It came to light recently that Orbitz.com has been directing Mac users of their site to more expensive hotels and services compared to those of PC’s. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Orbitz is doing this because Mac users were already buying more expensive hotels and so Orbitz is just doing this for them automatically. Other websites like Priceline and Expedia say they do not profile customers based on their operating system.
This begs the question whether or not your can get around something like this. I certainly hope other websites decided to pick up on this trend of profiling sales based on operating system, but it is not necessarily bad. Download websites do this to help you download apps to your operating system automatically rather than manually sorting apps by OS. Websites also do this to change the website if you are using a mobile browser on a smartphone or tablet.
However, you can change the user agent of almost every browser. This feature is usually for developers and is added to test website or web app functionality or just for people to get websites to work properly without switching browsers. Here is how to change user agents in Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera on the Mac.
Wall Street Journal story: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304458604577488822667325882.html