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An $800 MacBook would be 'the height of folly' - report - Page 2

post #41 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Had Apple succumb to calls from industry watchers to release a new MacBook at or below the $800 price point, it would have amounted to "a value-destroying event of epic proportions," according to a newly published analysis.

In a report released Wednesday, Needham & Co's Conor Irvine and Charles Wolf, one of the more colorful analysts covering Apple today...

Like journalists, analysts are supposed to be objective. I thought Wolf's comments during the apple give-and-take were embarrassing to his profession. I can't find the transcript, but he fawned to jobs, complimenting him in at least one instance on the fine job he'd done. Can you imagine a CNN's Wolf Blitzer interviewing Obama or McCain and then telling him (substitute Wolf's words to Jobs here) what a great job he'd been doing with his economic policies? I was surprised by Wolf. He sounded like one of us fanboys here.
post #42 of 56
...but I think the value proposition of the $999 White MacBook is simply too low. The machine does not age well. A premium product shouldn't look like crap with a bit of dirt on it.

Had he put the black machine (but with the white machine's specs) at $999, then it would be a much better deal.

Also, the fact that you need to go to $2000 for a 15" screen just seems wrong. It is totally unrelated to cost. If your eyesight is poor, you need to spend a lot of money for performance you might not want.

But yes, I do think that a $500 to $800 notebook from Apple is a bad idea. But right now the value of Apple's line varies a lot. I think you get a lot for $1299, but not enough for $999, for example. And the $1799 price point only has the Air, which solves a specific problem.

And while I don't use FireWire, I agree that taking it out is hardly a "premium" thing to do.
post #43 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by rtdunham View Post

True that, but it WOULD be a Toyota. There's a reason the car-makers who manufacturer cars that are closer to commodities--Nissan, Toyota, Honda, VW--all have luxury (think apple-level) brands (think Infiniti, Lexus, Acura, Audi). Talk of Apple entering a lower price point market is just the same business philosophy in reverse. Maybe it's right for apple, maybe it's wrong, I'm not smart enough to make that judgement...

True but there IS a very big difference. You're not staring at the motor under the hood like a computer that would be prominently showing an Mac OSX interface. These car manufacturers can get away with it because not many people actually know that a Acura is a high priced premium Honda. Apple doesn't have that luxury and its premium computer brand will suffer.
post #44 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alonso Perez View Post

... Also, the fact that you need to go to $2000 for a 15" screen just seems wrong. It is totally unrelated to cost. If your eyesight is poor, you need to spend a lot of money for performance you might not want...

In that case wouldn't you just lower the screen resolution or use the built-in Accessibility features for the visually impaired?
post #45 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljocampo View Post

In that case wouldn't you just lower the screen resolution or use the built-in Accessibility features for the visually impaired?

A larger screen won't help if the resolution increases proportionatly. It'll be as small, just more spread out.

OS X does a horrible job of displaying non-native resolutions. Try it out, you'll think you'll need glasses. Hopefully they get RI worked put in time for the new 30"+ ACD.
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post #46 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

A larger screen won't help if the resolution increases proportionatly. It'll be as small, just more spread out.

OS X does a horrible job of displaying non-native resolutions. Try it out, you'll think you'll need glasses. Hopefully they get RI worked put in time for the new 30"+ ACD.

Cutting the resolution DOWN from native 1440 to say 800x600 WILL increase the size of the text on the same size screen. The post I was replying to said that he'd have to spend 2k more for a 15" screen to get bigger text.

As for the non-native issue, most of the regular screen intervals are just fine. But I'm with you, it's not optimal and I too long for resolution independence.
post #47 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaynardJames View Post

Actually, what anantksundaram said is right. Price-elasticity of demand is a measure of the percentage change in quantity demanded based on the percentage change in price. It is true that for almost all products that lowering the price will increase the quantity demanded. The reverse is also true. But, different products react differently in quantity demanded when there is a change in price. Some have drastic increases in quantity demanded when price decreases, some have little change. Products that have more drastic change are elastic, products with little change are inelastic.

What you said is correct though, but is not the definition of price elasticity. Total Revenue is affected by price elasticity.

Thank you, sir.
post #48 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

HP has been making a server OS for years (HP-AIX), and Sony has experience with BSD (the PSP and PS3), as well as selling a version of Linux for the PS2.

In all reality, what they would likely do, is make a customized Linux distro (my guess is Debian-based, as that has a lot of momentum because of Ubuntu), and make it for opportunities a user wants a basic OS to quick boot into (< 30 secs).

Linux would be an idiotic choice for anyone looking to make thier own OS. By the virtue of it being GPL you're bound by the license agreement to release any kernel and userland changes you make to improve the end user experience. Which means all of your competitors get it and it's no longer a differentiating point.

Only if you don't really care do you choose Linux and your expectation is to leverage the general improvements of that OS rather than creating a better user experience on your own. IBM and HP choose the Linux route because they saw that their own Unix OS's were losing anyway in the long run and improving Linux only helped them and hurt Sun.

