Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system didn’t exactly kick off a complete revolution in computing. The are pockets of innovation though. For all the talk we hear about Start Screens and Windows Store apps, Windows 8 PCs are better overall than their older counterparts. New backup and restore options mean you’ll never really need to take your PC into a service to get back to factory settings. Windows 8 PCs start faster than their counterparts running Windows 7 too. More importantly, you can purchase a Windows 8 PC for what doesn’t amount to a lot of money.
It’s no surprise that a large amount of people are considering purchasing a Windows 8 PC right now. With easy to use features like Reset and Restore and low prices, it’s a great time to buy. Here are some tips for buying a new Windows 8 PC over the next few months.
Go Outlet Shopping
Every year there’s some new device to purchase, some new version that everybody is willing to dump their old machine for. This is a core dynamic that drives iPhone and smartphone upgrades. There’s less of an emphasis on it, but the same thing happens in the notebook, desktop and tablet space too. Just like smartphone shoppers, Windows 8 PC buyers who are savvy enough can use this to their advantage.
When many people rush to upgrade to the next must-have ultrabook they sometimes trade their old one in for credit. Often times, people send back their gently used device because of an issue. Rather than trash the entire notebook or desktop, companies simply fix what was wrong initially and move on. Companies then go back and resell the older unit for deep discounts after it’s been checked out.
The Dell Outlet has deep discounts on some of the company’s latest Windows 8 PCs, monitors and accessories. Special coupon codes help buyers save even more. Lenovo, the world’s largest Windows 8 PC maker also offers discounts to users through an outlet of its own. Called the Lenovo Outlet, there’s savings to be found for all sorts of machines – even servers. I couldn’t find one listed for HP.
Be smart, save where you can. Purchasing from an outlet store could mean you’re able to afford an overall better machine than you would otherwise.
Software Is Important
We are all guilty of focusing on hardware when we’re buying a PC. We want something that we’ll have no problem looking at for long periods of time. Often, we’re looking for something slim, something light. We always remember to check for the hardware extras, like touchscreens. What we forget is that software is very, very important. That’s always been true, and it’s especially true of Windows 8 PCs.
Microsoft has done a great job on improving the behind-the-scenes stuff in Windows 8. Again, it’s the fastest, lightest and best performing Windows yet. That only makes the gulf between Windows and the crap PC makers stuff their machines with more worrisome.
Lenovo has taken some flack for installing way too many extras on users PCs. Acer and HP are guilty of the same thing. You don’t want to get your new Windows 8 PC home and spend the next few hours uninstalling random bits of annoying software. You want to enjoy your device and talk about its new features to anyone who’ll listen.
Dell and HP do a decent job of informing users what’s installed on their PCs. So does Lenovo, this week’s Superfish scandal not included. Look at the breakdowns of what you’re buying to see what’s included on the machine. It could mean you have less to uninstall. Included software isn’t a bad thing sometimes too. Often, companies will include actually useful software that saves you from having to make a separate purchase. For example, many Windows 8 PCs now come with Microsoft’s Office 365 service.
If all else fails, look into whether the Microsoft Store carries the Windows 8 PC you want to buy. Anything sold from the Microsoft Store website or retail locations are scrubbed of unnecessary software. Microsoft calls these Signature Edition PCs.
Go With What You’re Comfortable With
Those at the cutting edge of what’s available always have a knack for declaring what kind of Windows 8 PC users should by. I’m guilty of telling people to only buy a 2-in-1 Windows 8 PC or not consider anything that doesn’t include touch. That’s wrong, and I apologize. Don’t listen to guys like me when we say things like that. Do go into a store and try out the new Windows 8 PCs for yourself.
If there’s huge leap you can point to with Windows 8, it’s that it embraces choice. Like your notebook and want something that works just like it? Great, buy a notebook with or without touch. Do you like the simplicity of a Mac but want something with touch? There are Windows 8 PCs that provide that. I use a Surface Pro 3 as a notebook and tablet, but that doesn’t mean you have to. Windows 10 will drive this point home when it arrives in final form later his year. If you buy now, you’ll get to upgrade for free.
Good luck with your new Windows 8 PC purchase.