The iMac Creates Desire, Meets a Need

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2010-07-27 Print this article Print


5. Design matters 

The iMac is one of the best examples of Apple's special ability to design products. As mentioned, the computer is dominated by its large display, which is flanked by a beautiful black bezel. The rest of the computer bears the familiar aluminum finish that has become Apple's signature in the computing market. The iMac is simply the best designed Mac on the market, and potentially the best design in the personal computing space. It might not be the most forward-thinking product Apple offers, but it's certainly nice-looking. 

6. It's truly a mainstream device 

The iMac was designed to deliver a viable computing experience to mainstream users. Although Apple might not like to hear it, the company's computing division is not in the mainstream personal computer market. In fact, it provides products to a niche audience. But the iMac is one of the few products that has broken out of that niche and delivered an experience that appeals more to mainstream customers than any other computer the company offers. And, in doing so, it has brought Apple's slate of machines to more people. The impact of the iMac cannot be overlooked. 

7. The Magic Trackpad has value 

With the announcement of new iMac models, Apple also revealed the Magic Trackpad, a $69 accessory that users can buy to let them control on-screen actions without the need for a mouse. It works similarly to the trackpad Apple offers on the MacBook Pro, complete with gesture commands and the ability to move around the screen. The peripheral is meant to be a stand-alone product, but it's an ideal fit for the iMac. Not only does it fall in line with the company's desire to be more innovative, but it fits nicely next to the iMac's keyboard. If nothing else, it adds value to an already valuable device. 

8. It's the perfect entry-level Mac 

The iMac isn't designed to be a device for advanced computer users that want the best functionality of any product on the market. Instead, it's designed to bring those folks who might have never used Mac OS X over to Apple's side. And in that respect, it's doing a far better job than even Apple had hoped for, thanks to its ability to attract consumers who want a well-designed, easy-to-use computer at an affordable price. The MacBook and MacBook Pro can't attract novice computer users the way the iMac can. And chances are that they will never be able to match the iMac in that way. 

9. The price is where it should be 

Apple is well known for offering products that are substantially more expensive than the competition's. A quick comparison between a MacBook Pro and any high-end laptop from HP or Dell quickly proves that. But the iMac is different. Because it's designed with entry-level users in mind, the starting price of $1,199 puts it where it needs to be in order to appeal to customers. And although most folks might balk at a $2,000 desktop computer these days, the top-of-the-line iMac's $1,999 price is a fair one for what customers are getting. 

10. Not everyone wants a notebook 

As notebooks become more popular to the detriment of desktops, everyone seems to think that products like the iMac will eventually give way to notebooks that appeal to the consumer's desire to be mobile. It's a valid argument that could drastically change the dynamics of the computing space. But for now, it's important to remember that desktops are still wildly popular. And for many consumers, having a notebook doesn't make as much sense as having a desktop sitting in the family room. A notebook might provide more mobile options, but from a family's perspective, an iMac delivers better functionality right now. And that probably won't change any time soon. 

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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