Not rich enough to be a Mac person

Microsoft — ruffled by constant ridicule by Apple — launched its latest counter-punch last night with an explicit jab at its cool but expensive archrival in a prime-time ad featuring one thrifty young woman’s quest to find a 17-inch laptop for under four figures.

“Lauren”, a feisty, red-haired computer-shopper, is given $1,000 to score a laptop with a 17-inch screen, and told she can keep the change.

First stop: the Apple store. Cue disappointment. The cheapest Macbook laptop, with a 13-inch screen, is $999. Lauren consoles herself that she is “not cool enough to be a Mac person” anyway.

Next stop, Best Buy, where a plethora of Windows-powered machines are excitedly examined. She walks out with a suitable model for $699.99. “I’m a PC and I got just what I wanted,” she exclaims delightedly to the camera.

Microsoft’s reasoning is sound. They can’t acquire Apple’s fashion appeal, and pushing value over coolness will strike a chord in the recession.

from Fan Fare:

Hollywood ponders Jobs-lessness

(Writing and Reporting by Sue Zeidler)jobs

Apple Inc's Steve Jobs has commanded a leading role in Hollywood for years with his clout and influence in the digital entertainment arena, including Apple's position as a leading provider of downloads for music and video at its iTunes Web site. 

Jobs also sits on the board and is the largest individual shareholder of the Walt Disney Co., having sold his Pixar Animation Studios for stock in the venerable film and TV studio. Now, his exit from the limelight at Apple has left Hollywood abuzz.

The 53-year-old tech icon and pancreatic cancer survivor recently said he was stepping aside temporarily at Apple due to health problems "more complex" than previously thought, leaving studio execs to wonder if negotiating with Apple, famous for its tight control on pricing, could become easier. Or, has Hollywood lost a powerful visionary and advocate for change at a time when it needs to move fast in the shifting digital landscape?