CNBC's On the Money: 'It is an iPod/Mac Christmas'
Holiday Shoppers Helping Fuel Apple's Already-High Sales

by Joe Leo, Columnist November 30, 2006

NEWS: (11.30.06)-- CNBC reports that Apple's sales for iPods and Macs are heating up, with shares at an all-time high, up 75% since July (from $50 to $90) and 13% just this month alone, and the holiday shopping rush is only helping fan those flames.

And they say the holiday shopping for Apple--for both buyer and seller--has only just begun.

The top story yesterday evening on the CNBC business news program, "On the Money," (weeknights, 7:00p EST) was a report on the increase in iPod/Mac sales and what they think all of this will mean for the company.

"Let's start with Apple, closing in on $100. It is an iPod/Mac Christmas! The stock is telling you the things are selling faster than ever!" said Anchor Dylan Ratigan as he began the night's news line-up.

Ratigan reported that 6 out of the 10 top electronics selling on for the holidays are all...? iPods. Furthermore, current data shows that sales of iPods are directly influencing Mac hardware sales which have seen a sudden increase in only recent months.

CNBC predicts that it will only get better for Apple come early 2007.

Ratigan's colleague provided his own analysis, saying that all this will branch out to a bigger picture (our pun, excuse us), with the "iTV" product coming soon, the rumored soon-to-be-released "iPhone" [see related article], along with the highly-anticipated release of "Leopard," Apple's next version of Mac OS X (v10.5) due out early next year.

"Forget about Microsoft and the corporate world," the reporter said. According to him, the center of attention right now is capturing the home market, which Apple intends to do by continuing to tout the digital lifestyle that is at the heart of every Mac, and with new products such as the "iTV."

Lest we all forget, remember that the other week Microsoft debuted their own branded mp3 player, the Zune. Will Apple's rival have any effect on sales of the iPod, and subsequently, throw off the whole formula of Mac mp3 player sales leading to purchases of Mac hardware?

Ratigan reported that after only being out on the market for a week, the Zune dropped down to #62 on the list, losing its predicted spot of being #1 while having previously been considered one of the top new gifts to get for the holiday season. (This coming after some analysts, in advance of its release, called the Zune "the iPod killer").

The CNBC anchor brought up the fact that Microsoft's original XBox console was, "a sleeper success" and they now command the market among serious gamers. Redmond's recently released XBox 360 has left Nintendo and Sony to trail behind, even with their own newly-released next-generation consoles out to in time for the holiday shopping season.

Ratigan asked their guest analyst his thoughts on that notion, on whether this scenario could also possibly happen for the Zune?

"I get the sleepy part," the guest columnist said, with no points for Microsoft on the part of success.

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