my Mother is Expecting!
My mother has decided to add another member to the family. The Apple family. That's right, my PC-loving, die hard XP-using, Compaq owning mother has decided to abandon a sinking ship and jump to the Apple Macintosh family vessel. This marks a momentous occasion in history as my mother will be the first Magee to go mac after myself.
On Monday, Apple released an entire new lineup of notebooks. They replaced or updated every laptop they manufacture, making some extremely fast and portable machines now available. This is exciting for the new machines, but even more exciting for the day-old machines.
Now that Apple has released these computers, they will begin their intense marketing making the machines that were "so cool" the day before be "so lame". The machines that the company was so proud of on Sunday night are now old news, and the newer, faster machines are their pride and joy. There was nothing wrong with them, and them aging one day has not changed that. What I mean is, sure computers are getting faster and lighter, but how fast do we need them? And more importantly, why won't they get any cheaper?
Apple sells MacBooks starting at $1200. No matter the technology of the time, they make the laptops as fast as they can for $1200. When memory gets a little cheaper, instead of dropping the same computer down $100 in price, they double the memory and market how fast their new computers are, "at the same great price". Well that price is OK, but not great. I would rather see them drop the price $100 on the computer that is already PLENTY fast for 90% of users. But that's not how it works.
To pull off this dream, I watch for special instances where this occurs. For instance, they will never leave the technology and drop the price, unless...
One minute they have warehouses full of great computers. The next minute those great computers are "lame" and room needs to be made for the newer cooler ones. So, these great computers, THAT ARE STILL GREAT, get discounted. Bingo. Exactly what I wanted. The same great computer, for less money.
Some people will say, "but I really need that newer more powerful machine". But I disagree. Let's say Apple releases all new notebooks every June and December. You buy a December model, the day they release them. Six months later this machine is lame. You will keep the machine though, for probably a total of three years, because it still works fine, and is plenty fast. After all, six months ago it was as fast as they got! Now, with the idea that your six-month old computer has and is still fine, what if you hadn't bought it six months ago. What if you bought it today, the day the new ones just came out. You said yourself it's perfectly fine, and still will be for another 2.5 years, if you hadn't bought it in December, you could buy it today. For WAY LESS. It's still the plenty fast computer you need, and will still use for another 2.5 years.
Since these computers are lame, they are discounted. I just learned about this discounting last November, or we would have done Aubrey's MacBook differently. We bought Aubrey's MacBook for $1500, and upgraded it from 2GB of memory to 4GB for $200. That was last June. Today, one year later, she still loves her machine. It's crazy fast, and works the same as day one. After releasing new machines in December, and again yesterday, her machines is now 2 rounds of lame. Nobody wants THAT computer, it's not newer faster better. BUT, hers is crazy fast, plenty fast. I would still suggest people to her computer today, because it rocks. However, today, Apple is trying to sell her lame computer to make room. Today, they are selling the exact same $1500 computer for $750. WHOA. One year later, and a perfect machine, but HALF OFF. If we keep with the three-year model, this machine still has two years of good life! Plus, that $200 memory upgrade, with how fast technology prices are, could be done today for $50. WHOA. If we would have known, Aubrey could have gotten last year's lame model for half price, one year old, used it for this past year, and still had another year, for half price.
This is basically what I did with my MacBook. I own a June 2008 MacBook. I bought it the day after new ones released in December 2008. I got a six-month old computer, wait, technically ONE DAY OLD, because "yesterday" it was cool, for a great deal. One day earlier my June computer was $1700. I got it for $1200, just because it was one day (six months) lame. After the yesterdays new computers, my computer, like Aubrey's, is now two rounds of lame. They sold more of mine today for $1000. WHOA. The same machine I'm on right now, that I've had for 6 months, love, and will use for another two years, for $1000. dang. The trick here is not to go six months waiting for a computer. The trick is when you're ready to buy a new one, buy one that's one generation of uncool. Save hundreds.
I love my computers. I push them hard, but I love them. With this little $1200 computer I am editing multi-camera video shoots, professional photography images, storing movies, listening to over 7000 songs, and of course surfing the internet. I am on my computer constantly, and it goes everywhere with me. If this little six-month old lame computer is fast and strong enough for the demands of a professional like myself, it's definitely fast enough for my mom. She could have picked it up for $1000, but she doesn't even need THIS much, she got a slightly slower machine, that's still CRAZY fast for the average user, for $750. Praise God.
That's exactly what I found for my mom. My mom bought Aubrey's $1500 computer (no 4GB upgrade) for $750. Maybe she'll upgrade the memory when it gets here for $50 and make it just the same as Aubrey Ella's for $800 total instead of the $1700 it was a year ago. Maybe she won't! Today, it's screaming fast, maybe in six months she'll want a speed boost and I can upgrade it for $25! Who knows!
Humility and patience. You don't need the latest fastest computer, because in six months it'll be uncool anyway. Wait a while, and buy the "uncool" one the day they release the latest greatest. It'll take people two months to even notice it, and you'll save hundreds of dollars. By saving so much, you can upgrade your computer every three years, keeping it "new" (six months old at the time). If you bought the newest fastest every time, it'll still get old, and maybe you could only upgrade every four years.