$200 Windows Laptops Sometimes Don't Suck

Forget about the generally dreadful Netbook devices of a few years ago; for a couple of Benjamins, you can get a cloud-based Chromebook, or one of the new Windows laptops. HowToGeek has the skinny.
Cheap Windows laptops are nothing new. They became a mass-market phenomenon with netbooks. Netbooks were once selling like hotcakes, but then sales slowed down to a halt. Those netbooks — with their low price and convenient portability — had too many drawbacks. They were too slow, too tiny, and too hard to type on. Tablets sealed the deal and offered a better “getting on the ‘net” for more people at a low price point than netbooks did.

When Windows 8 came out, Microsoft moved away from those netbooks and ended their cheap “Windows 7 Starter” licenses. The cheap Windows laptops dried up as Microsoft tried to push people toward more expensive machines with touchscreens. In their absence, Chromebooks sprang up and started grabbing more marketshare.

Microsoft is now serious about competing with those Chromebooks at the low end of the market. Manufacturers can make cheap Windows laptops like the HP Stream and pay Microsoft nothing — that’s $0 — for the Windows license. This is all thanks to “Windows 8.1 With Bing,” a version of Windows that’s indistinguishable to the average user. No, there are no limitations for you here, unlike those obnoxious old Windows 7 Starter systems.
Sorry, I just think this is funny...

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