Originally Posted by TheNext44
I still don't understand why Apple didn't release their version of a netbook instead of this IPad. That really is the direction consumers are going, smaller and cheaper, not bigger and more expensive.
Apple has been successful and made lots of money, but because they have less practical appeal than other computers, they actually have a very small slice of the market. This would have been their chance to shed their "elitist" image and grab a bigger chunk of the market.
Inadvertently, the answer to your question is in there. Computer hardware is a low-margin business. Netbooks are basically cheap Internet appliances. There's no sizzle. Apple's a company that trades on cool and a stripped-down "we have a netbook too" Macbook isn't going to do anything for that, nor is it going to add much to the bottom line. They'd rather swing for the fences with something new and different.
Or, put another way, they have no interest in shedding their elitist image. It's what allows them to keep high profit margins on their products even while they're selling millions upon millions of iPods and iPhones.