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Apple broadens rebate offer

Apple announces rebates of up to $200 on its Power Macintosh 6500 series in an effort to position itself for strong sales in the Christmas season.

    Apple Computer (AAPL) today announced rebates of up to $200 on its Power Macintosh 6500 series computers in an effort to position itself for strong sales in the Christmas season.

    The rebates on Power Macintosh 6500 series computers, which are generally sold to consumers and small businesses, supplement rebates already being offered on notebooks and some high-end computers. These were announced earlier this month. (See related story)

    During the "Add-on Take-off" promotion, between October 31 and January 16, 1998, customers who buy Power Mac 6500s and other selected products in tandem with Apple monitors will get cash rebates. Apple will offer a rebate of $50 on Power Macintosh 6500/225 models and a rebate of $200 on all other 6500-series systems, including the 6500/300.

    Apple is looking for a boost during the holiday season from the consumer market. During the fourth quarter of Apple's just-ended fiscal year, the company shipped 652,000 units, down eight percent from its previous-quarter results. The fourth quarter is usually the second strongest of the year for Apple, as a result of sales to the education market.

    As the year comes to a close, two major competitors--Motorola and Power Computing--will stop selling Mac-compatible systems. With only Umax left as a Mac clone vendors, there has been concern that Apple would lack incentive to reduce prices.

    Nevertheless, Apple has taken a number of pricing actions in the last month, including price cuts of up to $1,000 on PowerBook 3400s, but it remains to be seen whether Apple can capitalize on opportunities arising from the exit of Motorola and Power.

    Apple says it is offering more information on the program at a special Web site.