Laptop Computer So Inexpensive You’ll Think It’s a Misprint

Posted on by Mary Hunt in Best Inexpensive, Home & Family 35 Comments

 

You’ve heard it and you may even believe it—that you get what you pay for. While that may be true some of the time, it is definitely not something you should believe across the board.

chromebook

There are times that you really can get a lot more than you pay for. I’m talking about Samsung and Google’s laptop computer, Chromebook. The price on this baby has just dropped below $220. See? You think it’s a misprint, don’t you. It’s not. And yes, I said two hundred and twenty dollars.

I’m not much of a techy, so let me describe this laptop to you the way I understand. Think of an iPad with a built in keyboard and touchpad. Weighing in at just 2.4 lbs., it is .07 inches thin, fast and absolutely does not heat up. With a full 11.6-inch screen, this computer and display are flat-out beautiful. 

The Samsung Chromebook is a great option for students of all ages who need a laptop to take to class every day. It’s perfect for writing papers, taking notes, creating documents, browsing the Internet, listening to music, managing photos, reading email and even streaming Netflix.

Samsung Chromebook starts in seconds, has virus protection built-in, and runs Google apps, which are available in the Chrome web store. It comes loaded with leading Google products, like Search, Gmail, YouTube and Hangouts, so you can work, play, and do whatever you want, right out of the box. Want to help someone with little computer knowledge get online and computer literate? This would be a great laptop to start with because it is so simple to use.

With Samsung’s Chromebook, there’s no setup, and your files are automatically backed up in the cloud. With over 6.5 hours of battery life, this laptop can go anywhere with you. It comes with 100GB of free Google Drive storage (for 2 years), a built-in webcam, and dual band Wi-Fi to make it easy to connect to wireless networks.

I just can’t say enough nice things about this laptop computer. Who would have ever thought that a laptop computer like this Chromebook could be this inexpensive? What next? A new laptop computer packed in every box of cereal? I can’t wait to see that! But in the meantime, a great laptop for $219—that comes with 12 free Gogo in-air internet passes (did I mention that?)—simply can’t be beat.

I know you want one and I wouldn’t doubt at all that you, or someone you love, really does need a Samsung Chromebook. But please take the time to check the specs and  learn all about it by reading reviews and descriptions before you proceed to checkout.

Should you decide to go forward and purchase the Samsung Chromebook, prepare to be amazed!

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Posted on by Mary Hunt in Best Inexpensive, Home & Family 35 Comments
  • Mo_Hu

    How much did you get paid for this advertisement? (Just asking.)

    • Lorrie Ney

      DBL has already answered this question in the past by pointing out that they occasionally hawk a product they find truly useful for pay in order to keep this website up and running. They are a business, and have to make money as well as” help people.” They don’t exist on pure donations!

      • maxhalberg

        Hi Mo_Hu, as Lorrie mentioned we don’t get paid anything up front to promote a product. The Chromebook is something that we at EC feel meets the needs of many of our readers for a great price. As we mention on our Privacy and Terms page in the footer, and at the bottom of each email we send we do receive a small commission if a sale is made from the link we provide. You would be amazed at how expensive it is to keep a site like this up and running. It equals out to costing hundreds of dollars each post with the cost of hosting, sending emails to 40,000 people, the time it takes Mary to write these columns, and a staff team to edit and manage this blog. In order to keep Everyday Cheapskate FREE, we need to support these costs in some way. By finding products Mary and the rest of our staff believe are beneficial we can offset some of these costs without costing the reader anything unless they make the informed choice to buy a product. Below I have copy pasted the disclosure of material connection which you see on our terms page and the bottom of each email.

        Disclosure of Material Connection

        “Some of the links in posts on this site are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, Everyday Cheapskate may receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, EC only recommend products or services we have used personally and believe will add value to our readers. We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

  • Miriam

    Yes the price is amazingly low but keep in mind – it doesn’t run Windows and therefore you can’t use Microsoft software on it. There are probably some open source software available but you won’t have the range of software (or the sophistication) you get with Windows.

    • maxhalberg

      Hi Miriam, you are right. There are options for using Microsoft software (Office 365, which is web based), but the Chromebook is a no frills laptop. In the Chrome Store there are apps that meet the need for many of these uses. This is not intended to be a full fledged computer but instead is of great use to someone who surfs the web, emails, and does simple word processors. It is comparable in many ways to many tablet devices in a laptop form. As Mary mentioned: “Think of an iPad with a built in keyboard and touchpad.”. This is a great analogy which I feel describes the usage of the Chromebook perfectly.

      • Khaat

        Hi! I know I’m late to the commenting party here, but I felt I had to add .02 as I’m just reading :) I agree that these Chromebooks are great, and as they are chromebooks, if you need to use office products, you can use Google Docs to do documents, spreadsheets, and other such things. I purchased one for my 70 year old mother recently who did not think she could get away from a full laptop. Boy was she surprised!

