There was a time when laptops were not nearly as cheap as they are today. These days, it is not hard at all to find cheap laptops under $200. There are so many options these days to choose from and so many different inexpensive laptops available. However, you will want to know what to look for when looking for the best laptop under $200. We have compiled a buyers guide on everything to look for when looking for your cheap laptop. But before we talk about it, let’s see what are the best rated laptops under $200 in 2016.

HP Stream

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  • Intel Celeron N3050 1.6 GHz
  • 11.6 inches
  • Windows 10
  • 2 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 32 GB
  • 2.6 pounds
  • Magenta, Blue, Purple
  • Read Review

Acer Aspire E 11 ES1-111M-C40S

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  • Intel Celeron 2.16 GHz
  • 11.6 inches
  • Windows 8.1
  • 2 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 32 GB
  • 2.8 pounds
  • Diamond Black
  • Read Review

ASUS X205TA-UH01-BK

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  • Intel Atom Z3735F 1.33 GHz
  • 11.6 inches
  • Windows 8.1
  • 2GB DDR3L 1333 MHz
  • 32 GB
  • 2.84 pounds
  • Black
  • Read Review

ASUS Chromebook

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  • Intel celeron 2.1 GHz
  • 11.6 inches
  • Chrome OS
  • 2 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 16 GB
  • 2.5 pounds
  • Black Silver
  • Read Review

Acer Chromebook 11 CB3-111-C670

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  • Intel Celeron 2.16 GHz
  • 11.6 inches
  • Chrome OS
  • 2 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 16 GB
  • 2.43 pounds
  • Moonstone White
  • Read Review

 

Best Budget Laptops Under $200 Reviews

These laptops above are great choices for those who want a good laptop on a very limited budget. Following are detail reviews on each.

 

HP Stream 11

HP Stream 11 is an 11.6 inch laptop with a screen resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels backed by integrated Intel HD Graphics. With a price tag of less than $200, this laptop is Microsoft’s response to Google Chromebooks and comes with the full version of Microsoft Office 365 with one year cloud integration. Powered by a dual core Intel Celeron N3050 processor clocked at 1.6 GHz with 2GB DDR3L RAM and internal memory of 32GB (Via a MicroSD Card), this laptop can provide an average battery backup of up to 8.25 hours! This laptop runs on Windows 10 and comes with a cloud storage of 100GB on OneDrive for one year. Other features include DTS surround sound, Wireless LAN card, 1 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0 port and Bluetooth support.

Stream 11 is a great choice if you are looking for a budget laptop to carry around but wish to have windows experience with a more than decent battery backup.

 

Acer Aspire ES1-111M-C40S

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Acer Aspire ES1-111M-C40S is an 11.6-inch laptop weighting 2.8 pounds (1.2 kg). It sports 2 GB of DDR3L RAM, which have lower voltage requirements than a standard DDR3 RAM and helps in saving the battery in this laptop. C40S is powered by an Intel Celeron N2840 2.16 GHz Processor which is based on the new 14nm chips and is extremely power efficient. This processor runs so cool that there is no requirement of any fan to cool it down and thus this laptop does not have any. Its 11.6 inch screen has a resolution of 1322 x 768, which is brought to life by is integrated Intel HD graphics module. The laptop have 32 GB of internal storage memory in the form of SSD which is guarantees lightning fast read and write speeds and quick boot timings.

Its other features include Bluetooth 4.0, 1x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0 and an HDMI port with HDCP support, HD Webcam, a 802.11b/g/n Wireless LAN card, SD Card reader and HD audio support. The system comes pre-installed with Windows 8.1 Operating System. It has a 2650 mAh 3-cell lithium ion battery which gives it a life of up to 5 hours on a single charge. All in all, it is a decent laptop to use on the run which is lightweight and quiet due to the absence of any fan.

 

ASUS X205TA-UH01-BK

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ASUS X205TA-UH01-BK is an ultra-portable Signature Edition laptop with a battery backup of up to 12 hours, supported by its 2-cell lithium ion battery. Just like all the other Signature Edition laptops, it is free from all the 3rd party adware and bloatware and offers you a clean and authentic windows 8.1 experience. It comes with 2 GB of DDR3L RAM clocked at 1333 MHZ and an Intel Atom Z3735F 1.33 GHz processor with a turbo boost of up to1.83 GHZ. Backed by an elegant design, this laptop weighs just about 2.84 pounds (1.2 kgs) and is only 0.68 inches thick! Other features include – a wireless LAN card, Bluetooth, micro HDMI, MicroSD card reader, 2 x USB 2.0 ports and a microphone input/headphone output combo jack. Apart from all that, this laptop also sports a chiclet keyboard with a single piece construction to get rid of those frustrating loose keys.

Its 11.6 inch screen of 1366 x 768 resolution is supported by Intel HD Graphics for seamless transitions and animations of the GUI. With the internal storage of 32 GB and a cloud storage of 100GB on OneDrive for 2 years, this laptop is a must for a person who wishes to have large battery backup on a single charge and portability is a preference.

 

 ASUS Chromebook C200 12-Inch

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With the increase in popularity of Chromebooks, more and more manufacturers are hopping into the market with their own Chromebooks and many new models are being launched in the market. One of them is Asus Chromebook C200, which comes with a 2.16GHZ (Turbo up to 2.4 GHZ) Intel Dual-Core processor and 2GB of DDR3L RAM. Running on Chrome OS, it sports an 11.6 inch screen having a resolution of 1366 by 768 pixel powered by Intel HD Graphics. As of storage, C200 offers 16GB of SSD space and 100GB of cloud storage on OneDrive for 2 years.

