My $1,000 iPad Purchase Odyssey (And The Law Of Large Numbers Be Damned)

  • Posted: 04 August 2010 02:45 AM

    My latest missive at Eventide.

    This is simply a story about my iPad purchase odyssey three weeks ago. I suggest anyone who doubts Apple will grow revenue this fiscal year by 50% ($65 billion and a $20 billion fiscal fourth quarter) and doubts Apple will grow revenue by 50% next fiscal year (roughly $100 billion) needs to get their nose out of outdated business books and needs to take a stroll inside an Apple retail store on a weekend afternoon.

    Better yet. Take a stroll inside an Apple retail store on a weekend afternoon and buy an iPad (if you can!).

    Snippet: All told I spent over a $1,000 at the Apple stores on that Sunday and about 25% of the iPad’s purchase price on accessories and services. That’s not including the $30 I immediately spent from home on the iPad versions of Pages, Numbers and Keynote. The Apple iPad is a revenue and earnings monster and these days the Apple retail stores are jammed with foot traffic.

         
  • Posted: 04 August 2010 11:33 AM #1

    In the June quarter the stores had 60.5 million visitors and average sales of $9 million per store. Most likely traffic will be even higher this quarter and revenue per store may set a new record.

         
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    Posted: 04 August 2010 11:44 AM #2

    Whoever conceived the Apple store design was a brilliant innovator, who saw the potential for interactivity being the core of the store’s design.  Where else can people go into a store and play with electronic gadgets to their heart’s content?

    In my region, Microsoft is about to open a new store in the Bellevue Square mall to go head to head with Apple.  It will be interesting to observe which store is busier and more profitable.  Go to: 

    http://blog.seattlepi.com/microsoft/archives/208529.asp

         
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    Posted: 04 August 2010 11:53 AM #3

    adamthompson3232 - 04 August 2010 05:54 AM

    Hell, try visiting an Apple store on a weekDAY afternoon. I went to my local Apple store on a weekday afternoon to pickup my 4 and the store was jam packed.

    Tru dat. Every single time I’ve ever visited an Apple store, it’s pretty much shoulder to shoulder with other people milling around.

    I popped into the one down the road at the mall last week to get a Magic Trackpad, and just getting an employee to get one out of the back for me took a half hour. It’s almost like you need an appointment just to buy something. When she finally got back to me, I asked her if the place was always a mad house. She kind of rolled her eyes and said “yes”.

         
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    Posted: 04 August 2010 12:10 PM #4

    firestorm - 04 August 2010 02:44 PM

    Whoever conceived the Apple store design was a brilliant innovator, who saw the potential for interactivity being the core of the store’s design.  Where else can people go into a store and play with electronic gadgets to their heart’s content?

    In my region, Microsoft is about to open a new store in the Bellevue Square mall to go head to head with Apple.  It will be interesting to observe which store is busier and more profitable.  Go to: 

    http://blog.seattlepi.com/microsoft/archives/208529.asp

    You don’t need to visit a Microsoft store to see how the concept is vapid without good products.  Just go see one of many Sony Style stores.  Spooky places filled with products that seem out of a different era.

    http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&identifier=S_BrandShowcase_Retail_Locations

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  • Posted: 04 August 2010 01:04 PM #5

    I just visited the Apple Store at “The Domain” in Austin over the weekend, and across the street from the AS was a boarded up “Sony Style” store.  <snicker>

         
  • Posted: 04 August 2010 02:37 PM #6

    firestorm - 04 August 2010 02:44 PM

    Whoever conceived the Apple store design was a brilliant innovator, who saw the potential for interactivity being the core of the store’s design.  Where else can people go into a store and play with electronic gadgets to their heart’s content?

    In my region, Microsoft is about to open a new store in the Bellevue Square mall to go head to head with Apple.  It will be interesting to observe which store is busier and more profitable.

    The challenge for Microsoft overall is assisting Windows OEMs in establishing pricing control on hardware products. Retail stores won’t have an impact.MSFT has built an empire commoditizing hardware for the sake of software and OS margins. All the retail showrooms established will not change the dynamics of that market.

    I wonder what the economic justification is for an expensive retail presence without a means to effectively move product or assist in raising product prices.

         
  • Posted: 04 August 2010 02:58 PM #7

    DawnTreader - 04 August 2010 05:37 PM

    I wonder what the economic justification is for an expensive retail presence without a means to effectively move product or assist in raising product prices.

    I don’t think that is relevant Robert… I think that the Microsoft stores are purely a Ballmer play on “we’ve gotta have some of that” thinking. They got the guy who “designed” the stores for Apple in and I think the shopfitting company too. I think IIRC that Apple fired that company almost immediately they found out. The guy has now been poached by Telsa to design their stores so Microsoft didn’t keep him for long.

    I would love to know how the Microsoft Stores are doing. Am completely at a loss as to why there are there, but hard information is not easy to come by.

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  • Posted: 04 August 2010 04:02 PM #8

    DawnTreader - 04 August 2010 05:37 PM

    I wonder what the economic justification is for an expensive retail presence without a means to effectively move product or assist in raising product prices.

