Source of MacBook price cut revealed

Apple's problems may not be limited to disappointed reviewers and a weak launch.

By Benzinga Feb 22, 2013 4:08PM
The Apple Inc. logo is displayed on the back of the new MacBook Pro David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty ImagesBy Louis Bedigian 

Apple (AAPL) surprised consumers when it announced that it had lowered the price of the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display.

It did not make much sense for Apple to cut the price so soon after release. At the time, the 13-inch model was less than four months old. That did not stop Apple from reducing the price, prompting critics to speculate about the cause.

There have been signs that the smaller Pro machines are selling poorly, especially after bloggers got hold of the device.

"In terms of gaming performance, there isn't much," The Verge's Nilay Patel wrote in his review.

"While the Retina MacBook Pro is easily the most desirable 13-inch Mac laptop to date, the high price and lack of discrete graphics make it a tough call versus either the more powerful 15-inch Retina Pro or the more affordable 13-inch Air," CNET's editors concluded.

The low performance also caught the attention of Computerworld's Michael deAgonia. "In terms of actual performance, the Intel (INTC) i5 processor isn't as fast as the quad-core i7 I'm used to," he wrote in his review.

According to DigiTimes, the entire computer segment is expected to remain stagnant throughout the first half of the year. Taiwan-based supply chain makers are hopeful that sales will pick up after Intel launches the Haswell platform in June. Windows Blue, which is thought to be the first major update to Windows 8, is also expected to give the industry a boost.

In theory, Apple should have been able to accomplish the same thing when it released the MacBook Pro with Retina Display. Consumers do not seem to be overwhelmingly interested in spending $2,199 on a 15-inch model, or $1,699 on the 13-inch iteration. The latter was reduced to $1,499 this month. It is not yet known how much of an impact this will have on Apple's sales.

Google (GOOG), which was rumored to developing a touch-screen laptop last November, has expanded its market potential with the company's first high-end machine. Officially known as the Chromebook Pixel, the new notebook is Google's answer to the MacBook Air.

However, if consumers are unwilling to spend $1,499+ on a MacBook Pro with Retina Display, they may not be overly interested in a weaker $1,299 machine from Google.

More from Benzinga

Feb 25, 2013 12:42PM
Hey Jaime,   Cash on hand is $196 per share alone.   Why don't you do your homework before you shoot off your mouth.
Feb 22, 2013 4:32PM
Lenovo's Yoga 11 and 13 Ultrabook touch screens using i3, i5 and i7 with 128-256Gb are selling very at $999-1500. Lenovo's Helix will be outed in March and it's highly anticipated to blow even the Surface Pro away. 2013 will be the year of the Ultrabook convertible tablet especially after Intel's Bay Trail ships.
Feb 22, 2013 8:29PM
Apple is overrated!! Apple stock in the last year $705.07 down to $435.00
Cant wait to see them under $200 next year.

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