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Why iPod Mini is a smart move for Apple

CmdrTaco posted more than 10 years ago | from the no-dept dept.

Media (Apple) 730

Ample Dave writes "Ars Technica has an analytical article up right now that looks at Apple's strategy with the (many would say overpriced) iPod Mini. I have to admit that I bought into the rumors of a dirt cheap iPod Jr., and thus was very disappointed when the real price of $250 was announced, but this article changed my mind. It leads me to wonder about Apple's other pricing games. You an see this kind of thing with the eMac and iMac, too."

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Still Don't like it (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101607)

Way too little for way too much cash.

Re:Still Don't like it (5, Interesting)

Egonis (155154) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101673)

On the other hand, high-end MP3 Players (like the new Rio, whatever it's called) are almost $200, but for another $50, you get a much larger capacity.

I think it's worth it, I'm a student and can't afford it, but I would buy one if I weren't poor.

And no, I'm not a Mac User/Activist

Re:Still Don't like it (4, Insightful)

Dashing Leech (688077) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101772)

While it's true that the iPod Mini compares well with the other players in the article, they didn't say why anyone would chose the Mini (4 GB) rather than pay the extra $50 and get a 15 GB iPod. Even at $299, the full iPod still compares favorably with most of the other players in the article. So why would anyone buy the Mini?

Re:Still Don't like it (5, Insightful)

vontrotsky (667853) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101836)

>>So why would anyone buy the Mini?

Smaller form factor and colors. For a lot of people this stuff really really matters.

I run and I would much rather carry the Mini, than a full size ipod. Plus, I only have 3 gigs of music, so I really wound't get much more value out of a 40 gig player.


Re:Still Don't like it (1)

Alan Partridge (516639) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101834)

I'm assuming that you DIDN'T read the article? The iPod Mini is highly competitive, what else needs to be said? if you don't want one, don't buy one.

I don't so I won't, but it looks like a competitive product nonetheless.

Re:Still Don't like it (1)

Alan Partridge (516639) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101895)

sorry, that was meant for grandparent

I do, of course, agree with parent wholeheartedly.

Re:Still Don't like it (3, Informative)

radish (98371) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101913)

You can get the Rio Karma for $250. That's a 20gb player. So in fact you can get "a much larger capacity" for $0 extra.

Re:Still Don't like it (3, Interesting)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101912)

Right... I would also agree.

However, as Apple says, 20% of the market is people spending $250+ for a 512MB flash player.. and that's the market apple is after. They are not trying to sell this to those who otherwise would buy a normal iPod... because we sould say "50 bucks more for 10 times the space, that's a no brainer"

Americans ... (-1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101608)

... always concerned about price, never about value.

Re:Americans ... (1)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101898)

... always concerned about price, never about value.

Asinine, considering that Apple's largest market is America. Also, price *is* half the value eqation.

Yeah, not the best price (1)

W32.Klez.A (656478) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101610)

I'm pretty sure this slight hype about lowering the price of the iPod will still do positive things for Apple. Since they kind of have a stigma of high prices, as many articles as they can get about lowering them will pay off.

They let me down big time. (0, Redundant)

ScottGant (642590) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101856)

I was jazzed this last keynote speech. I thought for sure they were going to release a 1 gig solid-state iPod for $99 bucks. I had heard this through the rumor mill out there, but obviously they're not always right. I was all ready with my credit card to make the purchase.

But come on, $249 for 4 gigs? When for a mere 50 bucks more I could have 15 gigs? I don't care how much they try to justify it, it just isn't a good deal to me.

But think about it, if they sold a $99 iPod they would sell a zillion of them...cementing even further they're hold on the player market.

But what do I know...

Howard Dean stiffs the bill. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101617)

Dean Deli Debt

West Des Moines, January 26, 2004 - They came to town, tried to get your vote and then left for New Hampshire.

But one presidential candidate may have left a big bill for a small West Des Moines deli. The campaigns ate, drank and slept at dozens of places across town. For the most part they paid their bills.

This is how it's supposed to work inside the Brown Bag Deli. Owner Scott Hoffman makes you a turkey sandwich and then you pay for it.

