Buyers Guide to Laptops (2011): An Honest Summary

This morning, I logged onto our Penarth Computers Facebook and noticed a deal for 50% Off a Samsung RV5-10AF Laptop at “Stone” (a company I have never heard of). Original price £718.00 reduced to £359.00. Then I noticed something, Intel Dual Core T3500 Processor, a Celeron processor first introduced over 3 years ago.

Before I continue, let me summarize processors in today’s market (2011). The processor is the ‘brain’ of the computer, it’s the one component that cant be changed/ upgraded. Currently, there are two manufacturers of processors for laptops, Intel & AMD. Intel have the upper hand in the current market, their processors perform better, faster and for a longer period of time. Their latest technology is the quad core processor, the product range is titled the i3 i5 & i7 (sometimes called the iSeries). These processors are from todays marketplace and todays technology, meaning they are new to this year. The ‘Celeron’, ‘Pentium’  & ‘Intel Core 2 Duo’ processors are the old generation of processors, those that have been around for anything upto 3 years previously.

The easiest way to summarize processors is in 5 levels from low to high (1= Low & 5 = High)

Level 1: Celeron (From £230.00 – £399.00)
Level 2: Pentium (From 299.00 – £399.00)
Level 3: i3 (From £350.00 – £499.00)
Level 4: i5 (From £450.00 – £699.00)
Level 5: i7 (From £599.00 – £1299.00)

To explain the situation with the ‘Groupon’ deal through “Stone”  as simply as possible, this laptop is an old model and at it’s original price of £718.00, the company should be shut down for adding over 300% markup to a product. Reduced to £359.00 it’s not so bad, you can pickup a Celeron processor in PCWORLD stores for anything between £250.00 to £399.00. However, if you were not aware of the levels of processors and their prices, you could very easily pay the £359.00 for a laptop that has come to the end of it’s market lifetime, and when companies like “Stone” are misleading customers by adding 50% Off to a massively overpriced product to begin with, it’s no wonder why they sold all 357 of these laptops within 24 hours of advertising with Groupon.

It’s disgusting that a company can mislead customers like this with the use of such voucher schemes that are designed to save people money, not mislead them. My advice to anyone buying a laptop is, get yourself an Intel i3 processor at the very least! They are in the same price range as the Celeron and Pentiums that have been around for years already, so why waste your money buying an old model product when you can get a current, better performing and better value product for the same price.