Should Apple lower entry level pricing?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by Mad Mac Maniac, May 21, 2012.

  1. Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #1
    Obviously Apple has been doing very well lately... namely from it's line of iOS devices and yet it's line on Mac's hasn't really seen similar growth in the last century. Sure it's slowly creeping up 2% and 3% at a time, but still has a worldwide marketshare of around 8%. Opposed to the huge marketshare of iPhone and iPad (I believe they are somewhere around 35% and 65% respectively).

    So what's the main difference? Do Mac's just suck relative to iOS devices?? No of course not. Mac's cost a significant premium over competing PC's opposed to iPhones and iPads are competitively priced with it's competition. Sure you can argue the materials/construction/OS etc of the Mac make the price worth it. But the iPad still has all those things and is able to remain price competitive.

    Apple has become hugely popular, by means of iPhone and iPad, and I think it is time for them to capitalize on some of that success with the Mac. They are already making the iOS to Mac transition extremely seamless in ML by bringing similar design and features to the Mac and by seamlessly synching it through iCloud. I think the time is ripe for Apple to shake up the industry even more by refreshing the MacBook line's with extremely competitive prices and then deploy a huge marketing push to the iOS users showing the new Mac with its new low prices.

    I know we had a rumor about the 11" mba price starting at $799... I think that'd be great, but I think Apple could push the envelope even more and start pricing at $699. Then start the 13" mba at $899. I know that really sounds crazy for Apple, but I think it is feasible. Plus the previous entry-level 13" macbook was priced at $999.

    I know there will be tradeoffs, namely lower specs and the retina display, but honestly I think the display on the mba is pretty beautiful already. If you need retina, that should be a pro feature. And the mba will still have a price range for those that need a high spec device. Now that the "macbook" is gone the mba is supposed to be the consumer, entry level device. Let's treat it as one.

    What do you think? Should Apple keep the same prices and keep the slow creep of 2-3% or do you think they should aggressively push into their iOS user base and try to take a huge marketshare chunk from windows with lower prices as microsoft releases their risky win8?
     
  2. Skoopman macrumors 6502

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    #2
    Why would Apple "push in the iOS user base" with a lower price point? That doesn't make any sense. Mac and iOS devices are not competing with one another.

    As for the rest, I think Apple should price the 11" entry model at 799 and the 13" at 999. Any lower than that will decrease the profit way too much for Apple. If they price the entry model at 799 I fear apple might not upgrade anything besides USB 3 and a new processor. RAM could remain at 2 GB, which is enough for many users and hey, ML could be less memory hungry or let's say manage memory even better than Lion, who knows.
     
  3. Redbull916 macrumors member

    Redbull916

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    #3
    I think it should stay exactly where it is.
    Premium price for a premium device, as this is what generates desire.

    If Porsche made a budget car at Kia prices (with similar spec), the volume of 911 sales would start to drop as the exclusivity and desirability of the brand is compromised.

    Put the price up if anything!
     
  4. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #4
    Exactly. But look at it this way, (I don't know the exact statistics, so I'm going to reference my earlier estimated statistics). 8% of the world (of computer uers) has a Mac. 35% of the world (of smartphone users) has an iPhone. Therefore at LEAST 27% of the smartphone marketshare uses an iPhone but doesn't have a Mac (assuming 100% of Mac users have an iPhone, which of course isn't true). Can you imagine if Apple could get half of them to convert to Mac? Even 10%? If Apple could convert just 10% of those users they would double their PC marketshare. (yes I understand none of that is exact because # of PC's vs # of smartphones is different, but the general point is correct)
     
  5. EwanMcTeagle macrumors 6502

    EwanMcTeagle

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    #5
    Of course I'm all for it since where I live (Poland, but Europe in general) Macbooks are more expensive than in the US - entry level MBP is $1500. That's 5300 PLN (Polish Zloty) which is roughly 2000 PLN ($500+ more than a comparable PC).
    I've browsed a popular Polish computer selling chain (Sferis.pl) and most comparable notebooks (13-13,4", Intel i5, 4+ GB RAM, Intel graphics) are that much (around $500) cheaper than the entry level MBP:
    http://www.sferis.pl/kategoria/135-...][Core™+i5]=1&o[1017][Intel®]=1&o[941][Tak]=1

