I stopped by the Apple Store yesterday. You gotta be impressed by the number of people in those stores. They’re buying everything. iPods. Duh. And Macs. And software. They get to touch, and feel, and hold everything in the store. This store had 12 Apple associates on the floor. 12. And the iPod choices? Too much or just perfect?
Looking at all the iPods spread out all over the middle section of the Apple Store I am inclined to say there are too many choices. Everything was in stock except the pink iPod mini (it’s sooooo hot for blondes—high demand—just like me).
It was bewildering. But that didn’t stop the iPodees. They were buying and then buying some more. As in accessories.
I asked a few folks standing in line what the spent on accessories. The average was about $130. The average iPod is somewhere around $200. Suddenly that little music maker is pushing $400 (add a few CDs or a bunch of downloads from iTMS).
So, the same question. Does Apple have too many iPod choices these days?
The iPod page on the Apple Store lists all the iPods and their respective prices (and colors; remember, when you’re giving your favorite blond a gift, it’s “pink”). At the high end it’s the basic iPod. There’s no longer an iPod photo as all the white case iPods are photo iPods.
The 20gig model goes for a competitive (not the lowest price, though) $299. The 60gig model is only $399.
There’s also that odd looking iPod U2 which is 20gigs and sells for a whopping $329. Only blondes with multiple tatoos would buy that iPod. And they wouldn’t be “real” blondes anyway.
At the mid range is the iPod mini, now available in 4gig and 6gig sizes, but still sporting four of the original colors. Silver. Ugly blue. Hot pink. And some kind of sick pea green.
The iPod minis go for $199 at the low end and just $249 at the high end.
The low end of the iPod lineup is the newer shuffle. A 512meg shuffle is a mere $99, and a 1gig shuffle is a mere $129. Apple is expected to drop both and move to a 1gig and 2gig.
And that’s what highlights the problem.
Apple’s iPod line up is perfect. Or is it? It’s just too easy to migrate from the 512meg shuffle to a full 1gig for only $30 more. But for only $60 more than that you get 4X the music storing space with a mini at just $199. $100 more and you get the color screen and 5X the space of a mini.
You get the idea.
Apple’s got us by the knickers and they’re pulling a full court wedgie.
No wonder Apple owns the portable music space. They’re dealing a great hand. Every time. The only losers are competitors.
The oddball customer who buys a music player that’s not an iPod also has to suffer with some kind of crummy music player and use a crummy-er online music store. And pays about the same money.
I’d say Apple’s choices are many. And perfect?
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