Costco to Stop Selling Apple’s iPod

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Costco will be phasing out its iPod line and iTunes gift card inventory over the next few months. The company said that the decision to drop the products was a mutual agreement with Apple, according to the Seattle Times.

“In the past couple months, we agreed to wind down,” commented Costco’s Chief Financial Officer Richard Galanti.

iPods will soon be MIA at Costco

iPods have been available in Costco for years at a small discount, but the retailer hasn’t been able to sell the music players online because of Apple-imposed restrictions.

Mr. Galanti didn’t say why Apple wouldn’t let Costco sell iPods online, and now that the companies are parting ways, it looks like there won’t be any chance of the iPad ever showing up on the retailer’s store shelves.

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John Martellaro

I saw an article whose humorous, jesting title was, “It was all over when Steve saw the iPods next to the Mayonnaise barrels.”

Lee Dronick

I buy my prepaid iTunes cards at Costco, $60 worth for $55. Oh well c’est la cyber.

Ross Edwards

Based on the kind of brush-ups Costco has been having with companies like Coca-Cola in recent years, one surmises this was a simple matter of conflicting price preferences.  Apple fixes prices, yet Costco’s stock in trade is that EVERYTHING is cheaper there (even when they have to make a bundle package to do it, a la video game consoles).  Add in that Costco likely commanded a discount from the normal Apple wholesale, and Apple selling every iPad it can produce without even trying, and you can see where the two companies’ needs and expectations were no longer meeting.


Costco’s gray-market sale of Omega watches doesn’t give me a warm feeling about where and how they purchase many high-ticket items. Costco is a big-box store that gets products from wherever they can. I’ve been an executive member for years and have been upset when something I liked disappeared from the shelves. I don’t go to Costco to purchase anything important, I just don’t trust what will happen with the products. It’s fine with me if they aren’t carrying Apple products anymore. Their computer shelves are filled with HP products so they must be able to get good discounts for those items and not others.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Oh good grief. If you are a watch enthusiast and not buying gray market, you are seriously wasting money. There’s nothing inherently shady about gray market watches or TVs or other high-dollar goods. The manufacturers use those channels to test price points and even to add distinguishing value (packaging, warranties, service) to the so-called “legitimate” channels. Keeping the gray-market channels fertile also lets manufacturers experiment with product offerings and not having to hit a retail home run with each.


How does either party benefit from this?
And shouldn’t they both be concerned about their customers?
Guess not!


iPods and iTunes cards have already disappeared from the Costco in San Francisco. They are replaced by a display for Zunes selling at $199.99.

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