Apple Ups The Specs, Drops The Prices Of MacBooks In Australia

Apple has adjusted its Retina MacBook Pro and MacBook Airs in Australia to beef up the processing power while dropping the price, but is it in response to government pressure?

The two 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros would be adjusted to include a 128GB SSD on the lower end model and has been slated to cost $1649 from today, while the higher-end model get a new 2.6GHz processor and a 256GB SSD for $1849.

Meanwhile the adjusted entry-level 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro will boast a 2.4GHz processor, while the top of the range 15-incher will get a 2.7GHz quad core processor and 16GB of RAM which will cost $3199.

The super-skinny MacBook Air is also going to benefit from price cuts today, with a new 256GB SSD model set to cost $1549.

The changes come amidst a storm in a teacup for the gadget giant, as the Australian government attempts to corral tech multi-nationals into explaining why their products often cost more in Australia than they do in territories like the US.

Adobe this week dropped the price of its Creative Cloud suite in response to government pressure, but it's unclear whether this move by Apple is also in response to the IT pricing inquiry.

If Apple had simply dropped the price of its laptops, it would be feasible to think that it was in response to the Australia Tax inquiry, however the presence of new processor tech makes us think it might all just be coincidental timing.



    They dropped their prices in the US, the AU price drops just followed, I seriously doubt there was anything whatsoever to do with the Australia Tax inquiry.

    Just looking at the price comparisons though, they have very slightly adjusted the price differential on the 13" MacBook Pro prices (and maybe the others that had a price drop). But they usually re-align prices based on the exchange rate when they do price/product changes.

    Eg: US price vs AU Price:

    Old 13" retina low end: 1699/1899 = 1.117x more
    New 13" retina low end: 1499/1649 = 1.10x more

    Old 13" retina high end: 1499/1649 = 1.10x more
    New 13" retina high end: 1699/1849 = 1.088x more

    (note that's just a direct comparison of US vs AU prices, exchange rate could be taken into consideration too).

      Also that prices on the US Apple store don't include sales tax (set per state). Prices for Apple hardware, when you throw in wiggle-room for exchange rates to fluctuate and the applicable taxes, it's not too bad.

        In fact at 1.1 times the US price, it is EXACTLY the same, there benig 10% GST here. At just 1.088 itmes the price, the high end 13" Retina model is actually CHEAPER here than in the US, as well as being quite competitive against similarly specced PCs (for a change).

        Last edited 14/02/13 11:20 am

      So basically close enough to be almost inconsequential. Pretty clearly it's just scaled in like with the US price drops, with rounding to keep the prices with the $XX49 and $XX99 tags that they consistently use as opposed to some weird/non clean value.

    Because the surface pro is better, and $600 less.

    mac overprice their hardware ridiculously it has and always will be, why they will fall. Telling your self your innovative, doesn't make it true.

    Apple prices in Australia have been sitting close to US pricing for a while now. And as most have pointed out the displayed USD price dose not include tax.

      However there is a huge difference in pricing for digital sales via iTunes.

        Just as Blu-ray and CD products are decidedly cheaper in the United States. Distributors set their prices.

        The one place where Apple are the Distributors are for their App Store, where we are actually cheaper then the US

        Digital sales are more expensive here than the US. But Apple can't do anything about it as it's the studios that set and control the price. As for blu-rays, I buy all mine from Amazon UK.

          Of course Apple can do something about it if they want, they have their 30% mark-up to play with.

            I know they get 30% in apps but I haven't seen the same info on Movies/Music, I have read anecdotal information quoting 10-15%

              I'd love to know who gets the rest, then, because we only get 18c a song and our label gets less than that.

        The Music industry in Oz held out for a bigger slice of the pie, so go complain to them.

    still expensive compared to windows machines for what you get.
    my 15.4 asus with 16gb of ram, 256 ssd, blueray drive, 750 HDD cost 1300...