    But seems similar on the amazon.com, although the HP or Sony aren't that much cheaper:
    • HP ProBook 5330m LJ463UT 13.3' LED Notebook - Core i5 i5-2520M 2.50GHz. - $1200

    • Sony VAIO VPCSA43FX/SI 13.3 Inch Laptop (Platinum Silver) - $1173

    • Toshiba Portégé R835-P56x 13.3-Inch LED Laptop (Magnesium Blue) - $750

    • ASUS U31SG-AS51 13.3-Inch Laptop - $629

    So it all depends on what you want and if you're willing to pay extra for the brand and for the finish material - plastic, magnesium, alluminum.
     
  6. KnightWRX macrumors Pentium

    KnightWRX

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    #6
    iOS devices are in markets that are new and growing exponentially.

    Macs are in a market that is old and mature, with minimal growth.

    Do you really need to ask why the growth numbers between both platforms aren't the same ? It really is just about market realities.
     
  7. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

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    #7
    No, if you can't afford an Apple computer at the prices they are now, then you shouldn't be buying one in the first place. They aren't expensive when you do the math and figure that they'll last you much longer than the typical Windows based machine.

    You also have to understand that a MacBook Pro is more than just a motherboard with a hard drive. There's sensors to make sure the hard drive survives a drop, there's an IR receiver, an all the little parts add up in cost. The keyboard alone, $100, the screen $300+.

    And it's like buying a fancy car. If you don't take care of it, you're only wasting your time. I have seen people's iPods and iPhones all beat up from being thrown around. Do we really want to see those same people at the Genius Bar complaining about their $699 Macs falling apart?
     
  8. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #8
    I think this is the kind of elitist attitute that gives Mac users a bad name. I hate when I see people whining on here things like "wahhh I can't believe Apple allows iPhones and iPads to be sold at WALMART! That is where all the poor people go! They don't deserve Apple products!" Yes, Apple is doing fine with pricing their Macs with very high end, expensive pricing. But I think the success of the iPhone and iPad proves that Apple has a lot of mass market appeal and if the Mac is priced more competitively their sales will skyrocket. Who are you to dictate whether a person should be able to buy a Mac or not? You think you are better than someone because you have more money than them?

    And the "they last longer" thing isn't really all that true. My late 2007 whitebook is much more beat up than my wife's dell which she bought refurbished in 2007. And I take care of my computer too. Her Dell works as well as my Mac also.

    and you may notice I'm not talking about their pro line. I'm talking about the supposed consumer line. The mba. When the redesigned 13" mba was released the bill of materials supposedly cost around $700, and I'm sure that has gone down since then. I know there is a lot more (design, software, manufacturing, etc) that goes into it, but $200+ profit on each entry level mba sold is do-able. Where Apple really makes the profit is on the higher spec models.
     
  9. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #9

    Ummm, I have Pentium III Towers still running as File servers, I have an old Pentium 4 box that I still use as a media center ( yep, its got a nice video card in it, it'll play 1080P nicely ), I have a Pentium II Laptop, still works perfectly.

    I don't know where so many Mac guys get this idea that PC Hardware doesn't last, I have some machines that are pushing 15 Years ( REALLY old stuff ) and still work just fine. Sure, really cheap PC hardware sucks. But most people don't buy that.

    And if Mac can't put together a reliable laptop for 700 dollars, then that says something about them. I have laptops from crap brands like Dell and HP that I beat the living crap out of, and some of them are pushing 8 years old, and they run just fine.
     
  10. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #10
    Sorry but this is just a case of drank the kool-aid. You suggest many of these features are unique to the mac. Some other manufacturers have tried to make laptops that are resistant to spills. Note how many spill threads we have on here :). They do not necessarily last longer than a Windows machine. Either one can last a long time, and macs are not necessarily supported longer. I use Apple too, but that doesn't make it a good idea to spread bad information.

