I love these ads. Microsoft needs to do more of them and directly attack Apple's (lack of) features and overall prices more directly.
I'm a MacBook owner. I have a UniBody MacBook. It was a replacement for two plastic MacBooks that failed due to Apple's poor build quality.
I also find the arguments put forth by the Apple apologists to be hilarious.
One of the arguments that fails but is used the most is "total cost of ownership". A Mac user trying to use this argument is just downright stupid.
With a Mac Pro or MacBook Pro, you're spending more than double what you would on an equal PC. With the Mac Pro, you can build something with several times more GPU processing power and about 95% of the CPU power for around $800. With a MacBook Pro you can get a PC with the same processor, bigger HDD, blu-ray, a GPU that is at least twice as fast, and standard features like HDMI and card readers for half the cost. When you compare the iMac to PC desktops, there is no comparison. You can buy a better screen plus use actual DESKTOP components and get much more power for several hundred dollars less. I mean, look at the iMac. It's a laptop on a stand. You have to spend $1799 to get dedicated graphics. A $900 PC tower can have a Core i7 and at least a GeForce 9800 GT. Look at the MacBook. That system I compared to the MacBook Pro a few lines up is priced at $1299, same as the UniBody MacBook. Why even buy a MacBook? If you want a 13.3" screen, Dell's Studio XPS 13 offers dual GPUs running in hybrid SLI, an LED screen, 4GB of RAM, and a 7200RPM 320GB HDD for about the same price as the entry UniBody MacBook. It also has a 2.4GHz processor. Look at the Mac mini. $600 gets me 1GB of RAM and a notebook Core 2 Duo at 2GHz with a GeForce 9400M? $600 in the PC world will get me quad core, 4GB at least, and a good GPU.
There are other aspects to the "total cost of ownership" argument Apple fans like to make. One being anti-virus software. First of all, good AV software is free. Secondly, you have to be pretty stupid to get infected these days. IE and Firefox both guard against malware actively, and will give you multiple warnings and try to stop you from downloading malware at every step. Then Windows itself will attempt to stop you from installing and running it. So that part is bunk.
Then people like to go on to the software aspect. Apple apologists like to point out that Macs come with iLife. Well, I just recently reinstalled OS X to remove all of iLife except iPhoto. iLife is the ultimate in bloatware. By reinstalling OS X without iLife installed I have about 10GB more of free space, even though iLife only requires 6GB to be installed. The iLife suite is useless for most people, and iMovie is only good if you want to do Youtube or Mobile Me clips. It's no longer any good for producing actual movies that would be good enough to burn to DVD, which is still what most people want. Even iMovie's newest and most impressive feature, image stabilization, is a gimmick. All it does is zoom up on the picture. So you have to decide between having a full resolution shaky image or a lower quality still image.
Freeware is almost non-existant on a Mac as well. Aside from VLC, Perian, and Adium, what decent freeware is there? Nearly every piece of software wants you to pony up $5, $10, $15 to fully unlock it. On Windows theres a whole world of freeware thats nearly as or as good as the paid stuff. With Windows, you can get by entirely on freeware.
Another aspect to the "total cost of ownership" argument would be warranty and service. Apple is known for not covering basic build quality issues, just ask the first gen MacBook Air owners about their hinge problems. Apple offers NO damage coverage. With a prebuilt PC, the manufacturer will offer warranties that cost about the same as AppleCare that cover accidental and liquid damage. Apple doesn't do this. AppleCare isn't even available for phone support 24/7. And if you're like me, and they replaced your screen with a defective one, you have to drive 75 miles to your closest Apple Store to prove its defective and get a replacement!
Now that the "total cost of ownership" argument is completely and utterly dead, let's go back to the commercial.
In this commercial she gets an HP HDX system. That means for about half the cost of the MacBook Pro she got a slightly faster GPU, the possibility of blu-ray, a bigger HDD, card readers, HDMI, and all of that good stuff.
Sure, the screen resolution MIGHT be 1366x768. It could be 1920x1080 as well, we don't know what specific model she got. However, 1366x768 is a true 16x9 resolution. Which means even though it is slightly lower than the 1440x900 screen on the MacBook Pro, its not the out an out of proportion 16x10 screen. It's a proper 16x9 screen which is perfect for video. And since it will have standard features like HDMI, she can connect it to any modern display (HDTV, computer monitor) without having to use a mess of expensive adapters and cables.
Some people mention "Windows Movie Maker" as the software Vista comes with. That is true. However, unlike a Mac, you're not stuck with only the pack-in software to choose from. It's extremely likely she already has the software she wants. Or she can buy the software she wants and still come in at saving money compared to buying a MacBook Pro.
The best part of the commercial is the comment about the amount of RAM the MacBook Pro comes with. It's true. Apple's computers tend to come with 1/4 (Mac mini) to 1/2 as much memory as PCs do. Some argue that its because OS X is more efficient. That's just a load of BS that you can smell from a mile away. I've been using OS X for years now, as well as Windows for even longer. Windows runs much better on the same hardware, and Leopard is every bit as "bloated" as Vista is.
In the end, Microsoft needs to keep these ads up. It shows what a ripoff Macs are and how you can get much better for half the money by going with a PC.
And to anyone who says Microsoft is "scared", keep in mind that Apple's worldwide market share is only at about 3.5%, Microsoft's is at about 90%. You think about that