Apple’s Mac sales continued to slide this quarter, as Apple sold only 3.95 million computers running OS X, down just over 1 percent from the 4.1 million they sold in Q1 2013, and pretty much flat compared to the 4 million they sold in the same quarter last year. That’s no surprise: PC sales are sluggish in general, and while Macs aren’t running wild, flat growth is better than a dip.
Mac sales likely weren’t helped by the fact that Apple did not release any majorly updated hardware during the quarter. It did make some changes on the hardware side, however; back in February it made minor internal spec bumps to the Retina MacBook Pro, and introduced some pricing changes to the Retina Pro, MacBook Air and SSD upgrades. Apple was probably hoping that would be enough to give Mac sales a good boost in lieu of major new hardware, especially the $200 price drop on the 13-inch Retina MacBook pro, which before the change wasn’t priced too much lower than the 15-inch model, which boasts a dedicated internal graphics card and therefore offers much better gaming and 3D graphics performance.
Despite not introducing any Macs (besides arguably the VESA-mount compatible iMac), Apple’s new iMacs caught up with demand during the quarter according to estimated ship dates from the Apple Store, meaning sales likely weren’t too impeded by stock constraints on the supplier side. Even so, Mac sales weren’t looking great for the quarter, but that could all change depending on what Apple has up its sleeve in terms of spring and early summer launches.
Macs sales being relatively sluggish isn’t the end of the world for Apple, and it’s been clear for a while now that iOS and iOS devices including the iPad and iPhone are getting the lion’s share of the company’s attention. As Apple executives including Tim Cook have said in the past, Apple isn’t worried about cannibalization, so long as its own products are the ones eating away at market share. And judging by the 19.5 million iPads sold during the quarter, which topped expectations, that’s exactly what it’s doing.