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Monday, January 17, 2005


Thoughts on the new Apple Products

I read about the Mac Mini and iPod Shuffle, and, unlike most people, I'm not impressed. Let's look at the specs of the Mac mini:
Price: $499
CPU: 1.25 Ghz
RAM: 256GB
Graphics: Radeon 9200 32MB
Hard Drive: 40GB
Optical Drive: CDRW/DVD-ROM
Ports: 1 Firewire, 2 USB, DVI, VGA, Audio line out, Ethernet, modem
Monitor: None
Keyboard: None
Speakers: None
Mouse: None
Wireless optional
Warranty-1 year.
Now let's look at a whitebox wintel system:
Price: $299.99
CPU: 2.4GHz
RAM: 256MB
Graphics: Integrated Graphics
Hard Drive: 40GB
Optical Drive: CD-RW
Ports: 4 USB, VGA, Parallel, Serial, PS/2, modem, Ethernet, line out, audio jacks
PCI slots so you can add wireless or anything else you want.
Keyboard: Included
Speakers: None
Mouse: Included
Monitor: None
Warranty: 1 year
So, the PC is cheaper, it has a faster CPU, it includes a keyboard and mouse, and it's more expandable. Looks like its the better deal. For people complaining that I'm comparing a whitebox to a brand name computer:
1. Show me a whitebox Mac-oh, yes, there aren't any!
2. Dell offers a similar system for $399.
Now, let's turn to the iPod Shuffle. The iPod Shuffle is a $99 512MB flash MP3 player. It is only an MP3 player, it has no FM tuner and no voice recording or anything like that. It doesn't even have a screen. For $91.99, you can get a SanDisk player that has an FM tuner, has voice recording, has a screen, and lets you choose the order in which to play the tracks. Gee, which is the better deal?
Personally, I think these products are an attempt by Apple to sell cheap devices at a premium price by putting them in a fancy case.

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