eMac gone for consumers but available for schools

In the midst of introducing an updated iMac G5, new iPods and major new release of iTunes, Apple also quietly removed its eMac computer from general circulation. Apple has confirmed the eMac is no longer available, at least for consumers.

“The eMac is no longer available at the online Apple Store or Apple’s retail stores, but we are continuing to offer the eMac on the online education store for institutional customers,” an Apple spokesperson told MacCentral .

The all-in-one eMac incorporates a built-in 17-inch CRT-based display and G4 processor. The system most recently featured a processor clocked at 1.42GHz, and was available with a CD-RW/DVD-ROM “Combo” drive or with a DVD-R “SuperDrive.”

The eMac was originally intended as a lower-cost all-in-one computer specifically designed for and limited to educational institutions following Apple’s introduction of the LCD panel-equipped iMac G4. But public interest in the system caused Apple to rethink its strategy, and within a short period the company began to offer the eMac to consumers too.

“For consumers looking for an affordable all-in-one Mac, the new iMac G5 is a great solution,” said the Apple spokesperson.

The eMac also faced stiff competition for the hearts and minds of penny-pinching consumers with Apple’s own Mac mini. At $499, the Mac mini is Apple’s least expensive Mac yet and $300 less than the eMac — though it eschews amenities included with the eMac, like a built-in screen, speakers, mouse and keyboard.

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