Microsoft's new "price" television commercial (Updated)

Microsoft's new "price" television commercial (Updated)

Summary: I finally watched the new MS commercial "Laptop Hunters - Lauren" TV commercial, the tagline: "On a strict $1000 budget, Lauren hunts around town for a big screen laptop."While mostly true (the only only 17-inch Apple notebooks cost $2,000-$2,800) the ads don't take into consideration the Windows notebook's Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).

SHARE:

I finally watched the new MS commercial "Laptop Hunters - Lauren" TV commercial, the tagline: "On a strict $1000 budget, Lauren hunts around town for a big screen laptop."

While mostly true (the only only 17-inch Apple notebooks cost $2,000-$2,800) the ads don't take into consideration the Windows notebook's Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). For example, I noticed that Lauren didn't purchasing any anti-virus/malware/adware software and their associated subscriptions when she checked out at Best Buy. Lauren also didn't buy any other software at checkout, so we're left to presume that she's going to live with the bogus trial/crap/bloat/shovel-ware that comes pre-loaded on most PC's these days.

I wonder if Apple will make a follow-up commercial set 30-days later after all Lauren's trialware has expired, her hard drive's full and the machine has slowed to a crawl because she's part of a million node botnet. She could come back into that same Best Buy and talk to a helpful Geek Squad member who informs her that all of her email, photos and contacts are gone because they have to re-format her hard drive -- for $125 thankyouverymuch.

But that's not my point.

There's an easier target that Microsoft could have more easily exploited (and I fully expect them to). In the next installment of "Laptop Hunters" they could trot out a poor student or laid-off parent who just needs a basic notebook computer and wants to spend less than $300. The happy subject of the ad, who I'll call "Jake," could emerge from the Dell store with a Mini 9 that he purchased for $249. The punchline will be that he went into the "Mac store" and all they could offer him for less than $300 was an iPod.

And they'd be right.

Update: AP reporter Jessica Mintz says Lauren is an actress. Tip: Daring Fireball

Topics: Microsoft, Banking, Hardware, Laptops, Mobility

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

76 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • plenty of decent free anti malware out there

    avg, avast, defender for spyware, for example. Lot of my friends use the free stuff and it works for them. What, freeware is great for open source but crap for Windows?

    Having said that I fully recognize freedom from malware is a nice Mac and Linux feature they get to have almost purely for being obscure. I haven't lost a windows install or data to malware since 2002 or so, since I learned how to avoid it. It depends a lot on your usage patterns. The vast number of average users will be fine with free anti-malware protection.

    The crapware of all kinds they put on Windows PCs is shameful - but it does lower the price. Its removal should be factored in. I think they charge about $50 for that, or you can do it yourself. It takes some effort but you can still leave Best Buy with the PC of your dreams for a whole, WHOLE lot less than a Mac. I think Dell and Lenovo and possibly Sony seem to be doing better with crapware anyway. The most recent machines I have worked on were running very fast from the factory.

    Of course you might want to factor in the cost of a rape and pilla . . er a Mac repair or upgrade in your TCO???
    eggmanbubbagee@...
    • "you can still leave Best Buy with the PC of your dreams"

      Only if the Best Buy you bought it from is on Elm St.
      kozmcrae
      • Freddy is at the Apple store

        waiting to steal your paycheck, wake up
        eggmanbubbagee@...
        • Freddy will rot...

          waiting for me there.
          kozmcrae
    • This is a reply to the story

      Jason, your tactic is old -- claiming tha PC is less secure than Mac. Heck, MAC WAS HACK IN JUST 10 SECONDS IN THE RECENT Pwn2Own contest!
      silent.griffin
  • What?

    So that's the best iTard comback you have. There is plenty of good free AV software out there which makes your botnet crack moot. So that leaves spending an extra $500 at least to avoid bloatware. Nice work! Is this supposed to make idiots who spent almost twice what they should have on a laptop feel better? iFail
    pdskep
    • What? cont'd

      Don't forget Open Office which is also free. Not to mention various free PDF readers/creators.

      As a matter of fact, it is difficult to think of anything commercial (in the way of software) that does not have good quality share/freeware alternatives.

      Of course, including that info in the orignal article would mean the author would have nothing to write about.

      ShoreLeave
  • that's a VERY good commercial, thanks for the link

    and I think you have to recognize that - if you are PC or Mac - about 10x more tasteful and accurate then the snide, smug, and misleading Mac adds. Those Mac adds might have pulled in some switchers but they have gradually, and subtly annoyed everybody else and left a bad taste in their mouth about Apple which is more and more looking like the bogus elitist and manipulative corporation they are. So I understand why the iFaithfull are out this morning with lame counter attacks. Lauren just isn't cool enough to be a Mac person, LOL. Is it still cool to pay almost 3 grand for a laptop? Is that what cool is? Sure, you can pay too much for a PC with dubious luxury features too (Adamo, etc) but you don't HAVE to.
    eggmanbubbagee@...
    • Agreed!

