Thursday, October 11, 2018

Mac Sales Down in Q3 2018 Amid a Lack of Updates

Juli Clover:

During the quarter, Apple shipped an estimated 4.9 million Macs, compared to 5.4 million in the third quarter of 2017 for an 8.5 percent drop. Apple’s market share also declined, dropping from 8 percent in 3Q17 to 7.3 percent in 3Q18.


Apple’s decline in Mac sales is no surprise as the company has yet to update much of its Mac lineup for 2018. The only Mac that has seen a refresh so far is the MacBook Pro, with MacBook, MacBook Air, and Mac mini updates still on the horizon for a fall launch.

Falling Mac sales come amid stagnant growth for the overall worldwide PC market. A total of 67.2 million PCs were shipped during the quarter, an 0.1 percent increase from the third quarter of 2017.

Aside from the $4,999 iMac Pro, the current Mac lineup is not very inspiring. The Mac mini and consumer notebooks haven’t been updated recently. The iMac was updated in June 2017 and still has a defective processor. The MacBook Pro was updated this July, but the keyboard remains a question mark; we don’t yet know how reliable the new design is, and it’s been reported as less pleasant to type on than the unreliable one. The Touch Bar is still mandatory.

Apple has yet to deliver on its talk about recommitting to professional users. Mojave added hurdles that make it harder to develop and use pro apps, and a prototype framework for making dumbed-down apps. At WWDC, Apple hinted that there were Mac App Store improvements for developers, but so far they are MIA like those secret Leopard features. We know very little about the forthcoming Mac Pro, which is scheduled for 2019.

Previously: Macs Lose Marketshare, On the Sad State of Macintosh Hardware, Forthcoming MacBook and Mac mini Updates.

Update (2018-10-19): Bradley Chambers:

I am specing out a new bulk Apple laptop purchase, and I couldn’t be less satisfied with the current lineup.

I really need a MacBook with 2 USB-C and 256GB storage for around $1199.

Update (2018-10-22): Bradley Chambers:

Apple used to be about premium experiences compared to the competitors, but I do not see “premium” on any products except iPhone. It seems like now they are counting on the Apple brand to sell the products versus a best in class experience. On the flip side, I feel like there are so many categories they could make a meaningful impact in (home networking, home automation products, and expanded cloud services) that it perplexes me why they don’t.


The thing I like the least about Tim Cook’s Apple is they are taking gambles on raising pricing and building accessories for iPhones where Microsoft is re-thinking the laptop, and Amazon is trying to build a world where the OS lives in the cloud. We’ve been reduced to a world of apps and digital assistants. Android has most of the core apps you’d need to switch. Alexa can do a lot more than Siri. Amazon Fire TV has very similar apps to Apple TV.

11 Comments RSS · Twitter

Stagnant market, yes, but technically it grew a sliver. Then you have Apple nearing a double digit drop in sales. People should continue to avoid single sourcing their purchases in any event, but especially when dealing with expensive, often "outdated", and strangely troublesome hardware.

Perhaps if Apple gets down to a double digit or greater drop in sales they will take the platform seriously. If they do, great!!!! New hardware and better software for all! If not, then at least we have clarity in course. Platform is life support and people know to plan their escape going forward.

I'd love to know what's going on behind the scenes with the Mac. A lot of Apple's actions the past 6 years seem pretty inexplicable. Some can be explained by Intel's problems and even changes in the GPU market. However that doesn't explain a lot more. The presumed (yet still unannounced) October event may start to repair the damage. But for many people it's not just getting new iMacs or MBPs but a pattern of attention over time. It'll take years for Apple to regain trust and it's not even clear they plan on paying that much attention.

[…] Speaking of the Mac App Store, Paulo Andrade writes (tweet): […]

Nathan said, "Perhaps if Apple gets down to a double digit or greater drop in sales they will take the platform seriously."

Unfortunately, my guess is that if there were a double-digit drop in Mac sales, Apple would interpret that to mean that no one is interested in the Mac platform, resulting in even further neglect and abandonment.

[…] Mac Sales Down in Q3 2018 Amid a Lack of Updates, On the Sad State of Macintosh Hardware, Building a Hackintosh […]

Oooo. Good point.

[…] Mac Sales Down in Q3 2018 Amid a Lack of Updates, MacBook Pro 2018, Unreliable MacBook Pro […]

Isn't this the year we're supposed to get the Modular Mac Pro? It sure is strange that we haven't heard anything at all besides the "don't worry, we're working on it!"... what, a year and a half ago?

It also seems like their Mac mantra these days is to make sure they work fairly well with the latest and greatest equipment, but only half ass or not at all with any legacy hardware (even stuff that is only 2 years old)... completely ignoring that most pro users have tons of legacy equipment that is either super costly to replace or simply has no modern equivalent (or the modern version is less functional / reliable).

I just created a petition for replacing Tim Cook as CEO... share it! Maybe we can have an impact on Apple's future.

Who do you think would do a better job?

[…] Previously: Forthcoming MacBook and Mac mini Updates, Mac Sales Down in Q3 2018 Amid a Lack of Updates. […]

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