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An in-depth report by AppleInsider is shedding more light onto the recent appearance of Apple's full line of Macs at select southern California Best Buy stores. Contrary to the initial report by ZDNet which was based off of statements by analyst Samir Bhavnani, the current program is only a seven-store pilot.

However, Best Buy has indicated that it is prepared to scale the Mac pilot program "rapidly" if it proves to be a hit, according to Steve Lidberg and David Niederman, two analysts with Pacific Crest Securities. They say a fortified relationship with the electronics retailer will present Apple with the opportunity to bulk up on its domestic retail presence.

Best Buy is North America's #1 consumer electronics retailer and sells home and car audio products, CD/DVDs, and home appliances (washers/dryers/microwaves/etc) in addition to computer-related products.
 

yankeefan24

macrumors 65816
Dec 24, 2005
1,104
0
NYC
I knew it wouldn't all start at once. 7 stores sounds right. In a few months, it may go nation wide, or they may drop it. Let's wait and see.
 
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Shadow

macrumors 68000
Feb 17, 2006
1,577
1
It'd be a great way to increase Apple's market share-not many people (including me) have "easy" (ie not having to travel several hours) to get to an Apple store :(
 
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runninmac

macrumors 65816
Jan 20, 2005
1,494
0
Rockford MI
Im glad because Im not to sure how smart BB's team is around the nation. Around here they tried selling me an iPod calling the click wheel the "fly wheel." Im sorry but you should call the main features of the product by the right name.

And like the sale's clerk new more that me *rolls eyes*
 
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Rocketman

macrumors 603
Kingsly said:
As long as the Best Buy employees actually take five minutes to learn the main features of the machine before trying to sell me one... i'll be happy.


Is that even realistic considering the sheer volume of SKU's BB sells? My guess is BB is for people already familiar with a product via TV, word-of-mouth, or online research, and a direct sale approach with qualified sales reps is limited to Apple Stores and (remember them?) the faithful long-term Apple authorized retailers.

Rocketman

Free advise. Buy from someone willing to give service AFTER the sale.
 
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Seasought

macrumors 65816
Nov 3, 2005
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At least you'll be able to buy a Mac at one of these seven stores, unlike another big computer company I know... :D
 
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yg17

macrumors G5
Aug 1, 2004
14,994
2,766
St. Louis, MO
I'm not so sure it's a good idea unless there will be full time Apple reps at the store.

BB employees aren't the brightest crayons in the box, I can just imagine a potental switcher who knows nothing about Macs walking into the store:

Customer: "So, I can check my email, chat with friends, and surf the web with this thing, right?"
BB Employee: "Uhhhhhhh......I'm not sure if Macs can do any of that. I think you need Windows for that sort of thing."
Customer: "OK, I'll take this HP then"

----------

Customer: "So, if I buy this digital camera, and this Mac, they'll work, right?"
BB Employee: "Uh......the box for the camera says Windows is required, so I guess it won't work."
Customer: "You don't know if it will work with that iPhoto thing I've read about?"
BB Employee: "Ummm....guess not. The box says Windows"

---------

Customer: "What's the difference between this Mac and that eMachines computer?"
BB Employee: "The eMachines has 2 buttons on its mouse, and with computers, more is better so you want that one"


You get the idea. I just don't see it being good for Apple's sales.
 
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bobber205

macrumors 68020
Nov 15, 2005
2,182
1
Oregon
Personal and typical mac consumer opinion:
I would look and see a mac in a best buy, but I would never buy one in a best buy.
 
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longofest

Editor emeritus
Jul 10, 2003
2,875
1,532
Falls Church, VA
bobber205 said:
Personal and typical mac consumer opinion:
I would look and see a mac in a best buy, but I would never buy one in a best buy.

Mac people wouldn't, but how about potential windows switchers? They probably aren't even going to the Apple Stores, so this gives more options other than CompUSA or other smaller resellers.
 
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longofest

Editor emeritus
Jul 10, 2003
2,875
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Falls Church, VA
stuartluff said:
So what is BestBuy? Is it like Tesco/Walmart in England?

Haha... good question. We forget that BestBuy isn't EVERYWHERE. Best Buy sells a ton of things, and is kind of like a "superstore". It sells home and car audio products, CD/DVD's, Home Appliances (washers/dryers/microwaves/etc), and of course has its venerable Electronics section which includes cameras/camcorders, software/games, and PC's.
 
