Strong opinions, weakly held

MacBook Pro vs the Wintel competition

I have seen some discussion of MacBook Pro prices, but few of them seem to be comparing Apples to apples, if you get my meaning. To make a true comparison, you have to compare the Mac to a similarly equipped PC notebook from a business-oriented line of products. (Business-targetted laptops are better built and more expensive than the ones targetted at consumers.) Here’s an article previewing Core Duo-based Windows notebooks, and it sure looks to me like the price of admission is $1999 regardless of manufacturer. Gateway advertises a much lower price than that, but as soon as you start customizing it to match the specs of the MacBook, you find that you’re right at the same price point as the Apple laptops.

There’s no question that Apple desktop systems are significantly more expensive than Windows systems, but Apple was competitive in the notebook world until progress stagnated on the processor front. To me it looks like the Intel transition has put them right back in the fray.

Update: Tristan Louis performed a more detailed comparison between the MacBook Pro and Acer’s new Core Duo laptop and finds that the Mac comes up short on feature by feature basis. (He has both listed at $1999, but commenters seem to think that the Acer is more expensive than that.)


  1. Not germane to the subject of your post, but you wrote “Business-targetted laptops are better built and more expensive than the ones targetted at consumers”

    I have it from a reliable source who used to work at Dell that Dell’s Inspiron and Latitude notebook computers are all built together and only branded at the end of the manufacturing process. All part of Dell’s relentless pursuit of lower manufacturing costs.

    So, at least for Dell, it would seem that there is no functional difference between consumer and business lines, though Dell clearly banks on the belief that there is a difference by charging more for the business laptops.

  2. Dell buisness labtops have a reason for being more expensive (at least in my eyes). Their consumer labtops have a bunch of bloatware loaded on them. Proabably alot of there revenues come through this bloatware. The business notebooks have none of this bloatware, which makes Dell higher the price for a profit. To me, I would actually pay more to get a REAL OS disk, and all of the crap off the PC

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