updated 03:15 pm EDT, Thu April 30, 2009
Lower priced MacBooks
Apple is allegedly in the process of restructuring its Mac offerings to include a number of lower-priced models, an unnamed source has told AppleInsider. Specific details remain unavailable, but the company is believed to be readying more affordable variations of the 13-inch MacBook and iMac, two of its best-selling products.
Although Apple recently reported its best non-holiday quarter yet, Mac sales have taken a hit as the economic recession continues. Shipments for computers were down three percent, while iPhone and iPod sales contributed to an 8.6-percent gain in revenue.
Many analysts believe Apple's lackluster performance in the PC segment can be explained by its higher ASPs. Although the structural collapse of selling prices has slashed revenues for many companies, the Mac-maker could be experiencing a drop in market share as customers flock to less-expensive systems. While Apple was shipping less Macs for the recent quarter, HP systems showed an 11-percent gain.
Acer has doubled its market share in the US, primarily due to the popularity of its netbook devices. User spending is said to have contracted significantly in the first quarter of the year, and it remains unknown if the global PC market has reached its lowest point. While Apple has expressed little interest in directly tackling the netbook market, reducing its ASPs could help it regain market share in a feeble economy.
Pricing information for the unconfirmed Macs has yet to be disclosed, although it is believed that the first products could arrive as early as this spring with a revamped MacBook line.