If the PowerMac G5's are released, should Apple stop making the PowerMac G4 towers?

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
If Apple computer does indeed releases a new PowerMac G5 tower, should they stop making (or discontinue) the PowerMac G4 towers? My current thinking says no.



I believe by continuing to produce a PowerMac G4 tower, Apple would fill a niche that is currently being overlooked. This niche is the prosumer Mac market. Many Mac users love to upgrade and "tinker" their Macs. From adding a new (or second) hard drive, installing a PCI expansion card, an internal CD-RW drive (I consider users that perform the previously mentioned upgrades, prosumers). All things you cannot do on the iMac line of computers (or not easily at least).



The PowerMac G5 line of computers will no doubt be a great line of computers for Apple. However, the PowerMac G5 line of computer will be intended mainly for professional?s users and not consumers. Their price will be also geared towards the professional market. A price that can easily be justified if your profession involves using a computer to make money.



For the major of consumers out there, the professional price tag of the PowerMac G5's will probably be too much to warrant their purchase (even if Apple sticks to the current PowerMac pricing scheme, $2000 for a lowend PowerMac, with a 17" CRT monitor, and taxes is a lot of money for a consumer level computer). This is were the problem lies. The next step down from the lowend PowerMac G5, will be the non-upgradable top-end iMac (not even one PCI slot). Not really a great choice for the Mac prosumer.



By keeping the PowerMac G4 towers around a while longer, it would provide a great way for experienced Mac users (especially beige G3, B & W, and early G4 owners) an incentive to upgrade to a new Macintosh (instead of just b*tching that the new Mac's are too expensive).



Additionally, if the PowerMac G5's are released, it is very likely that the iMac line will move to the G4 chip. If the G4 chip is cheap enough to be used in the iMac line of computers that should make the price of a PowerMac G4 considerably cheaper. And have a price tag a little lower than the top-end iMac (it is okay to have some price overlap between models as long as it is not too much).



What are your thoughts??
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 21
    crusadercrusader Posts: 1,129member
    Better than a cube

    I don't think the prosumer market is big enough to sustaian the cost of a additional line though.
  • Reply 2 of 21
    cobracobra Posts: 253member
    I would love a nice lowend tower.



    Not going to happen but it would be nice.





    But really, I ain't upgrading until I get a 2 GHZ G5.



    Nothing less for me.
  • Reply 3 of 21
    jrcjrc Posts: 806member
    YES!
  • Reply 4 of 21
    dave k.dave k. Posts: 1,306member
    [quote]Originally posted by Cobra:

    <strong>I would love a nice lowend tower.



    Not going to happen but it would be nice.





    But really, I ain't upgrading until I get a 2 GHZ G5.



    Nothing less for me. </strong><hr></blockquote>



    Unfortunately, I agree with you. Apple is far too stubborn.
  • Reply 5 of 21
    imacfpimacfp Posts: 750member
    Apple would not need to do this if the new iMac allowed a second hard drive, a new video card, and was a G4.
  • Reply 6 of 21
    macaddictmacaddict Posts: 1,055member
    And people wouldn't need to work if they could crap dollar bills.
  • Reply 7 of 21
    dave k.dave k. Posts: 1,306member
    [quote]Originally posted by Cobra:

    <strong>I would love a nice lowend tower.



    Not going to happen but it would be nice.





    But really, I ain't upgrading until I get a 2 GHZ G5.



    Nothing less for me. </strong><hr></blockquote>



    Unfortunately, I agree with you. Apple is far too stubborn.
  • Reply 8 of 21
    jwdawsojwdawso Posts: 358member
    [quote]Originally posted by Dave K.:

    <strong>



    Unfortunately, I agree with you. Apple is far too stubborn.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    Apple is not stubborn! Apple is a multi-billion dollar business that is focused on making a profit. If Apple thought that it could make more money by keeping the towers it would. Do you remember a few years back when there was a proliferation of models and it was hard to tell the difference between the models? And they couldn't sell them? And there was the real possiblity of going out of business?



    I'm not saying a prosumer tower wouldn't be great ( I just recently replaced the hard drive in my iMac - not nearly as simple as the towers!). I would characterize Apple as innovative, focused, leader - not stubborn.
  • Reply 9 of 21
    jwdawsojwdawso Posts: 358member
    [quote]Originally posted by Dave K.:

    <strong>If Apple computer does indeed releases a new PowerMac G5 tower, should they stop making (or discontinue) the PowerMac G4 towers? My current thinking says no.

    ...

    By keeping the PowerMac G4 towers around a while longer, it would provide a great way for experienced Mac users (especially beige G3, B & W, and early G4 owners) an incentive to upgrade to a new Macintosh (instead of just b*tching that the new Mac's are too expensive)...



    What are your thoughts??</strong><hr></blockquote>



    Just a little perspective - those of us who bought Beige, B & W, and early G4's AND pre-G3s paid more money then the current pricing. Due to inflation, just the price of the Pro models is way better than it used to be.



