There have been rumors floating around that Wal-Mart and/or Target could start selling Macs soon. Some folks say this would dilute Apple’s image, especially in the case of Wal-Mart, whose reputation is mainly for cut-throat low pricing. But if Apple wants to grow the Mac market, Wal-Mart may be the best way to go.
I’m not the biggest fan of Wal-Mart. In my hometown of Huntingdon, Tennessee (population: 5,000), it has put the kibosh on many locally owned, mom-and-pop stores. However, if the residents of my hometown want to buy a Mac they have to drive almost 30 miles to a Best Buy in Jackson, Tennessee. There’s no Apple retail store in Jackson — and there never will be in Huntingdon.
In small towns like mine, it would make sense for Apple to have Wal-Mart carry at least a limited selection of Macs. And there are LOTS of small towns like mine all across the U.S. Most have Wal-Marts; fewer have Target stores; none have Apple retail stores.
In April some Target and Wal-Mart stores both rolled out test program, adding mini Apple shops within stores. I expect this to continue, at least if Apple wants to sell more Macs. Besides, Wal-Mart and Target have been selling iPhones, iPod and iPads for a long time now — and that’s certainly not hurt Apple’s reputation, sales or bottom line in the least.
— Dennis Sellers