During the conference call yesterday about Apple’s financial results, COO Tim Cook reiterated Apple’s negative stance towards the netbook market. While many of us might want to see a relatively cheap Apple netbook with Mac OS X, all the recent figures do seem to confirm that it simply isn’t a good idea for Apple.
PC manufacturers are stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to netbooks. The little buggers sell pretty well, but these sales figures come at a price: they are devastating for manufacturers’ margins – and if there’s one thing that lies at the base of Apple’s current success, despite the crisis, it’s big fat margins.
Apple doesn’t want its margins to suffer, and they are not willing to lower margins for market share gains, even if it means losing market share in the current economic climate. “I think cycles come and cycles go. What we’re about is making the best computers in the world, not making the most,” Cook said, “We believe that if we do that over the long term, we will gain share.”
While this position could previously be debated, after the recent flurry of company and overall market figures, it’s hard to argue that Cook is wrong on this one. It’s sad therefore, that Cook also felt the need to attack the netbook in its current form. “When I look at what’s being sold in the netbook space today, I see cramped keyboards, terrible software, jerky hardware, very small screens and just not a good consumer experience and not something we would put the Mac brand on,” Cook said, “It’s a stretch to call them a personal computer.”
I strongly disagree with this opinion, and I think the sales figures of netbooks indicate that many people disagree with Cook as well. Netbooks have been on the market for a while now, and if people really didn’t like them, they would’ve never seen rising sales as we’ve seen the past year. Cook also reiterated the utterly nonsensical idea that the iPhone and iPod Touch can fill the role of netbooks, but we’ve already covered that one before extensively on OSNews.
I think we can safely say that we won’t be seeing an Apple netbook in the foreseeable future. It simply doesn’t make sense for Apple right now.