Windows laptops cheaper, Mac desktops pricier than in 2006

Market research company NPD has compiled some interesting data on average selling prices in the retail PC industry. As eWeek’s Microsoft Watch reports, the numbers show Windows desktops have hovered around $550 for the past couple of years, while Windows laptops dipped from $877 in June 2006 to only $700 two months ago.

Apple has priced its Macs a little differently. At $1,543 on average, Mac desktops were actually over $100 more expensive in June of this year than in June 2006. Meanwhile, Mac laptops only went down from $1,574 to $1,515 over the same time period. Microsoft Watch illustrates the data by comparing two notebooks: an HP DV2946NR that’s available for $699.99 at “some Target stores,” and Apple’s $1,299 MacBook. The HP has a larger display (14.1″), double the memory (4GB), double the hard drive capacity (320GB), and a slightly slower processor (2GHz), but with a much lower price tag.

Interestingly, the HP laptop complements its four gigs of RAM with a 64-bit version of Windows Vista. Microsoft Watch questions Microsoft’s own observations about the increasing prevalence of x64 systems, but it nonetheless quotes NPD as saying 11.6% of Windows notebooks sold in June had 4GB of RAM. 4GB Windows notebook sales were “nothing” at the start of this year, NPD claims.

Comments closed
    • StashTheVampede
    • 11 years ago

    What makes more news headlines:
    Apple computers are more expensive than Windows computers

    OR

    Comparable Apple computers are comparable to Windows computers

    The first line is a … bit misleading, but the second line won’t make headlines.

    Compare Apple notebook to Lenovo, Sony, HP and Dell and you’ll find that they do VERY well on their price (remember: 15″ MBPs are LED backlit). Compare the Mac Pro to a same speed dual Xeon workstation from HP and you’ll find that Apple is cheaper (I did the same and it was roughly 1k cheaper).

    Does EVERYONE want the same features (15″ screen + LED backlit)? No. This is clearly why the PC wins in volume: so much competition and configuration.

      • thecoldanddarkone
      • 11 years ago

      mac pro= competitve

      Macbook Pro, not so much. Macbook, nope again.

      I just configured a xps 1530 m with led, 2.5 c2d, 4 gigs, 250 5400rpm drive, evdo card, 8600gtm with 3 year warranty for 1649.

        • StashTheVampede
        • 11 years ago

        Price them without the upgrades. Apple’s margin on upgrades is silly. I don’t even know someone that loves Apple computers that buys their upgrades.

          • adisor19
          • 11 years ago

          Seriously. Upgrades from Apple = RAPE. No one in their right mind would upgrade their RAM or HDD from Apple.

          Adi

          • thecoldanddarkone
          • 11 years ago

          Just the Warranty+mbp is over 600 dollars than what is in that post. That’s base mbp, BASE.

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            And does the HP have the 5 points i mentioned ealyer on ?

            Adi

            • thecoldanddarkone
            • 11 years ago

            Haha.

            1. Lets see, it has an sd slot.
            2. I only need firewire, not powered firewire
            3. I’ve seen mbps tumble
            4. I like multiple sound ports
            5. it has both vga and hdmi (means less dongles for me)
            6. fingerprint reader
            7. It’s closer to 700 dollars difference
            8. It’s faster, has more memory, and a bigger hard drive

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            You basically went around my point and simply dodged the obvious answer : no it doesn’t have those points that make it worth it in my book for that extra 100 – 200 $ difference.

            Adi

        • bozzunter
        • 11 years ago

        100% agree, in fact I have a Mac Pro. Anyway the entry level iMac (with 4 GB of course, and of course bought at macsales.com) is not that bad.
        MacBookPro (which I also own) is a “little” overpriced, just 500$, but that’s the price for having such an OS like Mac Os, which is really worth its 500$ for me…

    • Hattig
    • 11 years ago

    People, let’s not turn these stories into a Dailytech-esque anti-Mac playground!

    Fact is, a lot of people can’t afford a Mac, so they’ll buy the cheaper offerings from other companies. That’s because Apple don’t provide cheaper offerings so they won’t even consider them as an option.

    I personally like Macs – not all of them – and the OS and the software that people release for them. However I do feel that Apple has some issues in terms of static pricing of their products, long intervals between releases, and not offering a wide range of products.

    Apple should bump CPU and RAM whenever they can, or drop prices over the lifetime of a product. They should offer lower end versions of the MacBook with slower CPUs or whatever other PC manufacturers do to achieve lower price points. Oh, and they should drop that combo drive shit like two years ago, especially on any hardware that costs north of $1k!

      • Skrying
      • 11 years ago

      Except the other manufacturers are offering better hardware at lower prices. They’re not doing anything special other than charging less. It’s certainly not a volume issue either as Apple is one of the highest volume computer manufactures out there.

