Is $299 too much for a laptop? Wal-Mart has answered Best Buy's $299 laptop challenge with a $298 offer.
"For the first time, a 3GB memory laptop from a well-known brand has ventured below $300," Wal-Mart said in a statement Thursday.
Starting July 26 (this coming Sunday), Wal-Mart will begin selling a $298 Compaq Presario notebook (CQ60-419WM) with the following specifications: a 15.6-inch display, 3GB of memory, a 160GB hard-disk drive, a CD-DVD drive, and Windows Vista pre-loaded. The laptop will use a 2.10 GHz AMD Sempron SI-42 processor and Nvidia GeForce 8200M graphics.
The $1 discount gets you a Compaq-branded laptop versus the Acer (subsequently sold out) from Best Buy. And the Compaq bests Acer with 3GB of memory versus 2GB.
A Wal-Mart blog said that quantities "are limited and will begin selling at 8 a.m. on Sunday, July 26," adding parenthetically, "May want to pass that along because we expect this one will be quite popular."
Wal-Mart will also begin offering, on the same day, a 15.6-inch Acer ultrathin laptop for $548. The AS5810-4657 model will sport Windows Vista Home Premium (qualified for free Windows 7 upgrade); an Intel ULV (ultra low voltage) SU2700 processor; 3GB memory; a 320GB hard-disk drive; and "all-day" eight-hour battery life, according to a Wal-Mart statement.
In August, Wal-Mart will sell the new 10.1-inch HP Mini 110-131NR Netbook too.