Date: Monday, February 1st, 1999, 00:00
Reports heard around the Web indicated a much higher price for P1 than we originally reported. In order to reach the true, main stream consumer we expected Apple to price P1 at or around the US$1300 price point. Apple’s focus groups have indicated that this is the point where most consumers change from making a “pseudo-impulse” purchase (little justification required) to a “family meeting” purchase (do we want a vacation or a PowerBook?).
The US$1900 P1 price making the rounds puts the new PowerBook out of the price range of the critical mass. One PowerPage source has heard the US$1900 figure around Apple’s Cupertino campus and has never heard anything less than that.
The only way we can look at the P1 pricing issue is with common sense:
- Apple released the iMac at US$1300 because it appealed to the common man. At US$2000, the iMac would not have been nearly as commercially successful, especially with the price-oriented Wintel converts.
- Consider that Apple has removed video-out, PC cards, and possibly even DVD support from the consumer portable, all believed to be cost-cutting moves. Would removing these items make sense for a US$1900 model?
- Lombard/333 costs US$2500 nicely equipped. Would you purchase a stripped consumer model to save US$600? Probably not.
Is the US$1900 price issue simply a leak tracking ploy by Cupertino? Could it be a decoy to throw us off the scent, making the US$1300 price a surprise at Expo? The issue is still undetermined, but the early betting at PowerPage world HQ is leaning heavily on the US$1300 side of the fence.
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