      Some of these comments make me cringe. People have this crazy idea that Macs are amazingly better products when it couldn’t be farther from the truth. The fact is Apple is very anti-consumer. They hardly ever pass on price savings to the consumer and instead always eat it up as more profit.

      Some comments here perfectly show off the “Mac Cult” I was referring to earlier. Blindly defending products that cost more and offer less. I guess people like wasting their money, favorite pastime.

        • adisor19
        • 11 years ago

        See, this is where you’re absolutly wrong. You don’t get inferior hardware at all. In fact, you get SUPERIOR hardware.

        Let me take my own personal purchase : Mac Book Pro.

        Here is its hardware superiority compared to the others(you can’t find this on a PC laptop of the same price) :
        1) 1 FULL POWER 6 pin Firewire 400 port
        2) 1 FULL POWER 9 pin Firewire 800 port
        3) MagSafe power cord connector. (saved my laptop from sudden death at least 10 times)
        4) Combined Analog/Optical IN/OUT jacks (Takes half the space compared to having 4 separate ports)
        5) MultiTouch trackpad

        The CPU, RAM, HD are the same as what a PC laptop has, however, the 5 things that i have listed, only the MBP seems to have.

        Adi

          • d2brothe
          • 11 years ago

          Well, if those 5 things are worth a huge price premium (500 bucks at least), then thats great, but how often do you really use it, I’d bet most people don’t. Also, I don’t feel like looking, but I’m willing to bet the only Mac exclusive things there are the power connector, the touch pad, and maybe combined jacks. In either case, people trip over my cord all the time…provided I don’t have my laptop teatering on the edge of a table, it isn’t going to go flying. As for multitouch, maybe its a useful feature, but again, is it worth a huge premium?

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            Ya, pretty much that, the thinness of it and the looks of it as well. And let’s not forget the ability to run OS X out of the box. For most Mac users that last thing i mentioned the what makes all the difference, myself included.

            Adi

            • Skrying
            • 11 years ago

            That’s absolutely laughable. Firewire as a standard is very much on the decline. Even then there are a number of laptops that still have it. As for the power plug… I can’t decide to laugh at you or cry for you. You really do wear the “Macs as fashion accessory” badge of honor proudly.

            As for thinness. It has a number of draw backs. You mentioned dropping the computer and having the same effect. Not true at all. For one you can fit in a free fall sensor hard drive into the money you’ll be saving, after that other hardware is going to be safer as the body is more rigid and less prone to flexibility.

            You also fail to mention the drawbacks to the combined ports.

            The multitouch pad is nice but hardly again possible to make up the cost difference.

            I recently bought a 13.3″ Dell XPS M1330. The base unit is $899 compared to a MacBook’s $1,099. The M1330 has more hard drive space, double the memory, and a DVD burner compared to a useless combo-drive. You must jump up to the $1,299 MacBook to get comparable specs. Not to mention the MacBook has next to no customization options at all. I can’t pick to save money on the processor, or just grab “SuperDrive.” Apple FORCES you into a much higher cost bracket for features that should only cost $30. So instead a $1,129 I’m looking at $1,299. That’s not fair. How can you support this practice? It hurts you as a consumer yet you seem to love it. If you compare the M1530 to the MacBook Pro the difference is cost is even larger, much larger.

            The XPS notebooks from Dell are certainly not bad looking units either and while they’re thicker it’s not much so. You seriously value thickness at $400? $900? I know you’re going to say yes, I guess that’s your right. It makes so little sense to me, I can’t support a company like Apple who forces their customers into much more costly brackets for no reason.

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            I’m sorry, what’s so laughable about the MagSafe connector ? Cause the fact that it saved my laptop’s life so many times is a GOOD THING TM in my book.

            Adi

            • Skrying
            • 11 years ago

            I’m sorry you’re a bit clumsy. I personally don’t leave my laptop charging in a position or area where that could happen. It’s called taking care of my expensive items.

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            Good for you. I just hope the day won’t come where somebody else but you knocks it off.

            Adi

            • Skrying
            • 11 years ago

            Again why would I let that happen? The cable runs up behind my desk, no risk there. If I have it somewhere I place the charger in a corner where no one will walk over the cable. What is so hard to this? Placing your device in areas this could happen is being careless. I don’t park my car with the rear end out in the road just like I don’t leave my laptops charger cable hanging in a place someone could trip over it…

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            That only work in your house. But use you laptop in a school environment and you won’t have the luxury of hiding your wire.

            Adi

            • SNM
            • 11 years ago

            All Mac portables have free fall sensors.

