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Best Buy Launches Laptop Line for Students

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 40 comments

Best Buy narrows down the choice for students down to four laptops.

The back to school 'buying season' is one of the hottest for computer sales – laptops especially – and Best Buy hopes to be one of the premier choices for shoppers.

Best Buy today announced a new line of exclusive, customized laptops manufactured by Toshiba, Dell, HP and Sony that cater specifically to students.

The electronics retailer said that its computing team worked with students to identify most desirable features in a laptop, with these six characteristics emerging as the most important: extended battery life; low weight and portable design for easy transport; personalized design, yet professional; full virus protection; preloaded with necessary software (specifically a full version of Office Home and Student); and an affordable price point.

“Best Buy is in a unique position to listen, learn and apply what we hear from people as they interact with technology,” said Kelley Noreen, senior merchant computing. “With college students, we learned that while they notice a laptop’s appearance first, the design, portability and functionality are just as important. These students definitely taught us a few things and reinforced we are focusing on the things that matter the most to them.”

The four models feature battery life ranging three to six hours, weights no more than six pounds, a 14-15.5” screen size. While the hardware specs are all fairly standard for consumer laptops, the preloaded software is what will be of value to students. Each laptop comes preloaded with a full version of Microsoft Office Home & Student and 12-15 months of anti-virus protection

The laptops are priced from $649.99 to $799.99. Find out more on Best Buy's comparison page.

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  • 19 Hide
    cekasone , July 23, 2009 4:37 PM
    a $250 netbook from newegg is more than enough for school work.
  • 10 Hide
    mrkenan , July 23, 2009 4:41 PM
    Quote:
    While the hardware specs are all fairly standard for consumer laptops, the preloaded software is what will be of value to students. Each laptop comes preloaded with a full version of Microsoft Office Home & Student and 12-15 months of anti-virus protection


    WOW!!! I cannot get over how valuable that would be as a student! Not really though. I can get Office Enterprise from my school for $20 and AVG for free...which would be times better than the Norton or McAfee that is preloaded on those.
  • 10 Hide
    Aoster87 , July 23, 2009 5:11 PM
    I am a student and I have been looking at laptops and I won't buy a single one of those piles.

    MSI laptops are superior in terms of price / performance / cost.

    Look at newegg and you can find a Centrino 2 / ATI 4350 laptop for $650.
Other Comments
  • 8 Hide
    griffed88 , July 23, 2009 4:35 PM
    eww...dell
  • 19 Hide
    cekasone , July 23, 2009 4:37 PM
    a $250 netbook from newegg is more than enough for school work.
  • 10 Hide
    mrkenan , July 23, 2009 4:41 PM
    Quote:
    While the hardware specs are all fairly standard for consumer laptops, the preloaded software is what will be of value to students. Each laptop comes preloaded with a full version of Microsoft Office Home & Student and 12-15 months of anti-virus protection


    WOW!!! I cannot get over how valuable that would be as a student! Not really though. I can get Office Enterprise from my school for $20 and AVG for free...which would be times better than the Norton or McAfee that is preloaded on those.
  • 9 Hide
    griffed88 , July 23, 2009 4:43 PM
    Yes, McCrapfee and Norton are almost like virus's themselves. lol
  • 1 Hide
    Hanin33 , July 23, 2009 4:46 PM
    wot everyone above said plus... um... how are they personally customizable or rather, how are they more so than a standard laptop?
  • 9 Hide
    scook9 , July 23, 2009 4:56 PM
    i guess students don't like playing games on their laptops...ya right
  • 10 Hide
    Aoster87 , July 23, 2009 5:11 PM
    I am a student and I have been looking at laptops and I won't buy a single one of those piles.

    MSI laptops are superior in terms of price / performance / cost.

    Look at newegg and you can find a Centrino 2 / ATI 4350 laptop for $650.
  • 2 Hide
    captaincharisma , July 23, 2009 5:14 PM
    scook9i guess students don't like playing games on their laptops...ya right


    umm..........yea anyone who is into PC gaming knows laptops suck for gaming


  • 4 Hide
    lifelesspoet , July 23, 2009 5:23 PM
    Laptops aren't meant for high end gaming, they are meant to play solitaire on the couch, at least that is what most people need a laptop for in my expirence.
  • 5 Hide
    megamanx00 , July 23, 2009 5:35 PM
    Yeah, you're just going to buy that laptop ........ but what about Viruses!? Get our Norton Security Pack or we'll cry!Oh, oh, you have to get our data back up plan, and useless doesn't cover anything warranty, and laptopbag usbsticks burnablecdsmousemousepadandevenmorelaptopcrap!!!!!! *breath* that will be a whole lot of money sir. Thanks for shopping at best buy.
  • 1 Hide
    g0rilla , July 23, 2009 5:45 PM
    they could knock a few hundred dollars off if it didnt come preloaded with office. every college student knows that the universities sell software for dirt cheap.
  • 4 Hide
    xbsoft , July 23, 2009 5:48 PM
    captaincharismaumm..........yea anyone who is into PC gaming knows laptops suck for gaming


