Analyst: Apple retail stores unable to meet demand

Too much demand at retail

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster says that Apple's retail stores are struggling to keep up with demand for its new Mac mini and iPod shuffle products and said tht the staff is pointing people to its online store, despite significantly delays in shipping at the , which shows a 3-4 week delay on each product. Piper Jaffray has an 'outperform' rating on AAPL with a target of $100.
  1. chrisutley 02/01, 08:13pm

    Heads should roll at Apple. If this were a now and then problem, fine. However, Apple does this time and time again. Being conservative with a new product is one thing, but this is just unacceptable.

  1. ebeyer 02/01, 08:21pm

    3-4 hours? 3-4 days? 3-4 weeks?

    Respectfully, you guys need to proof these articles before you post them.

  1. dashiel 02/01, 08:24pm

    i will apologize whole-heartedly if this isn't true, however in this case there was no way apple could have expected the reaction to the shuffle. according to reports apple will produce up to 500,000 shuffles per month and apparently had at least a one month supply on announcement, some say as much as 2 months. if that is true and based on the total flash based mp3 market apple will have gained a 2-4% market share in less than the first month (that's not 2-4% of january sales, or 2004 sales, that's all flash mp3 players ever sold!). they will automatically become the largest selling flash maker, outselling numbers 2 and 3 combined (which outsell all the others combined).

    i don't care how optimistic apple was you can't predict that kind of success.

  1. Dr.Funkenstein 02/01, 08:44pm

    Apple is 'cursed' with a peculiar conundrum.

    The more successful and accessible their products become, the more people want them, the scarecer they are, which increases demand for them even more.

  1. kw99 02/01, 09:56pm

    Obviously, it would be nice if Apple could have stocked up on the two hot products to precisely meet the incredibly high demand. But give it a rest (the "heads should roll" commentary that comes up EVERY time there is a story about shortages). Apple planned it right. The customer cannot buy a "Mac-compatible" PC from any other company. The customer cannot buy a "iPod-compatible" music player from any other company. They will get in line because they are not going to get a Dell or a Creative product (of they would have done so already). And the initial shortage creates a positive buzz with the media. They wouldn't write as many articles about the popularity of certain products if there was abundant supply. So stop trying to spin something that is great for Apple into a negative...

  1. ronjamin 02/01, 10:02pm

    The shuffle could have been predicted, but not the mini. The shuffle is the ultimate USB flash drive. I was at Wal-Mart the other day, WAL MART, and they had 256MB USB drives for over the cost of a 1GB Shuffle. The geeks, the newbies, and thier mothers are sucking these up like a crack-junky.

  1. Roehlstation 02/01, 10:41pm

    We still have many of them left at MicroCenter here in Cincinnati

  1. sreinhardt 02/01, 11:03pm

    I'm sure I could walk into any retail establishment that sells Dells and other brands of flash-based players, and THEY'LL have them in stock...
    And that makes me feel good.

  1. aristotles 02/02, 12:26am

    Dell does not sell through the retail channel. They rely on phone and online sales.

  1. kw99 02/02, 12:30am

    >I'm sure I could walk into any retail establishment that sells Dells and other brands of flash-based players, and THEY'LL have them in stock...

    THAT's the big difference. If there's a waiting list for a Dell model (if that's possible), the customer could just buy a comparable HP/Compaq or Gateway or other brand's offering. There is no relevant difference. If there's a wait for a Creative music player, the customer can look at the similar product from iRiver or even Dell.

    Apple's advantage is that they offer a desireable combination of hardware and software (and service in the case of iTMS) that is unique and not available from the competition. Apple should take full advantage of their "advantage" when planning the level of stock before product release. If it's more popular than expected, they can ramp up production to meet the EXISTING demand, not make a huge and risky commitment before release to meet uncertain demand.

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