Saturday, June 13, 2009

One forty-nine -- are you out of your mind?

Less than one hundred fifty bucks for a computer! If you have been holding off buying a rock-bottom mini-laptop to play around with, you no longer have an excuse. -- are they out of their minds? -- now have the Alpha 400 for $149.99.

I hope they stay at this price for good, because this is an important break in the price floor of computers.

As I have repeatedly said here, computers approaching $100 are a revolutionary development. Really low prices are revolutionary for the computer, semiconductor, software, and electronics-retailing industries -- for the whole IT field, actually.

Look at it this way: at $100 retail, how are you going to put Microsoft Windows on a computer?

So $150 is revolutionary if sticks with it.

Click here to check out the offer: CLICK HERE.


  1. The specs say 8mb max file size. I was going to order one until I saw that.

  2. I don't think that's true, though; they include (a beta of version 2 of) Firefox and I'm pretty sure some of its shared libraries alone are bigger than 8MB. I haven't heard of any version of Linux that couldn't handle file sizes less than the 2GB mark, hard drive capacity notwithstanding.

    I just got a Palm Pre and have been putting off investing in a netbook, but as long as I can wipe this thing and put a less security-hole-ridden version of Firefox, an SSH client and remote desktop software on it, the $149 price is a bit tempting. Not as tempting as when it was on sale for $129 last fall, though.

    It's weird how long the price of these things has stayed up with the 7" Eees and Aspire Ones getting below the $200 mark nowadays. They couldn't have cost more than $70 to make, and that was almost 2 years ago. I guess the quantities were small enough that the niche they fill in the market could maintain its price.

  3. For what it's worth, Newegg is selling the 9" Linux Asus Eee with 512MB of RAM and 4GB of flash for $169. As with, I don't know how long this price will last, but 20 bucks more for 4 times the RAM, 4 times the flash and the ability to install the Flash plugin would definitely make it worth the extra for me.

  4. These are all excellent ideas.

    I want to keep up with the very cheapest mini-laptops, no matter what they are called, even if called "toys". However, I understand that some readers will opt up.

    If you find something cheaper or interesting, please let me know, just as the above have.

    If we could just get a supercheap Android computer or one with an ARM or MIPS processor to be subsidized or otherwise made widely available, that might break the ice.

    I too have been surprised that these little laptops haven't fallen in price faster. Supercheap is the way to go to break the monopolies, whose business models depend on high prices for computers.