Scott will tell you deliveries are a little different, especially one back on the 16th of this month. That was a big order for this small business of four employees. 200 brown bag specials...with turkey, roast beef, ham and veggie sandwiches. The total...$963.01.

As he headed out that day, Scott remembered this customer has paid its bills late a couple times before. So he promised delivery this time with one condition, "c.o.d."

He showed up at the customer's downtown office just in time for lunch. The Dean headquarters was utter chaos. But he couldn't find anyone who'd pay him. They said try the other building next door. Same answer next door, try the other building. Scott went back and forth for 20 minutes. Nobody would pay.

He just assumed they would pay in good faith. After all, Dick Gephardt's campaign paid its lunch bills on time. And Howard Dean has thousands of followers in Iowa. Can't one of them give Scott his money?

We tried all day to reach Howard Dean's people-- no comment from them yet. By the way, Scott Hoffman says he considered himself a possible Dean supporter before the incident. He's since changed his mind.

We're checking unpaid debts from other campaigns and haven't found any yet.

Re:Howard Dean stiffs the bill. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101672)

Where is this originally from? I wish to site it.

Re:Howard Dean stiffs the bill. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101708) inKQq4

Re:Howard Dean stiffs the bill. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101813)

You're not going to get a good grade if you "site" a reference.

History Repeats... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101619)

"$249? No Wi-Fi? Lame..."

typo? (0, Redundant)

happyfrogcow (708359) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101627)

will hold 4GB of music,"

4GB? We were expecting maybe 2GB, but that sounds ok

should that be "We were expecting 20GB"?

Re:typo? (4, Informative)

lowmagnet (646428) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101653)

No, all the rumours were based on a 1" 2GB drive that was on the market already. The rumour sites didn't realise that they could go higher than 2GB, and the 4GB drives were announced the same day.

Re:typo? (1)

happyfrogcow (708359) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101677)

ah, thanks. his response in "that sounds ok" was a little misleading. Having a 2GB increase would seem to evoke a better reaction than just being "ok".

anyway, thanks for the clarification

Re:typo? (2, Informative)

mekkab (133181) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101664)

No- 2GB. Why? We were all expecting a cheap player. As such, we didn't expect a cheap player to hold too much.

When you are expecting lower prices, you expect lower specs.

Heh (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101630)

I'd still rather pay $50 more for a 15GB iPod

Re:Heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101892)

Just think how many parents are going to steer the rugrat to the iPod Mini instead of the iPod Maxi in order to save the 50 clams.

Yeah, the kid won't shut his pie hole 'til he has an iPod, but a mini will save the harried parent 50 bux while achieving silence.

Yeah, I almost agree... (5, Interesting)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101635)

I'm as much as an Apple fanatic as most of em; I've got my two Dual G4s, my powerbook, and my 3rd generation 20Gb iPod, and I'd agree with this article completely except for one thing...

It costs an extra $120 to get all the accessories that should come with the damn thing! Why is it so much extra to get the armband, the dock, and the remote? For $250 the should be included.

Accessories: where the money is. (4, Insightful)

mekkab (133181) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101687)

Thats like digital cameras these days.

Only $250! But the CompactFlash is so small as to be stupid. And you'll need a case. And some rechargeable batteries. And an AC adapter. And a docking station. And...
After its all over, you just spent $500 on something that costs $225.

I guess thats the new Bait and switch? Or can you come up with a better name for it? (upselling?)

Re:Accessories: where the money is. (2, Insightful)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101744)

Yeah, I guess... But with cameras these days you at least have that feeling of "it was only $250!", but with the iPod Mini we're starting out with "holy crap! $250?" before they stick you for the accessories.

Re:Accessories: where the money is. (4, Insightful)

Tim C (15259) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101763)

"Upselling" is what our sales guys tend to use when talking about getting a client in for eg a usability study, or hosting, or whatever, with a view to gradually selling them more of our services. So, we start out small, they get to know us, then we sell them a whole new website with support, etc.

Same thing here - go in (relatively) small with the basics, at a smaller margin, then sell sell sell on the extras, where the real profit is.

