Re: Wall Street laptops span high, low ends

Lloyd Wood (
Mon, 4 May 1998 00:30:44 +0100 (BST)

On Sun, 3 May 1998, CobraBoy wrote:

> By David Morgenstern (
> Like Apple's desktop Power Mac G3 line, the logic board will be
> the cornerstone of a range of models that stretch from the entry
> level to the high end. Apple will offer six configurations that
> combine various screen sizes, video display capabilities, cache
> sizes and processor speeds. Users will also be able to customize
> their systems via Apple's online store, sources said.

One logic board. Six configs with various screen and cache sizes.
Hmmm. One logic board. Multiple sizes.

Is it me, or have Apple missed an obvious marketing ploy? Pay less
money, and your new laptop comes in a _bigger_ plastic case?

This actually makes sense in some contexts:

- larger case makes the smaller screen size look even smaller thanks
to the larger surround area. Still, it's more room for post-it
notes and pictures of the family!

- a larger case means more room for sensible, cheaper, desktop
connectors. (Apple's proprietary HDI ports are particularly badly
engineered.) This removes the need to include special cables as

- cheaper laptops have cheaper batteries with less energy capacity, so
with a bigger case you could get useable lifetime up to the more
expensive models by filling the extra battery slots there's room
for. Of course, since the model is cheaper, the end result
is heavier for the same lifetime. But probably more reliable, too.
(of course, we'd all have good battery lives if colour screens
weren't now de rigeur. I want greyscale screens drawing off
batteries that last for weeks - but I can't type on a Psion, and
that Psion filing system makes a mockery of the object-oriented
OS it runs on.)

- your status as a computing power user becomes obvious. There's none
of that 'but my CD-ROM drive is 20x' hooey from discussing laptops
with the guy next to you on the plane. You merely note each others'
laptop sizes ('His is only an inch thick!') and leave it at that.


marketing genius.