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back to article Apple gives MacBooks some Santa Rosa loving

Without the usual tarantara, Apple has updated its MacBook laptops with faster hardware and some more upgrade options. The Macbook line will now ship with Intel's Santa Rosa chip set, sporting either a 2.0GHz or 2.2GHz Intel core 2 Duo processor and Intel GMA X3100 graphic processor. They also now include the option to upgrade …

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decisions decisions

do you pay over the odds for the high class hooker or the five dollar job on the corner, both end up with the same results...

come on Apple sell it to me at the price of a Dell and I'm there!

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Dell

But Dell is crap compared to Apple!

If you compare it to another quality brand like Lenovo ThinkPads, then the price is quite reasonable...

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Jobs Halo

Just buy a Dell if you want it priced like one

Apple makes very good machines. Dell does too but if you want a Dell that is built like an Apple it will be priced like one or even more. If you want to buy a cheap nasty Dell, expect it to be, well, cheap and nasty, and it really won't last long. My iBook G4 is four years old now and has been used heavily. I even upgraded it to Leopard and it spins along nicely. Lets see your cheap Dell last like that. MacBooks are not expensive, heck, buy one of the old models on the refurb store and save a bundle.

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Prices

Apple (and most of the world's companies) really annoy me with their pricing. I know it's an issue for the UK, with many items doing an almost pound/dollar conversion, but looking at Apple's current pricing:

$AUD 1599 for the bottom range MacBook

$USD 1099

Fair enough, with the worthless Australian dollar.. but that's just not true anymore. Right now, $1099 USD is $1198 AUD. How is it that it costs $400 more to buy in Australia than the US?

I don't buy the whole market forces/cost of doing business usual spin either. The same can be said for toys like the iPod Touch - $299USD in America, $384USD in Australia.

I'd consider buying an Apple, I really would. But with the fact that Apple is already overpriced in the market, coupled with the fact that if you don't live Stateside they'll rip you off even more.. I just can't bring myself to do it.

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FAO frankgobbo

This has to be (along with the whole 'omg, I bought a new 500GB Hard Drive and there's only 465GB of usable space, wtf?' issue) the most uninformed thing that comes up in relation to Apple products outside the US.

US Prices *DO NOT* include sales tax, whereas the UK (and I'm assuming Australia too) include VAT at 17.5%, which normally equalises the prices to within a reasonable amount.

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Go

Sales tax

GST in Australia is a flat 10%, so $1317AUD for the USD price converted vs $1599 - it's still nearly $300, or nearly a 20% premium.

My apologies for being so uninformed and thinking that Apple was ripping off non-US residents when they so obviously aren't ....

I won't even start on the $300 AUD price premium for "black".

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Prices

Comparing prices for similar performance and spec before I bought a new notebook two months ago, the comparison came out like this:

Dell: EUR 2,600.--

HP: EUR 2,800.--

Toshiba: Nothing similar offered at the time

Acer: EUR 2,300.--

Apple: EUR 2,000,--

Guess which I chose. As to the US/non-US pricing, Nathan is right with the sales tax not being included in US prices. Plus, there is such a thing as import duty in most countries, remember?

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Sales tax

The basic Macbook is $1,099. At today's exchange rate, that's £528. Add VAT and that's £620. In the UK, the machine sells for £699.

Is it just a low-end thing? Let's see:

The top-end Macbook Pro is $2,799. That's currently £1,344. Add VAT and you get £1,579. UK price? £1,799.

So it looks like Apple have found that the UK consumer doesn't mind paying 13% more the US consumer.

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@Decisions Decisions

"do you pay over the odds for the high class hooker or the five dollar job on the corner"

Well if you want an ineffectual hand job; or to get the clap or HIV; or to be beaten up by the pimp then go for the five dollar job!

My works Dell cost 100 quid less than a MacBook at the time. It's virtually the same except that it has a far slower processor, no bluetooth, crappy build quality and the batteries in all of them died just after a year. If you spec a Dell of decent quality and the same specs you'll actually end up paying more...

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I would buy one now, to run Windows Vista (obviously)

If it were not for:

1. The horid keyboard (Have you seen the size of the enter key on a Mac Book Pro, UK version, it's tiny - to make way for some pointless speakers.) Clearly it's not designed for day in day out use.

