Here's the latest news about cheap laptops.

Cisco Cheng writes:

Heading out to your local computer store might not be such an expensive trip these days, with the way laptop prices are going. It used be that spending at least a thousand bucks for a good laptop was a given. Things are a little different as we approach 2008. For around $800, you get at least a dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and more than 100GB of storage space on a big-name brand. Graphics are advanced enough that even integrated ones can provide a smooth Windows Vista experience, not to mention a decent gaming experience with 2D games like World of Warcraft and Second Life. With advanced 3D games, you can easily configure a laptop with discrete graphics and still come in under $1,000.

And then you have the ASUS Eee PC 4G-a sleek, 2-pound ultraportable priced at only $400. Granted, it runs a Linux operating system and loads only 4GB of storage space, but this little laptop is more than enough to handle general-purpose tasks. Even Sony, which is known for its expensive laptops, is coming out with models that are cheaper yet just as attractive. For example, the Sony VAIO VGN-NR160 has a distinctive design with a textured surface that, along with a gorgeous 15.4-inch widescreen, undoubtedly adds to the unit's sex appeal. And by pricing it at $830, Sony is attempting to reel in the frugal shoppers for the holidays. The Dell Vostro 1500 and the HP Pavilion dv2500t are both highly configurable, with prices starting as low as $549 for the Dell and $799 for the HP. Finally, you can always count on Acer to stock retail stores with laptops that are well under $1,000. The Acer TravelMate 4720-6727 is a $900 laptop that you can find at your local Wal-Mart and Best Buy.

Steven J. Vaughan writes:

Opinion: As laptops get cheaper, Linux and Windows XP are both making better business sense than Vista.

The good news for everyone is that you can get a good, solid laptop for under a grand these days. The bad news for Vista users is that many of those laptops, even though they're sold with Vista, have nothing like enough resources to run Vista decently.

This year, from everything I've seen, has lived up to the Merrill Lynch prediction that 2007 would be the year that notebooks overtook desktops to become the bigger revenue generator for PC makers. For some companies, like Hewlett-Packard, laptops have become the single most important revenue source.

There are a couple of reasons for this and they're closely tied together. First, a PC vendor can make more profit on an under-$1,000 laptop than it would on a PC at the same price. At the same time, with Wi-Fi being available essentially everywhere and laptop prices falling below the magic $1,000 mark, more and more customers, both consumer and business, are turning to laptops.

Here's a report:

The Internet is an excellent place to start your comparison shopping for a quality inexpensive laptop. Most, if not all of the major laptop makers have online sites where you can find some great laptop discounts and laptop deals. Many online stores and affiliate sites will also give you some great laptop bargains, so shop around. Dell is well known for its online laptop coupons and discounts. Using Dell coupons will get you a cheaper laptop. Many other laptop makers like Toshiba and HP offer great online deals and discounts, so make sure you look around before you buy that cheap laptop. And don't forget eBay, but be careful of what you're buying and always thoroughly check out the seller as well as the product. Remember "It ain't cheap if it doesn't work!" Still, if you're on a limited budget it pays to do your homework and shop around. There are some great bargains to be had, but don't be fooled by all those low prices. Just make sure your cheap laptop has all the features you need or can comfortably accept without too much disappointment. Make sure your cheap laptop is in fine working order and has a nice warranty attached to it.

Here are recommendations about cheap laptops:

Your search should include the finest brands in the industry such as Dell laptops, Sony VAIO laptops, Gateway laptop computers, Systemax notebooks, eMachines notebook computers, HP laptops, Toshiba laptops, ThinkPad notebooks, Acer laptop computers and Fujitsu laptops. Each offers top-flight laptops in every category. If you want great performance and a complete feature set, look for a notebook PC with a fast processor, big hard drive and plenty of RAM, up to 1GB DDR. This will enable you to master multiple programs running simultaneously. If you want the laptop of luxury, try the beautiful Acer Ferrari laptop computer with its genuine Ferrari paint job. A casual traveler might look for an eMachines notebook computer or ThinkPad laptop that has superb multimedia features and outstanding optical drives. If you fly frequently and portability is your main concern, you might consider one of the slim, lightweight Gateway laptop PCs or Sony VAIO notebooks whose processors are optimized for mobility. Look for 802.11b-g wireless technology, so you can connect to wireless networks or the Internet from any hot spot. Or you can customize your notebook with one of Systemax' famous build-to-order deals.

