TheStreet.com blows it, says ‘Macs still cost more than most Windows-based PCs’

In an article today about how Apple’s Mac OS X “continues to win over a growing number of computer users and chip away at the dominant lead of Microsoft Windows,” TheStreet.com’s Staff Reporter, Daniel Del’Re, incorrectly states:

Macs still cost more than most Windows-based PCs, with the least expensive model retailing for $1,199.

MacDailyNews Take: Not only does Del’Re get the baseline price for a new Mac wrong (it’s really less than half what he states at $599 for the Mac mini), Del’Re also fails to take into account the concept of comparable specs and features along with Apple’s refusal to make low-end junk that will not satisfy customers.

Match any WIndows PC box assembler’s product to an Apple Mac as equally as you can and you’ll see that Macs are very competitive on price, often beating OS-limited offerings from Dell et al. – plus only OS-unlimited Macs can run Mac OS X and Mac-only apps such as those in the iLife suite along with Linux and Windows applications.

We can’t ship junk. There are thresholds we can’t cross because of who we are. The difference is, we don’t offer stripped-down, lousy products.Apple CEO Steve Jobs, August 7, 2007

You’re not missing anything else in the full article, Think Before You Click™, here, that we have not already reported in our two articles posted this morning:

Net Applications: Apple Mac market share up 40% in last year – October 01, 2007
Net Applications: Apple’s Safari Web browser market share up 44% in last year – October 01, 2007

MacDailyNews Note: Contact Daniel Del’Re via web form here.

49 Comments

  1. Cost of ownership comes to the mind:

    Yes, spend less on a plastic box designed by company A, with company B’s OS, and sold by company C for 599. No bluetooth, no Wi-Fi, no 1000/100/10 Ethernet, no high-quality digital connection (mini-DVI/DVI), no built-in camera (much less software integration). Ok, let’s ignore those factors.

    What about protection against viruses? Trojan horses? Worms? General internet security? So what? 50 dollars a year to keep the computer running. Not to mention that it takes up 10-25% of the CPU to continuously keep the PC from getting sick. Sounds like a bargain.

    Ease of use and interoperability between software? Besides the money spent, what about the frustration and time wasted? What about your mood? Can you put a price tag on any of that?

    Suddenly, something with all the features of a Mac, plus security and easy of use, becomes an easy choice… even on a Mac Mini.

  2. @Jerry T:

    Waiting almost 2 years for an upgrade to the Mac Pros?

    Considering the first Mac Pro was released less than 14 months ago, that’s pretty impressive.

    And for the record, since then they have gone from quad-core to octo-core. Pretty significant upgrade in my book…

  3. MikeK,

    I agree 100%. Lots of it is crap. But my point was that not only do Macs cost more than PCs, all the stuff, software, upgrade cards, accessories etc. also cost more on the Mac side. And I really meant 3rd party apps not Apple stuff. To me Apple software is second to none and I don’t mind paying a premium. I just don’t want to buy Tiger Woods 1997 at $49 when the 08 version is out on the PC at the same price…” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

    And this “compare similar specs and Macs are cheaper” is only true when Apple releases something new. After 6 months that isn’t true.

    When I got my MacPro there weren’t many quad PCs. You had to special configure them. Apple as usual was ahead of the curve. I got a great machine for the money. But now, almost 2 years later that MacPro with the same specs costs the same. But there are tons of PC quads out there with better specs and cost lots less. Too bad they come with windows.

    I didn’t feel cheated when I got mine. It was a great bargain for what I got at the time. But I need a second machine now and would hate to spend the same amount on such old specs. The video card is what causes me the most heart burn. I mean come on, the 7300GT is one of those bargain bin $50-$60 throw away cards on the PC now. And this is supposed to be a Pro system. The upgrade cards are equally old, underpowered and overpriced. The 1900XT (what I have) is two generations old now and a $100-$150 on the PC. It’s almost $500 on the Mac bought stand alone.

  4. @ Jimithy,

    By almost 2 years I emphasize the “almost”. I got mine as soon as they dropped and replacements are nowhere in sight.

    Rumors are they’ll be announced by Macworld. Who knows? I hope sooner as I need a second machine now. But announced in Jan. 08, maybe ready immediately maybe not is close enough to 2 years for me.

