I'm used to buying desktop replacement laptops so this request from a friend has me a little stumped.
She told me she was looking to buy two 'laptops' for her boys for Christmas. All they do is play Minecraft and log into Facebook so I asked why she was spending $2k on a pair of laptops. So she has challenged me to find an alternative for $500 each !
Their dad works offshore a lot so having a webcam to Skype with has become integral and as yet there is little need for a laptop to do their homework on. I asked her about future school work, what they may start to play in terms of games, but they are a couple of years away from serious homework, have a PS3 for games and just use her laptop for Minecraft and Facebook.
So what are the alternatives ? I have an Asus TF101 which I thought would work well, but I know nothing of Minecraft to know how well it would go. They like sitting on the couch to play and so a full sized laptop is too big. A couple of keyboard docks and away they go. Can they play Minecraft properly on a touch screen though ?
All I know of netbook's is whilst they are small and light they are often limited in the ram department. That's no problem for web use but if they think they are laptops they may expect them to perform like them later on and ask too much of them
Finally there are laptops. I have a couple of Dell D620's for my kids and they are fantastic. Probably overkill for what they do, but certainly future proof. However every laptop I find with a webcam adds $$$'s to those without....or am I looking in the wrong places ?
Second hand isn't a problem, neither is just walking into JBHifi or HN and buying a cheap laptop, but as I've never bought basic specs Id hope not to have to start now :)
Any thoughts ?