What is this "Apple premium"? I hope this is just the premium you spend for not building your own, because unless you compared an Apple branded machine to a DELL, HP, or any other manufacturers computers with similar parts you should before you make such a statement.
The "apple premium" I refer to is the perceived expensiveness of apple hardware. You see, average computer buyers don't really look at "similar parts" they just look at the price for a complete system (being computer + screen + Keyb. + mouse). Now i could have gotten a complete system from dell for 763 including a 19" monitor (average joe remark: "and it has a faster processor too!" -P4 2.8 GHz)
I know just as well as you that, no, for the exact specifications apple really is not that much more expensive. The problem is average computer buyers simply don't look at the exact specifications because they have no idea what the exact specifications mean! Instead they just argue: "hell, I can get a complete computer from dell for hundreds less."
Reply: "but the apple has much better specs"
"the dell is fast enough for me!"
reply: "but it has no spyware and viruses and works great"
"I'm still not gonna pay ... hundred more for it!"
end of discussion.