  5. I know nothing about Daniel Del’Re. Lord knows I’d be the last to intentionally smear him, I mean, his article, afterall, was published by the scrupulous street.com …a web site spawned by the clever, cymbal-crashing Jim Cramer ..and just Jim wouldn’t compromise his integrity in pursuit of his own self-interests when he has an intimate audience with whom he shares so much and inclines in this direction or the other. It must be an awesome feeling of power influencing the financial resources of that audience. You’d have to be very careful to deny the urge to manipulate those resources, say, for instance, to reward a friend for a special favor or something like that. I mean, I guess it is possible to resist a little corruption like that if you don’t need the money but it’s not always about money. There’s power. If you’ve never been intoxicated by power you don’t know what you’re missing ..but just Jim wouldn’t deliberatly manipulate his audience, I mean, if someones big thing was shorting stocks then Jims audience would really start to look like a big pile of money to that someone, I guess. I’m not suggesting Jim would engage in anything like that. I do remember when he said nyx was the buy of the century. That was a good one. But the street.com …now that’s another story. I don’t read it anymore because it’s become a real potpourri of opinion. It does make you wonder if the individual investors are seen by the seasoned traders as the real resource. Cattle for the cowboys. I mean if I had that kind of influential power I’d really be intoxicated ..and I would feel so good when I pushed you up and down and I pushed you in and out and taking your money both ways. I would grow horns and a stingray tail but I’d still smile and you’d still believe that I was trying hard to help you …but I was actually f*kng you hard during the trading session and after hours, too ..because I was drunk on power and on influence. I was corrupt and I was going to yank you around and around until you just gave me your money. I would be so bad ..but I still wouldn’t read the street.com. No, I don’t think I’d be that bad ..nor would I in reality manipulate my audience. I’d never do that.

  6. It’s a sure sign that Apple users are struggling to demonstrate that Macs are cheaper when they trot out the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) myth. TCO is a valid measure in a business, which has to pay for staff, rooms and electricity to run their computing infrastructure. But in a home situation? Come on. Do you pay a servant to maintain your computer? For most home computer users, the TCO *is* the purchase price. Building up imaginary shopping lists of software a PC owner might want to buy, such as virus checkers, doesn’t change this. All of this software is available for free anyway (such as ClamWin, etc).

  7. Reality Check,

    Yeah TOC in a home or small 2 man shop situation like I have is a joke. TOC “is” what I pay for the stuff. And hands down everything I buy for the Mac is more expensive than for the PC. Excluding CS3, which cost the same.

    I haven’t bought Virus scanners, spyware detectors or anything like that and the PC runs just fine. I also don’t need to pay for a 10 man IT staff like some on here try to make you think you’ll need to simply run a single PC at home…” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

    But as soon as new MacPros drop I’ll be getting one and then my partner that uses the PC will get my current MacPro. We aren’t 50/50 partners…LOL!

    Mind you our PC isn’t a slouch. It’s a 6850 Core 2 duo at 3.0 ghZ, 4 gigs of RAM, a new 8800GTS with 640 megs of video RAM and almost a terabyte of hard drive space. All for about half of what my MacPro cost.

    But it doesn’t run OSX and that makes the MacPro worth every penny more…at least that’s what I tell myself…LOL!

  8. TCO for home users. You guys must be kidding, “just the sticker price” ? You pretend to be tools or indeed that is what you believe?

    My neighbors spends hundred $ every year on a large spectrum of software to protect is PC with WIndows XP. Does not that add to the costs of his PC? I spend $0 for those. He sent his PC to repair at least 4 times since we both got ours: me a 17″ MacBook Pro, he some ugly 17″ laptop PC.

    We compared recently: on the sticker price he saved some $200. Now it has spend all in all some $400 more than me. He understands fully now that PCs cost more than Macs. Even for home users.

  9. >My neighbors spends hundred $ every year on a large spectrum of software to protect is PC with WIndows XP.

    I’m sorry. That’s just bullshit. Or your neighbour is extremely stupid. Windows comes with a good firewall and you can get the equivalent of Little Snitch (which you must pay for on a Mac) for free from companies like ZoneAlarm. Windows also now includes anti-malware for free, or you can get the 3rd party SpyBot for free. That just leaves the virus checker. You can get ClamAV for free, or get McAfee or similar for about $30.

    How’s your neighbour spending $100’s?!

  10. @ Sky Lark,

    As we were discussing the average home user or the one to two man shops explain how your link applies. As I stated in my post we have a single PC in my shop and yet we still get by without needing a 10 man IT dept. as people like you try to imply adds to our TCO…tool.

    @ deleted,

    I’d really like to know what your neighbor spends “HUNDREDS” on to keep just one PC going. Most anti-spyware is free and anti-virus subscriptions are in the $50 a year range. We use neither on our PC and it runs just fine. And as it is our Web dev. computer it is online constantly.

    Maybe he shouldn’t click every “you’ve just won 50 free iPhone’s” links he comes across…surely by now he realizes he didn’t win?

  11. just a question for those making comments about the lower end video chips in most macs: with the imac, mini and laptops, is it a heat issue perhaps? with the mac pro it’s inexcusable, but for everything else, would cramming an 8800 in the imac form factor maybe cause bigtime overheating?

    ah well. despite any of the things they do wrong, i still prefer apple products – and this comes from someone who had been building his own windows pcs since 1999. while i KNOW i could piece together a more powerful machine for less money, i can truly appreciate the tight integration of hardware and software apple provides.

    i mean, come ON, i got super excited about getting a free AIO powermac G3 yesterday! it’d be great if apple could make a machine like that again – all in one WITH expandability other than RAM and HD space! =)

  12. After four windows pc and changing to a mac the total investment is much cheaper for the mac, cards, software. After buying all the software and cards to do what the mac comes with can not be compared and now vista with all its problems.

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