    They charge what they can get for them. You're right that the snobbish attitude is silly, and I hate the suggestion that they will last longer. It influences too many people to purchase them based on that premise, then I see many on here complaining when their expensive machines die outside of warranty before they're prepared to purchase a new one. I will say that in the 15" range, for something from another brand that I'd actually want (quad cpu, decent graphics, decent display) it's also expensive.

    Apple PR repeated it enough times, and somehow Windows 95 era stereotypes still persist. I only own macs currently, but I've worked with a pretty wide variety of computers, and I don't buy into the silly stereotypes.
     
  11. ditzy macrumors 68000

    ditzy

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    #11
    While it would be great for consumers if the price of macs went down. It would not be great for apple, as increasing marketshare would ultimately decrease profit share. Which is actually very healthy for apple, while the same could not be said for its competitors.
    It would also mean that apple would have to get involved in the race to the bottom, which is actually bad for the consumer as well as for apple. Apple could do what you suggest, but I ultimately think that it would be a bad thing.
     
  12. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #12
    Why? Are they not selling enough computers with a large profit margin? Market share is does not necessarily mean profitability. It may mean you are selling 10x as many units at a loss as your competitor. Apple owns the $1000+ market segment for computers. Dropping their prices would simply mean that they would sell more computers and make less profit. Not a recipe for financial success, I would think.

    Also, Apple has been known to sell iDevices in order to sell more Mac computers. In the Jobs biography, Jobs said he moved a whack of advertizing money from the Mac side to the iPod side and promoted the heck out of iPods in order to sell more Macs. In those early years the advertizing budget for iPods probably soaked up any profits those devices were making.
     
  13. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #13
    This is not a Kia vs Porsche kind thing with an Apple.

    Most people can afford 1500 dollars for a computer, which can buy you an iMac or Mac Mini or Macbook AIr.

    The main reason I don't think alot of somewhat serious users, like gamers, or home video editors, go for PCs over Macs, is for 1500 dollars, that imac will perform terribily compared to a 1500 dollar PC.

    PC's have much better Power+Compatibilty per dollar than a Mac.
     
  14. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #14
    Agreed. Macs are not for people who need "power" generally speaking. I thinking specifically gamers, because I've read some posts from video editors who have written persuasively that the right Mac can handle video editing just fine.

    But gamers are a breed apart, and their needs are different. And Macs are made for them. But then again, neither are Lenovos. So it's not a PC/Mac thing, it's simply which users a particular HW manufacturer targets. Macs are made for the masses, and for small businesses. They are plenty of computer for 95% of consumers. Gamers are small segment, compared to masses, and Apple has chosen to not make products for them.

    It's not a Porsche/Kia thing - it's a Minivan/Pick-up thing. Minivans for families - does almost everything a family needs. Pick-ups for those people who need to haul cargo.

    People just need to pick the right tool for the job...
     
  15. G51989, May 22, 2012
    Last edited: May 22, 2012

    G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #15
    Gaming isn't as tiny as you might think it is, its still a huge industry.

    Like the iMac, I think it only comes with 4GB of ram and an i5? And a mid range display for 1200 dollars? Really? Thats throwing your money away imo.

    Macs are not made for the Masses, or small business's. Otherwise they would offer a more affordable model. And would have more than sub 10% of the market. What happened to something in the eMacs price range? That would be very competitive.

    The issue is that, at least for your average computer user, sure you could use a base line iMac. But, you can get something just as powerful, with Windows 7, decent amount of ram, and even a decent GPU for 600-700 dollars. Why would an average user buy an iMac when he could go buy a Dell that will perform better for a much lower price?

    Thats kinda my point. Why doesn't Apple bring out something along the lines of the eMac again? Could be a lower priced version of an iMac, sell it for 699. For 699, you can still have a decent panel, a nicer plastic case. Decent amount of processor power, decent amount of memory.

    Why not? Sure the profit margin wouldn't be as high. But if they could get into that price point, they could actually compete with Dell or HP for the consumer market.

    The " windows crash's all the time and sucks " days have been over since the Day Windows XP came out. Apple CANNOT compete on the home computer market until they have a Sub 800 dollar offering. Sure the profit per machine will be lower. But they would sell a ton of them.

