club isn't so high. If Apple didn't have the mini, their lowest-priced computers would start at $1100, which would likely turn people away.

I stated earlier, however, that I don't think people generally walk out of the store with the mini (unless they're dead set on getting a Mac and at the same time, have a strict budget). Either the mini entices people and then they take a look at Apple's higher-end Macs and end up walking out with an iMac, MacBook, or maybe a MacBook Pro, or they aren't convinced and buy one of Dell or HP's familiar and more capable mini-towers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

Look at the new Dell Hybrid Studio - costs more, does less than their other desktops, but it looks cool (I like the bamboo cover), but it cost a premium, because it's small.

Eesh, that thing looks like one of those old Zip drives.

Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

I have Mini, but it's not what I wanted, and it's not a media powerhouse either, and not to mention, computers shouldn't need putty knives to get at the internals.

If you didn't want it...why did you buy it? Did you expect it to be a "media powerhouse?" Guess that would explain why you don't like it.

Many SFF computers aren't easily upgradeable, but they certainly could have put a turn-key release similar to the mechanism on MacBook/Pro battery compartments. I mean, even the iMac has screws (and a RAM door, right?). Then again, if it came with 2GB of RAM and 320GB HDD, most people wouldn't see a need to open it up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

Overall, in it's current form, the Mini is great for lightweight users, with lightweight needs, or those looking for a 2nd computer or Mac to compliment Windows PCs, or not wanting/willing to go for an iMac or Mac Pro. The Mini's only real saving grace, is that it's the cheapest 'new' Mac that can run OSX, without doing it illegally.

Exactly.

I think I should have specified the people I think make up the largest group of casual computer users likely to make the switch: Baby Boomers

Most baby boomers...
1) are currently Windows users (and not necessarily happy ones)
2) aren't very computer savvy
3) enjoy simple tasks that don't require, nor benefit from super fast processors, tons of RAM, good, or even decent video cards, tons of HDD storage space (web browsing, writing text documents, emailing, maybe listening to music, possibly looking at pictures on their 3-5MP digital cameras)
4) have kids who will likely tell them to get a Mac and/or buy them a Mac for their parents' sake and their own

Quote:
Apple has a fairly narrow-minded market strategy IMO. Small, low to mid, and then overkill.

I'd say they have a focused market strategy. They're outpacing the industry 3 to 1, so it's obviously working. They don't try to be everything for everyone, thus its easy to recommend pretty much any of their Macs to people (with the Mac mini being the only real exception, which could change if Apple decides to get them up to speed with what's current in computers).
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post #613 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post



I think I should have specified the people I think make up the largest group of casual computer users likely to make the switch: Baby Boomers

Most baby boomers...
1) are currently Windows users (and not necessarily happy ones)
2) aren't very computer savvy
3) enjoy simple tasks that don't require, nor benefit from super fast processors, tons of RAM, good, or even decent video cards, tons of HDD storage space (web browsing, writing text documents, emailing, maybe listening to music, possibly looking at pictures on their 3-5MP digital cameras)
4) have kids who will likely tell them to get a Mac and/or buy them a Mac for their parents' sake and their own


I'd say they have a focused market strategy. They're outpacing the industry 3 to 1, so it's obviously working. They don't try to be everything for everyone, thus its easy to recommend pretty much any of their Macs to people (with the Mac mini being the only real exception, which could change if Apple decides to get them up to speed with what's current in computers).

Let me introduce you to AMUG, our membership has a great many seniors. That sorta dumps on your theory.

http://www.amug.org/
post #614 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by zinfella View Post

Let me introduce you to AMUG, our membership has a great many seniors. That sorta dumps on your theory.

http://www.amug.org/

...what?

And my comments about Apple's market strategy had nothing to do with baby boomers, so I don't know why you combined the two.

No offense, I'm not saying you don't know what you're talking about, but I don't know what you're talking about.
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post #615 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

...what?

And my comments about Apple's market strategy had nothing to do with baby boomers, so I don't know why you combined the two.

No offense, I'm not saying you don't know what you're talking about, but I don't know what you're talking about.

Your description of baby boomers is not as accurate as you think it is.
post #616 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

I find it odd that you think the xMac so compelling a machine that it would destroy all Mini, iMac and Mac Pro sales and yet would not do more than double sales. You would have thought if the xMac were great enough to obliterate the entirety of Apple's current lineup of desktop machines, that it would attract enough new customers to lead to at least quadruple units shipped.