It's *not* bait and switch, because you are getting exactly what's advertised - it's just not quite as useful on its own as you thought it was. That's not really the company's fault though.

Re:Accessories: where the money is. (1)

mekkab (133181) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101849)

Oh I'm not complaining about the tactic, I'm just trying to put the right "label" that describes the tactic. Hey, if I intended to spend $250 and walked out spending twice that much, thats my own damn fault!

Re:Accessories: where the money is. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101865)

Or you can just spend $500 (like I did) and get a nice digital camera (Canon S230) w/ all those accessories and 256M flash.

Re:Accessories: where the money is. (1)

the_rev_matt (239420) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101911)

It's called a loss leader. Sell the basic item at or below cost and make your money on accessories. See also: printers and ink cartridges.

Re:Yeah, I almost agree... (2, Insightful)

Dark Paladin (116525) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101757)

I guess my question would be "why do you need those things"?

For my iPod (30 GB, if you're curious), I got a dock but never use it. I just plug it into the cord every so often to sync up my audio books or some such.

So for most of the items, I'd say they are truly "extras". Don't get me wrong - I personally think the mini-iPod should be $199, but after reading the Ars article as well with that handy little table I'm leaning more towards the "Probably *is* worth the cost".

Either way, I'll hope for a price drop, mainly because I want to get my wife one for our Anniversary.

CTAA FOREVER (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101636)

Are you a Cmdr.?
Are you a Taco?
Are you Cmdr. Taco?

If you answered yes to all of the questions above, THEN GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE, YOU FUCKING JERK OFF

Am I the only one... (0, Offtopic)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101639)

who saw iMac and eMac and thought "Escape Meta Alt Control Shift"? :) Just not a Mac fan I guess. =/

Coolness (1, Offtopic)

tcopeland (32225) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101645)

From the article:

The Apple brand is cool right now, and that perceived hipness is a major selling point for Apple.

Yup, right. But Apple is doing other things right, too - like Mac OS X being a solid operating system based on Mach and various BSDs. We run our web and CVS server [] on OS X and it's cranking along just fine.

Fact is... (0, Interesting)

Espectr0 (577637) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101668)

...that if i would spend over 200 bucks to get a mp3 mplayer and have 2 choices, a 250$ one and a 300$ one with a big hard drive capacity difference, i would pay the higher one. The smaller size does not appeal to me, although i realize that some people will be interested in them because of dumb things like color (women)

Re:Fact is... (5, Insightful)

Neophytus (642863) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101683)

you've just been upsold by $50

Re:Fact is... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101704)

color is not dumb.

Re:Fact is... (1)

happyfrogcow (708359) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101759)

not owning any mp3 type player, I would agree. this "market" that apple wants 20% more of, why does it exist? does it exist purely because people want a device that is smaller than the palm of their hand? Or is it that flash based players have fewer moving parts and less chance for damage? Quicker transfer times? It seems like the iPod and other large capacity players are a real market, where this "high-end flash-based market" is irrelevant. i mean, who would buy a Creative Muvo TX for $269 only to get 512MB?

People seem to forget... (5, Interesting)

John Harrison (223649) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101789)

The original iPod had 5 GB of storage. The mini iPod has 4 GB for now, but in a year what will it have? This is a new form factor that will become more and more attractive over time. At some point (three years from now?) it won't matter that a mini holds 80 GB and a normal iPod holds 160 GB, the smaller size will be enough of an advantage to go for the mini. At some point the mini will simply be the iPod. Then the larger one will move on to video.

Re:Fact is... (4, Insightful)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101791)

because of dumb things like color (women)

Oh, please. Not every man is design impaired, and color and styling may be among the criteria evaluated in a purchase. When you buy a car, or clothes or whatever do you completely eschew color and design? I doubt it. While the very few will take function completely over form most of us enjoy having something that is aesthecially pleasing besides being of great functional value.

Am I to assume from the tone of your post that if you were to be able to have a girlfriend/boyfriend you would completely ignore looks? :-)

Re:Fact is... (1)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101847)

I meant "aesthetically." Sheesh.