    Low Cost Machine+Compatibility with Windows Software= Sales.
     
  16. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #16
    "Huge" when looked at on its own, but not so much when compared to the rest of the computer market. I'm talking about serious gamers who spend serious time gaming. In most cases they are going to be building or customizing their own rigs anyway. For the not so serious gamer... well, wasn't a year or so ago that PC Magazine found that a Mac running Boot Camp was actually the best PC for running Windows? Apparently Macs weren't so underpowered after all.
    Mid to high-range display, actually.
    Price has nothing to do with whether it made for the masses, it's the feature set that makes it attractive to the masses or not.
    Something like a third of the market at post-secondary institutions (which includes way more community colleges than Ivy League schools, btw). And unlike general PCs, Mac market share is increasing. So.... yeah I'd say the masses are finding that Macs work well for them. I can't speak in general terms, but in the three communities I am familiar with Macs are installed in about a third of businesses. So obviously there are some small businesses that think that Macs are appropriate tools (and appropriately priced) for them.
    You forgot the monitor, keyboard, and mouse there....
    Why? They would eat their own market. Sell a low profit item instead of a high profit one. Business success does not necessarily mean high market share.
    So why do it?
    They are already competing with Dell and HP. And doing very nicely too. Let Dell and HP scrap and scrape for few dollars profit fighting for sales from customers who make purchasing decisions solely on price, while Apple sells high profit items to customers who have more discerning needs.

    You may find Macs affordable, but Apple doesn't need every sale. They just want sales from people who want Apple's solutions to their problems.
     
  17. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #17
    " Huge " in that its a Multi Billion dollar industry ( last thing I saw said 15+Billion, how is that not a market to look into ) How is that not something to look into?

    iMac? Mid range, that's all I'll give you. Its not a high end display, in any way shape or form, at least for what I do. ( I do work for CBS, if thats any indication ) It looks great for most people I'll give you that. But with the terrible color reproduction and gloss, I'll take a real High end NEC any day, at least at work. And I OWN a brand new iMac. So I know exactly how the screen looks ( as I'm typing on it now lol ). Now Im not saying its a bad display, but as far as professional work, that display would get laughed out of our department. For the home user and my daily driving? Its great, anyone who does graphic work? joke at best.

    Alright, I'll bite. What " feature set " makes it so attractive? Esp at that crazy inflated price? I can't think of a single thing a Mac can do that a Windows 7 machine of decent specs can't. Not one thing.

    Where that market is, doesn't matter. I don't care if its at post Ivy League schools, or in a trailer park. And their marketshare has stayed at below 10%^, and so far shows not very many signs it will reach that. Windows 7 is just as good as OSX, and far more compatible. Never Under estimate Microsoft.

    No, I'm talking, an all in one for 700 or 800 dollars even, it doesn't need a metal case, or an iMac display, you can get a decent plastic case for 700 or 800 dollars. Decent specs to, why not offer a true low-mid end display, i5 processor, 6gb of Ram, 1TB hard drive, built in speakers, plastic mouse and keyboard for 800? The sales would be great.

    No, they would never eat their own Marketshare, someone who is interested in a 700-800 dollar computer most likely is not interested in an underpowered iMac for 1200-3000. Offer them a lower priced model. They might bite.

    Lower profit margin? Who cares? They would sell so many of them, they would still make a huge chunk of change. It would open the market up, big time for Apple.

    They are competing with Dell and HP? Are you on crack dude? No offense, but Dell and HP dominate the Workstation and Home computer market, and the server market. Scarping a few dollars? Sure their profit margin isn't as high as Apples, but they make very good money. If they didn't make good money, they wouldn't be huge computer makers.

    Apple could make a TON of money off a 700-800 dollar All in one, and they are a company, they care about making money. Nothing else.

    Right now, I think the iMac is one of the biggest Ripoffs for a typical user, not that I am or anything. Money in that small of an amount isn't to much of an object for me.

    I have a couple of PowerpC Macs, and the new iMac, and I do love them, Hell my laptop is a Pismo G3 with the 900mzh processor upgrade and an SSD hard drive. I love it, its retro, cool, well made, and great.