Right. Prove it and I'm sure Apple will produce an xMac. That's the problem right? Your assertion is that if they build them they will come.

Here are the reasons why I think growth will not be as massive as you think:

Desktops in Apple's primary market are on the decline. Most growth is in notebooks even for Windows. Therefore desktop growth will be limited.

Desktops are a thin margin business and price is often key to sales. Hence the focus on price by HP, Dell, Acer, etc. Most sales are in budget desktops, business machines and game rigs.

1) Apple will never make a "budget" xMac.
2) OSX has limited enterprise support. MS isn't going to help beyond a certain point. Business is not an Apple focus area even today.
3) There are limited games on OSX. Apple doesn't support game development as much as Microsoft does (DirectX, XNA, etc).

Therefore the growth potential of desktops in general are limited and xMac more so.

Quote:
I understand that. What I don't understand is as I said above, if (according to you) xMac was superb enought to destroy Mini, iMac and Mac Pro sales why would it only double the number of computers sold?

Because the onus is on YOU to prove that it would do more than double sales since YOU claim the xMac is a desired addition to the Mac lineup.

Quote:
Let's not forget that I think that Apple would sell about the same number of iMac and Mac Pro machines as they currently do and that the vast majority of xMac sales would be additive.

An unproven and arguably untrue assertion.

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It could be better.

Yes, everything could be better but it's an idiotic statement when Apple is doing so well and posting 30%+ YOY growth.

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Marginilisation doesn't necessarily mean that there are absolutely no options.

Main Entry: mar·gin·al·ize
Pronunciation: \\ˈmärj-nə-ˌlīz, ˈmär-jə-nəl-ˌīz\\
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Form(s): mar·gin·al·ized; mar·gin·al·iz·ing
Date: 1970
: to relegate to an unimportant or powerless position within a society or group
mar·gin·al·i·za·tion \\ˌmärj-nə-lə-ˈzā-shən, ˌmär-jə-nəl-ə-\\ noun

Websters

Tell me that Apple has an unimportant or powerless position within the computing world.

The choice of the word marginalization is deliberately negative. OSX is no more "marginalized" than Lexus or Porsche. It is the best and most successful desktop Unix in the world. It is the second most popular desktop in the world and has far more cache than the leading desktop. It is the only other mainstream desktop operating system.

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Often it can mean that the only options are very expensive or hideous after-thoughts ported from a Windows version.

Often it can mean the person that chose the word has some agenda where they'd like to cast a negative light on something.

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You didn't answer my question about whether you live in the U.S.

I do. So?

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Trust me, OS X is marginalised outside the U.S.

And Western Europe. Largest share of the UK education market. And Sweden I think. In any case, given the dominant position of the US in the computing world (heck even Linus is in the US) what happens here will follow.

When it will not...well, I hope you can learn Chinese but that's a decade out at least.

Quote:
I wasn't claiming that without the xMac Apple are doomed. That would be rediculous. They are clearly not doomed.

Again with the negative waves. Implications that while they aren't "doomed" they also won't do well. Well, they also don't need the xMac to do brilliantly. Which they ARE doing and will continue to do.
post #617 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by zinfella View Post

Your description of baby boomers is not as accurate as you think it is.

Care to elaborate? I was raised by one and she fits my description quite well. I was taught by many in high school. Not saying EVERY baby boomer is as I described, but MANY are.
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post #618 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

...
You seem to forget that I already said that as time passes, the need for the xMac diminishes. If Apple haven't brought one out within 3 years, there'll be no point any more and we can all stop talking about it.
...

I somewhat disagree here.

An xMac with several PCI slots(re: or whatever replaces them) might not be desirable nor needed, but as long as technology advances, making current technology legacy then yes the desirability of slots remains(re: when will USB 3 or FW 1600/3200 be out?). Buying the latest tech for older computers may not have all the advantages, but when buying a new computer to replace that aging computer, that means those peripherals you bought won't have to be replaced as often, no?

Also, it appears the best selling consumer desktop for Apple is the iMac, not the Mac mini and there will remain an advantage for having separate monitor, especially in the upper end of the price range. I say this because this allows people the ability to spread out their purchases over a greater length of time and only replace what needs replacing at the time.
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 #619 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

3) There are limited games on OSX. Apple doesn't support game development as much as Microsoft does (DirectX, XNA, etc).