Going down the FreeBSD path like Apple makes a whole lot more sense. You can release whatever you like back to the community but you aren't obligated to.

HP does not make AIX. That is IBM. HP makes HPUX.
post #49 of 56
Apple should definitely market a small 1gb or 2gb flash-based version of their iPod (but without a display), maybe starting at around $49, perhaps make it available five or so bold colours.

And they should consider making "lite" versions of some of their Pro apps like Logic and Final Cut...

And why not a basic Mac in miniature form and make a big song and dance about how you can get it for under $600...


Yeah, my darling Steve is right (oh i love him so), budget versions of existing products, or rather the plebs that might buy them, wouldn't be welcome in our poncy boutiques thank you very much.
post #50 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuffyzDead View Post

I LOVE IT!!

As a business owner selling Pizza, I can not agree with Apple more.

I ONLY want to cater to those customers that are willing to pay $4.50 a slice and up!!

I feel there is significant value in my Pizza, and business has never been better. Customers are 5 deep to pay for our value-added Pizza. Those that want the $1.25 slice, can choose to go right down the road, because as Steve says "There are some customers which we chose not to serve."
.......!

That is so funny. LOL er........ unless........ you were serious. :-(

Dell pizzas cost 12.00$ and come with one meat.
Apple pizzas cost 11.95 $ and come with one meat, but its a different meat. For a buck more, you can get the Dell meat too. :-)

Dell also sells the pizza that falls on the floor. Its 2.99 $. Parts fall off. Dirt gets on. But its cheaper. Apple does not sell pizza that falls on the floor.

Hmmmmm...... I like that presentation more. :-)

Just a thought.
en
post #51 of 56
Apple computers won't come with any meat. Jobs is a vegetarian.
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post #52 of 56
To continue the car analogy: Apple's not going to make a Scion brand. Get the F over it.
post #53 of 56
Yes, a $800 MacBook might be folly, but a 10" Mac Touch tablet with built in 3G SIM adaptor and WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n ... for $799, would blow people away.

I mean, there's been such fantastic announcements already, what *else* could possibly come in just 3 months time at MacWorld SF Jan 2009???
post #54 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by rtdunham View Post

RE: the exchanges on price elasticity...

It's reassuring to me that there are folks like all of you--anantksundaram, tundraboy, Maynardjames--who have knowledge in special fields and are willing to share it. Your contributions (and others who contribute in different areas of expertise) are what make this forum so valuable.

Thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaynardJames View Post

Actually, what anantksundaram said is right. Price-elasticity of demand is a measure of the percentage change in quantity demanded based on the percentage change in price. It is true that for almost all products that lowering the price will increase the quantity demanded. The reverse is also true. But, different products react differently in quantity demanded when there is a change in price. Some have drastic increases in quantity demanded when price decreases, some have little change. Products that have more drastic change are elastic, products with little change are inelastic.

What you said is correct though, but is not the definition of price elasticity. Total Revenue is affected by price elasticity.

May I interject and mention, a non-technical thing, yes, lower prices can push more volume of units sold. However. remember in terms of capacity Apple is already shipping the most units it has ever done in history, for Macs and iPhone. Remember more sales volume can lead to a lot of challenges in keeping up with supplying and supporting that demand, and managing "bloat" when demand growth slows.
post #55 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

Yes, a $800 MacBook might be folly, but a 10" Mac Touch tablet with built in 3G SIM adaptor and WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n ... for $799, would blow people away.

I mean, there's been such fantastic announcements already, what *else* could possibly come in just 3 months time at MacWorld SF Jan 2009???

I agree that it would blow people away, but I don't see Apple releasing a product at that price. I think $999 is the lowest they'd want to start, with $1099 being more reasonable for Apple.

I would think that Apple's ≤10" netbook would basically be the MBA internally, but thicker like a MacBook.
Intel® Atom™ processor Nettop/Netbook (BGA437/uFCBGA8)
. . . — 330 (1M Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $43
. . . — 230 (512k Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $29
. . . — N270 (512k Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $44

Mobile (FCBGA8)
. . . — Z540 (512k Cache, 1.86 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $135
. . . — Z530 (512k Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $70
. . . — Z520 (512k Cache, 1.33 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $40
. . . — Z510 (512k Cache, 1.10 GHz, 400 MHz FSB 45nm) - $20

LV/ULV Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor2 Mobile (FCBGA6)
. . . — SL9400 (6M L2 cache 1.86 GHz 1066 MHz FSB 45nm)3 - $316
. . . — SL9300 (6M L2 cache 1.60 GHz 1066 MHz FSB 45nm)3 - $284

