Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2
It goes on to talk about how one component of Apple's success is it's "refusal to sell netbooks" but this isn't really so. Apple's so called refusal to sell netbooks is really because they require a healthy margin on everything they make. It's those fatter margins on all their products that's protecting them from the recession. It's also the fact that they cater to the wealthy end of the market and don't focus on the average consumer. But then it doesn't sound so angelic when you put it that way does it?
Apple most certainly does cater to the average consumer. Who do you think is buying up all those iPods, including the Touch (or the iPhone for that matter)?
I was debating myself between a netbook and a Touch, opting for the Touch. I got the base model and for a good price which allowed me to pick it up for significantly less money than a netbook, any netbook.
Netbooks are not really good machines to be doing significant work on. They're too underpowered, generally have smallish, hard-to-use keyboards, screens too small for working with video editing, doing higher-end photo work in programs like Photoshop, etc. and usually don't come with a lot of memory. In other words, they're really best suited to surfing the net, checking email, playing the odd video, etc. But here's the thing. The iPod Touch happens to be a very good device for such uses and it has netbooks beaten on several fronts. Battery life is better because it's a significantly smaller device. It's far easier to lug around than a netbook and has a killer app associated with it thanks to the App Store which makes buying and loading programs onto the device a very easy and fairly inexpensive process.
Myself, I think, Apple would do just fine by ignoring the netbook category mainly because they have a better solution in the iPod family of products. All it would take to seriously outdo the whole netbook segment would be to add another iPod to the mix with a somewhat larger form factor (maybe go to a 5-inch screen and add bluetooth) and continue to evolve the line as the company has been doing all along. If that addition to the iPod family came in at a netbook price point, it would make a lot of sense for many consumers as an alternative.
After a few weeks of enjoying my Touch, I have to say that for a lot of consumers, the device would undoubtedly gets the job done and can be bought for less money, so why opt for any of the netbook offerings out there? The main thing is, you look at what you want to do with the product and consider your options. The Touch really does fill an important niche far better than a lot of the netbook products being hastily brought to market by other computer manufacturers.
I have the best of both worlds with a desktop set-up that allows me to do more demanding work off a 32-inch monitor (a base mini that cost me well below $1,000 attached to a Sony that I use as my TV as well) and a Touch that allows me to do assorted stuff on the go.
I'm not exactly bringing in lots of cash but Apple has products that are affordable for me and offer more elegant solutions all around compared to what other manufacturers do. You don't have to spend thousands on a Mac Pro laptop and set up a Mac Pro tower on your desk to take advantage of Apple's superior products. There are affordable products available from Apple and they offer good value all things taken into consideration.
Maybe I'm not the typical customer. I can't say. But at the risk of sounding like an ad, I have to say that for me personally, Apple has managed to provide affordable solutions that are a pleasure to use.