Predicting Tomorrow's MBA Price Points

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by kingsal, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. kingsal macrumors member

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    #1
    Can we get some entry price predictions going?

    My calls:

    11" MacBook Air, $1099

    11" MacBook Air 3G, $1229

    13" MacBook Air, $1299

    13" MacBook Air 3G, $1429

    Apple is being pressed on margins (down from 41% to 36%, I think) with iPhone 4 and iPad being responsible, so I'd really be surprised to see Apple hit the $999 price point with the Air (especially b/c it already exists as an entry point into Mac with the MacBoook), but it think it could happen if Apple is looking to do significantly more volume than I'm expecting.
     
  2. appleguy123 macrumors 603

    appleguy123

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    #2
    11" $899 (I know that it seems crazy low, but this is my prediction, I don't see Apple selling a quasi-netbook for more than the MacBook)
    13" $1299 (has far better specks than the 11")
     
  3. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #3
    I'm not going to do a prediction price point, but rather a hope price point!

    11" MBA = non-existant
    13" MBA = starting price point $899-$999

    As I said, hope, and I'm not holding my breath for it. ;)
     
  4. joelypolly macrumors 6502

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  5. bossxii macrumors 68000

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    #5
    3G... Don't see this happening with the likes of Verizon moving to LTE over the next 18 months and if the only offer it ATT heads would roll!

    If an 11" shows up $799 to 899. The more likely improved 13" $999 base to $1399. This all based on the MBA moving to flash storage vs SSD drives.
     
  6. kingsal thread starter macrumors member

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    #6
    I hope you're right about $799, though I don't see Apple pricing a laptop for lower than the top-end iPad model. If a price point approaching that ever happens, I think it's more likely to be in Apple's back pocket as a later "price drop" than now.

    $999 is more likely, I think. $799 would mean that Apple would have to produce it for about $440 to hit the average margins.
     
  7. revelated macrumors 6502a

    revelated

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    #7
    You guys are all delirious if you think Apple is releasing a MacBook Air for lower than $1299, regardless of how big or small it is.
     
  8. bossxii macrumors 68000

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    #8
    Probably right, and logical, but its fun to toss a few darts :)
     
  9. bossxii macrumors 68000

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    #9
    I will bet you a virtual cheeseburger... 11" MBA will be less than that, probably $999. :)
     
  10. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    I tend to agree.

    Perhaps there will be a new product meant to replace the white MacBook with basically the same specs. Remove the optical drive, fit with a new smaller aluminum unibody case and voila, new product at $999. The Air could remain, with a spec bump and slightly lower prices.
     
  11. revelated macrumors 6502a

    revelated

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    #11
    Come on now.

    SSD = $300
    Screen = $300
    Case = $150

    Right there and not including processor and other components I'm already at $750. Processor is going to be around $150-$200. RAM if they go 2GB on the 1066 is going to be $100. I'm already over $1k and we know how Apple likes to ramp profit margins.

    It's not happening. In any case they wouldn't dare go so close to the highest priced iPad. $1299 is the lowest you'll see and I think that's even stretching it. I say $1399 for a low end model, $1799 for a high end model and MAYBE some BTO.
     
  12. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Sounds like you're pulling out retail prices and then talking of margins on top of that? I agree that the MacBook Air will probably not drop to $999. I also think an 11.6" MacBook at $1300-1400 would be ridiculed. So I'm baffled and really wonder if any of the recent rumors are true.
     
  13. kingsal thread starter macrumors member

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    #13
    LOL Apple doesn't pay close to those amounts. Those are retail prices. Apple has relationships with suppliers and a lot of market power. They definitely don't pay $100 for 2gb of RAM. And $300 for a screen? No way!
     
  14. revelated macrumors 6502a

    revelated

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    #14
    That didn't stop them from insane pricing on the current Air.


    Then explain to me why the current MacBook Air retails at $1799, and you'll see the point I'm making.
     
  15. kingsal thread starter macrumors member

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    #15
    I'll give it a shot: It's an extremely high-margin low-volume product. Apple doesn't sell a lot of them, so the price they ones that they do sell for hefty margins. There is no way the production cost is close to $1800 for it.