    What would be so bad about APple putting together a Budget all in one? I make good money so I don't care.

    Average Consumer:

    * Looks at an base iMac for 1200 dollars. *
    * Looks at a 700-800 Dollar Dell Tower+ moniter. Has more ram, a faster processor, and more options for a video card *
    Which will he buy? 9/10 it's gonna be the dell.

    Apple could expand its markethshare so much with an affordable all in one.
     
  18. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #18
    Never said it wasn't big.... you should look up the term "relative". Gaming is a specialist market. Building computer desks is also a multi-billion market... it's just not one that Apple participates in.
    Never said it was high-end. It is the better end of mid-range, if that makes more sense. But it's not a cheap monitor. I work with world class professional photographers if that helps. Some of whom need truly high-end monitors, and some of whom find they can get what they want from an iMac screen. The limiting factor has always been ink-to-paper.
    Not terrible colour reproduction.... though it's not the best either. The gloss is not an issue for people who set up their work areas to accommodate the gloss. But, as I've said before, it's not a "high- end" monitor... but it's not as terrible as you claim. It's a solid monitor. And if you were buying that same quality of non-Apple monitor separately you'd not be saving any money with a Windows PC.
    Never said it did more than a Windows PC. I've always said that essentially they do the same things..... it's how they do it that makes one more attractive over the other.

    You must mistake me for someone who wants one platform to "win"... (you might look in the mirror....) However, I recognize that each are tools that solve people's problems. People need to the pick the tool that suits them. I do post to these threads when someone makes factually inaccurate claims about how "over-priced" a Mac is, and then suggests that Apple becomes a charity and subsidizes their products for people who can't afford them.
    Let's talk again in 3 years.....
    The closest Dell I could configure for that price had an integrated GPU (unlike the iMac), less RAM, half the HDD, no NIC, no Wifi, and a smaller screen, and I couldn't figure out whether it was a low-end or mid-range panel. Just saying... but the time you add all of those parts back in....
    You'll forgive me if I don't invest in any companies you start? eh?
    No. It would put them squarely into the market where every dollar of profit is hard won. Where margins are razor thin, and where a decrease in that margin by even a tiny amount makes a huge difference. Where companies sell some things at a break-even price in just to make a few dollars on selling accessories. A market where the only thing that matters to a consumer is price. Apple seems to be fine not going there. IBM got out of that market because they could see the writing on the wall.
    Sure - combined they push Apple down the list... but they are two different companies. Look at Apple's figures in relation to either of them individually, and "dominate" is not the word I'd use. Especially since one of them lost 29% share last year.
     
  19. ReanimationN macrumors 6502a

    ReanimationN

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    #19
    That's supposed to be the market the Mac Mini targets. However, with the entry level Mini's awful specs, most people are just going to pass on it. The base Mini in Australia costs $AU600- for that price, I could get a machine with an equivalent processor, 8GB of RAM, and an SSD (120GB) put together by my local computer store. Their budget builds are second-to-none, so many people in my area love them, and to top it off- their warranty is longer than Apple's.
     
  20. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #20
    Alright, I misunderstood. I'll give you that.

    No it's not a cheap monitor. And I see your point, we do have photographers who do use iMacs in our department, but a vast majority of them highly dislike the gloss. Its an good monitor, I would know. I have one. But its not super high end like I hear some people saying. And that gloss DOES get VERY annoying.

    Your right, its not a terrible monitor, I think I am just nitpicking because of the monitor I have on my work station, which was well...a decent chunk of change. I'm glad I didn't buy it. Sometimes it's just hard to come home to the Imac monitor, glossssssss. Might make me sound tarded, but I have an Apple Cinema 30 inch plugged into my GAMEPC Gaming rig, its pretty sex.


    Alright, I thought that's what you meant. I do not however see what makes a Mac more " attractive " other than how they look, and I do like how they look. Though I do have to say. I do think Apple's computers have gone downhill, one of my other Macs is a decked out Dual 2.7gzh G5 with 16gb of ram, 7800GS and all that jazz. Running 10.5. Probably the most solid computer I've ever owned, 10.7 on my iMac seems to have far more stability issues.

