Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 31st Jul 2005 11:47 UTC
Apple Industry watchers have noticed a "halo" surrounding Apple's iPod: The popular music player is helping to bring new users to the company's Macintosh line of computers. However, could the uncertainty surrounding the Mac's upcoming switch from PowerPC to Intel processors take the shine off that halo?
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RE[4]: On Apple hardware
by David on Sun 31st Jul 2005 17:06 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: On Apple hardware"
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"Really, I like my iBook and Apple's hardware, but claiming that they're using higher quality raw materials than Dell, Sun or whatever is complete nonsense."

It's interesting that you used Dell and Sun in the same breath there. Sun, a maker of higher-margin servers and workstations, spends a lot more effort and money on both industrial design and case material quality than a low-margin volume manufacturer like Dell.

There's probably more variation in the cost of a computer case than just about any other component. Dell probably spends less than ten dollars on their cases, while Sun and Apple's cases probably cost them somewhere between fifty and a hundred dollars to manufacture. I don't think Apple is spending much more than Sun or Alienware, or another maker of more high-end boxes, but they're certainly spending more, and using better industrial design and materials than Dell or another volume manufacturer.

And if you don't see how the plastic on your iBook is better, then that tells me you haven't held a Dell Latitude laptop in your hands lately. Apple uses a thicker, higher quality, more expensive plastic than Dell does, and you can tell just by touching it.

Now, people have often claimed that Apple uses better components inside its computers, and in this case I think that it's not always true. Things like video cards and hard drives are generally of the same quality as components in their competitor's products. Obviously, the components in a new G5 tower are better across the board than those in a bargain basement $300 econobox PC, but if you compare what's inside a high end, $1500+ Dell workstation, you'll find components of comparable quality: hard drives, video cards, RAM. A real hardware geek migh find that the Apple motherboards and its onboard components are more elegantly designed, but that's probably more subjective than anything else.

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