Microsoft Hits Apple Where it Hurts

Video: Laptop Hunters $1000 – Lauren Gets an HP Pavilion

Faster than you can say Red State vs. Blue State, Microsoft's latest ad has set off a class war between Windows and Mac fanboys. If you haven't seen the ad, basically, shopper Lauren tries to find a laptop under $1000 and ends up getting a Windows machine.

Artwork: Chip Taylor
I remember reading earlier this year a comment by Ed Oswald on Technologizer that said Microsoft fans were "much more metered in their support" compared to Apple fans. Oh, how times change! In the past, Windows boys have let Microsoft do all their public dissing for them, taking shots at the Apple Tax, shortcomings of the iPhone and even the Apple logo. But since Microsoft pulled out the long knives with its latest commercial spot, warriors of both stripes are reaching out from their basement caves for an epic Windows vs. Apple battle.

"Only the Apple people... can be called 'fanboys,'" a commenter named Lonewaffle said on PC World. "Whereas all 'PC' people are just reasonable and more intelligent." The conversation continued in much the same way, with most cracks going after Apple-when they weren't being directed at the author that is.

As the battle waged it seemed we were doomed to witness further carnage. But then a glimmer of hope named YukonJack stepped in to calm the warring tribes, "This is an age old battle between "styles" in the old days before computers: there was and [probably] still is a battle going on somewhere between a Harley-Davidson owner and an Indian owner." Ah, yes, tell us, Yukon Jack, how this is such a silly argument with a sentimental anecdote from the annals of Americana: "The difference between them was the Indian owner had actually gone to school. Does this sound familiar?" Turns out YukonJack is a Windows man.

PC World wasn't the only place that fights broke out. Over at Gizmodo the Apple fans were defending their honor against Microsoft's attack. Even poor, perky Lauren became a target in this bloody battle of words. "I don't care if that broke b*tch can't afford a Mac," said pettiblay. "I would love to see a study where you give a couple people 2500$ and see which laptop they buy."

On Crunch Gear, IHateMyIphone said, "most mac users only went with an apple because some over paid actor pop up on their tv with a cool shirt on and started bashing vista."

Of course it wasn't only the commenting crowd that was getting in on the action. Over at Microsoft Watch, Joe Wilcox said, "Oh, baby, this is exactly the kind of marketing Microsoft should be doing now. The emphasis is value, with Apple taking blows from Microsoft. Ouch." Apple Insider, on the other hand, went after Microsoft with the price vs. value argument. Can you guess what its conclusion was?

We can expect more of these ads, as advertising dollars are flowing right now to get Lauren and her fellow shoppers in front of the March Madness audience. So with no end in sight, and since no one else is willing to be the voice of reason, let me bring some sanity to this process. Buy whichever system you like. Just make sure it meets your needs and you're getting good value for your money.

Do you understand what I'm saying? That's right, you should switch to Linux.

Steve Ballmer: I am a PC

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