    Maybe it's not that Macs are over priced per say, but I think for most people they are. Average consumer Joe looks for bigger numbers, and a lower price, he has no reason to buy an Apple over a Dell or HP or whatever, he'll go with the better specs for less money most of the time.

    Which is why I do think Apple could gain some ground in a lower end machine. And btw, I don't want any platform to " win ". Seeing as I own PCs and Apples. I have nothing to gain from that, my personal opinion is that Windows is a better platform for most people, including myself. Though I would not have said that in the Pre Windows XP days. I would have recommended Macs to people more than anything back then.

    And its not suggesting a charity, I think a vast majority of people can afford 1500 dollars for a decent iMac, they just have no need for it. So they don't buy it. They buy a PC tower or something along those lines, I just see it as an untapped market for Apple. That I do think would be worth looking into.

    Not to sound like a dick, but I've been hearing that for a LONG time from a lot of Hardcore Mac users. As it stands, OSX currently has no advantages over Windows, until it does. And until it becomes more available than it is now, I don't see it making a massive jump. Hell, 10.7 so far for me has been more unstable than my 10.5 G5 and my Windows 7 machine at home. Not to say its unstable, its not. I just tend to run into more issues with my imac.

    I didn't say iMac, I was talking about the Mac that doesn't exist in that price range ( the Mac Mini doesn't count. That thing sucks. If your interested in a Mac Mini, I always tell people. Get a used iMac, or work harder and buy a new iMac, much better computer ).

    As far as iMac pricing goes though, via Dell. For the same money as a Base Level iMac, you get an i7 3.40gzh, 2TB hard drive, all your media card readers, 8GB of DDR3 ( they'll bump you up to 12gb for like 40 something bucks. ) Video card is a HD 7570 1GB GDDR5, which has twice the memory of the baseline card in the iMac, and its faster. Also inculdes a 24inch LED monitor, though I'm not sure about how it looks, never seen one in real life ( I don't venture into best buys or things like that often )

    For me, the XPS would be the clear winner, its more expandable, its more powerful, it has just as good as a warranty, Its more expandable as well, also I don't believe you can swap out the video card in a iMac, I'm pretty sure they're mobile GPUs. Built right into the logic board.

    Thats NOT saying that the iMac is a bad computer, its not. I wouldn't have blown all the money I did on my iMac if it was a bad computer. Its a great computer, but I just don't think its for most people when there are things like an XPS of what I just listed for the same money.


    A massive huge profit margin isn't always super duper important, McDonalds makes almost nothing on every product they sell, and Toyotas profit Margin isn't close to that of Ferrari or Porsche. But they sell enough of them to make good profit.

    I do see what your saying, and you make a good point. However, there is still profit to be made, yes they sometimes do sell things at break even, however they are still making a profit on almost everything. And I think replacing the mac mini, with a mini tower, or lower end all in one could bring in some good money. I do know people who do like Macs, but don't make the kind of money you or I most likely make. So a cheaper model would tempt them, and they probably wouldn't care if it had a plastic case and didn't have the latest everything ( which hell the current iMac doesn't have the latest of anything hardware wise in it )

    There are many many many more PC makers than Dell and HP as you know, to many to list. Though you already knew that. Those two are probably just the most well known.

    Apple won't crack that 10% marketshare cap until they make OSX more available, or bring out a lower priced machine, or let clones be made again. ( bad idea imo ), or until they start making servers, or decent work stations.

    And none of that is dissing Apple, they are an awesome company that I would love to see do better in the home computer market, and its a company you want to see do better. They put out a great product.
     
  21. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #21
    I agree that most average consumers are looking at price first, and then some superficial spec number that they don't really understand in any case.

