R.I.P White MacBook, We Bid Thee Farewell
It finally happened. Apple has killed off the white MacBook. The popular option amongst students, and secondary education institutions is no more.
The move does make sense, the white MB and the new Macbook Airs would have shared the same price point and resulted in competition for consumers' hearts. And as we all know Apple loves pushing new products on consumers, but it also means the Apple line of laptops share a unifying aluminum look.
However, the move does present a precarious predicament for secondary and higher education institutions. A number private schools and school districts have implemented or are the process of implementing 1:1 laptop programs for their students and many of these were built around the white MacBook. These institutions liked the cheap price point, larger hard disks, and optical drives. Its familiar to students and faculty alike, and at the right price.
Schools must now choose between a $949 (education discount) 11" MBA and a $1099 13" MacBook Pro. Obviously the schools may get some added discount if they purchase in volume, but when purchasing hundreds and possibly thousands of laptops, the extra $100 in cost per unit adds up very quickly, especially for cash strapped school districts. Also, the elimination of a lower priced MB with an optical drive hurts. The external SuperDrive costs $79.99 and is just another item that students could break or possibly lose.
It will be interesting to see what schools decide to do now. Will they move towards cheaper windows equivalents (many already do) or will they opt for one of their two new more expensive Apple solutions?