Letters from Steve: No One Bought the Xserve

In what looks to be another email response to a customer question, Apple CEO Steve Jobs explains exactly why his company is discontinuing the Xserve: It wasn’t selling.

The French Mac Web site macgeneration reported that Mr. Jobs’ response to one Apple fan’s plea for the Xserve was “Hardly anone was buying them.”

Apple’s Xserve

Apple quietly announced at the end of last week that its Xserve rack-mount server would be discontinued January, 2011. The company will be offering customers a Mac Pro or Mac mini with Mac OS X Server pre-installed in its place.

The Xserve is Apple’s pro-level server product. It includes Mac OS X Server, three hot-swappable drive bays, an option for a redundant power supply, and takes up 1U or rack space.

Assuming the email from Mr. Jobs is correct, it isn’t a big surprise that Apple chose to discontinue the Xserve even though the company looks to be gaining a foothold in the enterprise market. Dropping products that don’t perform well in the market in favor of supporting more popular sellers is common place, and it looks like that may be exactly what happened to Apple’s pro-level server.