For months, Apple was running "Get a Mac" television advertisements coloring PC computers as inferior products. The ads depicted Apple Mac as a young, hip character as contrasted to the PC computer, an outdated, geeky, unreliable character.
Finally, PC started fighting back. Microsoft started running "laptop hunter" ads that challenged a shopper to find an Mac laptop computer with features found on PC laptop computers with a budget of "under $1,000". After she shopped Mac and PC stores, she chose the PC laptop and paid cash for it with the money she won in the challenge. These ads apparently did not sit well with Apple.
Apple's lawyers reportedly contacted Microsoft demanding they stop running the laptop hunter ads. Since the original PC ads started running, Apple had reduced the laptop prices, so the under $1,000 price challege no longer held true. Microsoft partially heeded the call from Apple's attorneys. Instead of discontinuing the laptop hunter campaign ads, Microsoft started running updated hunter ads that challenge shoppers to find Mac laptops with similar features to PC laptops for "under $1,700".
Apple and PC computers have been market rivals since Apple Computer Inc. (now, Apple Inc.) was incorporated in 1977. The final chapter in this competition is yet to be written. One thing is for certain that this competition prevents either of these two market forces from having an unrivaled domination of the computer market. And true competition benefits consumers with the selection, quality and price of products available in the market.
Some of the information in this article was obtained from articles on Cnet News, PC World, The Christian Science Monitor, The National Business Review, and Wikipedia.
Robin Mashal is a partner at the law firm of Hong & Mashal, LLP, and can be reached at (310) 286-2000. His practice focuses on business law, real estate law and civil litigation. Hong & Mashal LLP is a California business law firm.