Re:Fact is... (0)

AceCaseOR (594637) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101792)

However, suppose that physical size and cost are also important factors. The $250 player may have less space, but it also costs less then the $250 one, and doesn't take up as much physical space. Also, since it uses Flash memory, it doesn't skip when you're jogging, unlike the full sized iPod.

Now, assuming that the price of $299 as given for the MuVo2 is the actual price, you're getting a comparable MP3 player, that's slightly physically larger, and has the same storage capacity as the MuVo2, but it's $50 cheaper. Sure, you aren't able to read .WMA files, but, instead you can read Apple's propriatary format, so if you're using iTunes, you have a compatible player, without having to burn the songs you want to carry around to Audio CD, then rip them as MP3s before transfering them to your device.

On the other hand, and the MuVo2's price is actually $199 dollars, then that would be the better buy, as it can read the more commonly used WMA files, costs less, and is physically smaller, with the same storage capacity.

So you're not intersted in color? OR women? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101897)

Sexist bast. Next time I run by our MTSO to visit I'll tell the chick running the operation she should add a little color to the place.

Mac hardware is expensive?? (2, Funny)

Trolling4Columbine (679367) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101681)

What a scoop!

Re:Mac hardware is expensive?? (5, Insightful)

Caesar (9965) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101748)

Did you bother to read the article? The whole point is that the device is not expensive at all when compared to what else you can get in the smaller storage capacity market for that price.

At the very least, it's competatively priced, and given the iTunes support and the superior UI, it's probably a no-brainer for anyone looking in that general price range.

My Article: Why I dont give a turdabout iPod (-1, Troll)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101689)

Because I just dont.

Although this IS a smart business move for Apple.

With so many new folks switching to their systems, the demand for an overpriced device that can be more easily shoved up a virgin asshole must be overwhelming them.

Red Hat should work on a miniature Yoda doll.

I see (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101734)

I don't need no instructions to know how to rock!!!!

Because it will never happen in this universe, therefore instructions would be a waste of time.

This article is 100% right. (4, Interesting)

nicedream (4923) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101691)

Sure you say "I can get 11GB more storage for only $50!!" But that is the geek inside of you, always wanting bigger, better, faster, more.

How many people don't even have enough MP3s to fill the 4GB mini? Answer: A LOT. They don't give a crap that they can have every MP3 in the world in their pocket. They want something easy to carry, and being cute pink helps too.

I have always admired the ipod for its design and interface, but even with as small as they made it it was too big for me so I have been through a few flash players. But come Feb 16, guess which new player I'm going to have....

Also, IMO, the ipod mini is going to pave the way for where the ipod is going. As the 1 inch hard drive capacities go up to the 10, 20, 30 GB range, I can forsee a time when the ipod is discontinued and the mini takes the center stage.

So wrong... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101781)

" But that is the geek inside of you, always wanting bigger, better, faster, more."

No, that is the *American* in him. Explain SUV's. You can't, except that people want bigger, better, faster, more, despite the fact that SUV's have less space than a minivan, cost far more than they're worth, but they're cool (how a pickup truck can be cool is a triumph of redneck over common sense, but I digress).

Thus, small will appeal to the Japanese, and to girls, and metrosexuals, but that leaves the rest of the world.

No, I'm not trolling, you just seem to wrong compared to reality.

Why not a Flash iPod? (0, Interesting)

Fleet Admiral Ackbar (57723) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101693)

I was surprised to see that the mini iPod is HD-based. The one real weakness of the Pod IMHO is the fact that you can't run with it. I still have a crummy Diamond Rio 500 around for exercise purposes. I would have purchased even a 1GB non-HD Pod for $249...

Re:Why not a Flash iPod? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101758)


I run with my iPod all the time and according to the manual this is perfectly acceptable.

Have you tried running with an iPod? (4, Informative)

petard (117521) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101775)

I've run with mine 3 times a week for the past 4 months and haven't seen any ill effects thus far. Or is there some problem I'm missing?

Re:Have you tried running with an iPod? (1, Insightful)

happyfrogcow (708359) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101823)

i think people assume the insides are held together with scotch tape or just thrown in their without any thought. mention of "not being able to run with iPods", based on friends experience, should be modded troll.