    Not when you own a G50VT-X8TW with 9800m GS with the possibility of BIOS flashing it to 9800 GTS speeds. :)  3Dmark scores vary between 9K-10K.

    NOTE: Newegg don't sell them anymore. Lucky I got mine right on time. :p 
  • 1 Hide
    chaohsiangchen , July 23, 2009 6:20 PM
    xbsoftNot when you own a G50VT-X8TW with 9800m GS with the possibility of BIOS flashing it to 9800 GTS speeds. 3Dmark scores vary between 9K-10K.NOTE: Newegg don't sell them anymore. Lucky I got mine right on time.


    They have new Asus laptops with NVIDIA GT 240m. Those are from new TSMC 40nm process which runs faster and consume less power. They should perform between 9800m GS to 9600m GT.

    I remember Bestbuy is also selling an Asus laptop with GTX 260m.

    Though a cheap laptop for business plus a cheap desktop for gaming and multimedia is probably better solution.
  • 2 Hide
    cobra5000 , July 23, 2009 6:21 PM
    I do believe you can probably play WoW or most MMORPG's on these just fine, thank you.
  • 1 Hide
    awaken688 , July 23, 2009 6:45 PM
    Every university I know has free AV software that they provide to their students, so including it in the price doesn't make sense for a consumer(assuming they are targeting college students). Also, on campus, there were very good deals on major software like Office. I guess it comes down to if the student just wants something ready to go or not. Obviously, the TH readers wouldn't go for this, but I doubt they are targeting us.
  • 1 Hide
    xbsoft , July 23, 2009 6:45 PM
    chaohsiangchenThey have new Asus laptops with NVIDIA GT 240m. Those are from new TSMC 40nm process which runs faster and consume less power. They should perform between 9800m GS to 9600m GT. I remember Bestbuy is also selling an Asus laptop with GTX 260m.Though a cheap laptop for business plus a cheap desktop for gaming and multimedia is probably better solution.


    I won't agree that GT 240m runs faster then 9800m GS. First of all, 240m has less 48 SP and 128bit, but it certainly runs cooler in terms of temp goes. But yeah, it's between 9800m GS and 9600m GT.

    As for GTX 260m, it's quite faster then 9800m GS, but I read on forums that it runs very hot close to 100C.
  • 1 Hide
    blafrisch , July 23, 2009 6:53 PM
    The Dell says it has DDR3 RAM till you click through to the actual product page. Not that it really matter all that much, but it is false information.

    And what is up with the screen comparisons? Common users won't know what 720p means. They'll be like, "It's like a really nice TV screen," when in reality it's worse than all the other offerings on that page.
  • 1 Hide
    mdillenbeck , July 23, 2009 7:31 PM
    What kind of students were they talking to? Obviously not those taking art or science courses.

    How would this laptop help with taking Calculus notes? Chemistry Notes? Biology notes? Using as a sketchbook? Playing around with video editing?

    Let see... Open Office is free, so that would save student money. It can handle almost all the files students would get - and its formula entry for mathematical notation is pretty simple and uses standard key input (compared to Microsoft's Formula editor which is an ugly and slow beast). No ChemDraw (or their biology drawing software), and no mention of tablet pcs - so its useless there.

    Oh, wait, were in the USA - students want to avoid math and science.

    (Okay, so this was just a long-winded rant that boils down to: one size does not fit all!)
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 23, 2009 7:43 PM
    Students do not want Office, Windows and an anti-virus with their laptop.
    Students either get software for free with their school (MSDNAA), with p2p software, or will use free replacements (openoffice).
    These laptops are probably 200$ too expansive because of software.
  • 1 Hide
    belardo , July 23, 2009 7:56 PM
    For the parents and typical students needing to buy a notebook, it makes it much easier for them. Its not geared towards someone who is shopping for something specific or great.

    Typical idiot-proofing. Remember, most people are idiots, including todays kids.
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