February 12, 2008
Don't worry too much if your company won't shell out $3098 to buy you a MacBook Air. It turns out you can get a useful, portable, powerful notebook computer for a lot less.A lot, lot less.
Bill O'Brien at InformationWeek has just checked out 25 Notebooks Under $600. At those prices you could pick up at least FIVE for the price of one MacBook Air -- though it might kind of awkward actually picking them all up at once. As it turns out, these aren't all underpowered curiosities not fit to do real work. (But O'Brien does include the OLPC XO-1 and Asus Eee PC 2G Surf -- which might not qualify as an everyday machine for most folks at small and midsize companies.) There are plenty of full-featured -- if relatively basic -- models from companies like Acer, Dell, HP, Gateway, Lenovo, Toshiba, and others. The most powerful boast 2GB of RAM, 160GB hard drives, and 15.4-inch high-resolution screens. They won't attact attention from the passenger in the next seat on the plane the way a MacBook Air will, but they will leave you with some $2500 in your pocket. And you could probably attract plenty of attention with that...
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