Apple has put together a new iMac configuration that will come in at $999, but it’s nothing worth getting too excited over, especially because most people won’t be able to get it. The new, cheaper, iMac configuration is being offered only to educational institutions.
The sub $1000 iMac configuration isn’t really all that exciting in terms of hardware specifications. The machine boasts the 21-inch screen, 3.1GHz Intel Core i3 Dual-Core processor, 2GB RAM, 250GB Hard Drive, and AMD Radeon HD 6750 with 256 MB.
The one interesting omission from this lower end iMac is Thunderbolt. Thunderbolt was likely omitted to save cash and because no convincing devices exist on the market yet. That combined with the significantly lower specs makes the overall configuration of the machine kind of a bummer. This iMac also lacks an ability to handle Bluetooth.
Saving $200 for dumbed down specs may not make the most sense for individual purchasers but it does make sense for education institutions buying machines in bulk to fill labs or libraries. It’s likely that this configuration will sell really well for Apple and it stands to save colleges, and schools a great deal of money.
The real question is will Apple extend this concept and develop another low end configuration only available for students purchasing individually. That idea would make sense if students were still opting to buy desktops, but with college campus having strong wireless support these days it almost doesn’t make any sense.