I wouldn't say Apple doesn't support game development so much as Microsoft's monopolistic position on the desktop and their use of proprietary DirectX has stifled a good bit of competition from OpenGL and non-Windows gaming in general. But then look at the App Store: there are likely more iPhone/iPod touch games in the first batch than the entirety of Windows Mobile games combined.

Apple likely recognizes that PC gaming is in decline thanks to the success of dedicated consoles, including Microsoft's own Xbox consoles, the first of which was put out to combat Sony's highly anticipated PS2, which they feared would eat into their profitable, high-end gaming market. Now MS itself has almost all but given up on supporting gaming on the PC. Games for Windows Live was a flop as PC gamers have never been charged for online play (with the only exception being MMO games, which have monthly charges that pay for maintenance and development) and there was free competition in the space from things like Valve's Steam service. They just recently made Games for Windows Live completely free because of that. At this year's E3 game conference, Microsoft even said "well it's really more of a console show" in response to why there were no major Windows gaming announcements.

They hardly "support" game development. They mainly buy up development studios. Rare hasn't put out a good game in years and Bungie went independent last year.
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False comparisons do not a valid argument make.
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post #620 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinea View Post

...
Only because you continue to deliberately misunderstand. How can I make it more clear? If you double sales while cutting price in half, all you've done is increase the amount of work needed to make the same amount of money.
...

This debate will go on endlessly.

I'm taking your example literaly. If you double sales and cut the price in half and this is all you do, then gross margins go up.

One thing that will dramatically be affected by doubling sales is the % of fixed costs per machine go down, significantly.

It's a price game that really can only be answered by Apple.
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 #621 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post


If you didn't want it...why did you buy it? Did you expect it to be a "media powerhouse?" Guess that would explain why you don't like it.

Many SFF computers aren't easily upgradeable, but they certainly could have put a turn-key release similar to the mechanism on MacBook/Pro battery compartments. I mean, even the iMac has screws (and a RAM door, right?). Then again, if it came with 2GB of RAM and 320GB HDD, most people wouldn't see a need to open it up.

It's Apple's only headless Mac under $2300, gee that might be it.

No, most SSF are pretty easily upgradable, they're typically just samller cases that's all, look at Shuttle PCs. And, yes, I've worked with the old iMacs - pop off the back, and you can get on the HD and RAM.

On the new iMacs, you must remove the LCD screen just to get at the HD.
post #622 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

I wouldn't say Apple doesn't support game development so much as Microsoft's monopolistic position on the desktop and their use of proprietary DirectX has stifled a good bit of competition from OpenGL and non-Windows gaming in general.

There are things that Apple could have made easier. For example, there is no good interface unification to joysticks, button number arrangement for hat switch directions aren't standardized and you have to spelunk the USB HID tree to grab a joystick. There's quite a bit of quirks that needs workarounds. Brian Greenstone of Pangea software outlined it and has code in his book. His code to just grab a joystick and work around Apple's bugs and quirks is something like 3000 lines. Then he shows how easy it was for OS 9, I think 20 lines or less.
post #623 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by wobegon View Post

I wouldn't say Apple doesn't support game development so much as Microsoft's monopolistic position on the desktop and their use of proprietary DirectX has stifled a good bit of competition from OpenGL and non-Windows gaming in general.

If OpenGL had developed a game focus subset (and not split between workstation and gaming) then DirectX D3D wouldn't have gotten much traction.

DirectX 1.0 sucked. Big time. It sucked pretty much until DirectX 5 (with 3 being so-so and 4 a no-show) with DirectX 7 being the first one to be widely adopted.

OpenGL had plenty of damn time to simply/improve game development and keep DirectX/D3D marginalized. Even MS would have quit eventually.

Quote:
Apple likely recognizes that PC gaming is in decline thanks to the success of dedicated consoles, including Microsoft's own Xbox consoles, the first of which was put out to combat Sony's highly anticipated PS2, which they feared would eat into their profitable, high-end gaming market.

DFC claims that the PC was the largest game market in 2007 and had the largest revenue.