    Look at it this way: Why does the iPad retail for $499 (starting)? Its component structure is pretty similar to the rumored Air, and probably a little more expensive for Apple because of the supply issues they were having. By your calculation @ around $300 for a screen (remember iPad is MultiTouch too), how is Apple able to sell it for only $200 more (processor, case, chip, memory, marketing, admin overhead, etc) and still make a margin somewhere in the low 30% range?
     
  16. techfreak85 macrumors 68040

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    #16
    The current Air actually has much beefier internals than the iPad.
     
  17. 314631 macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    The new MacBook Air will start at just $1399.
     
  18. iMacmatician macrumors 601

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  19. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    In early 2008, netbooks weren't yet big on the scene. The MacBook Air was introduced as a premium lightweight version of the MacBook. At the time, I guess Apple could get away with it. Since then, Air prices have dropped substantially but IMO they're still overpriced when compared to other MacBooks.

    The question in my mind is what can Apple leave out, that will allow them to significantly reduce the price? This is their way, after all...the cheaper products are typically missing stuff, i.e., the superdrive in low end MacBooks a while back. :D

    I believe Apple will introduce a new MacBook tomorrow in the $999 price range. But it's likely not going to be comparable to the current Air. It'll probably be either a redesigned low end MacBook or a stripped Air that's barely better than an iPad with a keyboard.
     
  20. jamesryanbell macrumors 68020

    jamesryanbell

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    #20
    If the specs are right, I'm going to buy one.

    Having said that, I will absolutely DIE laughing if they cap it at 2GB of RAM.

    Why? Because I don't have to have one, and I think it'd be the most hilarious disappointment ever.
     
  21. r2fa3l macrumors regular

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    #21
    $999 for the 11"
    its like the iPad [$499] with a keyboard lol
    Steve is making everything cheaper and cheaper.
    As mentioned above. They order supplies by millions. They get discounts.
     
  22. appleguy123 macrumors 603

    appleguy123

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    #22
    We will see. I'm going to bet that the 11.6" will be positioned as the affordable portable from Apple.
     
  23. cleric macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    $2999 13.3" 4gb of ram 256gb ssd just to mess with Scottsdale Steve made this laptop.
     
  24. bossxii macrumors 68000

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    #24
    As stated, the prices your quoted are so over inflated as costs it's not worth going over every one. However if you have followed sites like iFixit that tears down all the iDevices and gives pricing estimates it is very possible for Apple to build the various iPods, iPads, MBP etc.. at a fraction of the retail costs to consumers. The MBA is a niche product, Apple could be making 60, 70 or 100%+ margins on a low volume product.

    Apple builds many of it's components and the economy of scale when buying millions of any one part makes it very, very cheap. 300 for a screen? More like 75 to 125 range at best. I still stand by $999 if the release an 11" MBA. Whip out the CC and call up Samsung, I bet they would sell you 5 million of whatever widget you like at a fraction of a "retail" price that you are quoting.
     
  25. revelated macrumors 6502a

    revelated

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    #25
    I know that and you know that and that's exactly my point. Apple does not price its machines close to production cost. It throws margins in there so that suckers will buy it and complain later about how underpowered it is. That's exactly why I say it can never be anywhere close to the price point of the highest iPad or the white MacBook, because then there'd be no point in buying the Air except to "look cool".

    The Air's peer is the 13" MacBook Pro. That laptop can be had for around $1200. Apple knows that people will buy the Air just for how it looks even if it under the hood it's a piece of junk. Therefore, it doesn't make logical sense to price the thing cheaper than the 13" MacBook Pro and nowhere near the price of the white MacBook - because both machines are superior in spec to the Air except for the SSD.

    They already have an affordable portable...the white MacBook. Unless they plan on discontinuing that model in favor of the Air (something I think they should do but doubt they will), I think a lot of people are going to end up disappointed tomorrow.

    I'm calling it, like I have already: Low end at around $1399. High end at $1799. Apple touting how they "made it stronger" without increasing its price yet managed to drop the price of the entry level model. Same crap they pulled with the 13" MacBook Pro.
     

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