    It won't be the price that stops this group - it will just be whether we need the new capabilities or not. My beige G3 and iMac DV are fine for me on everything except video editing - too slow! - and of course, cannot burn DVDs. That's my incentive to upgrade. Lower prices never hurt though...
  • Reply 10 of 21
    Dave K, I agree. You must be an avid reader of my posts, I've made the same argument several times now.



    But I don't think Apple will do this. The one time Apple tried to fill in the low-end tower market with a "headless iMac", they priced the thing higher than the intro tower! That sort of thinking doesn't bode well for the future of "consumer" towers at Apple.
  • Reply 11 of 21
    dave k.dave k. Posts: 1,306member
    [quote]Originally posted by jwdawso:

    <strong>



    Apple is not stubborn! Apple is a multi-billion dollar business that is focused on making a profit. If Apple thought that it could make more money by keeping the towers it would. Do you remember a few years back when there was a proliferation of models and it was hard to tell the difference between the models? And they couldn't sell them? And there was the real possiblity of going out of business?



    I'm not saying a prosumer tower wouldn't be great ( I just recently replaced the hard drive in my iMac - not nearly as simple as the towers!). I would characterize Apple as innovative, focused, leader - not stubborn.</strong><hr></blockquote>





    Apple is a stubborn company. How can you possibly disagree with this. How can a multi-billion dollar company think that only TWO desktop lines and TWO portable lines can satisify all of their customer's needs. The answer is that they can't. When Apple was in poor shape years ago, it made sense to refocus their efforts and simpify their product offering. But now, that frame of mind can be very costly for Apple. This is Apple being stubborn (or cocky if you prefer).



    Many, many users want computers that they can play with. People want expansion via PCI, AGP, second hard drives or what ever. Right now in the PC world upgrading your computer is huge. How many store ads do you see that advertise this or that free after rebates? How many computer expos are held in your area? How many local PC shops are now in your area that build "house-brand" PC's in ANY type of configuration that you want? This is what Apple now has to deal with. Why is upgrading so big? Two reasons. 1.) PC's and their components are dirt cheap and 2.) Windows is starting to work like it should have been 7 years ago. Upgrading a PC is becoming easier.



    For a long time now, quarter after quarter, Apple has made money. Lots of money. They have also increased their market share and market presence. And for them now to sit back and STILL say that the PowerMac & iMac lines are good enough for everyone is very foolish, cocky, and/or stubborn. Remember, WE should be telling Apple what ARE needs are. Not the other way around.



    Thanks.
  • Reply 12 of 21
    jwdawsojwdawso Posts: 358member
    [quote]Originally posted by Dave K.:

    <strong>



    Apple is a stubborn company.

    ...

    For a long time now, quarter after quarter, Apple has made money. Lots of money. They have also increased their market share and market presence. And for them now to sit back and STILL say that the PowerMac & iMac lines are good enough for everyone is very foolish, cocky, and/or stubborn. Remember, WE should be telling Apple what ARE needs are. Not the other way around.



    Thanks.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    How many cases does Sony have? How many cases does Compaq have? How many cases does Dell have? How many cases does IBM have?



    What distinguishes the model lineup for the above? How many lines do the above companies have?



    How much money did Apple make this fiscal year? (Hint - negative ). (Your fiscal comments above are generalities that are plain wrong. Look it up at Yahoo.)



    Answer - Apple is an industry leader in all of the above. (Even losing less money than most last fiscal year.) Don't compare Apple to the whole PC industry - compare it to other PC companies.



    Why do you think Apple is sitting back? I would NEVER characterize Apple as sitting back. Innovation is their calling! What happened to the Cube? What about the iMac? What about the PowerMac case? Apple's towers are about the best in the industry and are a dream for upgraders. iMac's are simple to upgrade the memory. Your statement about "Apple sitting back" is just plain wrong.



    Do you really want Apple to share all of its intellectual property and enable you to roll your own Mac at the local PC store? They tried that once - remember the clones? - and almost went out of business.



    Does Apple make all the right moves? Does Apple have all the right product lines? Probably not, but who do you want in charge? Steve Jobs? Gil Amelio? You? I'll take Steve.
  • Reply 13 of 21
    applenutapplenut Posts: 5,768member
    [quote]Originally posted by Dave K.:

    <strong>





    Apple is a stubborn company. How can you possibly disagree with this. How can a multi-billion dollar company think that only TWO desktop lines and TWO portable lines can satisify all of their customer's needs. The answer is that they can't. When Apple was in poor shape years ago, it made sense to refocus their efforts and simpify their product offering. But now, that frame of mind can be very costly for Apple. This is Apple being stubborn (or cocky if you prefer).