Quote:

However, as mentioned, DFC Intelligence estimates the PC gaming market is the largest single game segment on a revenue basis and it is expected to grow 80% over the next 5 years. On a worldwide basis the PC gaming market (including online game revenue) accounted for nearly 30% of interactive entertainment software revenue in 2007. Of course, that does not include all the PC hardware sales that are generated from gamers.

http://www.dfcint.com/wp/?p=206

Worldwide it was $11.3B vs $14.1B for PC vs Console game revenue. The NPD numbers completely ignored games sold via download and MMO revenue. Blizzard raked in $1.2B last year all by itself.

Quote:
Now MS itself has almost all but given up on supporting gaming on the PC.

Say what? Windows gaming is alive and well. Heck they just ported over Mass Effect which saved me from having to buy a 360. When Dynasty Warrior 6 comes out for the PC (in English) then I can skip getting the PS3 for a while (or at least skip going over to my brother in law's house to play)

Quote:
Games for Windows Live was a flop as PC gamers have never been charged for online play

GFWL was pretty bad and yes, PC gamers don't accept being charged. That doesn't mean that there aren't millions of PC gamers.

Quote:
They hardly "support" game development. They mainly buy up development studios. Rare hasn't put out a good game in years and Bungie went independent last year.

Yes, because DirectX10 is strictly a console play and XNA isn't useful on the PC.

MS has the best game development toolchain for both the PC and console.
post #624 of 735
Just got off the phone with my friend from Silicon Valley, and he dropped a freakin' nuke in my lap regarding Apple's coming transition. I don't have permission to share much of anything, but I can say this much:

Motorola.

No, it's not what you're thinking.
post #625 of 735
It's been a long time since I've seen a rumour report from The Dawg.
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The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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post #626 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

Just got off the phone with my friend from Silicon Valley, and he dropped a freakin' nuke in my lap regarding Apple's coming transition. I don't have permission to share much of anything, but I can say this much:

Motorola.

No, it's not what you're thinking.

Well I'm thinking Moto sucks.

I guessing it has something to do with the former Moto exec at Apple, or Apple is buying something of Moto, or possibly the whole company.
post #627 of 735
What if i don't know what i'm thinking? Is it still not what I'm thinking?

Dropping 'motorola' into the fray is almost unfair
post #628 of 735
Wow! Is 625 posts in one thread a record of some sort?

I guess the bulk of the postings constitute one of the longest xMac/headless mini-tower arguments I've ever seen on here. Perhaps it's time Mr. H and wobegon just decided that neither of them are going to convince the other of their position and let it rest.

Since a lot of the discussion has to do with Joe Six-Pack and how he makes his buying decisions, and since I'm close enough to that that I might be able to shed a little light on the question, let me tell you how I see it. First of all, ignore Apple stores. The people who go into Apple stores are already at least half sold. We're talking about the guy who is barely aware that there are two platforms, and walks into a Best Buy, let's say, just to see what's on offer. The Best Buy that's closest to me (well, easiest to get to, anyway) seems to have an unusually good Apple section, from what I read, so I'll use that as an example.

First Joe walks past all the Windows machines: a bewildering array of slightly varying specs, some higher, some lower, in an incredible mish-mash that makes it impossible to decide which is better overall; an enormous price spread, with boxes that look pretty much the same varying in price by at least a factor of four; ugly bent sheet metal enclosures with ill-fitting plastic cladding stuck all over them like a Pontiac minivan; garish stickers on every spare square inch of surface; howling fans; and a congeries of brand names, some of which are familiar, some of which are not.

Reeling from all this, he finds his way into the Apple section. It's like stepping into another world: a quieter, more sophisticated, more advanced world. It's like walking with a few steps from 1985 to 2008. Everything he sees is elegantly styled and nothing like what he saw back in the PC aisle. "That's a nice-looking monitor...oh, wait: it's a whole computer! A whole computer with no huge box to hide under the table, where you can't reach it to put a disk in, or to clutter up the whole table with! Wow! But my monitor's still pretty good, all I need is a new computer to plug it into. What's this? $600...that's more like it. But it's just a little tiny box...." He looks at the specs and sees that they're in the same territory as the PCs he saw in the other section, at least the ones that were anywhere near $600, and more importantly, worlds past the specs of his current machine, if he even knows what they are. And it's 6.5" x 6.5" x2"! Unbelievable!

