A Pleasant Surprise: Mac Software at Target

By  |  Friday, January 30, 2009 at 11:58 am

target_storeI may have missed the boat completely here and its been there a while, but while I was shopping my local Target for blank DVDs (so I can finally get around to installing Windows 7 on my MacBook Pro) I came across something I didn’t expect.

Sitting there all by their lonesome were several copies of Parallels 3.0 for Mac for $79.99 (although yes, we’re now at 4.0, which was released in November of last year). They were almost lost in a sea of Windows software, but yes, they were there. This surprised me–while I’d expect the software to be available at electronics retailers, I wouldn’t expect it here.

After all, those shopping in Target are likely not there to buy technical software like Parallels. Also, the stereotype of the Mac user is more affluent than what may be considered the “average” consumer for a Target or Wal-Mart type discount establishment. Who needs Mac software other than us techies? The Mac is still just an elite club…right?

Not anymore.

img_0115Even just a year ago, it would have been unheard of to see Mac software (or heck, hardware for that matter) anyplace but from Apple itself or its then considerably smaller network of Apple Authorized Resellers.

Now, with the Macintosh experiencing somewhat of a rebirth through the ‘halo effect’ of first the iPod and now the iPhone, jumping on the Apple bandwagon is in vogue.

Big name retailers like Target are much more cautious in deciding what gets put on their shelves because shelf space is at a premium. Everything must make money–they cannot specialize in one thing because consumers expect them to carry everything.

In other words, this means only a select number of products from each category make it onto the shelves. For Parallels to convince Target that it is indeed worth it speaks volumes to the Mac’s newfound retail power. Here’s hoping that this isn’t the last piece of Mac OS software to make it to Target.

So I’m curious. Where are you all finding Mac software and accessories where you haven’t before?


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9 Comments For This Post

  1. Jay Says:

    So Target is stocking Parallels now, but they can’t even get the most current version on the shelves? Parallels 4.0 replaced 3.0 back in November.

  2. Ed Oswald Says:

    Yes indeed. But in all likelihood Parallels 4.0 would replace 3.0 when it sells out. I actually am going to send an e-mail over to Target PR just to inquire since you have me curious.

  3. Thomas Traub Says:

    I’ve installed W7 on my Mac using VirtualBox directly from the downloded .iso by mounting the .iso file with Disk Utility.

  4. tced Says:

    The appearance of Mac software at Target is a consequence of the size of the Mac market. It has apparently reached critical mass enough to have the attention of the buyers at Target. I assume Windows is somewhere nearby since that is the usual reason for having Parallels. However Parallels is pretty “geeky” for Target.

  5. stoperror Says:

    When I first saw it I was like “Why the hell would this be sold”. I could see popular software like Microsoft office or an Adobe product, but virtual machine software? That ain’t exactly the most popular PC software, nor I think it is a very popular Mac app.

  6. Gregory Kelley Says:

    The right thing to do about the presence of Mac Software in TARGET stores is to:

    1) Compliment Them!! both at the store level (ask for the manager) Be nice. Ask for more, like games and iLife and iWorks, etc. Tell your mac friends to do the same.

    2) E-mail the main office with similar praise.

    3) We all know the Mac Market is big, but the PC crowd has been trying to keep it quiet.

    Revolutions start quietly and proceed quietly — often for years. Like a tidal wave moving in deep water.

  7. Ed Oswald Says:

    Greg: I love that comment, and will say here, here!

  8. droughtquake Says:

    Did you see Parallels in a (standard) Target, a Target Greatland, or a Super Target store? The larger the store, the greater the variety…

    Target probably relies on a distributor to decide which pieces of software to carry.

    Many of Target Teammembers and ‘Guests’ own Macs, iPhones, and iPods.

  9. IT Support Services Says:

    Sure, why not? It’s just another distribution channel…

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