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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Desktops > I was offered a Mac Mini Apple Store deal

I was offered a Mac Mini Apple Store deal
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funkboy
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Apr 3, 2005, 03:17 PM
 
(Because this post got really long, I bolded the actual deal I was offered at the Apple Store, so skimmers can skip most of my exposition... I still think my story is interesting, because I lived through it )

I finally got to the Minneapolis Apple Store in the Mall of America, and decided, "what the heck, I think it's time to get my mini." I had been holding off ordering online because of the dreaded 2-3 weeks wait time for my custom-order configuration. I figured I'd get Airport Extreme, 80GB, and the SuperDrive, since this would be my main computer.

I got to the Store (and was greeted by a live band recording on GarageBand, something in conjunction with the John Lennon Foundation) and proceeded to ask for the Mini (the special store-only edition that has all these extra features). The guy I worked with said this model was one he specially designed because people were asking for the extra features so much. I asked him, "Really? You were the guy who got Apple to start offering this special configuration?" He said something like, "It wasn't solely me, I mean, other people were involved..." Strange that he'd claim that

But, as for the purchase, he wanted me to get the AppleCare warranty. I said, "nope, no thanks," and that was after I had shown interest in (but respectfully declined) a KVM switch. I told him I'd be using it with my PC.

After saying no to the KVM, and then no to Applecare, he said, "How about if I give you 10% off the machine if you get AppleCare? That's how much I believe in getting AppleCare."

Lights go off in my head: can Apple do this? I thought there was some rule preventing them from offering computers (at least, advertising) at a price lower than a particular one they lock in everyone at.

Then my mental math starts running: 10% off $849 (I was planning to use my educational discount, and AppleCare education costs $99, but I forgot to mention this to the salesman): whoa, this is an excellent deal! I'll get AppleCare for about $15! After some deliberation, I decided to take it. I forgot to mention the educational discount until almost before he charged my card, though. (AppleCare is $149 otherwise)

I mentioned that I wanted to use my educational discount. He recalculated everything... and when I asked if I can still get 10% off the machine plus the edu. discount, he said he couldn't do that. Well, stink-a-roony.

Interesting experience, though - did they think I was a potential Switcher? I don't think I mentioned my Mac experience, just that I was planning to use this mini with a PC. I wonder if they're offering 10% off with AppleCare to potential Switchers, or if it's offered to everyone who shows resistance to getting AppleCare?

For what it's worth, I've never used AppleCare on my computers, nor have I ever extended it. Maybe I'm lucky - what do y'all think about getting it for the Mini? Think it will up its resale value a lot in the future? I wonder what these Minis will sell for on eBay in two years from now.

And once you get a Mac mini at your computer desk, it will surprise you how much you want to clean up the aesthetics of the area: I ended up rearranging all sorts of cords and cables, getting them out of vision so as to not hurt the Mini's cleanliness.

And the Mini somehow calibrated with the 17" Dell 1704FP DVI monitor automatically - a properly-named Color Profile was already chosen in Displays Prefs! Surprising to me: does this happen to others?
( Last edited by funkboy; Apr 3, 2005 at 03:24 PM. )
     
omar96
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Apr 3, 2005, 04:20 PM
 
Originally posted by funkboy:
And the Mini somehow calibrated with the 17" Dell 1704FP DVI monitor automatically - a properly-named Color Profile was already chosen in Displays Prefs! Surprising to me: does this happen to others?
Can't talk about anything else in your post, but this part is true. It also identifies properly my Dell 17" CRT and my two KDS CRT's by name
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MrForgetable
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Apr 3, 2005, 06:31 PM
 
I didn't get AppleCare for my laptop. I have some time to deliberate until my first year of warranty wears out, but since AmEx gives me 1 year extra of warranty, is it worth the 240 bucks for one year? i don't know.
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nickw311
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Apr 3, 2005, 10:03 PM
 
mine worked seamlessly with my 19" Dell LCD but what I was really impressed with was that the first time I started it, the drivers and settings were already loaded for my HP PSC1200 Printer
     
jrramsey
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Apr 4, 2005, 12:12 AM
 
Of course, if nothing goes wrong, its a waste of money. All it takes is one "hitch in the giddy-up" and you're out that amount and more plus you can call anytime about virtually anything.