Seriously, walking from the PC aisle to the Apple section, you think: "This is where they keep the alien technology that took from Area 51!" It's so much more advanced and sophisticated that you feel you're in another world. And some of us respond to that. I won't say it's a majority, but it's a very substantial number. The specs on all of these machines, PCs or Macs, are serious overkill for what we use them for, anyway. If you go through a huge process of sorting out all the specs and prices, which hardly anybody does, you'll see that Macs are not really any more expensive than equivalent PCs, but it's true that Apple doesn't play in the shallow end of the pool. Their cheapest units don't approach the low prices at the cheap end of the PC line, but they look like they're worth more. Then of course, there's that 84-cubic-inch box that does the same work as all those crappy-looking, loud, 1024-cubic-inch behemoths: Hmmmm.....

I don't want to get into the whole discussion of whether Apple should or would offer a headless mini-tower. They would have to differentiate it from the competition somehow. Maybe this "technology the competition can't match" will contribute to that. I think their actions will seriously depend on whether they can slap down the clone-makers quickly and easily, or if some lunatic judge buys Psystar's "antitrust" arguments. If they are more or less forced to license OS X, then we could see some form of Apple mini-tower. I'm sure they have it all figured out as to how many more units they would have to move to make up for the decreased margin, and the lost sales of iMacs and Mac Pros. At least do them the courtesy of accepting that they've war-gamed this whole scenario every which way from Sunday, and if the conclusion they came to doesn't match yours...oh, well!

There are some of us, however, who want something a little different, who appreciate Apple's elegant design and unified appearance, and who will pay to buy our way out of the minimum-price crapbox world that our Windows brethren endure. If Apple does get into the cheap commodity PC market, I hope they can sustain both, but I'm not hopeful that they could.
post #629 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac-sochist View Post

Wow! Is 625 posts in one thread a record of some sort?

I guess the bulk of the postings constitute one of the longest xMac/headless mini-tower arguments I've ever seen on here.

Obviously you never saw this 1,657 post behemoth (5th longest Future Hardware thread ever)! Vinea and I argued for quite a long time in that one . At least we've been spared any "xMac proponents just want a Mac Pro on the cheap" posts this time around (not a dig at Vinea, I don't recall him making any of those).
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 #630 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac-sochist View Post

Wow! Is 625 posts in one thread a record of some sort?

I guess the bulk of the postings constitute one of the longest xMac/headless mini-tower arguments I've ever seen on here. Perhaps it's time Mr. H and wobegon just decided that neither of them are going to convince the other of their position and let it rest.

It is kind of sad that 99% of my posts as a fairly new member here can be found in this thread. I don't know about Mr. H, but at this point I'm just having fun going back and forth. I mean, we're basically reiterating our original arguments and then I forget the points we've made and it starts all over, but from a different angle. It's an xMac vs. mini whirlpool that newcomers mistake for a harmless speculative thread on some mystery product transition.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac-sochist View Post

Seriously, walking from the PC aisle to the Apple section, you think: "This is where they keep the alien technology that took from Area 51!"

There are some of us, however, who want something a little different, who appreciate Apple's elegant design and unified appearance, and who will pay to buy our way out of the minimum-price crapbox world that our Windows brethren endure. If Apple does get into the cheap commodity PC market, I hope they can sustain both, but I'm not hopeful that they could.

Well said. And the Area 51-effect you mentioned is a good description of what initially draws most people to Apple's computers, especially the iMac's "disappearing mini-tower" trick and more recently, the Air's razor-thin form factor that seems to induce people lifting it up and measuring its weight.
False comparisons do not a valid argument make.
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False comparisons do not a valid argument make.
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post #631 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

It's Apple's only headless Mac under $2300, gee that might be it.

Oh gee golly, who put a gun to your head to buy a mini?

Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

No, most SSF are pretty easily upgradable, they're typically just samller cases that's all, look at Shuttle PCs. And, yes, I've worked with the old iMacs - pop off the back, and you can get on the HD and RAM.

Most of Shuttle's computers are marketed towards gamers, they have a dizzying array of SFF PCs, yet I've never seen one in a computer store.

Anyway, you brought up the Dell Hybrid. The Hybrid doesn't look user serviceable, nor does Shuttle's X200, which comes a lot closer to matching the mini's physical dimensions.
False comparisons do not a valid argument make.
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False comparisons do not a valid argument make.
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post #632 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

Just got off the phone with my friend from Silicon Valley, and he dropped a freakin' nuke in my lap regarding Apple's coming transition. I don't have permission to share much of anything, but I can say this much:

Motorola.