Runs just fine (2, Informative)

josquin00 (675292) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101810)

The one real weakness of the Pod IMHO is the fact that you can't run with it.

I'm not sure what you are basing this on. It doesn't skip - I run with mine (short distances: 2-3 miles) without any skipping issues. It is a little large/heavy to wear comfortably on a waistband or arm band, though. The iPod Mini ought to cover the size issue nicely.

Re:Why not a Flash iPod? (2, Informative)

3263827 (192923) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101824)

Who says you can't? The iPod has a 32mb buffer to help avoid skips. That translates into about 20 minutes of music depending on your bitrate.

Re:Why not a Flash iPod? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101851)

Huh? Not sure if you were just being sarcastic here, or are actually misinformed. In case it's the latter, I've run HUNDREDS of miles with my iPod without ANY problems...the skip protection work perfectly.

Re:Why not a Flash iPod? (1)

MrMastadon (588607) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101915)

Exactly. Apple made a big mistake by not going the flash route. The market for the regular iPod and the mini is exactly the same. The market for those that want a flash player and HD are completely different. If Apple would have come out with a flash player offering much like iRiver they would have absolutely killed the competition. I would have waited in line for days for one of these players. I was sooooo disappointed when I discovered that the mini was HD based for $250.

Let's get this out of the way... (4, Insightful)

molafson (716807) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101702)

"But does it have OGG?" (Answer: No, and it never will.)

Re:Let's get this out of the way... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101807)

"Do more than 50 people care" (Answer: No, and they never will.)

I got a 512mb player for $165 (3, Informative)

John Harrison (223649) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101703)

I think the price comparison chart is a bit off, since there are cheaper 512mb players to be found. I got mine at [] . No, I don't work for them. Oh yeah, it doubles as a USB drive.

Re:I got a 512mb player for $165 (3, Interesting)

blamanj (253811) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101796)

Not only that, but it disregards the fact that many of the flash players include an FM radio. This (and price) are the items that made me pick a lower-capacity flash player, rather than the more drool-worthy (design- and capacity- wise) iPods.

And why it's not (1, Interesting)

prostoalex (308614) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101706)

Read Robert Scoble on why Apple is locking users into the DRM only one product supports (iPod) [] . Scoble works for Microsoft, for those, who didn't know.

Re:And why it's not (2, Insightful)

Mononoke (88668) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101830)

Read Robert Scoble on why Apple is locking users into the DRM only one product supports (iPod). Scoble works for Microsoft, for those, who didn't know.
As opposed to the one DRM that Microsoft wants to lock you into?

Dual purpose (No, I'm not serious). (4, Funny)

Apiakun (589521) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101714)

As he states in the article: "Secondly, the iPod is cool. Apple is cool. Is the iPod Mini cool? As a married, Caucasian male in his mid-30s who thinks he looks good with a shaved head, I feel somewhat ill-qualified to judge what is and is not hip." Is he trying to review the iPod, or to tell us he's a member of the Aryan Nation?

It's competetively priced (3, Interesting)

jcsehak (559709) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101726)

I was just looking at an article in the paper about this, and similar devices by other manufacturers weren't very much less, and in many cases had much less HD space. And objectively speaking, they weren't nearly as cool. So I won't begrudge Apple their pricing scheme.

But still, it's not like it's wristwatch-size. When I heard the rumors of a small iPod, I shrugged and said "it's already small." It's like hearing about a new version of Photoshop. I was happy with version 6.

iPods Mini or Otherwise (4, Insightful)

EraseEraseMe (167638) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101731)

First of all, price point comparisons between other MP3 players doesn't really do the iPod any justice. It is over-priced for what you're given yes; but you're paying a premium for ease-of-use, style and of course the brand name. It's an Apple product, designed to work with other Apple products, and I'm sure that it works quite well. I own a 128 Muvo and that's all I need for an Mp3 player really. It's dual-function (128 Mb USB key acts as a USB drive as well), it's copy and paste in Windows for Mp3s and files (no need to install any extra software or drivers like some minidisc players I know of) and it's pretty sturdy. Granted, I got it for free so it's a bit better deal then a 4GB HD for $250 but hey, to each his own.