My vote is a STRONG yes! (and an absolute for the Powerbooks)
     
ChrisF
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Apr 4, 2005, 08:05 AM
 
Originally posted by funkboy:
Lights go off in my head: can Apple do this? I thought there was some rule preventing them from offering computers (at least, advertising) at a price lower than a particular one they lock in everyone at.
And the Mini somehow calibrated with the 17" Dell 1704FP DVI monitor automatically - a properly-named Color Profile was already chosen in Displays Prefs! Surprising to me: does this happen to others?
To respond to your first question: yes, Apple can do that. Apple does price match so they have some flexibility; however, regular resellers make virtually nothing on the consumer products (Mini, iBook, iMac, eMac) so most resellers won't be dropping the price much on those.
For your second query: if you did not run the calibration utility, the display isn't calibrated even though it appears that there is a profile. This happens on all Macs with DDC-compatible displays.
     
Thorin
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Apr 5, 2005, 06:32 AM
 
My guess is the reason he dropped 10% off to try and get you to take AppleCare is because the sales people get commission on AppleCare sales and get a bonus after they reach a certain point, he was probably about to hit his bonus, by giving you 10% off he'll hit his target and make even more.

When my house mate bought his 12" Rev B he did it over the phone with the Apple Store, and the guy tried to get him to buy a cheap kensington mouse with it, my house mate wasn't interested, but the guy offered him a discount on his powerbook (even though he was already getting educational prices) if he bought the mouse. It meant he paid less in total with the mouse than he would have done without it! Again I assume the sales guy was on commission for shifting the mice and was about to hit a target of some sort.
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southtdi
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Apr 5, 2005, 11:14 AM
 
Apple pays no commission whatsoever to any of their salespeople anywhere. They do try to get the stores to meet certain targets for AppleCare, Procare, and .Mac but that is about it. This has been documented around the net.
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Eriamjh
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Apr 5, 2005, 01:48 PM
 
Since Applecare itself has a "very high" profit margin, they can use that as the padding to lower the price of the computer if you purchase it. Without it, there is little padding to remove to lower the price...

Although you must remember, Apple's price is much lower than the wholesale price the resellers pay. If a reseller pays $420 for a $500 Mac mini, rest assured Apple's true cost is about $310 (although the books might reflect a higher cost to the Apple store itself, this is an accounting tactic).

Your student discount took a chunk out of the pad which is why he couldn't or didn't extend the same offer with your discount taken into account. In other words, you were already getting a discount.

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ChrisF
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Apr 5, 2005, 04:38 PM
 
Originally posted by Eriamjh:
If a reseller pays $420 for a $500 Mac mini
I wish it was that low!
     
Rob van dam
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Apr 7, 2005, 07:41 AM
 
not that its relevant but i bought my G5 20" imac for $1899 when the retail price down under is $2999. My friend who works at apple bought it through a staff sale.

ohh and on the apple care they do seem to want to push it. i had originally ordered through an apple store but they were to slow so i cancelled. but during my initial order i had purchased 17" combo drive edu model and told them i was on a budget. applecare edu was 240 sumthing dollars they were giving it to me for $211
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And thats the bottom line!!!!!!!!!
     
dennett
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Apr 7, 2005, 08:53 PM
 
A friend of mine was given a discounted price over the phone when ordering a $9k super PowerMac set-up with 30" and 23" LCDs about 5 months ago. He told them what he wanted and that they needed to get him a deal in order to make it happen, he was put on hold for a moment and then offered around $1,500 off. When I actually studied his invoice it was clear he had been given the EDU discount, even though they clearly knew he wasn't an educator and had no kids in school...
     
Dace
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Apr 11, 2005, 02:16 PM
 
All I can say is I purchased a Sharp LCD at Future Shop and they gave me the extended warranty at no extra charge. Well, to be frank, they reduced the price from 2200 to 1999 and the difference was the price of the extended warranty. Conclusion: they must make quite a bit of profit to be able to reduce it to 1999. In fact its on sale right now for 1999.


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