        • maxhalberg

          Hi Khaat. Thanks for the note and glad your mother is loving her Chromebook. We will be updating this post with the newer models of Chromebook shortly once Mary gets some more time to play around on them!

  • Stephanie Swalwell

    No internet = No use at all, because there’s no storage on the actual computer. It’s more like a cell phone with a key pad – which is very useful, assuming you have service.

    • maxhalberg

      Hi Stephanie, as I responded to Diana below this is incorrect. I am copy pasting my response to her for you to read as well:

      The Chromebook comes standard with a 16gb hard drive, which can be extended with a USB drive. Many apps are workable offline including Google Docs. You can find more info about offline apps in this article: http://www.zdnet.com/yes-you-c

      There is also a slightly more expensive Chromebook with 3G for around $275 which includes 2 years of free 3G (100mb a month) if you really need to send an email without WiFi availability. However as time goes on Wifi Public Hotspots have become more and more common, in addition to technology with cell phones enabling tethering I myself almost never find myself without Wifi.

  • Linda

    I thought your articles were about spend less, save more and get out of debt. Not promotion of stupid gadgets which is how we got into this mess in the first place. I am disappointed that you have stooped so low.

    • Mary Hunt

      Linda … You are so right! That’s the point of everything I do and have done for the past 22 years. And guess what? It’s worked for thousands of people. We scrimp and save where it doesn’t matter so we have money to spend on things that do! And many people reading this today are so grateful to know how to get their college and high school students outfitted with a laptop they can pay with cash. Money in the bank changes, everything, Linda. Having no debt is a freeing thing. Knowing how to use a credit card to buy a computer online and maintain a $0 is a fine art, a learned skill and one I would love to teach you.

    • maggiemae

      I have followed Mary for years, and I don’t necessarily use every tip she mentions or recipe she posts, but I certainly appreciate her willingness to provide information that she thinks her readers can use. If it doesn’t suit you, then it don’t buy it. But, I for one, have been shopping for a new computer for months, and this is an item I had not yet considered. I will do some research to see if it is for me – not as an impulse purchase, but as something I have been budgeting for with cash. My current computer is a dinosaur, and while it works, is on its last legs. Keep up the good work, Mary. I completely disagree that you have “stooped so low”.

  • kaetra

    My husband and I work in IT. We would not readily recommend this device to any of our friends or family, despite the very low price. We would advise spending a bit more on a real computer.

    • maxhalberg

      Kaetra thanks for your comment. I work in IT as well and I would never let Mary recommend a technology product without my approval. The Chromebook is a great laptop that fits the needs of many people. If someone is simply going to be surfing the web, checking emails, logging on Facebook, or using a word processor there is no better laptop under $900. Many of the laptops in the $500-$1,000 range are actually more inefficient to accomplish these goals with the additional bloatware of a full OS installed. This is the best computer for your buck as long as the consumer does their research and realizes the extent of its capabilities.

      • commonsnspls

        I am wondering if this would be a good gift for my father who is 80 years old. He would mostly want to be able to send and receive email. What do you think, is the learning curve going to be too much?!

        • maxhalberg

          There are actually VERY simple. That’s why I am so fond of these little laptops for exactly that purpose. Of course he will need someone to teach him the basics, but they are very intuitive computers with not a lot of settings or junk on there.There are a couple of new Chromebooks that just came out which Mary will be writing about in about a week and a half – but this Samsung is still highly recommended by me.

  • pianogirl88

    A friend of mine bought this computer several months ago, and on her recommendation, I bought one as my birthday gift to me this year. I have a PC at home, but wanted a laptop that I could use when I am at the college where I teach….it’s a 2 hour drive from home, and there are times I must spend the night because of my schedule. This computer is not “perfect”, but it enables me to be in touch with students and friends. A week ago, I had to take my next door neighbor to the hospital for his surgery. I was in the waiting room for six hours, far longer than expected, but there was wi-fi and I was able to connect with the world and get work done. I’ve been very pleased with my purchase and feel it was very much worth the money.

  • Maur

    I’ve had my Samsung Chromebook for three months, and I love it. My ACER laptop with a 17 inch screen finally died. No way I could afford a new one. Saw the Chromebook at Best Buy, did a LOT of research, and decided to try it. There is a learning curve, but it is an excellent product. I don’t miss Windows in the least!

    I think it is the function of this website to let people know about new and different affordable products.

  • Diana Baylie

    Yes they are great little laptops – but be aware that you pretty much have to be connected to the Internet at all times while using it bc most of its services are cloud-based. Even just to type documents you have to be connected.

    • maxhalberg

      Hi Diana, this is incorrect. The Chromebook comes standard with a 16gb hard drive, which can be extended with a USB drive. Many apps are workable offline including Google Docs. You can find more info about offline apps in this article: http://www.zdnet.com/yes-you-can-use-the-new-chromebook-offline-7000006103/

      There is also a slightly more expensive Chromebook with 3G for around $275 which includes 2 years of free 3G (100mb a month) if you really need to send an email without WiFi availability. However as time goes on Wifi Public Hotspots have become more and more common, in addition to technology with cell phones enabling tethering I myself almost never find myself without Wifi.

