May 31, 2006 5:22 PM PDT
Apple expands Best Buy foothold
Best Buy, North America's largest consumer electronics retailer, and Apple are flogging the new MacBook units, as well as the MacBook Pro, Mac Mini and iMac systems, said Samir Bhavnani, an analyst with Current Analysis. The Mac maker has prominent displays and units available in several Best Buy stores throughout the United States, he said.
Best Buy has been selling Apple's popular iPod music players and Mac Minis for some time, but the latest move represents a major expansion of Apple's retail efforts with Best Buy, as well as those outside of its own retail stores, Bhavnani said.
Apple was not immediately available to comment on the deal. A Best Buy representative had no immediate comment.
Best Buy is a destination shopping stop for electronics buyers of all stripes, Bhavnani said. Apple's presence in that type of store complements its own retail stores by exposing the company's products to customers who might not venture into one of Apple's shops, he said.
The move should help Apple get ready for the back-to-school shopping season, which is generally considered to be the second-busiest period of the year for the PC industry, Bhavnani said. The move also shows that Apple is very confident about the inventory situation regarding its new Intel-based products, he said.
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