29 June 2009

Dang! How low can they go?

This Sunday's paper included a Target insert offering the ASUS 10" EEE netbook for $249.99 including Windows XP.

Dang! My "travel laptop" is a 4-5 year old Dell with a battery that better approximates a capacitor.

Q: What do you call a laptop with a worn out battery?
A: A desktop with a lousy keyboard!

So do I spend the the better part of a C note for a new battery in a 9 lb laptop (that doubles as a DVD player), or $250 (3.5x) on a new sub 3lb unit (but no DVD capability)

It would be strictly a travel unit... The office here at the SandCastle is well flooded with CPU cycles (2.1 GHz triple core processors, x2 excluding said laptop) but a lightweight travel unit might be nice.

A couple weeks ago, Fry's Electronics had the same unit for ~$350. Now Target has the same system for nearly 30% less. How low can they go? (guessing)The Winder's-XP license is probably half of said C-note. How inexpensively can they assemble the electronics and still make a profit?

Given the current economy and infrequency of use, plus the DVD capability, I may opt for the battery. But I wonder how inexpensive can these laptops go? The Dayjob(tm) apparently requires about $15 worth of shipping containers to ship the smallest item. Run that through the profit equation and effectively nothing can sell for less than about $40. I wonder how that applies to ASUS? The shipping container is bound to be more complex, but the profit margins may be considerably thinner.

So how low can they go?

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