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DHagan4755

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Jul 18, 2002
2,206
5,944
Massachusetts
With Macs sales reportedly down 40%, and the supposed halting of M2 chip production because Apple had M2 aplenty, would Apple make the rare move of lowering its Mac pricing?

There are a couple of ways Apple could approach this.

First, with a new-to-the-lineup 15.5" MacBook Air imminent, there has been speculation on what this model will cost. Will Apple adopt the same approach as the iPad Pro pricing; i.e. $200 more for the larger display?

In the past, Apple's version of "lowering prices" is a play on value. With that in mind, Apple could discontinue the MacBook Air M1, slot the existing entry-level MacBook Air M2 in its place at $999, the new 15" MacBook Air 256GB SSD would be $1,199.

Likewise, the 13" MacBook Air 512GB SSD model could be dropped to $1,299, and the 15" MacBook Air 512GB SSD would be $1,499. This is Apple essentially saying you get a bigger display for the same price. Their version of a price cut. See how this game is played?

Or Apple could instead keep the line-up as is, but instead bump the SSDs on the models. $1,199 on the entry model would net you a 512GB SSD instead of 256GB and so on. Because of the way Apple silicon works with unified memory, it's less likely that Apple bumps the RAM to a 16GB default (even though they should).

What do you guys think will happen?
 

andrewstirling

macrumors 6502a
May 19, 2015
715
425
There may be different perceptions based on where you’re living. In the UK Apple have revised prices significantly upwards over the past 18 months so I can certainly see why sales have been poor. I’m as entrenched in the Apple
ecosystem as pretty much anyone but, the mini aside, I no longer consider the value of new macs in the uk to be reasonable / acceptable. I’m certainly upgrading at a far lower rate than I have done previously.
 

thenewperson

macrumors 6502a
Mar 27, 2011
961
871
Outside the US? Sure, they got a bit dumb with prices.

In the US? Nah
 
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Serge88

macrumors member
May 5, 2008
88
82
Mac sales are not really significant on the balance sheet. I don't think they will change the marketing strategy to sell more mac. They just have to wait for economy to recover from the recession.
 
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orionquest

Suspended
Mar 16, 2022
871
790
The Great White North
No, and nothing will happen. They might have a bad quarter but it will be blip on the radar. Release new product or updates and everyone will keep chasing those carrots.

Anywho this is a nothing burger.
 

Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
20,713
4,168
New Zealand
No,

they tried that in the '90 era. It was not successful. They almost went bankrupt.
90s Apple didn't have iOS as a money-maker. I suspect that Apple can afford to be a bit more "experimental" with the Mac range these days. Whether it actually happens is another matter entirely, of course!
 
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HouseLannister

macrumors 6502
Jun 8, 2021
309
512
Careful what you wish for. In 2013, Apple dropped the MacBook Air price $100 rather than making it retina like all their other offerings. Do you want it to be good or do you want it to be cheap?

Oh, and that 10 year old Air was $1099 for a 13”. $100 price hike in 10 years doesn’t seem too bad.
 

Analog Kid

macrumors G3
Mar 4, 2003
9,062
11,866
Business cycles are cyclical, and chasing them is for chumps.

Leaving aside all the stage shows, Jobs’ most important contribution to the revival of Apple was insisting that products be priced at what they’re worth and making sure Apple built enough of a nest egg that they could not only weather the lean times without making self destructive compromises, but accelerate out of them by taking advantage of better supplier arrangements and employee morale.
 

DHagan4755

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Jul 18, 2002
2,206
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Massachusetts
Apple doesn’t have sales at their store or website. Third party retailers often offer sales.
You're right. However I wasn't talking about Apple having a sale. I was talking about Apple lowering prices. There's a difference. Apple has lowered prices on their products in the past — the original MacBook Air debuted in 2008 for $1,799. Lest you forget!
 

DHagan4755

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Jul 18, 2002
2,206
5,944
Massachusetts
This isn’t the first time that Apple has faced this issue.
That point is very true. But the pandemic spawned a massive buying spree as people worked & learned from home. M1 was a massive upgrade in performance and battery life. M2 is a furtherance of the performance of M1 but not by the same leap as M1 was from Intel. Nonetheless the super cycle upgrade created a void because a lot of people are all set for now. M3 looks very promising, yet this won't probably be enough.

Apple does care what customers want. If they didn't Apple wouldn't have listened to customers who wanted HDMI, SD card slot, and the MagSafe charger. Everyone that had an older MacBook with MagSafe always went out of their way to comment, "I don't know why Apple ditched MagSafe, good to see they finally brought it back." If Apple didn't care, Apple would have kept the MacBook Pro wafer thin & let it run hot.

Everyone likes to look back fondly at the Steve Jobs' era but conveniently forgets about the QC issues of those "great products." The peeling paint & bad hinges on the Titanium PowerBook G4, Antenna Gate on the iPhone 4, the yellow tinted displays on MacBook Pros, the failing graphics cards in MacBook Pros, the hockey puck mouse, Mobile Me, and the list goes on.
 

