A Look at the Most Affordable Computing Devices

Published On September 17, 2014 | Electronics

Laptops and tablets have now been on the market long enough for high-quality to meet low-cost. Whether you need a back-to-school device or are getting a jump-start on holiday shopping, take a look at these affordable laptops and tablets that offer quality and functionality without breaking the bank.

Acer C720 Chromebook (C720-2800)

At a whopping low price of $199, the Acer C720 Chromebook is the least expensive laptop to make this list. It sits neatly between a mobile tablet and a full-fledged PC, offering web-browsing, HDMI and USB ports, a 6.5-hour battery life, and keyboard, as well as a lightweight, ultraportable design. Offline use and memory space are both limited, but Google includes 100GB in cloud storage as an alternative, in addition to a number of other perks.

Dell Inspiron 15

Everything you could need in a laptop for general or light office work, the Dell Inspiron 15 comes equipped with Microsoft Office for complete word processing, four USB ports, an HDMI output, LAN port and headphone jack. The major drawback is a low-resolution screen that can’t handle HD content. Nevertheless, its slim design is only about 1-inch thick, and this power-packed laptop still manages to have 500GB of storage in a 5400 RPM hard drive. All of this for $379 can’t be beat.

Lenovo G580

Offering up form and function at only $479, the Lenovo G580 will make you re-think what budget really means. It comes equipped with the latest Microsoft Windows operating system and plenty of storage in a sleek design. A comfortable keypad and a responsive touchscreen take you from typing to swiping with ease.

Google Nexus 7

It’s sleek, it’s fast, and it’s inexpensive. Starting at $183.99, the Google Nexus 7 is one of the best, affordable tablets on the market. The sharp, HD-screen and lightning-fast speed make it a joy to use, and with 16 GB of storage, there’s plenty of room for apps and content. The screen is smaller than some other models and it lacks microSD support, but all-in-all it’s quite a bang for your buck. For just a bit more, you can upgrade to models with more storage and/or 4G capabilities.

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7

Amazon has a solid grip on the budget tablet market with their $229 price tag on an impressive device. The app selection is limited, its remote video viewing feature is still in the works, and ad-removal costs extra, but thanks to Amazon’s extensive content library, there’s plenty to keep you entertained. One cool feature is the Kindle Fire’s Mayday button, which links you to a live customer rep instantly, for free. Amazon Prime members will get the most out this device.

Asus Memo Pad FHD 10

This large tablet doesn’t skimp on extras despite its reasonable $329 price tag. The combination of a unique floating desk feature and large screen are perfect for multitasking. And while some apps are slow to load, the Asus Memo Pad’s rounded edges, grippy texture, and generous bezels make for a comfortable and enjoyable tablet experience. And Asus Memo Pad’s Audio Wizard feature enhances audio quality, which makes watching a movie on its clear and sharp, big screen an even better experience.

EVGA Tegra Note 7

At nearly half the price of its stylus counterparts, the EVGA Tegra Note 7 is a great alternative at $199. If you enjoy the pen-in-hand experience of a stylus interface, you’ll love the EVGA Tegra Note 7’s comfortable stylus that stores neatly onto the frame. The camera and screen leave something to be desired, but microSD support, gaming performance, and smooth stylus make up for it.

With a plethora of options and an array of styles and functionalities, the budget laptop and tablet market has never looked better.

– By Tim Alan

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