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Why Mac Sales Are Up
 

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The latest Mac sales figures are out and, lo and behold, they are up a dramatic 39% for the month of April this year compared to last year. The question is, why?

If you Google or Digg (or however you root around the Internet) through the usual suspects of tech news sites and blogs, you'll find a number of headlines debating whether the iPad is cannibalizing iPod sales (iPods are down, by the way).

Case in point:

"IPad Already Taking Away iPod Sales" - Business Insider

"iPad Not Cannibalizing iPod, Says Analyst" - PC World

"Is the iPad Cannbalizing Mac Sales? Not Really!" - Wall Street Journal's Digital Daily

"Early Sales Data Suggests iPads Cannibalizing iPods, Not Macs" - Ars Technica

I think the real question may be whether Mac sales are cannablizing iPad sales.

So to back up, here are the 'deets for those of you who haven't heard:

- According to NPD, Mac sales are up 39% for the month of April. The street projected them to be up by 19%. They've been down by a few percent give or take the past two years for the same month. So whatever the reason(s), the effect is dramatic.

- iPod sales are down by 17% for the month of April.

- Reminder: the iPad came out in April and sold a million units within 28 days.

I have some theories on why Mac sales are up. My guess is that all of them are at least a little bit true adding up to a perfect storm of wicked sales figures for April.

1. The new Mac Book Pro also came out about the same time.

2. Apple lowered the prices of their Macs (ding, ding, ding!)

3. Could it be that people thought they wanted an iPad, saw what it couldn't do and just said, "What the hell, I'll just buy a Mac" instead?  Could it be that as great as iPad's sales were that a lot of people found it was a short enough walk to just spend the money and get an exponentially more powerful device?

4. A lot of people are upgrading their PC's, after waiting three years for Windows 7. Perhaps, again, at that moment of truth when making the purchase that a significant number of people said, "What the hell, I'm buying a Mac after all."

I'm just saying.

Bottomline: the Mac is doing well because it is a time-tested beloved product.  We're still slogging our way through this "jobless recovery". People are starting to spend a little money again. But they are doing so much more cautiously and wisely.

It makes sense to invest in a product you know and trust. I think that's why Mac sales are up (and the price drop didn't hurt, Cupertino!).

As for iPods, maybe they're dropping because everyone who wants one already has one.

P.S. You are welcome to follow me on twitter @oricchio

 

 

Last updated: May 18, 2010




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