Why Does Apple Have So Many “Entry” Laptops?


I remember way back in the day (the early 2000s) when buying an Apple laptop was a much simpler exercise that it is today. Back then you either picked up a MacBook or a MacBook Pro and if you picked up the Pro it meant you actually had something to do other than write papers. This is back when Jobs famously cut down the line products. Fast forward to today and purchasing an Apple laptop seems more confusing than ever. Today I ran through the product lineup and looked at three models and included the new iPad. This is what I found:

MacBook Pro Pricing
Two models – $1,299 and $1,599

MacBook Air
Two models – $1,199 and $1,399

MacBook Pro 13” (without Touch Bar)
Two models – $1,299 and $1,499

iPad Pro
Starts at $949 and goes as high as $1,699 for the 11” and $1,899 for the 12.1”

Why are there so many models to choose from? Especially for the average consumer? The introduction of the new MacBook Air kills any reason to pick up the MacBook. From a price point, it’s cheaper and has the extra port for accessibility. But then you look at the MacBook Pro, and for just a hundred dollars more you can step it up to a 13” Pro without Touch Bar. Why are you forcing the average consumer to choose between three SKUs for simple activities? Laptops have reached a point in design where they are all slim in design and lightweight.

At this point, you have to wonder why the MacBook exists in 2018. Why would you invest in the MacBook when you have the new Air sitting across the table at a ‘lower’ price. As it stands now, I don’t see how Apple can justify the existence of the MacBook, MacBook Air, and the 13” MacBook Pro(without Touch Bar). You could discuss power differences and what each laptop can handle, but then you just muddy the waters of why one of these things exists when they shouldn’t at all. I miss the old days when the MacBooks were products for the everyman, and the Pros were for those who really had something to do.

To make matters worse, you have to contend with various laptops and even the new iPad Pro. Again, Apple has priced its new tablet in a crowded product lineup, and with iOS becoming something that people can actually use for productivity, it only makes you wonder why you have so many choices. I’m not one to call for doom and gloom in the house of Apple, but as someone who uses their products, I am beginning to wonder why they have so many products competing for the same user.

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