Apple goes down, Consoles go up

In two rather odd bits of news, the WSJ is reporting that Apple has taken a Moderate hit in it’s sales figures, most likely because they have maintained a premium pricing strategy despite the economic downturn.

Sales of Macs in U.S. stores last month declined 1% from a year ago, while industry-wide PC sales rose 2%, according to research firm NPD Group Inc., which tracks retail sales.

NPD analyst Steve Baker blamed a 35% drop in sales of desktop Macs, noting growth in Apple’s laptops still outpaced rivals.

The decline marks a sharp reversal for Apple, which has enjoyed robust demand this year for its Macs, even as spending on Windows-based PCs slowed along with sales of other electronics like flat-panel TVs. To drive sales of its iPhone, analysts expect Apple to begin selling it at Wal-Mart Stores Inc., possibly at a discount.

My favourite quote from Jobs himself is

“We don’t know how to make a $500 computer that’s not a piece of junk,” Mr. Jobs said in October when the company reported earnings.

Classic.

At the same time, The Huffington Post is reporting that to escape the shiteous time we’re all having, everyone is off playing Xbox.

U.S. retail sales of video game hardware, software and accessories jumped 10 percent last month from the year-ago period to $2.91 billion, boosted by strong sales of Nintendo Co.’s Wii, Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox 360 and the alien shooter game “Gears of War 2.”

The availability of a broad range of games is one reason for the industry’s ongoing solid performance, said NPD analyst Anita Frazier. Games also provide a relatively cheap form of stay-at-home entertainment.

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