Secondly, maybe the Apple marketing team thought that a $50 difference was all that was really stopping them from taking hold of the lower market share. I also think that once people start buying more of the iPod minis, it will force Apple to bring down the price of the iPod Majors. I've yet to find 15Gb of music to fill up my player with, legal and quasi-legal. It really is a mind-game. $50 may put some people above what they wanted to spend on a player. If it stops 1000 people from buying other players, Apple just made $250,000 instead of $0.

Offtopic: Internet Clogged (-1, Offtopic)

kisrael (134664) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101735)

I'm just wondering if other people are seeing a great deal of Internet congestion, or if it's just something local to me and my employer over my lunch break...a lot of sites are seeming slooooow...

Re:Offtopic: Internet Clogged (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101780)

Agent Smith bit off Frodo's finger and crashed a plane into the internet.

Re:Offtopic: Internet Clogged (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101794)

i'm chugging along just fine over here on the east coast near DC. must be just you. I know, I know...offtopic. :-\

Re:Offtopic: Internet Clogged (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101841)

Its the new worm that's DDOSing SCO

Doesn't work, I'm still disappointed (1)

kc3lai (558303) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101736)

"...but this article changed my mind"
ne, I'm a cheap guy, and still disappointed about the price

Helsinki Syndrome. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101737)

If someone if held captive long enough, eventually they love their captors.

Re:Helsinki Syndrome. (1)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101893)

You'd be talking about the Stockholm syndrome.

I too! (1, Funny)

overbyj (696078) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101740)

Secondly, the iPod is cool. Apple is cool. Is the iPod Mini cool? I too think the iMini iPod is iCool! I want iOne iNow! Just iLower the iPrice to i$199 or lower Steve.

is it just me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101745)

"I could see my friend's daughter slipping one into her Hello Kitty backpack."

or should this guy be riding toyko trains after school and trolling the net under the alias "otaku"...

sorry dude, it had to be said. nice review though.

Re:is it just me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101837)

I'd like to slip something pink into his friend daughters backside. Helloooo kitty!


Overpriced (-1, Troll)

Krapangor (533950) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101751)

Apple strategy might be succesfull for now but in the long term they will be failing.
They make the usual Apple mistake: expensive high-quality products. It's just a matter of time until you get a Chinese-made 30 bucks player and 10 cent downloads from Google/Yahoo music.
At which point Jobs will announce losses again.

There is one lesson Apple seems not to learn: people want much and they want it cheaply. Nobody cares about quality.
This is quite surprising because this universal law of economics holds even for 3 dollar crack whores but the Apple company is the only place on earth where it's ignored.
Well, perhaps they are leading a healthy lifestyle.

Re:Overpriced (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101858)

Nobody cares about quality.

Well you're wrong since I do, and I'm certainly willing to the pay the premium if it's something that interests me. I wouldn't think of buying a $400.00 computer or a $9000.00 car since these are items which I use daily and depend upon.

The people who would buy Chinese knockoffs wouldn't have purchased an iPod in the first place so Apple really isn't loosing any sales. The cheap stuff is for the mass-market which is not who Apple caters to.

Apple marketing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101756)

Am I the only one who gets the feeling that this is just another one of those "free avertising" piece of "news?

How's this news? Ohhh, just wanna make sure that everybody out there has a reason to go buy this "cool" gadget? No, thanks.

One point he misses (4, Insightful)

smartin (942) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101785)

is that is positioned to sell as many as they can to people that will pay $249 for them. When those people run out they can drop the price to $199 and maybe even introduce a 2G at $149. And sell a shit load more.

No excuse (3, Insightful)

adrianbaugh (696007) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101793)

The fact that Apple's product is too expensive isn't excused by the fact that all its competitors are too expensive too.

Re:No excuse (2, Insightful)

veddermatic (143964) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101896)

Huh? Obviously if multiple companies have similar products at the same price point then one of the following is true:

1) It costs that much to produce, and that price is barely above break even.