    For a long time now, quarter after quarter, Apple has made money. Lots of money. They have also increased their market share and market presence. And for them now to sit back and STILL say that the PowerMac & iMac lines are good enough for everyone is very foolish, cocky, and/or stubborn. Remember, WE should be telling Apple what ARE needs are. Not the other way around.



    Thanks.</strong><hr></blockquote>





    maybe apple shosuld wait on your idea until they actually figure out a way to make money off the 2 existing product lines.



    hint: they haven't turned an operating profit in a long time



    [ 01-01-2002: Message edited by: applenut ]</p>
  • Reply 14 of 21
    emaneman Posts: 7,204member
    I would love it if Apple made a Prosumer tower. If Apple did this I would be very surprised.
  • Reply 15 of 21
    moogsmoogs Posts: 4,296member
    It would depend on how many G5 models they release. If only one, I'd say no. They'd still have to sell the G4 towers (hopefully they would also sport new mobos, etc) as the middle and low-end Power Macs. If Apple pulls a miracle and there are two or more G5 models immediately available (or available by say February 1) I'd say yes, Apple should nix the G4 tower and focus on the Apollo deal so they can get the fastest chips possible in the new iMac (probably will happen regardless) and laptops.



    [ 01-01-2002: Message edited by: Moogs ? ]</p>
  • Reply 16 of 21
    cdhostagecdhostage Posts: 1,038member
    It seems that I am at odds with others here, but I honestly prefer the simple product lineup. Consumer desktop, pro desktop. Consumer portable, pro portable.



    The "prosumer" slot is filled by the lowest-level Pro desktop. It is just the right price for a casual geek's tinkering.



    I do admit that I do not like that Apple does not seem to approve of or upgrading the other models. I wish I could upgrade my iMac's video card, for instance. Or repleace the HD eeasily. Apple has made advances in how easily their products are upgraded (witness the original and 512K Mac! Unopenable without special tools), but there are some ways Apple could get better.
  • Reply 17 of 21
    emaneman Posts: 7,204member
    [quote]Originally posted by cdhostage:

    <strong>

    The "prosumer" slot is filled by the lowest-level Pro desktop. It is just the right price for a casual geek's tinkering.

    </strong><hr></blockquote>



    Are you crazy? You think $1699 without a monitor is good for a prosumer? I think the price of the high end iMac would be the right price.
  • Reply 18 of 21
    I recall right before the Sawtooth G4 was introduced, Apple had lowered the price of the G3 towers and the reason given was that the cost of producing the unit had gone down, not just because of the general reduction in PC component designs but because of the fact that Apple had already covered the R&D and tooling costs for the custom components. The big reason for using the Yikes motherboard on the low end G4 was to compensate for the high cost of the G4 processor for the low end price point (of course production costs for Sawtooth boards and G4s fell and all the G4s went to a Single board). So, historically speaking, there are some price savings to be had in keeping an existing design.

    My modest proposal would be if Apple does have a new G-? wonder tower with DDR memory, faster bus, ATA-133, Gigawire, triple Gerbil Acceleration, and/or Raycer Aqua Acceleration, that Apple keep the current 733 Mhz model and not change a thing that's right, not one thing on the unit and sell it for $1299. Zero additional R&D dollars, nearly zero marketing dollars, Apple rides on the coattails of what it has already paid for and provides a "bridge" of sorts between the product lines. Six months from now, if the talking heads are right and the economy is purring along nicely, when the G? speed bumps, the "transitional" G4 can quietly go away, or if Apple finds they can make decent money on a $1299 tower it could be speed bumped slightly and kept on. By the time it's truly embarrassing the new architecture will have fallen in price enough to run the same racket again.
  • Reply 19 of 21
    reynardreynard Posts: 160member
    The disagreement here is only on the issue of whether or not it would make good business sense for Apple to continue a G4. There seems to be no disagreement about the desireability of having that choice. I dont have the facts to resolve the issue--maybe no one does. But Ill say this. It seems illogical to have to buy pro model just to get a 17" screen. But, financially, maybe this forces enough people just to shell out the extra bucks and buy more computer than they need. High profit margin for Apple.



    One more thing, Im a teacher and there is a 533 G4 for $1148 (no CD-RW) in the education store. And Ill buy that one if there isnt a better deal after Macworld. So Apple does see some use for a basic tower at least for the education market.
  • Reply 20 of 21
    reynardreynard Posts: 160member
    The disagreement here is only on the issue of whether or not it would make good business sense for Apple to continue a G4. There seems to be no disagreement about the desireability of having that choice. I dont have the facts to resolve the issue--maybe no one does. But Ill say this. It seems illogical to have to buy pro model just to get a 17" screen. But, financially, maybe this forces enough people just to shell out the extra bucks and buy more computer than they need. High profit margin for Apple.



    One more thing, Im a teacher and there is a 533 G4 for $1148 (no CD-RW) in the education store. And Ill buy that one if there isnt a better deal after Macworld. So Apple does see some use for a basic tower at least for the education market.
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