      • Diana Baylie

        I bought one and loved it – but I live on acreage and use limited Gigs per months. Most of my work is writing and I dont need to be online using Gs for that. I got the impression that its usefulness is very limited when in offline mode. I will definetely check it out again and perhaps repurchase. Thankyou !

      • GaelicWench

        Slightly off topic….I LOVE the Cloud. It’s where I keep all my Kindle books after I’ve read them. The unread books I keep directly on my ereader. I also love Dropbox to sync up all my androids (cell, reader and laptop). This way, software I use are up to date so I don’t have to manually input the information.

        Technology has come a long way, and I’d like to believe that it’s moreso for the better rather than for incideous uses.

  • Quiltin Barb

    I have a Janome 10000 embroidery machine & want a laptop that I can use to buy & download embroidery patterns–would this laptop work for something like this? My machine is an older style & has a larger (older) memory card with it…

    • maxhalberg

      Quiltin, I’m not sure how the embroidery machine works so I can’t give you a definitive answer. The Chromebook has an SD Card Reader and USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports so you may want to check with Janome themselves to find out what type of memory card it uses.

  • wordsilk

    Love the idea of a Chromebook, but it really is not useful for students beyond the basics. You can’t install PhotoShop, for example, or a stats program, or many of the programs students will need to install and use (and buy when they can get them at a student rate). And if the cloud goes down and you have your paper stored there, you’re SOL. Google cloud DOES go down and I HAVE lost documents.

  • Jenny

    Remember that many times you must look beneath the surface. Google has NO privacy policy. None. If you don’t mind trading privacy for price; go for it.

  • Jenny

    I don’t understand why my comment keeps getting deleted? I guess it wasn’t good for advertising. I merely pointed out that as long as you’re willing to trade privacy for price; go for it. Otherwise, be aware that Google has NO privacy policy whatsoever.

    • maxhalberg

      Jenny, we don’t delete comments unless they are rude or insulting. There is a built in spam filter in our comment system and something you may have said previously may have been caught in it.

      You are though, completely off base. Google DOES have a privacy policy and is very transparent about it. They even offer an “Incognito” mode in Chrome which does not save any cookies, history, or tracking information if you are so concerned with that. But in all honesty, if you are so concerned with online privacy, you should probably stay off the Internet as a whole, Google is no better or worse than any other company or site online.

      • Mo Hu

        Not true. Yesterday a critical comment was deleted (it was neither rude nor insulting; just true) – and I was blocked out. Just so you all know….

      • Jenny

        @maxhalberg:disqus Thanks for your reply. As I’ve never commented on anything before, I’m not sure how the system could have caught something? In regards to Google, look up the information, including the penalties/fines they have had to pay for “gross invasion of privacy. No doubt this led to the implementation of their new “no privacy” policy. http://lnks.ly/noprivacy Your suggestion to stay off the Internet as a whole if one is so concerned with privacy, is a good one, but hardly realistic in today’s world. And, I strongly disagree with your statement that Google is no better or worse. They ARE worse, and the old “Mary” I knew, (started subscribing when Cheapskate Monthly was in it’s infancy), would have never endorsed a reply such as yours without investigating the issue thoroughly.

        • maxhalberg

          Jenny, with what has come out recently with the NSA and such, one can never really expect a shred of privacy on the world wide web… whether using Google, Yahoo, or anything else.

  • Vanessa

    Wow I really want to try this laptop out! You can afford to take a chance on $220:))

  • dshaw

    I bought the samsung version last fall for 249 and it’s worth it. It’s basically a tablet in a laptop body. No, it’s not good for microsoft, nor itunes, etc. But anything google oriented is fine. It will open microsoft office documents, but you can’t edit, etc., and it changes the format… I just do new docs in googledocs. It’s a very basic word application, but it works…
    I also use a wireless mouse because the touch pad is annoying!!!
    The screen is small, but it’s still bigger than a tablet and has a nice keyboard.
    It’s 100x better than the $800 dell I bought that only lasted a year before crashing!
    When I get a new “real” computer it will be an apple product because they are far superior to pcs, even though they’re made in China for next-to-nothing.

    • maxhalberg

      dshaw this is an excellent analysis for the great usage of a Chromebook. Great call on waiting to afford a MacBook. When I recommend laptops people I always recommend the Chromebook if there budget is under $950 (the price of the least expensive Apple).

  • GaelicWench

    What I look for when I am reviewing computers of all genres is the amount of RAM, which isn’t mentioned in Mary’s post. It’s probably under 4GB, but I could be wrong. THAT is what drives the cost of the computer….as well as the OS. The lower the RAM, the slower the activity it takes. Just something to think about….