Those people who either attend or work at educational institutions are often eligible for significant discounts on computer hardware and software. The computer companies view the discounts as a good way of attracting future members of the business world to their products, and members of educational institutions view the discounts as just reward for the often-lower salaries of higher education in comparison to big business. Recently, though discount mail order houses had started to compete with the higher education prices. In response to that competition and to the continuing allegations that the Mac is too expensive in comparison to PC-clones, Apple just dropped the prices on the compact Mac significantly.
Warwick Daw of UCLA mentioned some of the new prices at UCLA (these will vary between institutions). A Mac Plus is $699, a double-drive SE is $1099, an SE/30 with one floppy is $1849, and a Portable with one floppy is $3149. A 40 megabyte hard drive adds between $300 and $450 to the price. The SE/30 is particularly attractive in comparison to the Mac IIcx now, since the IIcx's price remained the same, about $2800 for the main unit without the monitor.
Using prices from other discussions on Usenet, an impressive SE/30 system could be put together for a total of about $2800. That would include a $699 external 105 megabyte Quantum from Alliance Peripheral Systems, a company which has recently gotten excellent reviews on the net, and an extra 4 megabytes of RAM from one of the many companies selling RAM for about $65 per megabyte.
Apple hasn't achieved the low-cost Mac that will take the market by storm, since a Mac Plus still isn't particularly powerful for $699, but it appears that Apple is finally willing to try to compete on price in some markets.
Barry Brown -- firstname.lastname@example.org
Warwick Daw -- email@example.com
Marty Bies -- firstname.lastname@example.org
William R. Krempp -- email@example.com
Homer Simpson -- firstname.lastname@example.org.Buffalo.EDU
Pat Stephenson -- email@example.com
Steve Goldfield -- firstname.lastname@example.org