Dismissive Dell CEO not impressed with Apple Mac mini, calls iPod a ‘one-product wonder’ and a ‘fad’

“Dell has questioned Apple’s long-term business strategy, dismissing the iPod as a ‘fad’ and a ‘one-product wonder’ and claiming the new Mac mini won’t dent the PC market,” Andy McCue writes for Silicon.com. “In an interview with silicon.com at Dell’s Round Rock headquarters in Texas last week, CEO Kevin Rollins said the number of headlines Apple grabs does not worry him and that the company isn’t ‘in the same league’ as Dell.”

MacDailyNews Take: Of course Apple isn’t in the same league as Dell. Apple is not a commodity box assembler wholly dependent on another company to supply an operating system that strives unsuccessfully to be like a Mac. Hence Apple’s Mac platform works much more seamlessly and painlessly for their users.

“‘It’s interesting the iPod has been out for three years and it’s only this past year it’s become a raging success. Well those things that become fads rage and then they drop off. When I was growing up there was a product made by Sony called the Sony Walkman – a rage, everyone had to have one,’ [Rollins] said. ‘Well you don’t hear about the Walkman anymore. I believe that one product wonders come and go. You have to have sustainable business models, sustainable strategy,'” McCue reports.

MacDailyNews Take: Sony’s Walkmans played cassettes or CDs. Any player that played cassettes or CDs could do exactly the same things as a Sony Walkman. Apple’s iPod + iTunes cannot be replicated by others unless Apple lets them. Sony had no such advantage.

“Rollins was, not surprisingly, unimpressed with the Mac mini. ‘It might take some here and there, but Apple’s market share in the global computer business has really shrunk pretty far. Where they’ve been making success recently is not in the computer business, but in the iPod music business,’ he said. ‘So this might be an interesting new product but I’m not really believing this is going to turn the industry upside down.'”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Dell’s CEO sounds worried. He should be.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Michael Dell owes Apple an apology; Apple up 176 percent vs. Dell’s 13 percent in past 12 months – January 15, 2005


  1. The Sony Walkman (in all it’s different forms) has been on sale for over 25 years. Longer than Dell has been in existence!

    Even though it may not be ‘all the rage’ today, I don’t think you can call 25 years and over 300 million sold……a ‘fad’.

    As another poster has mentioned, Sony could still be at the top of the pile if they had got their act together when mp3s became the ‘rage’.

    Long live the Dell DJ !

  2. C’MON GUYS!

    Dell isn’t scared… I love Macs, I think they are great machines, don’t get me wrong, but Dell is not scared of the Mac Market. They are huge in the computer world. Go into a doctor’s office – they are all Dells.

    I really hope the Mac Mini does well, but it’s not going to put a dent into Dell. Someone has to be a litle bit realistic here on the forums!

  3. The Walkman comments don’t even make logical sense. What year did the Walkman come out? Like 1980 or something? And I can go buy one right now down the street. Yeah, that was a brief fad.

    It’s true the mini probably won’t make much of a dent in the industry. However, it could still be a boon to Apple.

    Dell is nothing but a product of MBA-think. They would be just as happy if they were making their money on shoes or cattle feed.

  4. What never ceases to amaze me, is how many people always foretell the demise of Apple. Year after Year, someone makes a fool of themselves by predicting the iceberg/titanic scenario.

    As far as I can see, the problem is an ethical one. Most other computer-Vendors out there sell the public a substandard model, in essence cheating them of what the could have. Then a companxy like Apple comes along, and shows the world what they could have. Now, obviously, the competition fears that the public will demand a product of the same standard that Apple can deliver. This, companies like Dell can never do, since they have no control over the products individual pieces.

    Apple is the only company that can harmonise (please excuse the pun) hardware and software. Even Microsoft has had some success with that, look at the XBox. and this is where the crux lies. The general public consensus will move away from “cheap” to “affordable”, and that is where Apple has positioned themselves with the mini.

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