No, it's not what you're thinking.

OMG!

What the hell kind of hint is that? Motorola has been dismembered and some of the pieces are in the toilet. Yes I could live with a one word hint but not that one. No its not what I'm thinking? Well what am I thinking then?!
post #633 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

Well I'm thinking Moto sucks.

I guessing it has something to do with the former Moto exec at Apple, or Apple is buying something of Moto, or possibly the whole company.

That can't be it. Right now there isn't much of a company to buy. If however someone were to hing Apple was buying up a wireless network company thereby transforming Apple into a network provider.....that would be one hell of a nuke!
post #634 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

Just got off the phone with my friend from Silicon Valley, and he dropped a freakin' nuke in my lap regarding Apple's coming transition. I don't have permission to share much of anything, but I can say this much:

Motorola.

No, it's not what you're thinking.

Ok, help us here. Tell us what it DOESN'T involve.

For instance, it doesn't involve motorola making custom chips for Apple correct?
Or, it doesn't have anything to do with motorola's recent acquisition of AirDefense and their wireless security tech correct?

Help us out here will ya?
post #635 of 735
I'm bumping because I want an answer on this. I will now leave this thread alone till tomorrow when I am at work. Unless of course there is a response by tonight. But if I don't get an answer from this guy who just laid a potential nuke of a clue (despite its vagueness) there will be......consequences. \
post #636 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Olternaut View Post

I'm bumping because I want an answer on this. I will now leave this thread alone till tomorrow when I am at work. Unless of course there is a response by tonight. But if I don't get an answer from this guy who just laid a potential nuke of a clue (despite its vagueness) there will be......consequences. \

Don't do that. If it's real and any details do leak, then the guy's friend risks losing his job if this is discovered. If it's false or a diversion, then you'll have wasted too much energy on it. And maybe you would have risked being banned for harassment.
post #637 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Don't do that. If it's real and any details do leak, then the guy's friend risks losing his job if this is discovered. If it's false or a diversion, then you'll have wasted too much energy on it. And maybe you would have risked being banned for harassment.

For one post harassment? If your trying to annoy me today you will have to get in line.
Forget about leaks. How about speculation and detective work. Can any of you guess what it might be from the one word hint?
Thats what this forum is here for isn't it?
*ARGH* LOOK here Mr. JeffDM, get ya lazy butt to a google screen right now and start investigating before I crack the whip!

After some quick investigating it will be discovered if its a waste of time or energy or not. And don't tell me not to do it either because its fun. Why the hell do people like you try to stop people on this site from having fun? Are you the principal or something?
post #638 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

Obviously you never saw this 1,657 post behemoth (5th longest Future Hardware thread ever)! Vinea and I argued for quite a long time in that one . At least we've been spared any "xMac proponents just want a Mac Pro on the cheap" posts this time around (not a dig at Vinea, I don't recall him making any of those).

Possibly. Who knows...after a thousand posts everyone in that thread has said something stupid or condesending. It got rather heated as dead horse flogging tend to be.

This whole xMac debate is so old by now we could do it by numbers like that old joke about prison humor:

xMac zealot: 47!
xMac hater: Oh yeah? 53 and 16!
xMac zealot: Noob! 16 is soooo debunked by 72 and 211!
xMac hater: 342 you jerk.
post #639 of 735
Here's a great read on why this isn't a Tablet, xMac or any new product.

The "technology transition" refers to upgrading existing products with more expensive components.

As the article says, this could be referring to the placement of BR drives across the line.
Or maybe moving the MacBook line to 15" screens (my favourite).

What it isn't is some whiz bang new gadget. Guaranteed.
The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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post #640 of 735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

Here's a great read on why this isn't a Tablet, xMac or any new product.

The "technology transition" refers to upgrading existing products with more expensive components.

As the article says, this could be referring to the placement of BR drives across the line.
Or maybe moving the MacBook line to 15" screens (my favourite).

What it isn't is some whiz bang new gadget. Guaranteed.

Ah, this guy came up with the same increased cost estimates as me ($150mill)... I guess I like him.

I agree totally that a transition is different to a new product. Unfortunately they also said they had some great new products coming (though they do always say that). Also a Tablet can be considered a transition from iPod Touch to iTouch.

That said... I'm not looking for an iTouch - I'm putting my money on touch screens on every existing screen.
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