Apple doubled the price of RAM upgrades on the base MacBook Pro

It now costs $200 -- up from $100 -- to double the base amount of memory.

Dana Wollman / Engadget

Apple takes a lot of heat for its RAM pricing, and the company’s latest move may only escalate the criticism. The lowest tier of the new 13-inch MacBook Pro comes stock with 8GB of RAM but can be upgraded to 16GB. That option used to cost $100, making it a no-brainer for most. But as MacRumors spotted over the weekend, the price has doubled to $200. While Apple does adjust its RAM pricing from time to time, the refreshed 13-inch MacBook Pro came out less than a month ago, making this a surprising change.

It’s not clear why Apple increased the price of the upgrade. Supply chains across industries have been disrupted by the Coronavirus pandemic, but as MacRumors reports, the prices of RAM upgrades on other Mac models haven’t changed. That said, the MacBook Pro model in question uses LPDDR3E memory. (Higher-spec versions of the laptop use LPDDR4X memory.) This type of RAM is, in a word, old, and so it’s not outside the realm of possibility that Apple could be running into supply issues.

Whether it comes down to market disruption, scarcity or something else, the $100 increase will likely be frustrating to prospective customers. 8GB or RAM is sufficient for tasks like web browsing, email and using productivity apps, but if a customer is hoping to use their MacBook Pro for anything more resource-intensive, like graphic design or video editing, the upgrade to 16GB is arguably a necessity.