The Motley Fool: Apple ‘may be the next Dell’

“How do we value Apple’s stock now [that Boot Camp has been released]? To answer, we’ll need to dig into Apple’s strategy. I’ve got my own opinions on that, but I’ll first give the floor to an old friend of mine, Rich Levin, a former InformationWeek editor and host of a national radio show covering tech topics. We’ve debated this and that about the Mac for what seems like just short of forever,” Tim Beyers writes for The Motley Fool. “This time, however, I think he’s spot-on:”

“It’s the first EFFECTIVE strike at Dell. It’s also a strike at Microsoft, and uses its own OS against them. And it’s a dual-edged ‘Win’ [sic] for Microsoft … Every Windows user will consider a Mac if Apple prices them competitively, and continues to produce computers that have style, superior engineering, and better quality overall in a world of commodity tin-box PCs … Flip side: Apple’s strike at Dell and Microsoft will not be maximally effective unless users don’t encounter limitations. They have to embrace Windows hardware, games, etc.”

Beyers writes, “I couldn’t agree more… Apple’s courtship of Windows users isn’t new. Ever since October 2003, when Apple first released the iTunes Music Store for Windows, Apple has been on a mission to woo PC loyalists. And that makes sense. If CEO Steve Jobs really wants a spot on the couch, he’s got to have a platform that, at the very least, offers the most and best video games. That’s not the Mac today. It’s Windows. (After the Xbox, Playstation, and the like, of course.) Think about that for a second, and then think about this: Every PC maker — Dell especially — wants to be your coach in the Couch Potato Games. To date, they’ve had two advantages over Apple: price and Windows. The first was eroded substantially when the Mac mini debuted with PC-like pricing. The second died with the introduction of Boot Camp. That leaves design and brand appeal as differentiators. Do you really believe Apple can’t win that battle?”

Beyer’s does some calculations and “puts [Apple] stock at more than $137 a share, or at least a double from yesterday’s close…Nice, right? Indeed. Just bear in mind that this valuation has several flaws. For one, Apple may already be richly valued. Second, Apple may not convince a substantial number of Windows users to buy Macs. Third, iPod and iTunes may not remain as dominant as they have been. Finally, there remain distinct differences between Apple and Dell, which could corrupt my assumptions… Bottom line: Apple may end up as the next Gateway. Or it may be the next Dell. Personally, I think the latter is much more likely.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Thankfully, Beyer doesn’t mean Apple will be assembling ugly boxes, slapping somebody’s upside-down and backwards attempt at copying the Mac OS onto them, and then using bait and switch tactics to sell them to dupes online; he means Apple’s going to be selling a lot more Mac hardware now.

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33 Comments

  1. F- YOU, CLONE!!

    Apple is dead. There’s no doubt of it anymore.

    Selling tunes is good enough for Jobs’s bottom line.

    Bootcamp will fail just like switcher’s did, and just like the MAC Mini did.

    You MAC tools need to get a life like Shatner said,, this is the beginning of your end.

    Long live my VIRUS-RIDDLED PC!!!!!!!!!!!

    I AM KING OF THE UBER-DORKS!!!!!!!

  2. Splat:
    I think you’re right it’s going to hurt Sony, Toshiba, HP first.

    People who buy strickly on price and businesses are still Dell’s domain but it will become even more commoditized and Dell’s profits will shrink.
    Sales for Dell will slow slowly at first but then they will begin to slide.

    It’s a new world out there with the beta release of BootCamp.

  3. Why does everyone focus on the one AND ONLY ONE thing that is better in the Winblows world – games? Out of all my PeeCee using friends (note that I said “using”, I didn’t say “loving”; “tolerating” would be more accurate) not one of them is a “gamer”. I’m not a gamer either (although I use a Mac, so that must be the reason, right? Keep believing that.)

    While I agree that Apple needs to shore this issue up since it is their weakest link, I think that we, and the media, should focus on the other 99+% of OS X that is FAR better than Winblows will ever be.

    And, “Truth Hurts” and “Apple is Done”, can you pass me some of the crack that you’ve been smoking?

  4. The Mac OS ain’t going anywhere, for the same reason the Mac still exists today: there are people who prefer to use Mac. Apple now has a new potential market: Windows users who may or may not switch to OS X as their primary operating system (though anyone who only intends using Windows is unlikely to choose a Mac). Either way it’s more sales of Mac boxes.

    The impediment to more sales is the same one Apple has always faced: the sheer ignorance of the public at large. Of course Apple doesn’t do itself any favors by refusing to advertise.

  5. Bottom line: Apple will sell more Macs, increasing marketshare and userbase. More people will be exposed to Mac OS X, which many of them will switch to full time. This will increase developer pressure, leading to yet more native titles for OS X. Because of the increased OS flexibility and long-term cost benefit of the Mac, we will see far more of them in businesses, public places (eg. libraries), and schools. Yet more people will be exposed to OS X, creating yet more switches, and more Mac sales.

    It is the dawn of a new era for Mac and OS X.

  6. Seems like there are some rather threatened pc weenies interupting normal service. Fools always strike out when they see their comfortable little boring world threatened. Running scared and people just smell that fear as they contemplate having to use their brain. Nice and easy does it.

  7. I’ve seen the light and it’s very bright!

    The real bomb is coming and it will be OS-X on ANY MODERN 64 bit Intel based PC!

    Boot camp is more than just a clever name (and it does not mean what you think). It’s Boot Camp for Apple as they become a real PC mfr.

    Apples next gen boxes will be 64-bit PC’s that run ANY OS!

    They won’t be cheap bargain basement stuff but none of us tradional Mac users crave the cheap crap. We want decent hardware that lasts and Apple will continue to deliver that. HP and Dull will offer cheaper systems and you, the user can decide if you want that junk.

    Apple manufacturing is coming out of the far east (the same places other mfr hardware comes from). The difference is the engineering that goes into the hardware, Apple designs great, high-quality products (that cost more than generic PCs).

    This means Dell, HP and Gateway will be pushed down into the bargain basement with Apple PCs taking the high ground for features and quality.

    Now for the best part, Apple WILL sell OS-X for use on any modern Intel based PC and they will do it before Vista ships.

    Have you bought your AAPL stock yet because it is GOING TO GO UP, WAY UP!

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