            As for the other stuff, if Macs aren’t worth it to you, fine, don’t buy one. Don’t assume that just because a unique feature doesn’t matter to YOU means it doesn’t matter to anybody else.

            • A_Pickle
            • 11 years ago

            PC laptops have the same thing — it’s in the hard drive, and that’s all that matters. Just because Mac developers write clever software for it and PC developers don’t doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

            I don’t think that Macs are a bad product, but they aren’t a great solution. Most people will be able to do the work that they need to do on a PC, with 90% the speed and efficiency as someone on a Mac. In many cases, I’d argue no more speed or efficiency, in fact less due to the added cost.

            Macs aren’t bad. But I’d rather pay under $700 for a good HP that’ll do most, or even more, than a MacBook can.

            • adisor19
            • 11 years ago

            LOL. If the HD doesn’t have the sensor built in, you’re SOL. And many of them DON’T actually have it especially in the 700$ cheaper models you reference. So, yes SOME more expensive PC laptops have it. ALL Apple laptops have it.

            Adi

            • A_Pickle
            • 11 years ago

            All Apple laptops are expensive. Your theorem fits there, too.

    • pogsnet
    • 11 years ago
    • Thresher
    • 11 years ago

    This highlights one of the major gripes I have against Apple:

    Static pricing and models.

    Other companies introduce new models more quickly and take advantage of price reductions in components to reduce the prices on their SKUs. Apple does not.

    So if the price of RAM drops, Apple maintains its price. HP and Dell either offer you more RAM for the same amount or they drop the price of the computer.

    Apple keeps their SKUs for a year, sometimes more. HP and Dell update their model lineups continually, so if Intel drops the price of a CPU or introduces a new one, you can count on these two companies immediately integrating it into their lineup. Apple, you have to wait until the next major update.

    Apple’s approach worked just fine when they were using PowerPC chips because there was nothing to directly compare their pricing to. I think this strategy works against them now that they use bog standard parts.

      • adisor19
      • 11 years ago

      This isn’t alwasy true. Take a look at the recent price cut of the SSD drive for the Air. It went from 1K to 500$ after just a few months on the market and not during a product refresh or sorts.

      Adi

        • pogsnet
        • 11 years ago
        • Thresher
        • 11 years ago

        Can you think of any other times this has occurred? I think that price cut was in response to the Lenovo X200, which came out 4 months later and had a considerable price advantage.

        The only time Macs are a good deal is when it’s a brand new model. Over the lifetime of that model, they decline in real value.

          • adisor19
          • 11 years ago

          You are right in your general statement. I was just pointing out a potential change in their trend.

          Adi

    • albundy
    • 11 years ago

    mac desktops pricier? not when making your own. their OS cost me alot less then vista, but then again, i have both on the same pc!

    • jstern
    • 11 years ago

    I want a mac mini, even if it’s over priced. It’s small and quiet and I value that a lot. It would be even more expensive installing Vista on it.

    • DrDillyBar
    • 11 years ago

    1337ness comes with a 50% markup don’t forget.

    • herothezero
    • 11 years ago

    q[

      • cubical10
      • 11 years ago

      I would have to disagree, i consider the physical build quality of my Macbook to be on par with my Lenovo T60p.

      • adisor19
      • 11 years ago

      The MBP is actually very well built AND it’s slick as well. You should dissasemble one in order to really appreciate the build quality. It’s the only way.

      Adi

    • SNM
    • 11 years ago

    The problem with these price comparisons is twofold:
    1) Apple doesn’t price it’s computers like most manufacturers. They maintain a pretty constant pricing scheme for each line, which means that upon the initial release of a new or heavily-updated model the computer is a pretty good deal, but near EOL it’s a rip-off.
    2) You shouldn’t compare Apple laptops to an HP model; they’re just a better build quality. Compare them to IBM Thinkpads or whatever.

    • curls
    • 11 years ago

    who did the research? captain obvious?

      • Convert
      • 11 years ago

      Captain Obvious had that day off, I think this one was handled by No-****-Sherlock.

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 11 years ago

    This just in from NPD: Apple laptops more expensive than PC laptops.

    Also, in a follow up article, the sky is blue.

    • harmisajedi
    • 11 years ago

    apple is a luxury design brand.

    there are two main kinds of people that buy apple products (this includes ipods & iphones)

    #1. the technologically illiterate, who appreciate osx’ straightforward-ness
    #2. those who treat electronic gadgets as a fashion accessory.