. . . — L7700 (4M L2 cache 1.80 GHz 800 MHz FSB 65nm) - $316
. . . — L7500 (4M L2 cache 1.60 GHz 800 MHz FSB 65nm) - $284
. . . — L7300 (4M L2 cache 1.40 GHz 800 MHz FSB 65nm) - $284
. . . — SU9400 (3M L2 cache 1.40 GHz 800 MHz FSB 45nm) - $289
. . . — SU9300 (3M L2 cache 1.20 GHz 800 MHz FSB 45nm) - $262
. . . — U7700 (2M L2 cache 1.33 GHz 533 MHz FSB 65nm) - 289
. . . — U7600 (2M L2 cache 1.20 GHz 533 MHz FSB 65nm) - $262
. . . — U7500 (2M L2 cache 1.06 GHz 533 MHz FSB 65nm) - $262 I put Apple's current MBA processors in blue. I could see Apple using the SU9x00 series ULV C2D processors, but not anything below that. I can't even imagine Apple using any current Atom chip in any Mac product.
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post #56 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I agree that it would blow people away, but I don't see Apple releasing a product at that price. I think $999 is the lowest they'd want to start, with $1099 being more reasonable for Apple.

I would think that Apple's ≤10" netbook would basically be the MBA internally, but thicker like a MacBook.
Intel® Atom™ processor Nettop/Netbook (BGA437/uFCBGA8)
. . . — 330 (1M Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $43
. . . — 230 (512k Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $29
. . . — N270 (512k Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $44

Mobile (FCBGA8)
. . . — Z540 (512k Cache, 1.86 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $135
. . . — Z530 (512k Cache, 1.60 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $70
. . . — Z520 (512k Cache, 1.33 GHz, 533 MHz FSB 45nm) - $40
. . . — Z510 (512k Cache, 1.10 GHz, 400 MHz FSB 45nm) - $20

LV/ULV Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor2 Mobile (FCBGA6)
. . . — SL9400 (6M L2 cache 1.86 GHz 1066 MHz FSB 45nm)3 - $316
. . . — SL9300 (6M L2 cache 1.60 GHz 1066 MHz FSB 45nm)3 - $284

. . . — L7700 (4M L2 cache 1.80 GHz 800 MHz FSB 65nm) - $316
. . . — L7500 (4M L2 cache 1.60 GHz 800 MHz FSB 65nm) - $284
. . . — L7300 (4M L2 cache 1.40 GHz 800 MHz FSB 65nm) - $284
. . . — SU9400 (3M L2 cache 1.40 GHz 800 MHz FSB 45nm) - $289
. . . — SU9300 (3M L2 cache 1.20 GHz 800 MHz FSB 45nm) - $262
. . . — U7700 (2M L2 cache 1.33 GHz 533 MHz FSB 65nm) - 289
. . . — U7600 (2M L2 cache 1.20 GHz 533 MHz FSB 65nm) - $262
. . . — U7500 (2M L2 cache 1.06 GHz 533 MHz FSB 65nm) - $262 I put Apple's current MBA processors in blue. I could see Apple using the SU9x00 series ULV C2D processors, but not anything below that. I can't even imagine Apple using any current Atom chip in any Mac product.

There are a couple of criticisms that I will make though. First, why does Apple having to use cutting edge processors on all their notebooks? The processors in the last generation of Macbooks aren't that slow running Leopard. So long as Intel still has CPUs for the last generation of chipset there is no technical reason Apple couldn't sell a single entry level model with a high end chip from the last generation that is signficantly cheaper than the current models.

Based upon Apple's positive cash numbers this year I would find it hard to believe that Apple was losing any money on the old $1100 white MB even when it was released. In ~7 months since the MB was first available I have a hard time believing that the price on the components has only dropped ~9%, but Apple has only dropped the base unit by ~9% so their margin of the base model has grown considerably. I will agree that the price of the components haven't dropped to the point where $800 would be a rational price point, but I wouldn't be surprised if Apple could sell the white Macbook for $950 or perhaps even $900. Many of Apple's competitors will sell you a laptop with the same size screen, same graphics, and the same CPU with a much larger HDD and more RAM for ~$900-950. I would agree that Apple shouldn't sell a laptop that is so underpowered that it harms Apple's brand image, but the white MB is clearly overpriced even after the $100 price drop.

The only reason I can see that Apple didn't release a new $1099 Aluminum model is that the higher production costs of the new MB case, chipset, and DDR3 memory are so much more expensive than the preceding model that a new $1099 model using the same chipset, case, and memory wouldn't have been profitable enough for management's tastes. Therefore, instead of canning the $1099 model they decided to retain the white MB for a while at a lower $999 price point. Due to the much sturdier case, additional memory, better graphics, and better CPU the new MB would still have had sufficient benefits that any fears that a $900-950 MB based upon older technology would canabalize sales of the newer more profitable model would be questionable.

I think Apple is merely sticking their toe in the water to experiment with their pricing to see whether they could make more money by selling slightly lower end consumer laptops. If their experiment is succesful, I wouldn't be surprised to see Apple permanently drop their entry level to merely $999 and eventually even go lower than that. As processors grow in power faster than most consumers ability to use the processing power declines in the median price for laptops are inevitable. There are a lot of people who used to buy >$1000+ laptops whose needs haven't grown, but the power of sub $1000 laptops has grown. While Apple does have a good image there is only so much that most people are willing to pay for merely for the advantages of a Mac.
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