If you’re going to school in the fall and were anticipating a free iPod Touch along with your new Mac, prepare to feel ripped.
Instead of their usual Buy A Mac, Get A Free iPod promotion, Apple’s 2011 Back To School promotion is a $100 iTunes gift card redeemable on the iOS App Store, Mac App Store, iBookstore or iTunes Store.
It’s hard to look at this deal as anything but a let down compared to previous offers. Not only was a free iPod Touch worth about twice the $100 gift card Apple’s giving away this year, but Apple will actually reclaim 30% of your Gift Card thanks to their 70/30 developer split.
It’s a markedly worse deal. Instead of giving away a physical, finite product with appreciable value, Apple’s handing out infinite virtual goods. Strangely, Apple might not even lose less money on this deal. Way back in 2009, the average iOS user was paying $80 for apps, and that number’s doubtless only gone up. Add music, iBooks and movies to the mix and Apple may actually make more money on an iPod Touch during its lifetime than the cost of giving one away for free.
Still, what frosh is going to look any gift horse past the uvula? Cash in on the deal here.