It’s official: Apple acknowledges Best Buy to carry Mac mini models

“Apple Computer’s Mac Mini is finding its way to more store shelves, with Best Buy planning to carry the $499 computer nationwide,” Ina Fried writes for CNET News. “Mac fans have noted that the diminutive desktop appeared on some store shelves last weekend, and Merrill Lynch issued a research note on Monday talking about the potential impact of such a move. Apple confirmed the plans on Tuesday.”

“‘We are pleased to offer Mac Mini at Best Buy stores nationwide,’ Apple said in a statement to CNET News.com… Best Buy has been selling Macs online and also carries the iPod in its stores… Kevin Cockett, a Best Buy spokesman, said the retailer was ‘excited’ to begin carrying the Mac Mini in all of its stores. ‘It’s the latest innovation from Apple and strengthens Best Buy’s assortment of computers,'” Fried reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Let’s see if this one sticks. Let the Sears rumors begin!

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Analyst: Best Buy to stock Apple Mac mini, Tiger likely due by end of April – April 04, 2005
RUMOR: Best Buy to sell Mac mini in retail stores – March 29, 2005

26 Comments

  1. The sales people at Best Buy are NOT sales people. They do NOT get any training on any product they sale. I have been in numberous stores many times and have yet to meet anyone there that has had any knowledge of the products that are for sale. I have even gone as far as contacting BB central (head office) and they gave me a script…I will never be back to a BB. Sorry Apple….will buy from the Apple store.

  2. Who cares whether the sales staff are going to react negatively to the mac mini.

    Best Buy have put down serious cash to stock the mini. Do you think they are going to have these units sitting around and not selling?

    If the management get wind that the staff are turning potential customers away, then there will be trouble.

    Just with the iPod, Apple are going to sell this baby anywhere they can. One of the reasons the iPod is still selling well is that it can be bought everywhere. That way you hit the casual buyer.

    Hopefully the mac mini will be the same.

  3. The deal with Best Buy over in 9 months.

    Said the Best Buy exec in Jan 2006 – “Apple never promoted the product or the Tiger OS. They were relying on word of mouth.”

  4. Anyone going to Best Buy to buy a computer hasn’t done their research. They sell absolute crap and it’s too expensive for what you get, if they even have in stock what you want to get.

    Apple Store Online
    Alienware
    Dell
    HP

    Anything but retail… Retail sucks.

  5. I’m also skeptical that this will last very long. Time and time again some big box retailer pics up Apple computers (well, their entry level models at least). It gets put on display in a good location for 1 month (if that), but the staff don’t get any training and are given incentives to sell higher margin store brand PCs. The store will stock all of 5 software titles for the Mac and Mac compatible peripherals will not be identified by employees because they don’t know any better.

    After the initial hype dies down, the product will get relegated to a back corner and will not be maintained (no demos running). After sales die off because of all the above factors, they’ll stop stocking them and shortly after they will sell off their demo units as “open box” items and that will be the end of it. This has happened time and time again, no reason to think this will be any different…

    The few reasons this helps Apple is because there is no doubt Best Buy will purchase at least a few thousand units which won’t be returnable. Sales are sales after all. Also the bit of exposure Apple gets for the short period won’t hurt. Also, if someone has made the decision to switch to a Mac, they’ll most likely do it regardless of what the BB sales people say, although they may actually dissuade more than a few not to.

    Move on people, there’s nothing to see here…

  6. There’s two flaws with the argument against doing this. Number one, everybody claims that the people at Best Buy know nothing about Macs. This is true. However, they also know nothing about PCs, audio equipment, TVs, or anything else they sell. They are all high school kids who stand around and chat about their classes with their buddies, who either also work there or hang out there every day. Number two, people argue that Best Buy is somehow the only place that is like this, when in reality they all are. Circuit City, K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Target, Sears, etc, are all just as bad. Look at CompUSA, a freakin’ national computer store and yet Apple had to add their own staffers to the place. Unless they want Macs to never ever be sold at any mainstream store anywhere, there’s just no way to avoid it. Look at it like this: having the Mini at Best Buy will not cause Apple to sell less computers, therefore it’s a good thing. Sure, if the staff were better they might sell more, but they will still sell some. Unless my math teachers only passed me so I’d be somebody else’s problem, I’m pretty sure some is better than none. So take the sales you get and go home happy in six months if it doesn’t work out.

  7. Seems to me that nobody wanted to carry the iPod either until it caught fire! Now almost every store carries them.

    The fact that Best Buy wants to carry the Mac mini indicates to me that there is quite a demand for the mini – and Best Buy is simply reacting to that demand.

  8. I hope this works for Apple, but BB has a horrible track record. I like the store-within-a store concept at CompUSA, and they actually carry Mac software titles and know about the equipment.

    I think if Apple developed a small kiosk/mini store setup, with software, accessories, iPods, and helpful information, they could use this in BB, Target, Sears, etc. succesfully. They could use their cool Apple design to make it a destination in these big box stores.

    Don’t forget that in Best Buy and other stores, vendors often pay for product placement (just take a look at a Best Buy ad to see what I mean – Napster and partners pay big $$ for placement and promotion). Apple have to play their game in order to be successful.

  9. When my Apple dealer did not have stock on the mini I went to Best Buy to see if I could purchase one. They had a demo, but no stock either. I would have purchased it at Best Buy if it was available.

    I don’t think it is the best thing for Apples image to sell computers through Best Buy. On the other hand it is not the best thing for Apples image to have such a small market share.

    I remember Commodore 64’s being sold at K-mart and other department stores. Vic 20’s at Eaton’s etc.

  10. We have BestBuy here in Canada, Toronto more specifically.. and I must agree that the staff generally have little product knowledge. They have been selling Mac Minis since they became available here. My experiences.. hmmmm… the wireless keyboard is not hooked up, althought the are using a nice 15’flat panel for display. I set up iTunes running with the visualizer, when I returned some minutes later the screen saver had kicked in with black screen only and a salesperson was explaining to a customer how it must have crashed again as a press on the (non-functioning) space bar failed to wake the unit. I explained to him the keyboard wasn’t connected, then I proceeded to click the mouse and voila like magic, it was up and running. My helpfullness was greeted with a very displeasant scowl from the salesman. They push the Creative units also when there is no iPod stock, although they claim to not work on commission.

    BestBuy & Apple? Not unless something changes.

    Dave

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