2) Market research shows that's what consumers will spend for the product, and so it's price is set there.

3) A combo of 1 and 2.

So yes, it *does* excuse it... if the market will bear that price, then it's not too expensive. Welcome to capitalism. If the market won't handle that price, they will be discounted until the "correct" level is found.... or someone like you comes out with one that doesnt' cost so much.

Good article (3, Insightful)

CptChipJew (301983) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101805)

One of the things I think most people don't consider is that most of the naysayers who point out the $50 difference between iPods are Slashdot/Apple types; people familiar with the tech industry, and most offerings by most major companies.

But consider the average Joe wandering around his local shop, who doesn't know much of about technology, and just knows that he wants a player that can hold lots of music, and isn't particularly large.

He is going to see many tiny music players, all with the ability to play the mp3's he downloads from Kazaa.

Being able to compare a 512MB player, and a 4GB player for the same price won't leave much decision making to be done.

Now me personally, I bought a 15GB iPod recently, because I feel $50 more is a pretty good investment for 11GB. But many people don't understand what a "gigabyte" or "megabyte" are. They see Apple's ad for "1,000 songs!", and think "Hmm, that's a lot of songs."

what's the difference? (1)

pizza_milkshake (580452) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101806)

iPods have always been over^H^H^H^Hpremium priced... welcome to Apple hardware. i would buy one if they cost less than doing a major upgrade (new proc and mobo) to my existing pc hardware

yes and no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101825)

The theory is good if you walk into a store and see the mini-iPod sitting next to the flash mp3 players.

But will stores put them next to the flash mp3 players or next to the other iPods?

At which point a person will read one price and read the other price and buy the "regular" iPod with boatloads more of storage.

Win-win for apple?

Most reports miss the market (4, Funny)

shawkin (165588) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101826)

Teen age girls. They buy a lot of music.
Fashion is important. Small is important; their purses are full of stuff.
Think of it as technical jewelry.
I know girls who are buying all five colors to match their outfits and moods.

The article makes a good point (1)

The I Shing (700142) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101831)

I was walking around Best Buy on Sunday and noticed the $200.00 MP3 players, and other their tiny size, I can't imagine someone not wanting to spend the other fifty bucks and get the real thing.

I'm convinced, too, that multiple colors will be more attractive to a broad consumer base than I previously thought. Look how well the colored iMacs have done.

And Apple offers nice discounts to people who attend or work at colleges and universities. If you're such a person, don't forget to check with your college bookstore or electronics store to see what the price is there before you buy an iPod or a Mini. At the school I work for, the 15GB iPod is discounted something like 10%.

Apple speaks to them... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101839)

Apple has an ability other vendors do not in selling to youth and non-techies. The plain fact that the ipod is so popular and the competition is not having much effect shows that the brand is more important than the price. Apple is taking that to the bank.

Hmm (1, Flamebait)

TheOnlyCoolTim (264997) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101840)

30 GB MP3 player [] , $19 more than iPod mini.

The iPods, mini or otherwise, are overpriced. Plus they go to the form over function route to neglect important things like a door to change the battery.


Size matters? (2, Funny)

Takara (711260) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101844)

If people, such as the people who wrote the article, can say that the iPod mini is worth the lesser space for the greater buck just because it's smaller... I think they need to re-review the iRiver. I mean, come on. The iRiver looks like a freaking skateboard [] .

I mean, come on! I'd choose the skateboard over the apple branded over-sized suppository.

Cool only gets you so far with mp3 players (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101848)

Secondly, the iPod is cool. Apple is cool. Is the iPod Mini cool?

I suspect the mini ipod is the height of coolness. Apple is producing it and they consistently deliver. The problem is I am not shopping for cool in an mp3 player. I shop for best ratio of price/features. I think clothes and cars can get a huge premium for coolness. I think mp3 players as a utility. Jobs doesn't want to be a commodity producer. It's beneath him. I think the mp3 player market place is going to move past Apple unless they get their prices down fast. I'm not holding my breath.

