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Apple Businesses

Apple and CompUSA Working on 'Software on Demand' 108

Posted by pudge
from the going-into-a-store-how-quaint dept.
pimpbott writes "Apple is working with SoftwareToGo to install kiosks in CompUSA stores to deliver software on demand. Imagine walking into your local CompUSA and ordering some obscure title that nobody would ordinarily stock, paying for it, and walking out with a custom-burned CD-ROM. This not only gets more titles published and available to the public at large by reducing the need for expensive shelf space and other publishing costs, but it keeps embarassingly large, mostly empty software boxes from ending up in the landfill."
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Apple and CompUSA Working on 'Software on Demand'

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  • More and more people are getting broadband. Call me unimaginative but, in the long run, what would this scheme offer over downloadable software? I'm sure some people will still be lacking internet connections, but will it really be enough people to subsidize this form of software distribution?
  • by dbrutus (71639) on Thursday March 13, 2003 @10:52AM (#5502735) Homepage
    The question is whether the cost of the kiosk storage exceeds the cost of serving your program data. You might, as a consumer, have access to broadband but if it costs a penny to push to the customer via the Internet and half a penny to distribute a copy via kiosks then kiosks will maintain their viability purely on a cost basis. They also offer some minimal marketing impact because searchers looking to buy will get a list of products, including yours that are available in the proper category. When was the last time you searched Google and got zero spurious hits?
  • by MConlon (246624) on Thursday March 13, 2003 @12:15PM (#5503545)

    Maybe I haven't been looking hard enough, but I haven't seen (legal) downloads of Microsoft Office X, Adobe Photoshop, Unreal 2, or pretty much anything else that you might want.

    I believe IBM will let you download electronic verions of their software, and knock 10% off the price.

    MJC

  • by GlassHeart (579618) on Thursday March 13, 2003 @03:28PM (#5505485) Journal
    all Macs sold today come with DVD-ROM ability

    Not yet. The $999 iBook and all CRT iMacs still ship with CD-ROM drives. More importantly, I don't have a DVD-ROM drive yet.

  • Re:stop scaring me (Score:5, Informative)

    by WatertonMan (550706) on Thursday March 13, 2003 @03:44PM (#5505640)
    Which is a good point, and not just funny. First off it has been my experience that rebates are a pain in the ass. When I bought my Mac I had all sorts of rebates I sent in. Unfortunately I only ended up getting about 1/2 the rebates back. One took me months because Apple cancelled the rebate fairly soon after I bought the computer. But instead of keeping the department open they just closed down the PO Box. Fortunately I called several of the other rebate offers and finally got an understanding manager. Then I found out that of the three, nearly identical, bar codes on the box I had to send in, I'd sent the wrong one in. More hassle. Fortunately again a very understanding person on the other end of the phone. Unfortunately not all the other rebate offers were as understanding.

    My advice? Think of rebates as a "plus." Do NOT calculate it into your purchase. Unless you have a lot of disposable cash, you can't count on the price. (i.e. your initial cost) Secondly it can be up to months before you see that cash. Thirdly I'd say at least half my rebates run into problems. Then you have to fit into your busy day tracking down phone numbers, finding receipts, etc. In about 1/4 of all rebates I never see the rebate. (That is with all products, not just computers)

    This is why companies love rebates instead of price reductions. They know that in practice they won't pay out all of them.

    My advice? Always keep a backup of everything. (A scanner is very nice for this) Prior to sending in the rebate, call up the help line to ensure you're sending in the right proof. (I think that a lot of rebate instructions are intentionally misleading so as to make it less likely you'll collect) Also if it is a rebate with a reasonable price (i.e. hundreds of dollars) consider sending certified mail and keep your proof.

    CompUSA isn't particularly worse than anyone else in rebates. But they do tend to over-emphasize the price of products in terms of rebates.

"Consequences, Schmonsequences, as long as I'm rich." -- "Ali Baba Bunny" [1957, Chuck Jones]

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