Apple said to prep MacBook Air price cuts

With the first wave of ultrabooks, PC makers have shown they can offer laptops similar to Apple’s MacBook Air at lower prices. The ball is now in Apple’s court, and according to DigiTimes, the Mac maker will soon cut prices in an effort to stay competitive.

DigiTimes says its sources expect Apple to introduce a new, more affordable MacBook Air family in the first quarter of next year—presumably to take advantage of Intel’s 22-nm Ivy Bridge processors, which should be coming out right around then. The refreshed Air lineup will reportedly include a 15″ model in addition to 13.3″ and 11.6″ offerings. That said, price cuts across the Air family are expected before the new hardware rolls out.

Now, there’s no word on how deep the price cuts will be. DigiTimes points out that some e-tailers are selling MacBook Air laptops below Apple’s list price as part of their holiday sales. (Best Buy, for instance, sells the base 11.6″ Air for $939.99 instead of $999.99 right now.) That doesn’t quite tell us how far Apple is prepared to go, of course. I doubt the company will match its most aggressive competitors and start offering the 13.3″ Air for $900, but price cuts of one or two hundred bucks wouldn’t be surprising.

Either way, I do hope Apple responds to the ultrabook phenomenon with some pricing tweaks. Even if the competition is catching up, I think MacBook Air laptops are still better designed and better finished, and I wouldn’t have a problem paying a small premium for that. The premium needs to be small, though.

Comments closed
    • Bensam123
    • 8 years ago

    Why would Apple cut their prices? People are fine paying the premium for their products and I would even say that’s part of what draws people to them (sadly enough).

      • mikehodges2
      • 8 years ago

      The draw for me was that it was [i<]actually[/i<] an ultrabook, and [i<]actuall[/i<] available 18 months ago...

        • End User
        • 8 years ago

        Don’t forget it has a multitouch trackpad that actually works.

          • mikehodges2
          • 8 years ago

          Bloody right!

    • nico1982
    • 8 years ago

    Awesome if true! Just bought one a few days ago XD

    • Kalgash
    • 8 years ago

    I just looked at:

    $1199 for the ASUS Zenbook UX21E-DH71 11.6-Inch
    $899 for the Acer Aspire S3-951-6646 Ultrabook with 13.3-Inch HD Display $
    $1149 for the Lenovo U300s 10802BU 13.3-Inch Ultrabook (Graphite Grey)

    amazon.com pricing (current sales pricing excluded).

    Versus:

    $999 for the Apple MacBook Air 11.6 inch.

    What price catch ups?

      • OneArmedScissor
      • 8 years ago

      Okely dokely, Dr. Spin.

        • Kalgash
        • 8 years ago

        Those were the prices I got at Amazon.com this morning in FireFox. What spin?

      • Goty
      • 8 years ago

      I’m pretty sure you mean:

      $994.47 for the ASUS
      $890.99 for the Acer
      $1149.99 for the Lenovo

      versus

      $1099 for the Macbook Air once you actually make it match the specs of the cheapest of the three above.

      That would be the “catch up”.

        • Duck
        • 8 years ago

        Acer is trash, doesn’t count.

        The Air is $999 not $1099. Asus tries to tempt you with slightly better specs, this doesn’t make the Air cost $1099.

          • sweatshopking
          • 8 years ago

          I wouldn’t agree with you there. Reliability charts post acer being mid range, and some of their models come clear in the top. Scott and geoff have both praised their 1810z’s many times, and my wifes 3810z is an excellent machine. I’m not sure the air price though, as i wouldn’t purchase one, so haven’t bothered to check.

          • Goty
          • 8 years ago

          If you want an Air that is comparable, then it does cost $1099 (the Air only comes with 2GB of RAM in its stock configuration).

          If you don’t want to compare the Air to the S3, though, we’ll go with the next cheapest option with the Zenbook. If you want to do that, though, we’d have to bump the Air up to the 128 GB SSD, which brings the price in at $1199. If you’d like to compare to the option stated by Kalgash (the $1199 Zenbook), the Macbook then loses out when you compare the processors, as the Zenbook will come with a 1.8GHz i7 and the Air will still be stuck with a 1.6GHz i5.

          Face it, “Ultrabooks” are better-featured than Apple’s products at similar price points. It doesn’t make the Air any worse of a machine, just less of a value (which is nothing new for Apple products).

            • Duck
            • 8 years ago

            You completely ignored the value of build, OSX, quality, style, design, thunderbolt. Thus, your opinion is invalid.

            • Goty
            • 8 years ago

            Yes, my opinion in invalid because I ignored build quality (even by all accounts between the Air and the Zenbook), OSX (there’s a reason there’s an option FROM APPLE to dual-boot windows on all of their machines), “quality” (umm… yeah, got nothing here since it doesn’t appear to be something you could actually quantify), style (which is entirely subjective), design (see style), and thunderbolt (wait, why do I need that again?).

            Your argument is fool-proof.

            • Duck
            • 8 years ago

            Just saying you can’t compare based on specs alone. If that’s what you are trying to do, clearly apple isn’t for you.

            • Goty
            • 8 years ago

            I’m comparing on cost. Why pay more for less?

            • Duck
            • 8 years ago

            see… [url<]https://techreport.com/discussions.x/22067?post=598889[/url<]

            • Goty
            • 8 years ago

            Thanks for reinforcing my argument. 😉

            • Duck
            • 8 years ago

            Huh? How about…

            [quote<]Why pay more for less?[/quote<] To get something better?

            • Duck
            • 8 years ago

            Fine. Just downvote me then. You’re right. Why pay more for less? Apple is doomed and by 2014 Acer will be the 2nd richest company on the planet.

          • MadManOriginal
          • 8 years ago

          Way to want it both ways. Apple fans often quote ‘better specs’ as a rationale for higher Apple prices, and yet here you want to turn it around and discount the better specs on a non-Apple computer.

        • leor
        • 8 years ago

        IPS IPS IPS

          • Goty
          • 8 years ago

          Is the panel in the Air an IPS panel? If it is, it’s not a very good one, at least on my friend’s 13.3-inch model.

            • Duck
            • 8 years ago

            I believe it is a factory calibrated TN.

    • Dygear
    • 8 years ago

    Apple, cut prices. What’s DigiTimes been drinking because I want some. That’s never, ever gonna happen, unless they are not shipping as much as they would like, and I think it’s pretty clear that’s not the case.

      • Beelzebubba9
      • 8 years ago

      Apple cut the price of the Air I have by $200 between the Core 2 and SNB generations, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they target a $800 price point for the IVB generation.

        • MadManOriginal
        • 8 years ago

        But this is saying they will cut prices on current models even before Ivy Bridge (which will also bring lower ultrabook prices). Aside from short sales and ‘specials’ (student discount, employee specials, etc) does Apple normally cut prices – meaning MSRP – on outgoing hardware, especially before the new models are out? I always thought they just let it fade away, and their main ‘permanent discount’ channel was the Apple refurb online store.

      • NeelyCam
      • 8 years ago

      Apple would never offer Black Friday discounts!

      Oh, wait…

        • Beelzebubba9
        • 8 years ago

        …Apple has always offered Black Friday discounts. And back to school deals.

        • no51
        • 8 years ago

        [i<]Over my dead body![/i<] -Steve Jobs

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