      But you get Windows.

        exactly I don't want Windows.... :D

        I got DELL for that one.... I want something different

        What's wrong with Windows? If they stayed with 7, there's absolutely nothing wrong with it. I hear a tonne of mac people dual booting with windows, I also hear a lot of Windows users using Hackintosh.

      You can't compare a retina to a non high-res screen as the price differential in this component alone is huge.

      But how much did it weigh and how long does the battery last?

      This a common problem I ran into with these fully loaded laptops, when you need a laptop for uni this these factors really do matter

        If all you need it for is uni, buy a netbook or a $400 Core i3 laptop.

          Or, you know, an ultrabook... Since portability and long battery life is their thing...

          Edit: and will still probably be cheaper than a Mac

          Last edited 15/02/13 4:04 pm

      As a primary user of Windows in need of a new laptop, I'm seriously considering purchasing the MacBook Pro 13" Retina purely because I love the hardware. I haven't found a Windows based laptop which looks as nice and has all the features. Mac OS X would be an interesting switch but I think I will dual boot Windows or run Parallels desktop because I still use some Windows only apps.

        I've considered this. But remember, you lose out badly on battery life and Graphics switching running Windows.

        Once you take into account that (and the fact that Macs have looked the same now for 5 years....yawn) an Asus UX51 looks AWFUL tempting....

          An option that I recommend is to create a bootcamp partition and then get Parallels to use that. That way you can access it via parallels if you want, but you also have the option to boot via Bootcamp. The later gives you some performance benefits, but you lose some of the OS X integration while doing so.

          It gives you the option depending on your needs at the time.

            @smigit Yes, I do this at work by default. You still lose out on battery life majorly and graphics switching when in boot camp. I'm not an OSX fan, so I'd be using Windows mostly. For me then it will not work well.

      What about anti virus costs? +$200-$300 every year. Comparable software loaded for free on a Mac? +$400-$600. More downtime due to debugging and defragging and the fact you have to use windows. I make it $2200. Thats not a sales pitch, its a warning notice.

        i havent run an antivirus for YEARS, and i even visit some dodgy sites.
        only since MSE came out, i have had something there, but before that, NOTHING.

        not sure about uni's but some places do offer free AV's for people with BYOD.
        also, dont think a mac is invincible...

        on battery life, my asus has around 4 hours of battery life while playing games...

        im sure if battery life is of an issue, you would could turn brightness down and have powersaving things on. i don't.

        at the end, your still getting a mac, with an outdated OS, no customizibility and lower specs for a comparable windows based machine.

        Working in retail I sell both Mac and Windows machines. 1: Anti virus is NOT $200-300 a year, that's just stupid, the high end versions cost <$100.

        If you want to be doing professional video/photo editing then you won't be using iMovie/iPhoto so it's the same cost of Mac for that. Office is ~$135 (though most retailers do it cheaper when bought with a machine, we do) while Pages, Keynote and Numbers are all $20.99 each so $62.97 which is cheaper but you do save more than $60-80 on buying the windows machine. $160-180 if you get the anti-virus.

        Just my 2 cents thrown in from the POV of a retail salesman. By all means keep buying Macs though, they help me reach my budget and have decent commission...

    Great timing, especially when you buy a Macbook Retina last weekend and you didnt get the price cut. Cheers Apple.

      You might be ok.

      From here

      Should Apple reduce its price on any Apple-branded product within 14 calendar days from the date you receive your product, feel free to visit an Apple Retail Store or contact the Apple call centre on 133-622 to request a refund or credit of the difference between the price you were charged and the current selling price. To receive the refund or credit you must contact Apple within 14 calendar days of the price change. Please note that this excludes limited-time price reductions, such as those that occur during special sales events.

      Last weekend? So, like, four or five days ago? Go back to politely ask to speak to the store manager. Explain your situation and odds are he/she will look after you. Managers always expect aggro so being nice goes a long way.

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