In what appears to be an unprecedented move, Apple released a statement last week announcing that their next-generation iMacs would be delayed until September. Apple rarely provides information or guidance about the release of new products more than four to eight weeks in advance, and typically only when at least one model is available in a shorter time frame. Apple also said that it was no longer accepting orders for the older iMac.
The following message appears on the online Apple Store's iMac page: "Apple has stopped taking orders for the current iMac as we begin the transition from the current iMac line to an all-new iMac line which will be announced and available in September. We planned to have our next generation iMac ready by the time the inventory of current iMacs runs out in the next few weeks, but our planning was obviously less than perfect. We apologize for any inconvenience to our customers."
Apple's stumble could cost it hundreds of millions of dollars during the critical back-to-school period that's practically started already as parents and students decide where to spend their money in the next two to three months. Apple will almost certainly be heavily promoting other models, potentially with large discounts, to avoid turning impatient potential iMac buyers into Windows users.