2. The joke of a pricing policy. MUG I am not.

John

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Anonymous Coward

@ Nathan Boal

"include VAT at 17.5%, which normally equalises the prices to within a reasonable amount"

Not true. A mac mini in the UK costs £399. Mac mini US $599 this is the same as 599 x 0.479845 = £287.45 at todays exchange rate. Add sales tax 287.45 x 1.175 = £337.75

The difference is £61.25, the cost of a 500 GB hard disk, or 15%. I can't be bothered to do this for all of apples models, but their website is there for all to see.

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Nathan Boal...

So you are telling me that sales tax in the US is 40% or more?

As others have said I'd love to give one of these a go except for the price... I currently use a top of the line Asus (power and build quality surpassing the Apple - latest chipset, great graphics card and constructed of aluminium) and at a much more reasonable price for equivilant {sp?} specs (currently using a W2C, looking at a W2P to replace it).

Drop the price to match and my next machine would be an Apple just to see if they are any good. Otherwise it'll be my third asus in a row when I next replace the machine.

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@FAO frankgobbo

Fair point about the sales tax, however, only internet sales are exempt from sales tax in the US.

How about a real-world comparison. Can someone go into the Apple London (Regent Street) store and get the price for the lowest spec 15 inch screen MacBook Pro:

* 2.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo

* 1440 x 900 resolution

* 2GB memory

* 120GB hard drive1

* 8x double-layer SuperDrive

* NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics with 128MB SDRAM

and other readers repeat the exercise for stores in New York, Toronto, Tokyo and Rome inclusive of ALL taxes and the price without tax. Readers comment back with the results so we know the true picture (i.e. the before and after sales tax figures let us know if it's the manufacturer/retailer or the government ripping us off).

I'll start the bidding - I called the store in London Regent Street, they told me their store price is the same as the online price. So I looked it up:

1,299.00 GBP inclusive of all tax

1,105.53 GBP exclusive of taxes

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Flame

dell

I use a dell, and its great. I have installed Suse10.3 alongside XP and it does all i need from a PC. XP is on there for my novice mates who fear anything outside windows, but i use the machine in suse. I've had the machine fpr about 2 years.

The best bit is that i don't look like a complete smug tosser like most apple users. And lets face it, apple users have always looked smug. Little did they realise that their apparently great machines would only survive by aligning itself more with the standard PC platform, allowing people to install Windows (how much hype was there about boot camp) and being financed by an MP3 player (i know aac etc but it still surprises me how many apple users don't know the difference between their mp3s and their aacs on their ipods. And yes, they use a core apple product, therefore they are apple users).

Rant over.

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Jobs Horns

@Math Campbell

Just been there, and done that (apple + dell websites).. Didn't buy the t-shirt because I would have had to remorgage my house (for the apple one anyway)

And the simple matter is, your so wrong :P!

The Highest spec macbook pro is over $1100 More than the Highest Dell XPS,

With the apple having a slightly better nvidia graphics card, and the Dell having a slightly better (250GB, 7200RPM) drive.

$1100 Dollars for the apple logo, nice!

*bring on the fanboys with there PMT-like winges about the 'build quality'.*

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Coat

@Nathan..Tax and cost of doing business yep..

Dollar for dollar comparisons just don't cut it....

The tax is GST in Aus (10%) and here in NZ (12.5%). Different business compliance costs, the red tape adds up as well.

There's the iPod index floating around somwhere, similar to the Big Mac index...yeah yeah, same point, different commodity.

And yes, simplistic as all hell yet cutely highlights the differences...

Petrol tax, just to throw another one in for a Friday evening..hmm ok in the sterling...

6p a litre in the US, somewhere around 50-60p a litre in the UK yeah? Ours sure only about 20p, and then we pay the GST...

Essentially though, I've just realised I've been sucked into this silly carryon and it' a Friday and I haven't had a beer...

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Paris Hilton

Cost differential

Plus, also what people tend to forget is the cost of transporting said product the thousands of miles to your door from where it was assembled.

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Tax on prices

Nathan, I never realised that before. Bit of a smack the forhead, duh moment for me just there!

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Paris Hilton

US versus UK pricing

Without any sales tax, the entry-level MB equates £594.89 in the UK and £527.11 ($1099) in the US... I hardly call the UK mark-up outrageous, particularly as the current exchange rate sterling against the dollar is the highest it has been in decades.

BTW the guy who posted '@FAO frankgobbov' online sales are not exempt in ALL Amercian states - most yes, but not all.

Interesting that news of a refreshed model should inspire so many comments about the pricing and not the product itself - but hardly surprising.

Incidentally, I wonder how many people complaining about the UK pricing would actually ever buy an Apple product...

