It's Clobberin' Time (1/20/98)
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How many times have you walked through a Sears store and seen one lonely Mac awash in a sea of PC-compatibles? When you go over to pay a little attention to that neglected Mac, how often do you find that its mouse is missing, or it's permanently locked up at the At Ease password dialog, or worse yet, it's just running the Finder and has three System Folders? Well, according to MacNN Reality, Apple's not going to take it anymore. One of their sources reveals that rather than fight the losing battle to get Sears, Circuit City, Best Buy, etc. to play fair, unless those retailers clean up their acts, Apple's going to take its ball and go home.

That's right, be prepared for the Macs to disappear from those chains who show no interest in selling Macs in the first place. Does that sound bad to you? Not to us. Sticking one nonfunctional Mac next to a slew of PC's doesn't constitute a sales strategy, and instead of selling Macs, it just reinforces the idea in consumers' minds that Apple is no longer capable of making boxes that anyone would want to buy. Betcha that the only Macs that Sears ever sells are sold to people who come in knowing which Mac they want to buy.

CompUSA has proven that just a little effort can sell a lot of Macs. At their stores outfitted with an Apple area, their sales of Macs jumped from just 3% of total sales to 14%. And that's with (unfortunately) hardly any salesperson support; we get constant reports from faithful viewers that they are unable to get any help when shopping in CompUSA for Mac equipment. Imagine what the numbers will be like when they actually get Mac-savvy sales help. (We at AtAT are particularly thrilled to hear that a new CompUSA is going to open in Cambridge, MA, just down the road from our headquarters; sounds like the Microcenter's going to have some real competition.) Anyway, our point is simply this: if a given retailer doesn't want to sell Macs, they simply shouldn't. Given CompUSA's success, it's plain to see that Sears' loss is CompUSA's gain.


 
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The above scene was taken from the 1/20/98 episode:

January 20, 1998: (Sorry—this was before we started writing intro text for each episode!)

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 376: Kinder, Gentler Microsoft (1/20/98)   While Microsoft seems determined to fight its domestic antitrust battles to the bitter end ("Give me monopoly or give me death!"), aReuters article reveals that they are smart enough not to fight a two-front war on different continents...

  • 377: Wild, Cheap, and Fast (1/20/98)   Meanwhile, a quieter war between the cable companies and the phone companies is being waged for the next great high-speed home internet access technology. The front-runner has definitely been the cable modem, which allows downloads at ethernet speeds or thereabouts (though, at least with the implementations we've seen, uploads still take place at standard modem speeds)...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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