    (edit: there is a small, small set of #3: the technologically literate who want a luxury toy they can tinker with.)

    these may not be entirely rational purchasing decisions, but they don’t make those who make them “assholes” or members of a “cult”. check your prejudices & brush that chip off your shoulder.

    i’d agree, however, that higher prices are simply par for the course. you don’t shell out six figures for a brand new porche because of its performance (i can BUILD you a car that will pummel a new carrera into the ground for under 30k) but rather because of the design that went into it & the privilege of showcasing your porche (in order to compensate for a receding hairline, perhaps.)

    we all have different priorities, and apple’s existence as a quintessential design brand which happens to dabble in technology has served all of us, in that it has pushed other companies to react when it comes to pricing as well as features.

      • Skrying
      • 11 years ago

      If they’re technologically illiterate how do they know OSX is straight forward? They don’t, they’re told by OSX users who do know technology. The Mac Cult is not something I made up on the spot, it’s a well know group of people who really just like Apple products for whatever the reason may be. Be it design, the OS, or the name. My comment was a bit tongue in cheek as I consider Apple computer to be on the higher end of build and design quality just simply to expensive when other brands compete easily these days. Those who think the price premium is worth it form the Mac Cult.

        • Spotpuff
        • 11 years ago

        The Mac ads with Justin Long.

      • grantmeaname
      • 11 years ago

      umm, it’s Porsche. Note the “s”. Also, the possessive form of osx is osx’s.
      The new Carrera starts of $73,500. Count ’em, that’s five figures.
      Anyone can build a car for cheap that can outperform a Carrera. The issue is that most people prefer their cars factory assembled, for some reason…
      The money they’re paying also purchases things such as front and dual side airbags, an in-car entertainment computer, and other goodies that your kit car will not have.

      The engine and brakes in my Porsche and your kit car are different. Apple still uses Intel CPUs and chipsets and nVidia and AMD GPUs.

        • d2brothe
        • 11 years ago

        Are you actually disagreeing with him? Your point isn’t that clear. In either case, he’s generally right about Mac, they’re an elitist brand and you can get a far better performing pc, of equal quality for less..

          • grantmeaname
          • 11 years ago

          The analogy is a crappy one. You simply can’t compare the two like that.

            • d2brothe
            • 11 years ago

            True, the analogy isn’t the best, but I think the point still holds….

    • Skrying
    • 11 years ago

    Does it really matter? People don’t buy Apple computers because they think they’re getting a good deal but rather the opposite. It’s the pricing that makes them elite-ish( assholes) and it’s claiming “Well I run OSX, therefore I am better than you Windows heathen.” Apple will never compete directly on price because it violates the first commandment of their Mac buying cult.

      • stmok
      • 11 years ago

      Feels more like Apple folks (fanatical ones at least) are living a life of the “social system”. Meaning looks or fashion, social status, glamour, etc (at any cost) is the primary here. (You can see what a person values in life if they’ve camped out days for a product.)

      They don’t use their systems like a tool to fulfill a purpose per se. But its more to do with a lifestyle. This becomes more obvious as you look at the applications within OSX (ie: iLife) as well as the feature they market for their systems. (zoom into photos, etc with track pad).

      Apple’s marketing plays on the element of ego and insecurity. Making deliberate comparisons in order to show superiority. The thing about ego is, its feeds itself…The more its done though, the less people respect it. (Who says marketing weren’t the best psychologists?) 🙂

      The one thing I don’t like is their active suggestion (marketing) that Macs are somehow invulnerable to security issues…It encourages arrogance on the end user and the hacker side. Seriously, who wouldn’t want to rip into Apple’s faux reputation of security? (Their response time to security is a joke compared to Linux or Microsoft…And MS learned things the hard way).

      The sad fact is, Apple’s brand is entirely reliant on a this perception of a quality reputation. Once you shatter that, the house of cards starts tumbling.

      Well, that’s my observation. Personally, I don’t care much for Macs as Mac fans do. I see it as a system like any other system. I’ll use it to fulfill a purpose, otherwise, I don’t really care for the looks, etc.

        • bozzunter
        • 11 years ago

        People buying Apple as they’re stilish as are stupid as people who post here things like “because they think they’re getting a good deal but rather the opposite. It’s the pricing that makes them elite-ish( assholes) and it’s claiming “Well I run OSX, therefore I am better than you Windows heathen.” ”

        But it’s understandable, this is a PC website, not a Mac one although I still don’t understand while TechReport writes 10 lines every now and then about Mac.

        For the report, I left PC 7 months ago and I bought 5 Mac as they increased my productivity a lot, apart to let me run a couple of Windows inside of each Mac with 8 cores. But who cares, go on and write stupid things… These forums are great as people generally post very interesting comments, but when talking about Apple 80% of users can’t really restrain to post, no matter how big their ignorance is.

          • grantmeaname
          • 11 years ago

          This is a computer hardware website, and Macs are made out of computer hardware just like PCs.

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