It’s a bad time to buy a computer, writes Walter Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal. And that makes it an equally awkward time for his annual computer buying guide. Both Microsoft and Apple will release new operating systems in the fall, and it’ll be easier to buy a computer with the new software preinstalled. But if you can’t wait, here are some issues to consider when buying an upgrade-ready PC.
Cost: Prices are way down. A low-end Windows laptop can be had for $500.
Mac or PC: Apple costs more, but “if speed, ease of use, and stability matter more, buy a Mac.” Still, based on the beta, Windows 7 will be a huge upgrade.
Memory: You’ll want 2GB, even on cheap machines.
Graphics: Discrete graphics processors will be more important than ever on the new OSes.