Bargain hunters would do well to check out the PowerBook 100 4/40s being sold at Price Club warehouse stores for around $900. Apple pulled that configuration of the PowerBook 100 from the price list, recalled all the stock from dealers, and sent it to Price Club. It seems Apple felt that the 75 Price Club stores were a good place to, well, dump the remaining 8,000 to 18,000 of these PowerBooks.
Needless to say, this move has angered dealers immensely because they cannot begin to match Price Club’s prices, even with less-capable PowerBooks, due to Apple’s normal pricing and dealer margins. The dealers I’ve heard complaining fumed because they felt they could have sold those PowerBook 100s just as quickly at such low prices had Apple allowed them to. The unfortunate consequence is that without the profits from selling low-end computers and the related training and software sales, dealers cannot afford quality staff, which damages the industry-wide dealer reputation even further. Nonetheless, Apple feels that it must expand its distribution network, and I’m sure that politics played a large part in the deal.
The Price Club stores have the machines now, but early reports indicate that the PowerBook 100 4/40 sells incredibly quickly at $900. A Price Club phone rep at one store said that she’s never seen so much interest in a product. You must be a member to shop at Price Club, but it’s reportedly fairly easy to qualify.