1) Air flow monitoring in a laptop is problematic. There's a lot of strange airflow paths and turbulences that normal airflow sensors will have problems interfacing with well. Also sensor in the flow stream will add flow resistance which will reduce total flow a bit reducing cooling. And on top of this the sensor will take up space which is at premium in a laptop. The best way in my opinion is just to use thermal diodes in the major components.
2) $20 for a flow sensor in a laptop is too much where pennies count and there are lower cost ways to get the same information.
3) At this point the best place for the air flow sensor is nowhere, it doesn't belong in a laptop.
Of course these are only my opinions but I do design and build all kinds of electronic equipment in my job. Since you just started your new job, you need to talk to the mechanical and electrical designs at laptop manufacturers to see if airflow sensors even make sense.