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Alert

Chip/Shoulder Interface

"The best bit is that i don't look like a complete smug tosser like most apple users. And lets face it, apple users have always looked smug. Little did they realise that their apparently great machines would only survive by aligning itself more with the standard PC platform, allowing people to install Windows (how much hype was there about boot camp) and being financed by an MP3 player (i know aac etc but it still surprises me how many apple users don't know the difference between their mp3s and their aacs on their ipods. And yes, they use a core apple product, therefore they are apple users).

Rant over."

The rant may be over, but the colossal inferiority complex evidently remains...

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Paris Hilton

colossal inferiority complex

Alternaltive is not inferior. Just not as anal as a mac user.

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@ Nick Haw

"Plus, also what people tend to forget is the cost of transporting said product the thousands of miles to your door from where it was assembled."

You mean from China. Why would that make the product more expensive outside the USA?

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Not just sales tax

Folks, most consumer goods in the US have a 90 day warranty. In the UK it is a minimum of 1 year, on top of which you have all the obligations under the Sale of Goods Act which can extend for up to six years from the date of purchase.

Those are sizeable costs which companies have to recoup when trading in the UK.

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Pirate

And the HDs in these 'new' Macs...

<cough>

...Seagate by any chance?

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Anonymous Coward

Title

Am I missing something, or is Apple taking the Mick on pricing?

http://www.dabs.com/ProductView.aspx?Quicklinx=4LFL&CategorySelectedId=11012&fb=336&NavigationKey=11012&InMerch=1

http://www.dabs.com/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=4PNR&CategorySelectedId=11105&NavigationKey=11105,49670000,49290000,46400000,7

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Anonymous Coward

@Nick Haw

You do realise these things are made in China right? Cost of shipping to US or Europe from China is about the same, so that doesn't explain the price differential.

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@ @ math Campbell

Your most expensive Boeing jet is more than your most expensive Cessna. Do you have a point somewhere you'd like to make?

You cant just compare "The top of their line", you have to compare specs and build quality.

Dell = Lowest Common Denominator, cut all costs at all costs.

Apple = Spending a little more can be worth it.

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apple vs dell

oh please

i'd go with Dell every time, Apple is simply not up to scratch with MS, not even close.

as for "Plus, there is such a thing as import duty in most countries, remember?"

import duty...yes because macs are built in the US aren't they.....or did i mis-read the designed in America built in China stickers

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GT
Unhappy

Everyone does it

Look at almost any vendor's US price vs UK price and the US one will be significantly lower. It is actually more expensive doing business here; higher salaries, much higher rentals, higher govt imposed costs. This is a UK problem (and a European one to some extent) not an Apple, Dell, <name your favourite brand> one.

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4GB of ram?

How many people need 4GB of ram at all? How many of them need it in a laptop?

If your application needs 4GB of ram, then it would probably benefit greatly from desktop-speed harddisks, cpu, and/or video card.

Oh well, at least OS X (unlike 32bit XP) can address 4GB of ram properly (PAE doesn't count.)

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re: Pricing

The top iMac is $2299 US at the US Apple Store. It is $2449 CDN, or $2620 US at the Canadian store. A difference of $321 US. 14% more to import? I don't think so. It cost no more to import from China to the US than to Canada. Even if they shipped from their US warehouse, which they sometimes do, it is only a brokerage fee of about $20. That doesn't explain the other $300 profit.

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Re: Everyone does it

Indeed. Apple just happens to have a more centralised and static pricing than most other companies, so it's more visible in their case. I'll gladly accept proof that Dell/any other major brand has the same price in US and Europe, with taxes and exchange rates taken into account, but I doubt anyone will be able to provide it...

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Anonymous Coward

@ Anonymous Coward

"

Posted Friday 2nd November 2007 14:07 GMT

Am I missing something, or is Apple taking the Mick on pricing?

http://tinyurl.com/yqz5tq

http://tinyurl.com/22rz4k

"

Yes you are missing something, because you're not comparing like-with-like! That Macbook comes with a 2.0 GHz Core TWO Duo processor and the HP a 1.66 GHz Core ONE Duo. Spot the difference? To make it simpler for you, the HP is supplied with the previous generation Core Duo CPU. Now you can argue whether there would be a noticeable real world difference in performance between the two systems, but it's a fact that you pay more for the latest kit, whatever the manufacturer. An HP of equivalent spec to the Macbook would be considerably closer in price than that entry level machine shown in your link.

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Jobs Horns

re: re: dell

talk about cheap dell plastic crap? how about having a macbook just over a year old with the casing cracking and the backlight blinking off, if that not cheap produced crap then i dont know what is !!!

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