Apple Quietly Moves Into Price Leadership Position

T-GAAP’s Mark Reschke observes that Apple has slowly shifted into the price leadership position with many of its product offerings, with the iPhone being subsidized put it on parallel pricing with its high-end competitors – Apple’s first foray into pricing a flagship product at least price neutral to the competition.

Then at WWDC, Apple showcased a new MacBook Air lineup with a $100 price drop across the board, the Air remaining at the high end of PC pricing, but in terms of the ultrabook market now cheaper than many of its competitors such as Sony’s new Vaio Pro 13 and Samsung’s Series 9 AO5 even though the MacBook Air is built with superior materials, offers stronger performance and much longer battery life compard with ultrabook PC rivals. The Apple model category that debuted as a boutique device at $1,799 can now be had in its latest iteration for $999.

Not only that, at the end of 2012, Apple was making more profit off Mac sales than the top five Windows PC vendors combined (Dell, HP, Lenovo, Asus, Acer), with an operating margin of 19%, while the rest of the industry averaged 3%.

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