Apple’s Mac ascendent

“There can be little doubting that the iPod ‘halo effect’ now shines a positive light on Apple’s Mac sales. Strong US educational sales, particularly into Higher Education, also helped the company shrug off fears of an ‘Osborne Effect’ prior to next year’s move to Intel processors. In fact, Mac sales were up 48 per cent year-on-year. However fears about soft iPod sales caused Apple stock to drop 10 per cent in after hours trading,” Andrew Orlowski reports for Channel Register. “Surprisingly, and despite ten consecutive quarters of growth for the iPod, Apple found itself fending off criticism of ‘weak’ iPod numbers. Apple sold 6.45m iPods in the quarter, only 5 per cent up from the previous quarter, but 1m of these were iPod Nanos shipped in the last 17 days of the period. One analyst described the 5.4m non-Nano iPods sold as ‘pretty light demand.’ Apple responded that Mini shipments were wound down prior to the Nano launch, that overall iPod sales came in as expected, that it couldn’t meet Nano demand, and that the company would be launching new products in the music segment in time for the holiday season.”

“In terms of Mac sales, Apple set a record of 634,000 iBook and PowerBook shipments for the quarter, 139,000 more than last year, but the strongest growth year-on-year came from desktop and server sales. Mac Mini, iMac, eMac, PowerMac and Xserve were up 56 per cent in terms of units and 42 per cent higher measuring revenue. Portable revenue was up 22 per cent on 41 per cent more units shipped,” Orlowski reports.

Full article (where Orlowski also includes a link that explains that the Osborne Effect is a myth) here.

Related articles:
Apple Q4 05 earnings report: best quarter & best year in company history – October 11, 2005


  1. I think this was an amazing set of numbers. In light of the fact that US consumer confidence is at a 15 yr low, gas prices have doubled in the past 6 months, 300,000 are thrown out of work on the Gulf Coast and the resultant concern of where the money to rebuild is gonna come from, and an endless stream of other bad news, Apples pulls its best year ever out of the hat, even with the fear that folks will sit on the sidelines and wait for Intel Macs. Given all this, and Christmas right around the consumer corner, how can this be anything but a big fat exclaimation point on one of the great business turnarounds in the past 25 years?

  2. Finally – some insightful comments on the Mac Line of Business.

    The back to school quarter is always the highest for this LOB but also was at serious risk due to the Intel switch. Now critics would say the buying spree was from people trying to get a PPC before the Intel switch so it will last longer and they can put off the switch, but realistically that would happen once new PPCs were announced. The real reason is the halo effect. People who were cool at school last year with their white headphones will now be taking Econ notes on their blistering-white iBook instead of a black Dell that is as boaring and the word “Dude” (you’re gettin’ a Dell).

    Look for a PVR version of a Mac mini to really spike sales.

    MDN word: brown

  3. And the countdown begins. Pull back those curtains Apple and rock the world. Personally, Im hoping that Apple unveils a new product line – something that compliments and integrates even more deeply into the digital lifestyle products that they have developed. Im not so sure that a refresh to any of their existing lines would generate more of a buzz to any others than the current installed base. New Powermacs would really just be seen as bridging strategy (albeit a needed one) prior to the Intel move. Even a vPod, whilst cool, is still a niche market with limited content and questionable utility in its current form factor.

    I dunno, but Im crossing my fingers. Here’s hoping my socks are about to be blown off. Oh, and an iTMS launch in Australia would be a sweet a sweet after-dinner mint.

  4. Dear cluster8,

    Aside from one article about a month ago of an A’stralian launch of iTMS I’ve heard zilch. No news, no hints, no buzz. Frankly the way Sony has been acting lately I’m expecting less than nothing on that front. Then again my contacts in the Oz music scene and our local media have got this matter wrong before.

    Do I expect a launch tomorrow? I reckon the odds are about the same as Sydney’s dams overflowing in the next 24 hours (they’re currently at c.40 per cent).

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