    But so what? Apple doesn't want those consumers. Apple is interested in selling to people who want a package of SW and HW and a well integrated 'experience', and who find value in that packaging. It's hard to put a value on that 'value added' experience - except that it is worth what people are willing to pay for it. If you are a consumer who doesn't want the Apple experience/package then the value of a Mac will appear higher. (And - to be clear - I don't think the Apple experience is absolutely better than the competition. But it is for me and many of the people I know for various reasons).
    But they need those sales like they need to sell computer desks. It is a market that they don't want or need. It's a tough market, and full of risk. And full of consumers who won't appreciate the experience of a tightly controlled HW & SW package. One of the ways that budget PCs keep prices low is to swap in a cheaper part as they become available. That is to say... if you are comparing two Generic PCs that are the same model and appear to be identical, if they were manufactured several months apart then it's likely you will find at least one chip/part/bus is different. It still works - but it's different. And the OS/Driver package needs to take this into account. Apple doesn't tend to do that. And since they control the OS as well as the HW it means they can integrate the HW and OS much more tightly.

    One of the things that drives us photographers crazy are Dell monitors. There are some mid-priced models that can may use a very very good mid-quality panel (better than the panels Apple uses) - or a very good low-quality panel. Dell swaps the panels used based on the price it can get for a shipment. For the average consumer, makes no difference. For the photographer - it makes a huge difference. Apple doesn't tend to do that because they want the 'experience' to be a good one regardless of when you buy a Mac.
    For most of the people I know, it's the other way 'round. And probably explains why in my circle Macs are likely at 50%+ ....
    But they're not spending that much for a Mac... they are buying an integrated package. If you need the package, then it's worth it. If you don't need it the package then it's silly to spend that much.
    I would disagree, for the work I have experience with.
    My primary work is photography - and honestly, whether I used Photoshop and Lightroom on OS X or Windows probably wouldn't make much difference. Except I am still running without an antivirus package on OS X.

    However... I do a lot of non-primary work, and I can not see how I can be nearly as productive on a Windows machine. I do all of my own promo, website, and graphics work. The OS X integration makes creating these materials incredibly easy. I have a consistent look across all these materials because OS X allows the tools I use to work the same way.

    I spend time (probably too much time :) , but that's one of the things about a small community) working with 3 non-profit groups. As part of the work we create documents, and other similar materials. Macs and Windows (no Linux) are represented about evenly. We 'Mac-heads' are constantly having to say our Windows using colleagues "It's a Mac thing" when we are asked how did something. We don't mean that meanly... but we are just able to do things with the documents (send them, share them, etc) during a meeting that our Windows using friends don't seem to able to do easily. For instance during a meeting I set up an ad-hoc network on my MBP so we could swap a bunch of documents around. Most of the Macs just picked it up, and I could very easily explain to the my fellow Mac users - in about 3 steps - how to join and share their Public Folders.

    I know Windows can do this too, at least I assume it can, but nobody there could do it. I spent some time trying to work it out with the Windows Guru at the table, and we finally had to resort to a sneaker-net because none of the Windows users could figure out how to join. I have to assume that Windows can do this...it's a mature and good OS. But it doesn't matter if 'knows' how to do this if a Windows User can't figure it out.

    That is just one example of how I find OS X makes my life easier on a day to day basis. It's just easy to use, and it just works (for me). I could figure out how to do this with Windows - but I'd rather spend my time being productive - or finishing my work sooner and harvesting my garlic.

    You may want to go back and look at market share numbers over the past few years, and the trends - even without including the iPad. Apple is increasing it's market share year over year year - by solid single digits and sometimes low double digits - while the over-all PC market has matured and has stabilized. The established PC makers are not trending up, but are fighting hard and stealing market share from each other. Some years they go up, and some years they lose. HP almost left the market altogether.
     
  22. DollaTwentyFive macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2010
    Location:
    Parts Unknown
    #22
    It's a premium brand like American Express, Rolex, Starbucks, LVMH, Montblanc.

    It is more expensive, but in my experience the products are superior as is the service. Service is key. Good luck getting decent service on an Asus.

    I think that if people are willing and able to pay for premium brands that provide exceptional products and services, then those brands are justified in charging more.

    This isn't meant to sound "elitist" My fear would be that if Apple had a lower price entry-level device, the quality of service would necessarily go down. I don't think the increase in volume at a lower revenue per unit would offset the higher support costs resulting from the additional units. Therefore something has to give. Either quality or service.

