Orbitz Shows Mac Users Pricier Hotel Options: Big Deal Or No Brainer?

There’s lots of chatter today about The Wall Street Journal‘s report that:

“Orbitz Worldwide Inc. has found that people who use Apple Inc.’s Mac computers spend as much as 30% more a night on hotels, so the online travel agency is starting to show them different, and sometimes costlier, travel options than Windows visitors see.”

On CNet, Larry Dignan writes that “Mac users will refrain from using Orbitz en masse now.”

The Atlantic Wire’s Hannah Miet says:

“It makes sense, from an advertising standpoint, to target the apparently wealthy, ad-receptive, self-assured, high-spending contingent that buys Apple products. But what about those of us who irresponsibly purchased our iPhones on credit, have only been ‘directors’ of our own unemployment, and are only looking for the cheapest roadside motel in Devils Lake, North Dakota?

“I guess we’ll have to log onto Orbitz from the computers of our low-spending, ad-averse friends. You know, the ones with inferiority complexes. Thanks, a lot, research.”

Now, there are a couple things to note from the Journal‘s report:

— “Orbitz executives confirmed that the company is experimenting with showing different hotel offers to Mac and PC visitors, but said the company isn’t showing the same room to different users at different prices. They also pointed out that users can opt to rank results by price.”

— “The average household income for adult owners of Mac computers is $98,560, compared with $74,452 for a PC owner,” according to Forrester Research.

And as Dignan says in CNet, “Apple customers are known to pay a premium for their Macs, strong design, and integrated software,” and apparently are willing to spend more on other things as well.

But, we wonder:

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