Since when shopping for a laptop became a simple affair ?
It never did.
Just think about it. A typical replacement time for a laptop is not more than 3 years, as you tend to notice a significant degradation in performance or develop a sense of jealousy over the other folks carrying more advanced laptops – “ultrabooks” for instance !
Or, your laptop may be weighing around 5.5 lbs and you see guys with laptops weighing less than 4 lbs – sleeker, thinner, easier on the shoulder, and what not…….and I can add, with better screens !
When such a time arrived for me, I started looking up as usual on the web for suitable options and checked with a couple of friends on their choices. I distilled the final choices to Lenovo, HP and Asus (yes, Asus makes probably the best laptops in the industry today).
So, why not decide on the configuration first ?
I did some technical study and decided that the configuration which would be most suitable as at this time – end of 2012 – is as follows:
i7 Third-Generation Intel Processor capable of turbo-boost up to 3.60 GHz
8 MB DDR3 RAM operating at 1600 MHz
750 GB HD spinning at 7200 RPM
nVIDIA Graphics Card with 1 GB Memory
1600 x 900 14″ HD+ Display
2 x USB 3.0 and 2 x USB 2.0 Ports
VGA and HDMI Ports
Having decided upon the above configuration, I went about shortlisting the model numbers of the laptops, and to my chagrin, discovered it is not that easy to get the above kind of laptops even in the U.S. market today. I searched Amazon, Lenovo, Asus, HP and BestBuy sites extensively. Once you apply even some of the above conditions, you will notice that the number of choices available to you drastically drops down to single digit options.
And, none of the available options would be less than USD 1,200 in price !
In India, such laptops are not available – I spoke to Lenovo and Asus Indian operations and they confirmed that they don’t have such laptops in India – they have to order from the U.S. ! And, their cost ? On an average, the difference between the U.S. configured laptop and the pricing in India for a similar laptop was in excess of USD 400 ! Even though, the customs duty is only 5%. Further, one has to wait for a long time to get the laptop.
So, I decided to wait for some more time, or buy when I travel. It is ridiculous, but it is a fact that one cannot get the above configuration easily in India, and not that easily in the U.S. as well. May be I got to do more research, but the fact remains that most laptops in Amazon have just 4 GB RAM even for Windows 8 configurations, and most of these have HDs with 5400 RPM which are noisy and slow.
I will report back when I have purchased my laptop with the attendant experience of buying the same. Hope that would be soon !
24th November 2012