Seth Porges writes:

The best cheap laptops for toting to campus. With one exception, weíve stuck to machines that start at under a grand. After all, college kids are poor and break and lose things. Of course, since virtually all laptops are customizable, all prices are approximate ó a few extra gigs of memory or a sweet new HD-DVD drive will boost any price.

The 13-inch MacBook is ridiculously easy to tote, pretty as hell, and shines with just about everything that matters to college kidsómovies, music, media editing. Of course, Macs were never known for their games, so get Parallels or Boot Camp if your fragging fingers are feeling frisky. And while it might cost a bit more than a comparably-powered Windows machine (and is the only machine we are featuring with a sticker that tops a grand), a Mac is a virtual vaccination that will keep you free of viruses, which spread through campus computers faster than mono at DTD. Starts at about $1099.

Dell Inspiron 1420: For the Color-Conscience I still donít get why people make such a big deal over what color a gadget comes in. But they do, and if you are one of those people, while i wonít pretend to understand what goes through your mind, I will recommend this computer. After all, one of its eight available colors is sure to make you happy. On a more technical note, this computer is a pretty damned good deal. Most configurations clock in under a grand, and it comes with a healthy 160GB hard drive, 2-to-4 gigs of RAM, an okay-sized 14.-inch monitor, and a I-guess-itís-now-standard Core 2 Duo processor. Also neat: For about 150 more clams, you can get it preloaded with 3G broadband from any of the non-T-Mobile carriers who offer such surfing services. And at 5.9 lbs, youíll feel it, but it wonít keep you from carrying your psych books either. About $850.

Here's a review: "Best budget laptop. In the under-$1,000 price range, reviewers agree that the 15.4-inch widescreen HP Pavilion dv6500t is a solid all-around computer for the price. For around a thousand dollars, you can configure this laptop with the latest technology in an uncompromised configuration that won't cripple your computer power down the road. At the base price, only gaming and video/photo editing performance are sacrificed. Reviewers cite audio and video playback, battery life and display quality as strengths of the 6-pound HP dv6500t. The Dell Inspiron 1520 is the closest competitor to the HP dv6500t. Sources that review both laptops give the edge to the HP notebook computer."

Here's a blog on cheap laptops: "If you want cheap laptops that are up-to-date your best choice is... to buy the cheapest laptop that is the lowest-end model in its brand... Buy laptop cheap and save money on high-speed internet. Don't believe in hype that you should look for laptop deals among the higher-end models. I hope our laptop reviews and comparison will help you to choose the best cheap laptops. New low-end laptops will save you hundreds of dollars and still provide all features most people really need for their basic computing needs. A discount laptop may be a better solution for someone who requires more computing power or desires higher-end model for less money. Save not just money but your frustration by buying low-end cheap laptops that can easily handle emailing and web browsing ... Or watch your brand new high-end laptop from Dell, IBM, Sony, Toshiba, HP or Gateway going on sale as an outdated model only three months after you bought it."

Report: "There are many reasons why people choose notebooks instead of desktop computers. Notebooks have the major advantage of portability. These days, people are working from everywhere - in offices, at homes, on the road and even while they are holidaying. That's why it is critical to have the freedom to move away from your desk and be able to work. Besides, notebooks work quieter and require less power than a desktop. They are also easier to use and, in contrast to desktops, can also be operated on batteries. One more reason laptops are gaining popularity is the continuous effort to enhance their features. They are becoming just as effective as desktops."