Still not convinced (1)

Sean80 (567340) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101854)

Apple, I'm still not convinced. I don't often go to physical stores any more, so I can't really tell how much smaller and cooler this new iPod is. The pictures just all look the same on Amazon. Further, I never heard a peep out of you about this being an alternative to Flash-based players, as opposed to being a little brother to your 15GB model. Maybe I was on another planet when your marketing guys said that to the world, but, nonetheless, you missed the chance for me to take out my wallet. Finally, the sticker shock is just too much. Why would I get off my ass to go check out an iPod that'll save me $50? Cool stopped being cool a long time ago for me, so that isn't a convincing argument for me any more.

It's all been said before, but I'm just one of perhaps many opportunities who were waiting for a $100 model, and simply forgot about it half a nanosecond after the price was announced.

Looks a little better (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8101859)

I agree, 250 is still an awfuul lot for the little MP3 play, but compared to the rest of the market it is a better value. But there still isn't enough price difference between the 15GB iPod for me to by that instead of the bigger one.

It's about perception not reality (1)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101883)

It doesn't matter how good, bad, or ugly your product is, so long as the public think it's the Next Great Thing (tm).

By pricing it so close to its big brother, Apple have invited criticism of the pricing model, rather than concentrated on the competition. There may be sound financial reasons for it, but given the relative desirability of the two, the larger one wins, *even* *if* it's more expensive.

The competition at this moment hardly matters. The initial comparison is done with the Big Brother, so by the time the competition are arrayed against it, you have 'the crap Apple one' vs 'the high-end' (remember, this is marketing, not reality) competition. Joe Schmoe goes for the 'high end' one, and Apple lose.

It may still be a fantastically successful product. Bet it would be even more so, if they'd docked $20-40 off the price...


Still waiting for the . . . (1)

angle_slam (623817) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101886)

Still waiting for the 60 GB iPod.

Article table misses one of the best competitors (1)

crush (19364) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101890)

FrontierLabs Nex 'A [] ($239) 1Gb Microdrive CFlash USB MP3,WMA,OggVorbis 3.1"(80mm) X 2.5"(65mm) X 0.9"(22mm)
Apparently they're very active in releasing BIOS updates etc.

Why has slashdot become so apple finatic ? (-1, Troll)

phoxix (161744) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101891)

Sorry, but I have to admit, this getting nuts.

First, apple has a bunch [] of [] stupid topics []

Some of them [] aren't even attributed to the right people! (read: IBM, IBM's research, IBM's development)

Secondly, there is [] It even uses Apple's disgusting aqua theme.

Thridly, this article reeks of "Apple can do no wrong, we're too blind to see anything else"

Sunny Dubey

PS: I did RTFA, however I see no reason why so many "buy apple products" articles need to make it on slashdot.

Really smart move (5, Interesting)

suntory (660419) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101894)

The iPod Mini has also had an interesting side effect. Before Apple announced it, everybody thought that paying 300$ for the lower iPod was crazy, and that it was greatly overpriced. Today, most people believe that the 300$ iPod is the best option available, and that it is reasonably priced. Definitely, these Apple guys are marketing geniuses...

missing the point (1)

rihock (680776) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101900)

Its not about the amount of storage. For example, I have a 5 gig iPod. I use it when I travel. It hold up to 1000 songs. I can't listen to 1000 songs anywhere I fly! It give me enough choice for the trips I take. I keep all my music on the desktop at home (10k songs) or on my laptop. I download what suits my mood for the trip and re-arrange things accordinly. Paying 249 for 4 gigs is reasonable if you don't intend to keep your entire music collection on the iPod, which unless you back it up, isn't that great of an idea..... just on man's opinion

Size Matters (1)

imkonen (580619) | more than 10 years ago | (#8101917)

I'm surprised the article didn't emphasize the size difference as another factor. Miniaturizing hard-drives and batteries is a large reason both the iPod and iPod-mini cost what they do. If you compare them, you really have to say "you can get 15 gB more for only another $50 and having a larger mp3 player." Not that there is a huge difference size, nor would I consider the iPod to be inconveniently large, but I think Apple is correctly surmising that what difference there is may be enough to convince some people the iPod-mini is the way to go.
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