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ejb190

macrumors 65816
Here we go again... I have never been impressed by the staff at Best Drive on By. Almost every time I have bought something, I have had to haggle with a manager over getting the advertised sale price or the prices on the shelves being wrong. And the knowledge base of the staff? I usually have to leave the computer section when I hear some punk trying to sell an older couple a computer far beyond what they need. Last Christmas I ended up helping a couple trying to buy their first SLR and teaching the employee at the same time.

Apple works hard to be an upscale brand. Biased staff and un-maintained demo units lead to poor sales and another failed attempt to put Apple Computers in Bust Buy stores.
 
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runninmac

macrumors 65816
Jan 20, 2005
1,494
0
Rockford MI
I guess for the people explaining what bestbuy is it would be important to point out it is the largest electronics retailer in the US
 
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Object-X

macrumors 6502a
Aug 3, 2004
632
1
Nice display

Got one near my house and it certainly seems to be a hit. Standing room only and the presentation is quite nice; much better than most CompUSA stores I've seen. Apple has generated quite a lot of buzz so it's good for them to expand their presence beyond their own stores. Especially now, since Vista is obviously going to suck and interest in Apple will rise substantially in the next two years.
 
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lord patton

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2005
1,052
10
Chicago
ejb190 said:
Apple works hard to be an upscale brand. Biased staff and un-maintained demo units lead to poor sales and another failed attempt to put Apple Computers in Bust Buy stores.

That's a definite possibility. Most peoples complaints center around the fact that the employees don't know anything, the product is poorly displayed, and the computers aren't well maintained.

That certainly has been my impression. However, if they are doing a slow roll out, perhaps they're trying to get it right. Having a large display will help, and Apple should make sure the computers have lots of software installed, a locked desktop (?) and good demo materials.

Then it could be a big win. Interesting, as well, that Best Buy wants to make sure the inventory pipe flows well.
 
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~Shard~

macrumors P6
Jun 4, 2003
18,377
44
1123.6536.5321
Sorry, maybe I'm missing something, but the Best Buy here has been selling Apple computers for quite a while now - nothing new at all. This news items implies to me that the USA Best Buy's don't sell Apple computers, so someone please correct me if I'm wrong. Weird... :confused:
 
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stefan15

macrumors regular
Oct 2, 2005
199
0
Canada
This works out awesome for me. We have a Bestbuy here in Calgary but no Apple Store. We do have London Drugs, but currently they only have the 17"MBP
 
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CorvusCamenarum

macrumors 65816
Dec 16, 2004
1,231
2
Birmingham, AL
From my personal Best Buy experiences, this will be akin to McDonalds selling prime rib, only no one there realizes that there's more to a cow than just D grade ground beef.

Let's hope Apple makes them do it right.
 
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poppe

macrumors 68020
Apr 29, 2006
2,203
33
Woodland Hills
Apple Insider speaks of the anyalysist (wow... I know... sp?) comparing the 17MBP and the M1202 or what evel the XPS is. Did they say anything about performance differences? not to get off topic..
 
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aprilfools

macrumors regular
Dec 15, 2004
212
1
Southern California
Best Buy and Mac's come and go just like the weather!!

Pilot program? It absolutely won't last. I can guarantee it will not. For 10 years I have always shopped at the Best Buy in Pasadena (Southern California). Every two or three years that Best Buy puts in a small Mac section and than a few months later the Mac section is completely gone. This has happened several times over the last ten years. I have come to believe that Best Buy management at both the Corporate and local store level in the computer department will ever take the proper accountability to maintain the Mac section and promote Mac sales. Kind of like the Mac section at CompUSA. Same thing. The Mac section is way back in the far dark corner of the store. Why? Because, they do not believe in the Mac, don’t want to give up shelf space for the Mac and don’t want shelf space for miscellaneous Mac software either. The CompUSA in Monrovia still has a huge cardboard sign that promotes Panther 10.3 that is how “out of touch” they are. Panther 10.3!! Tiger has been out for over a year now. CompUSA and Best Buy are so out of touch with Mac stuff and so clueless that they don’t even realize there is a clue.

Pilot Program? What a joke!!! Not gonna happen. Mark my words!!!!

Ben
 
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