    The key to understanding what Ballmer does is to understand that everything he does is personally motivated.  Think about his mindset and position.  He’s where he is ONLY because he was an acquaintance of somebody who got incredibly lucky. He was always Bill Gates’ lap dog, but then Bill left.  Ballmer operates in a fog of panic.  He’s in charge of this behemoth company and doesn’t have a clue.  He does not understand his market or his customers.  He believes Apple is successful due to hype and coolness, not differences in quality, so he tries to generate hype and tries to be cool, with predictable results.  He desperately wants to prove himself to be on the same level as Gates and Jobs, but all he knows how to do is pretend.  He’s operating in ways that will feed his own ego and calm his feelings of inadequacy and inferiority.  He’ll never quite be able to measure up, though he desperately wants to.  I hope he stays at MS for a long time.

         
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    Posted: 04 August 2010 04:38 PM #9

    Zeke - 04 August 2010 07:02 PM
    DawnTreader - 04 August 2010 05:37 PM

    I wonder what the economic justification is for an expensive retail presence without a means to effectively move product or assist in raising product prices.

    The key to understanding what Ballmer does is to understand that everything he does is personally motivated.  Think about his mindset and position.  He’s where he is ONLY because he was an acquaintance of somebody who got incredibly lucky. He was always Bill Gates’ lap dog, but then Bill left.  Ballmer operates in a fog of panic.  He’s in charge of this behemoth company and doesn’t have a clue.  He does not understand his market or his customers.  He believes Apple is successful due to hype and coolness, not differences in quality, so he tries to generate hype and tries to be cool, with predictable results.  He desperately wants to prove himself to be on the same level as Gates and Jobs, but all he knows how to do is pretend.  He’s operating in ways that will feed his own ego and calm his feelings of inadequacy and inferiority.  He’ll never quite be able to measure up, though he desperately wants to.  I hope he stays at MS for a long time.


    Well said Zeke, he is Apple’s best friend. LOL

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  • Posted: 04 August 2010 04:40 PM #10

    Ballmer may be Gates’ biggest mistake. But then what does he care, he’s giving his fortune away.

         
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    Posted: 04 August 2010 04:59 PM #11

    I visited the Palisades Mall Apple Store recently on a weekday.  There were tons of teens around the iPhone tables playing “meet the cute girl” using Facetime.  The Facetime instructions were on placecards around the iPhone tables.  The store was a packed party.

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  • Posted: 04 August 2010 06:04 PM #12

    Zeke - 04 August 2010 07:02 PM
    DawnTreader - 04 August 2010 05:37 PM

    I wonder what the economic justification is for an expensive retail presence without a means to effectively move product or assist in raising product prices.

    The key to understanding what Ballmer does is to understand that everything he does is personally motivated.  Think about his mindset and position.  He’s where he is ONLY because he was an acquaintance of somebody who got incredibly lucky. He was always Bill Gates’ lap dog, but then Bill left.  Ballmer operates in a fog of panic.  He’s in charge of this behemoth company and doesn’t have a clue.  He does not understand his market or his customers.  He believes Apple is successful due to hype and coolness, not differences in quality, so he tries to generate hype and tries to be cool, with predictable results.

    Zeke:

    That’s an interesting perspective. In mimicking Apple the lack of originality, in and of itself, is distasteful.

         
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    Posted: 04 August 2010 06:33 PM #13

    Zeke - 04 August 2010 07:02 PM

    ... I hope he stays at MS for a long time.

    On the other hand, it would be nice to have another American company operating on all cylinders ... THAT would be a renewed investment opportunity and a way to stave off Indian and Chinese competition.  It would be great to see Microsoft start innovating and head off in directions that might not necessarily compete with Apple.

         
  • Posted: 04 August 2010 09:11 PM #14

    firestorm - 04 August 2010 09:33 PM
    Zeke - 04 August 2010 07:02 PM

    ... I hope he stays at MS for a long time.

    On the other hand, it would be nice to have another American company operating on all cylinders ... THAT would be a renewed investment opportunity and a way to stave off Indian and Chinese competition.  It would be great to see Microsoft start innovating and head off in directions that might not necessarily compete with Apple.

    Microsoft competes more directly now with Google than with Apple and that competition will become more fierce following the release of the Chrome OS.

    Microsoft remains a highly successful global empire and it’s only in this quarter that Apple will once again overtake MSFT in both revenue and earnings.

    Microsoft’s retail stores certainly won’t turn things around.

         
  • Posted: 04 August 2010 09:46 PM #15

    DawnTreader - 04 August 2010 05:45 AM

    My latest missive at Eventide.

    This is simply a story about my iPad purchase odyssey three weeks ago. I suggest anyone who doubts Apple will grow revenue this fiscal year by 50% ($65 billion and a $20 billion fiscal fourth quarter) and doubts Apple will grow revenue by 50% next fiscal year (roughly $100 billion) needs to get their nose out of outdated business books and needs to take a stroll inside an Apple retail store on a weekend afternoon.

    Better yet. Take a stroll inside an Apple retail store on a weekend afternoon and buy an iPad (if you can!).

    Snippet: All told I spent over a $1,000 at the Apple stores on that Sunday and about 25% of the iPad’s purchase price on accessories and services. That’s not including the $30 I immediately spent from home on the iPad versions of Pages, Numbers and Keynote. The Apple iPad is a revenue and earnings monster and these days the Apple retail stores are jammed with foot traffic.

    I’m quoting the original post for those who are just now visiting the topic.