Ruddy Gunawan writes:

If you prefer to buy a used notebook rather than a new one, then you should read my guide first. I understand if you need a cheap laptop because we always prefer something which is effective, right? Only game freaks want to buy expensive laptops. If you need a laptop for your job, obviously what you need is a cheap one. Fortunately, you can find cheap laptop easily in used notebooks store. However, you must also remember that used laptops are not as good as new laptops. Sometimes you can see a damaged power cord inside the used laptop that you want to buy so you should see into the laptop first, whether it has a good power cord or not. After checking the power cord, you must test the keyboard, speakers, and mouse. If one of them is not working, you should find another used laptop. Another suggestion for you, don't trust the seller. If you ask him/her about the condition of the laptop, he/she will try to convince you that everything is fine. Force the seller to test the laptop in front of you so you will know whether the laptop is completely fine or not. Don't forget to check the monitor and the battery because these two parts are two of the most important components in a notebook. After you check everything, now you should look inside the hard disk. Find what softwares that the seller has already installed into his/her laptop.

From Boston.com:

The dream of a laptop computer cheap enough to distribute to millions of poor children is finally coming true - but not quite in the way its backers imagined. more stories like this The nonprofit One Laptop Per Child Foundation of Cambridge, founded by Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Nicholas Negroponte, is struggling to lower the actual cost and increase the sales of its highly-touted "$100 laptop." But two major electronics companies - Intel Corp. and Asus Computer International of Taiwan - have complicated the foundation's job by introducing rival laptops that seek to deliver cheap computing to low-income youngsters, and make money, too. Asus has begun to ring up sizable sales for its new mini-laptop, the Eee PC. The machine is being sold for $399 in the United States, but also will be sold for as little as $199 to school systems here and abroad. "Our idea is to provide computing access to children," said Donald Leung, Asus product manager, "and to sustain our own company's need, which is profit."

Here's a report on seeking cheap laptops:

When you think about buying a new laptop, WalMart may not be the first vendor that springs to mind - but perhaps it should be.

WalMart has great prices on laptops from vendors like Everex, Acer, Toshiba, Dell, Sony, and HP.

You may find the best deal by visiting your local WalMart instead of going online. WalMart's web site offers a basic Everex NC1501 laptop for $398. My local Wal-Mart is selling a much more well equipped Acer for the same price.

Acer is a better brand than Everex. Toshiba, Dell, Sony, and HP are all premium brands which you can buy for very good prices at your local WalMart store.

For $648, you can purchase a Toshiba Satellite with a 15.4″ WXGA widescreen display, a 1.8 GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core processor, 1 GB RAM, and an 80 GB hard drive. That's quite a reasonable machine!

In addition to comparing brands when buying a cheap laptop, you will also want to compare:

  • Display size
  • Display resolution
  • CPU
  • RAM (How much? How many available DIMM slots?)
  • Storage (How much? How fast?)
  • DVD drives (Read-Only or Read-Write?)
  • Wireless (Built-in or add-on?)

CNET reviews top laptops that sell for less than $1,000:

If you've got $4,000 to spend on a laptop, you can get a Dell XPS M1710 with the latest high-end graphics card, a high-definition disc drive, and flashing case lights. But what if (like most laptop buyers) you've only got $1,000 to spend? The good news is you've got choices. Manufacturers have heard the demands for a decent sub-$1,000 laptop, and they've responded in force. Gateway offers the $699 Gateway NX270S with a Celeron processor that provides decent performance for basic word processing and Web surfing. The Lenovo 3000 line dances around the $1,000 mark and includes the Core 2 Duo-based C200 and N100 models. HP brings its shiny, entertainment-oriented laptops to the masses with the base configurations of the Pavilion dv2000t and the dv6000t. And Toshiba's all business with the $999 Tecra A8. None of these laptops is going to be a number-crunching, game-winning powerhouse. But if you're looking to buy a laptop for a student or just want a second machine for surfing the Web from the couch, any one of these low-cost portables will meet your needs.