GMShadow

macrumors 68000
Jun 8, 2021
1,909
7,731
Those estimates by 'analysts' are always inaccurate. Never trust data you didn't pay for.

Sales spiked due to lockdowns and such, and Apple also had a supercycle due to the M1 Pros. Now, they'll let things settle and figure out where the new baseline is. Reacting solely based off a few quarters is how companies go broke.
 

KaliYoni

macrumors 68000
Feb 19, 2016
1,740
3,845
Mac sales are not really significant on the balance sheet.

It's true Mac sales aren't a massive presence in Apple's revenues but balance sheets show assets and liabilities. Cash flows, sales, and other types of income all appear elsewhere on financial statements.
 

KaliYoni

macrumors 68000
Feb 19, 2016
1,740
3,845
Apple has lowered prices on their products in the past — the original MacBook Air debuted in 2008 for $1,799.

Don't forget, prices from previous years need to be adjusted for inflation.

(here is one place to do so: https://www.minneapolisfed.org/about-us/monetary-policy/inflation-calculator )

Now, I don't think, given Apple's current corporate strategy and brand positioning, Apple would "reduce prices". If, in the face of a prolonged global recession, Apple did decide to tactically make its products a better value temporarily for buyers, I think it would keep its premium pricing intact and give out long trial periods for various Apple online services or include Apple Store gift cards with new hardware. That way buyers do get more for their dollar/euro/yuan/et al. but Apple does not get subsequent buyers anchored on non-premium prices.
 
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DHagan4755

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Jul 18, 2002
2,206
5,944
Massachusetts
Don't forget, prices from previous years need to be adjusted for inflation.

(here is one place to do so: https://www.minneapolisfed.org/about-us/monetary-policy/inflation-calculator )
Good point although Apple dropped the price of the MacBook Air in 2009 by $300.


At the Back to the Mac event in 2010, Apple further reduced the price of the 13" MacBook Air with a redesign to $1,299.
 
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theluggage

macrumors 604
Jul 29, 2011
7,622
7,745
they tried that in the '90 era. It was not successful. They almost went bankrupt.
I think it is closer to "they tried that in the 90s because they were almost bankrupt.

You're talking about the decade when the Wintel monopoly peaked, PCs got technically advanced enough to actually compete with Macs at graphics and DTP, and virtually every other non-Wintel platform went extinct. Apple did pretty well to survive it at all.

...but, yeah, cheaper Macs & more generous base specs would be welcome, but this "plunge" in Mac sales seems to be mainly industry-wide "reversion to the mean" after a sales boom during the pandemic, plus the end of a "boom" for Apple after the launch of the M1 series and a dip caused by their failure to launch new MBPs last October (probably knock-on from the pandemic and general chip supply woes).
 

SalisburySam

macrumors 6502a
May 19, 2019
832
706
Salisbury, North Carolina
What do you guys think will happen?
My guess is that the only thing that will be reduced is production quantities, with the resulting cost savings. Apple’s supply chain has demonstrated its ability to adjust downward quickly and effectively. Unlike say Tesla, Apple is not trying to push sales of every item it can create but reacts more to the number actually being sold without meaningful incentives. Yeah, I know, buying some devices gets you some free time on AppleTV+, but I don’t see that as “meaningful” like a 25% price reduction would be. And I don’t envision that happening. But would like to be wrong here.
 

Lounge vibes 05

macrumors 68040
May 30, 2016
3,660
10,631
Yes, but not in the way people think.
I could see Apple drop the M1 Air, bring the M2 Air (8/256) down to $1099 and start the new 15 Air at $1299.
I Could also see the iMac dropped down to $1099 for 8/256, just like the Mac mini M2 dropped in price.
But that's about it.
People expecting an M3 Air with 16Gb of RAM and 512GB of storage at $999 from Apple.... Its not happening.
 

zachlegomaniac

macrumors 6502a
Sep 20, 2008
806
370
Do they even care about Mac sales other than out of obligation to keep things greased for their other devices - especially the iPhone? Real question.

If not, then I can’t see why they would lower prices.
 

stradify

macrumors 6502
Jul 4, 2015
292
148
USA
If Apple has an oversupply of a product then Best Buy, Costco, etc can offload the surplus at reduced prices. Just a couple of weeks ago Costco was selling the base mac mini pro for $1099. I've not seen Apple lower their prices, in store or on the web, and expect that policy will continue.
 

Honza1

macrumors 6502a
Nov 30, 2013
934
433
US
If Apple has an oversupply of a product then Best Buy, Costco, etc can offload the surplus at reduced prices. Just a couple of weeks ago Costco was selling the base mac mini pro for $1099. I've not seen Apple lower their prices, in store or on the web, and expect that policy will continue.
$1099? Current base Mac Mini M2 Costco price (on line) is $580. They do list M1 Mac Mini for $300, but that is out of stock.
 

stradify

macrumors 6502
Jul 4, 2015
292
148
USA
It was a quick sale that lasted for about a week. What you're seeing now is standard everyday pricing.
 
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