    There was an interesting tear down on the iPhone charger and how it is way over engineered. I appreciate those details.
     
  23. TSE macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    #23
    Apple might very well lower the prices of the MacBook Airs if they stick AMD Trinity APUs in there to compete with Intel Ultrabooks.

    Besides that, no. Apple shouldn't lower prices. Why would they? Apple products sell like hotcakes, lowering prices wouldn't do a thing and might hurt "premium" image Apple has going on.
     
  24. G51989, May 25, 2012
    Last edited: May 25, 2012

    G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Location:
    NYC NY/Pittsburgh PA
    #24
    Yes, they do look at price first.

    Maybe my view is a little different, I just think Apple could get away with a lower end model and have some more money, after all they are in it to make money. But I do think your right that it might make sense for them to stay away.

    I think its personal taste for the Apple " experience " is exactly like a Windows " experence, " but with a more annoying UI, Sometimes I"m just not sure why I bought my iMac, but I do like. Awesome living room computer, GF loves it lol. It does under perform for the money I think, but its pretty cool.

    I think this entire thing boils down to personal taste. For me, I do like OSX. But I've been using Windows since as long as I can remember, I pretty much know how to do everything with it.

    OSX for me is cool, I do use it ( as I am right now ), for me. I could never use it all day at work. Some of the ways it works are just to funky.


    I did, its very very slow growth. But it is MUCH better than how Apple was...sitting at less than 2%, is it growth? Yes. Is it a threat to Windows or PC makers? I don't think so.

    I do love how Apple has come such a long way, it went from a nearly bankrupt company that needed a ton of loans, and a cash handout from Microsoft in the form of stock purchase ( it wasn't a TON of money by corporate standards, 150 million. But Microsoft investing in Apple gave the computer world a ' Apple is still a viable company ' and go ahead and keep developing. Even if it was a court ordered purchase lol ), that couldn't sell a hooker to a house arrested charlie sheen, to the most valuable company in the world in less than 20 years, big jump.

    Just couple things.

    I do not think an Apple computer is the choice for most people. This " experience " you speak of, is not something I think Joe Consumer is after, I think most people do, email, browsing, youtube/netflix/ do some light photo editing and maybe play some light games. All of which a 500-700 dollar Dell Tower will do just fine. So I think your right, if your not after that " experience " , Apple is not for you. Which is why I tend to not recommend Apple Computers to anyone, esp if they don't know what they are all about.

    For me personally, I look for high performance, easy upgrading, and tons of compatibility, so for me, an Apple isn't something I would/could use as a serious machine. But I think for some people. it could be.

    The only thing I really dislike about Apple, is the well. Lack of quality compared to their older models. My iMac has more stability issues than my Win 7 or XP machines. I have a Decked out PowerMac G5, that I used VERY heavily, loaded the thing up to max for hours on end, running 10.5. NEVER had a crash, never had a lockup. Can't say the same for 10.7. 10.7 is still an awesome OS. I just hope they fix its issues. OS's are supposed to get more stable as time goes on, not worse. ( I'm looking at you Windows Vista, Mac OS8/9. System 7, Windows ME, Windows 95 lol )

    American Express? They've been sending me offers since I turned 18 years ago, anyone with a half assed credit score can get one.
    Rolex? Apple isn't on the same level as that. A cheap Rolex goes for 8 Grand. You could buy a couple of Mac Pros for that.
    Starbucks? 2 dollars for a cup of coffee?

    Apple isn't a " premium brand ", in the sense that " Rolex " is. " Premium brands ", can't be had at Wal Mart or a Cell Phone shop with a 2 year plan.

    Apple is a Mid-Higher end computer. Nothing more, nothing less. They are VERY well made Machines, and there are PCs out there that are just as well made.

    " exceptional " is depending on what you want, for me a Mac is ' ok ' or ' cool ', for my serious uses outside of daily driving, a Mac is not " exceptional " for me. Its " under powered ". It depends on your uses. There is no end all be all.

    And " exceptional " services? Are you kidding me? Apple drops support for things that aren't even 7 years old.
     

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