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Chuck Jones Contributor

I cover technology companies, worldwide economies and the stock market full bio →

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I provide independent research of technology companies and was previously one of two analysts that determined the technology holdings for Atlantic Trust (Invesco's high net worth group), a firm with $15 billion under management. Before joining Atlantic Trust I was the Internet Security Software analyst for Smith Barney (where I authored the most comprehensive industry report “Internet Security Software: The Ultimate Internet Infrastructure”) and an Enterprise Server Hardware analyst at Salomon Brothers. Prior to becoming an equity analyst, I spent 16 years at IBM in a variety of sales and manufacturing positions. I have a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University and a Postgraduate Diploma in Economics from the University of Sussex, England.

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Tech 27,535 views

Apple's Black Friday Discounts: Nothing For Any iPhone Or The Retina Mini

Apple Apple has a once a year sale on Black Friday with this year’s deals being gift cards for iPads and the MacBook Pro but not in all countries. I’ve checked Apple’s U.K., Germany, France, Australia, China, Singapore and South Korea websites to see what Apple is offering. Overall there are gift cards for every iPad except the Retina mini but no discounts for iPhones, and there are no discounts in the Asian countries except Australia. (Note that my family and I own Apple shares).

Update: As of 12:06 am PT/3:06 am ET, Friday, Nov. 29, Apple’s U.S. website was still saying “We’ll be back” so we don’t know the exact gift card amounts in the U.S.

Update for the U.S. Gift card amounts:

iPad Air: $75 (a 15% “discount” which is higher than other countries gift card amounts)

iPad 2: $50

iPad mini: $50 (higher than other countries gift card amounts)

iPod Touch: $50

MacBook Air: $150

MacBook Pro: $150

iMac: $150

Overall Apple’s discounts don’t amount to much financially (see “discounts” below) but drive a lot of traffic. Giving gift cards helps Apple sell other products, such as accessories, which can have higher margins than its core products and can get customers to come into its stores again.

Nothing for any iPhones

It looks like there won’t be any early presents from Apple on the iPhones. It wouldn’t be expected for the 5s to have a gift card but given what looks like soft demand for the 5c it wouldn’t have been surprising for it to have had one. I suspect that Apple went through the calculation that it would cannibalize too much 5s demand and that the 4s is their low-cost iPhone.

An iPad Christmas

Every iPad except the mini with Retina display has some gift card associated with them. The iPad Air gift cards range in value from 35 Euros ($48) to 75 Australian Dollars ($68) so I expect the US value to be $50. This would be a 10% “savings” on the $499 16GB Wi-Fi model and less on the cellular and higher memory versions.

The iPad 2’s gift cards value range from 25 U.K. pounds ($41) to 50 Australian Dollars ($45). It will be interesting to see if the U.S. deal is rounded up to $50 so with the Wi-Fi version list at $399 this would be a 12.5% “discount”.

The iPad mini’s gift cards range from 15 U.K. pounds ($25) to 50 Australian Dollars ($45). I suspect that U.S. gift card will be $25 (Germany’s and France’s are 21 Euros or $29) which would be an 8% “discount” on a $299 price.

The Retina mini doesn’t seem to have discounts in any country. Since it was only launched on November 12 and last Friday, November 22, was the first day that walk-in customers could buy it I’m not surprised that there isn’t a gift card associated with it.

Asian countries won’t be receiving any presents

I couldn’t find any discounts on China’s, Singapore’s or South Korea’s websites for iPhones, any iPads or MacBook Pros. This may be driven as much by having fewer stores in these countries: 9 in China and none in Singapore or South Korea than anything else.

Follow me on Twitter @sandhillinsight. You can find my other Forbes posts here.

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