      [i]Those Mac adds might have pulled in some
      switchers but they have gradually, and subtly
      annoyed everybody else and left a bad taste in
      their mouth about Apple which is more and more
      looking like the bogus elitist and manipulative
      corporation they are.[/i]

      That sums it up very nicely! They were cute at
      first, then when the blatant lies came in I lost
      all hope in them.
      Loverock Davidson
    • Amen to that!

      I work with an MS hater (curious, since he uses a LOT of MS software and even likes a lot of it), who has often sent me links to the Mac/PC ads, which I found almost universally exactly as you described them - snide, smug, and misleading (though I'd add that they are also thoroughly filled with FUD). I have a friend who is only moderately computer literate, so he really doesn't have a horse in the race, and he also HATES the Mac/PC ads, for EXACTLY the same reasons - he also finds them elitist, smug, and condescending.
      I sent my co-worker the Lauren story with the video link, and he sniffed haughtily about how the whole OS war issue was so far beneath him. Of course, that wasn't the case when he was enjoying the Mac/PC ads that align more closely with his personal beliefs.
      Cognitively dissonant much?
      You are DEAD right, eggman, the Laptop Hunter ads are at least "...10x more tasteful and accurate than the snide, smug, and misleading Mac ads."
      radams36
  • Typical Mac thinking.

    What person who is savvy enough to shop around for a laptop doesn't know about FREE anti-virus programs as well as firewall programs and other intrusion protection programs all offered for free? After all, if you are shopping for hardware value, why would one turn Mac stupid when it comes to software bargains?

    You are obviously firmly ensconced over the pitcher of Mac kool aid where even iSneezing will cost you $$ for the iTissue.

    Not so for Windows users.
    Confused by religion
    • Free anti-malware

      Who are all these people who keep getting infected all the time? What ARE they clicking on??? I surf constantly and freely and have never been infected with anything other than a little spyware here and there, which I cleaned up quickly, and for FREE. Punchline: I RUN VISTA HOME PREMIUM WITH NO ANTI-MALWARE SOFTWARE. NONE. NAV is worse than most of the viruses it's sworn to protect against, and much harder to get rid of.
      compudog
  • Microsoft's new "price" television commercial (Updated)

    Excellent commercial and its spot on! Glad to see at
    least one Apple fanboy agrees with it. From you:
    [i]While mostly true [/i] Thank you! Now here is the
    part I don't get. You said that she has to purchase
    antivirus/antimalware applications. That is simply
    not true. If Windows is locked down that is not
    needed, but its still good to have as a safety
    precaution. And purchase a subscription? You really
    are out of touch with the Microsoft Windows world.
    There are free antivirus/antimalware solutions
    available. They are quite popular as well and she
    looks smart enough to know what they are and to
    install them. Say, what kind of antimalware software
    does Apple provide that is free of cost? Whats that,
    there are none so you wouldn't know if you have been
    infected then have to schedule an appointment at the
    Apple store, wait in line at the genius bar, and then
    get charged money for the same thing? Wow.
    Loverock Davidson
    • Jason is a very reasonable person

      Yes, he is a Mac guy, but gives credit where
      credit is due and he is not afraid of
      criticizing Apple when it deserves it.
      Thinking of it, he does that often (ask
      something like that to David Morgenstern or
      Worshiper Jim)
      markbn
      • how many mac guys are there in this planet?

        6% market share. you would't see one in a year. what i don't understand is why there are so many mac guys in the blog space?
        jk_10
        • Only 6%??

          Wow, I thought it would have been like many times that given the huge numbers of childish comments that windows fans direct at these blog writers every time the word Apple is mentioned.
          oncall
        • Is it up to 6? They are in 6th place, behind Toshiba.

          Ok, fine, 4, 5, 6 whatever? You still have a point. (worldwide of course, since money is money and people are people). Honestly if your read the tech press you would surely think Apple share must be what? 30, 40, 50%? But around five, FIVE??

          Most of this tech coverage stuff comes out of, you guessed it, silicon valley, home of the fruit.
          eggmanbubbagee@...
      • Apple would probably like to shoot Jason's kneecaps

        Yeah, we've all read his Mac - Dell mini experiment... that must be
        driving apple crazy. But he's just sending the message: apple have a
        big
        soul search to do, because their high margin business model can only
        go
        so far. Its exacerbated by the downturn, but its more fundamental
        than
        that... they urgently need some clever strategy to combine continued
        growth and keep their identity. They've negotiated it much better with
        the ipods than the computers. Some have suggested that a
        subscription
        internet laptop, subsidised from data charges like phone, might be an
        answer.

        The only good news for apple from that ad, which Microsoft seem to
        have quite explicitly accepted, is that she'd probably prefer a Mac if
        she
        could find one she could afford... Fill in the blank apple, and the world
        will be yours! Quick, before steve comes back.
        paul@...
    • Kind Of Like The Seinfeld/Mojave Commercials?

      Those fell flat like a fart in church.

      This one will too.

      Run along with your shill little boy.
      itanalyst2@...
      • no, not like that

        this one is obviously a winner - and you can't tell me with a straight face it isn't - I've been watching this stuff too long

        MS has stuck to it and now they are hitting on something
        eggmanbubbagee@...