Apple was caught last year selling Apple Certified refurbished hardware on eBay using the pseudonym Refurbished-Outlet. Allegedly.
The prices and details of these products were generally the same as refurbished products sold on the apple.com site. The products come with a one-year warranty and mobile devices contain a new battery.
But this week it emerged that Apple is lowering the prices on eBay, sometimes by quite a bit. For example, Apple normally charges $999 for a refurbed MacBook Air with 128 GB. But that same system with the same Apple inspection and one-year warranty went on sale in the eBay store for $899. Prices on other hardware products were slashed similarly.
(In addition, we learned, the company as been apparently working with “power sellers” on eBay to sell Apple hardware. For example, until they ran out of the 500 units put up for sale of 13-inch MacBook Pros selling for $999. These are new devices, not refurbished, and Apple is probably using the “channel” to clear out inventory.)
It seems to me that Apple is working behind the scenes to experiment with different models for selling refurbished and excess inventory. I wouldn’t be surprised if Apple was also trying other channels for doing the same thing that we don’t know about. And I also wouldn’t be surprised if refurbished gadgets vanished from the Apple site altogether, and for those items to be sold in the darker alleys of the Internet (like eBay) exclusively instead.
But I think there’s a ginormous opportunity here for embracing “used” in a big way — and it’s something only Apple could pull off.
Apple’s current “hobby” — also known as Apple TV — doesn’t tell us much about Apple’s future plans for the living room.
It’s a good product under the right circumstances. But five years from now, living rooms are going to be transformed by all-encompassing systems that turn TVs into video phones, gaming systems, home automation control centers and artificial intelligence assistants.
Does Apple have what it takes to compete in the living room?
Steve Jobs was a Buddhist, a religion founded on the concept of the impermanence of all things.
And everything is impermanent. Especially Apple products.
A lot of users complain about Apple’s everything-is-temporary philosophy. But I think Apple will increasingly embrace it — and even launch a social network whose main feature is the deletion of your posts.
Your MacBook Air might be the fastest, lightest, portable-est Mac you ever owned, but it is likely also one of the most storage-deficient Macs you have ever owned, in modern times at least. That will all be solved when bus-powered Thunderbolt drives start to show up, but in the meantime, take a look at Western Digital’s new 2TB My Passport USB drives.
Like an ugly duckling transforming into a beautiful swan, VLC 2.0 for Mac also comes in black. Image Felix Kühne/Flickr
VLC, the cross-platform play-everything-and-we-mean-everything video client is about to go 2.0 on the Mac. And amongst all the new features is one very welcome change: A completely re-designed interface that makes it look a lot more at home on Apple hardware than the open-source v1.x ever did.
The quality of Audio-Technica’s products is legendary, and their ATH-M50 headphones ($200) are no exception. Mids are smooth, highs are clear — and the bass rocks my ears. In fact, these guys are the cans for rock.
Confused by the whirlwind of Apple news from today’s Let’s Talk iPhone event? Don’t worry. We got a quick break down of all the new stuff Apple released today, including details on the iPhone 4S, Siri, iPod Nano and the highly anticipated Cards app.
iPhone 4S – Looks just like the iPhone 4 but the guts have been revamped for speed. The new A5 chip (Same chip in the iPad 2), has a dual-core CPU making it 2x as fast at CPU tasks. Graphic performance on the iPhone 4S will be Up to 7x faster in the previous iPhone. 8 hours of 3G talk time, 14 hours of 2G talk time, 6 hours on 3G browsing. Also of note, the wireless system in the phone has been updated to include two separate antenna. iPhone 4S can intelligently switch between antennas to transmit and receive. This will lead to improved call quality and 2X faster download speeds (Apple was calling it 4G speeds, but we’ll save you the debate on what is and isn’t true 4G).
On Thursday Cult of Mac’s Twitterfeed gained its 100,000th follower. We know we couldn’t have hit this big milestone without so many passionate readers who motivate us to provide the best Apple news content on the web. In order to celebrate we want to give back to all our Twitter followers who have supported us, so we’re giving away a treasure trove of goodies as our way to say thanks. We will be hosting a Twitter Trivia Giveaway on Tuesday, September 27th at 5pm EDT. If you’re not going to be available for the Twitter Trivia Giveaway you can still win some prizes by leaving your Twitter handle in a comment on this article and we’ll enter you in some of our random drawings.
The music options on the iPhone have sure gotten exciting over the last few months. First Apple unveiled iTunes Match, then Spotify launched their app in the US, and now Turntable.fm has brought their amazing social music experience to the iPhone. Earlier this morning Turntable.fm released their new iPhone app that enables users to listen to Turntable.fm DJ Rooms wherever they go.