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Acer: Intel must cut CPU prices to compete with MacBook Air

updated 11:10 pm EDT, Mon September 19, 2011

Acer, Compal ask Intel to cut costs to match Apple

Acer Taiwan's president Scott Lin and Compal's equivalent Ray Chen have both put out public complaints that Intel isn't cutting chip prices to let their ultrabooks compete with the MacBook Air. Lin insisted that Acer and other Windows PC builders couldn't get below $1,000 with their ultraportables without a subsidy while meeting the performance targets. His PC firm and others would have to either use slower processors or reduce their marketing, according to Digitimes' account of events.

In turn, Chen was more urgent and saw the lack of discounts as threatening the Intel-Windows monopoly. If Windows-based ultrabooks made by companies sourcing from Compal suffered from poor sales because of high prices relative to the MacBook Air, Apple would be the only one enjoying a "strong profit," he said. He was concerned the "Wintel alliance" would need to take some kind of action lest the whole group suffer at the same time.

Despite its $300 million ultrabook fund, Intel hasn't seriously entertained price drops, unofficial sources said. For notebook makers, it's believed to be a vicious cycle keeping them out, where ultrabook orders have dropped by as much as half because of low component shipments.

Apple is in a rare position for itself in the computer industry through the Air. Normally stereotyped as having more expensive systems for the features, the company has experience with premium parts like aluminum shells, lithium-polymer batteries, and solid-state drives that has helped it keep prices down and beat rivals trying to match its style. Windows builders like Acer are believed to be hunting for alternate materials and may have low production runs out of concerns that an ultrabook market might not exist beyond what Apple has created.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Elderloc

    Joined: Dec 1969



    This makes me laugh, after decades of hearing Apple's computers cost way too much, now competitors insist Intel cut prices. I've got a better idea, how about they innovate their way through it.

  1. ggirton

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Lemme get this straight

    "You have to let us buy the SAME PARTS as Apple, except ... we get to pay less, because .... because .... because .... otherwise we're totally FU'd???"

    Intel would be totally justified in kicking their butt down the field 15 or 20 yards.

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969


    How about giving Apple the same discount?

    Intel is going to take over the US if they start to subsidize. (wellfare business).

  1. philomath777

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Ha, ha, ha, ha,

    ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, hoooooooooo, suck it up, ha, ha, ha, ha. Apple tax? Ha, ha, ha, ha, it's now the WINDOZE TAX! Ha, ha, ha, ha, please help me off the floor!

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Why even make it if it is a 'fad'?

    Those 10D10TS (not talking about canon DSLRs) should stick to their story and not change the tune.

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Wait, make the Intel stckers 10x larger

    And ask Uncle Steve if 'WE RECOMMEND WINDOWS' in caps at startup would gain some browning points, or 50% off on Windows.

    What about Intel's tune as a startup sound?

  1. rumplestiltskin

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Yes; do it.

    So Intel lowers the CPU price and then Apple can lower the price of the Air. Seems fair enough. Oh...what was that? You mean Apple should pay -more- than Acer for the same CPU? Bwah-ha-ha-ha!

  1. MadGoat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    What's a 10D10TS

    What's a 10D10TS ? Are they in the same class as the 1D10T?

  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969


    monopoly? wintel alliance?

    those may be good quotes for future legal reference...

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Why don't they just get Windows

    users to pay more for the Windows notebooks. If anything, the Windows computer vendors should be asking for subsidies from Microsoft. Microsoft seems to be making plenty of money to spare and if it's so sure that Windows 8 will be so successful, they should take the risk of practically giving Windows licenses away so that Windows computer vendors can cut costs. Microsoft can make it up by selling more copies of Microsoft Office which makes plenty of money for Microsoft.

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