Apple Has Started Heeding the Market Trend
Apple has always been criticized for its costly products line. But now apple has decided to bring down the prices of iPhone 3G and the Macbook lines. Now it is to be seen if apple is going to reduce the size of its ‘Apple Tax’ to an extent where a Republican can also think of using the Apple products.
There is no doubt that as far as the quality and the features are concerned, there are only a few companies out there, who could give a competition to Apple. But the thing that bothers customers is the high price tag of the products of Apple. The term ‘Apple Tax’ has been hounding people for a long time and this has been in practice for so long that it is now taken as a legend. But it can also be said for certainty that this high pricing of the product is the one that has saved Apple from going in loss even in the times of global recession.
But the world market is reeling under the pressure of global recession and the customers are not willing to buy the products that will burn their pockets deep. Perhaps, this was the tendency of the market that has forced Apple to think beyond its elite market to cater to the needs of the mainstream market. Apple has announced at this week’s WWDC that it is contemplating about lowering the prices of its products without compromising with the quality. But even after this official announcement of Apple, I doubt that its intention to follow this promise.
One of the most striking examples of slashing of the prices of products can be seen from the lowering of the price of MacBook Air, up to $330 that brought down its cost to $1,499. Now this is the price cut that is going to attract a huge number of customers to buy this product. Then there is the SSD model, priced at only $1,799, which is itself not a cheaper deal, yet it matters when you count the $2000+ premiums, Apple used to charge before.
But this trend of the lowering of prices is not only limited to the products known for their beauty; instead this trend has included some best quality products too like, MacBook Air. The price tag for MacBook pro has also been replaced with another that strikes a chord with this latest trend of the price-slashing. As for an example, one week back MacBook Pro could only be purchased at a starting cost of $1,999, but now it is available at a starting cost of only $1,699. Then there is the MacBook Aluminium (13 inch) whose cost has also been reduced from a price of $1,599 to $1,199, a $400 reduction and that is of course not an insignificant cost reduction. Despite this level of cost reduction the latest version of MacBook is coming in built with some of the fastest components of its time and this is why it is also being termed as MacBook Pro moniker. This much of cost reduction, along with some faster components included, has made MacBook the latest choice of our Editors. But the users of Windows would like to go further and have something that cost them even less, say less than $1000. But at the same time they won’t like to have a system less featured than the Acer Aspire 3935. However, it is now quite clear that Apple has took some sound steps towards making its products more affordable and reachable to a larger mass than ever before.
The product that has recorded the sharpest and deepest price down at the last week’s WWDC was none other than the Apple’s 8GB iPhone 3G, which now costs only $99 for each unit. This price down in the cost of Apple’s 8GB iPhone 3G, makes it a dumb decision to buy a Palm Pre parade that still costs $199 and that also after taking the advantage of a mail-in rebate of the worth of $100. So, now there is no doubt that as far as the 8GB iPhone 3G is concerned Apple is in a win-win situation. The loyal customers of Apple, no doubt, won’t miss a single chance to grab the iPhone 3G S, whereas the customers, who place the quality at the top of any other factor can also get it at the same price at which a BlackBerry could be afforded. Not to mention that the subscribers of AT&T will also be in the frontline of getting their own set of iPhone, if they like to show some skill at the virtual keyboard.
But there is a hitch in owning an iPhone, as the customer has to sign a contract with the AT&T and if the concerned customer is already under another contract with some other carrier then it will be a little difficult for that customer to go in a deal with the AT&T. Then there is another problem: the wireless network of AT&T is not such a strong network that can be praised publicly. One can easily witness the poor performance of the wireless network of AT&T by simply bringing a certain number of iPhone users, say 300, in a defined cell area (like, SXSW 2009) and there you go, you can see that the performance of iPhones are struggling to even survive in this dense area of conflicting networks.
There is another thing noticeable about the iPhone. Though the iPhone now costs very less than a Palm Pre, if the costs of data plan and text messages are calculated for a longer run then it would transpire that it is more costly to own an iPhone than a Palm Pre. Last week in New York City, the CEO of Sprint, Dan Hesse, said at the Palm Pre announcement that if the cost of owning a Palm Pre is calculated over two years, it would be clear that it is $1,200 less costly than owning an iPhone, as the monthly charges of iPhone is comparatively more costly. Still the lure of owning an iPhone can’t be put aside as the time of 2 years is not a short period and if it is about the performance then $99 is not a price that can’t be afforded for once.
But the question here is: why the Apple is reducing its products’ costs, when it is already in a sound condition. The economic considerations could be one of the reasons. It is also evident that the Microsoft’s shopping commercials are also in a sore spot. It is a widely known fact that the Apple’s products are the most expensive of them all. It can also be watched that in the ads of Microsoft’s notebooks, no one is depicted as buying a notebook of worth $400. This shows the trend of the market that each of the customers wants to have a notebook with a 17-inch screen and an in-built Blue-ray drive.
But most of the products of Apple are still to see any reduction in their costs and even now, many of the Apple’s products are costlier than that of the Windows for as much as a few hundred dollars. Although, there is a new influx of customers in the Apple’s shopping centers after the reduction of Apple Tax and it has also paved the way for further trimming of the same in the near future.