You Paid How Much for Your First Computer?!

I just read something that made me laugh out loud—mostly because it’s funny, but also because it is poignantly true. 

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I wonder what my kids are going to tell their kids … ‘It was so rough back in my day. I didn’t get a phone ’til 4th grade and sometimes the wifi didn’t always work upstairs!’”

You’re laughing too, aren’t you! Well, I want to add one more thing: “And back then a computer cost more than a thousand dollars!” I can visualize those kids of the future, slack jawed at the thought of having to pay that much money for a computer. Unthinkable. Right?

Over the years I have owned no fewer than seven computers—mostly because I just beat them to death, but also because I’ve convinced myself that as a writer, I need to be on the cutting edge of technology. 

My first computer was, not surprisingly, the biggest, the heaviest, the slowest and the most expensive of all seven. With each upgrade, I welcomed a lighter, sleeker, faster and better computer. But here’s the surprising thing: Each new computer would cost less than the one it replaced. Technology is wonderful that way.

Speaking of wonderful, there really is no other way to describe what is happening in the world of Chromebook—a laptop computer that runs Chrome OS as its operating system and is designed to be used primarily while connected to the Internet. A number of companies such as Acer, HP, Samsung, Asus, Hisense and Toshiba are manufacturing Chromebooks because they have become so popular. In fact, Chromebooks have just recently (and for the first time in the U.S.) outsold Apple’s range of Macs. Now that’s amazing.

A Chromebook is a specific type of laptop computer that relies heavily on Google’s suite of applications. And it doesn’t have a ton of onboard storage, with most apps and documents living in the cloud rather than in the machine’s hard drive—which if you’ve ever had a hard drive crash, should come as really good news.

The most amazing thing about a Chromebook is the price. For example and as I write, an ASUS Chromebook Flip laptop with a 10-inch screen, 9 hours of battery life, 1.9 GHz Processor, 4 GB memory and a 16 GB SSD (solid state drive) is just $269 and that is not a typo. At that price, this ASUS Chromebook just might make a great gift for a special grad or dad.

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Is a Chromebook right for everyone and every situation? I am not planning to get rid of my MacBook Pro anytime soon, so the answer is no—but I do love my ASUS Chromebook. It’s compact, sleek, lightweight, has a full-size keyboard and  doubles as a tablet.

I carry it with me to keep up with email. It’s perfect for browsing the Internet, creating documents, taking notes and even playing a game or two. Or ten. Those are the things that a Chromebook really excels at. Add to that the cheap price and it’s no wonder Chromebook laptops have become so popular.

Still on the fence about a new Chromebook? Check out this great list of frequently asked pre-purchase questions from Google.

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Kathy

    My first computer setup was back in the early nineties when I graduate with my teaching credential. For $2,500 I got a dot matrix printer a Mac SE with a tiny 6-inch green screen and a keyboard. Very similar to one of the ones you see in some of the Seinfeld episodes before he got an Apple computer. If technology gets cheaper I can hardly wait till the price of cell phones catch up. They seem to be going up and up and up for the newest phones instead of down down down. My first couple of cell phones were free and they were the nice ones now for free you get squat.

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