Weighing about 2.5 pounds, C200 has a fan-less design due to its newer and better 14nm based CPU which runs cool and does not require any cooling mechanism to maintain its temperatures. Other features include a wireless LAN card, Bluetooth support, high quality speakers for crystal clear sound, a High Definition Webcam and an extra spacious touchpad with multi-finger support.

Asus Chromebook C200 is ideal for those who want a budget laptop to browse the internet and do office work on the go without any hassle.

 

Acer Chromebook 11 CB3-111-C670

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Acer Chromebook 11 (CB3-111-C670) is a budget laptop running on Intel N2830 processor. N2830 is a dual core processor clocked at 2.16GHZ and is extremely energy efficient. Based on 14nm process, this processor runs so cool that this Chromebook runs fan-less and is virtually silent during operation. It has an 11.6 inch display having the resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels and integrated Intel HD Graphics. Weighing at about 2.4 pounds, this Chromebook packs an 802.11 A/C wireless LAN card, 2GB of DDR3L RAM, 16GB of internal storage in the form of an SSD for high speed read and write operations, 1x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0, 1x HDMI Port and a MicroSD Card reader.

This Chromebook is focused at snappy web browsing and entertainment on the go, which it does deliver without any hassle. Boot speed is good, given the OS is stored in an SSD which generally offer 5-10x faster read/write speeds than conventional Hard Disks. Equipped with a 3-celled Lithium-Ion Battery of about 3220 mAh, this Chromebook offers up to 8.5 hours of battery backup on a single charge which is exceptionally good.

So, if you are looking for a laptop for extensive web browsing on the go with a decent battery backup to keep you up and running for long hours before needing any charge then this Chromebook is worth the short (if you don’t mind parting from the Windows operating system). And with its elegant looks and slim design (0.7 inches thick), you cannot go wrong with the looks either.

What to Look Before Buy a Cheap Laptop

Brand

There are a lot of different brands out there competing to be the best budget laptop. A lot of times there are bands that you have never heard of, but they offer such a good deal, it can be hard to resist them. However, you will want to make sure you do your homework on these cheaper brands. This is one of the best ways to make sure that you are getting the best bang for buck.

A while ago, it seemed like only smaller and no name companies were predicting laptops for $200. Recently, there has been an influx of major companies producing these cheaper laptops. This has really changed the market and has made it much more competitive.

A few years ago, you would never find a big name brand selling cheap laptops. This market was reserved for the overseas sellers and smaller companies. However, with more and more companies selling these laptops, this is good for the consumer.

It really comes down now to the competition between the brands. They are all competitions to be the best budget laptop and have to keep adding features to out compete the competitors. If one company releases a new budget laptop with more features than everything else on the market, then you could expect another company to try to outdo them or mimic them the next quarter.

TOP LAPTOP BRANDS

Many laptop brands such as Dell, HP, Asus, Acer,… are selling cheap laptops

When it comes to brand you should always go for the brand that has a better reputation. Sure, you might have to pay more, but you will have a better peace of mind knowing that you are buying from a brand that has a name. You should avoid those cheap overseas no branded laptops at all costs. Sometimes they do not even have Windows installed on them and the installation of this can cost more than the laptop itself.

Warranty

Let’s be honest, laptops under $200 are not going to be the most durable product in the world. Even the most expensive laptops are not really built with durability in mind. This can cause a lot of issues down the road if you do not have some type of warranty.

A lot of people assume that it is not worth it to purchase a warranty or look for laptops that have warranties because they are so cheap. However, this is the wrong mindset. It is very easy to find budget laptops that have warranties. Usually it will say if it does or not in the product description or when you are checking out there will be an option to buy a laptop.

Laptop Brands

 

A warranty on your laptop will give you much better peace of mind knowing that if something goes wrong, you are covered. Sure, it might not cover anything but it definitely helps you out a lot in the long run. You need to realize that these machines are not perfect. There is a chance something happens to them and you want to make sure you have got yourself covered.

Generally, warranties only cover manufacture defects. However, there are some plans that will cover everything from theft to you dropping it. This will make you feel a lot better about taking the laptop out with you and not having to worry about it constantly.

Reviews

Reviews are a huge part of finding laptops for under $200. You want to find a laptop that has a good history. Sure, there are plenty of laptops out there that may not have reviews and are still great devices, but it is not worth the risk.

I always like to make sure that the budget laptops I am considering buying have a decent amount of honest reviews. You want to make sure that other people have actually used them before and are satisfied. This is something I highly take into consideration and always make sure that other people have had nothing but good experiences with them.

Reading reviews is a huge part of finding budget laptops. There are so many different ones out there and a lot of them are brand new to the market. You do not want to buy a laptop that has not been used by others.

You will notice that a lot of the best budget laptops will have tons of different reviews. Most of them will be good and some of them will be not so good. You should not get turned off by the not so good reviews.

Not so good reviews are normal and it really just means that some people were not happy with it. Maybe they were looking for something else and were just not satisfied. However, if you see a lot of not so good reviews, then maybe you should reconsider the product and start looking at other products.

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Reading reviews is a important part to find budget laptops – Photo: Flickr

Build

The build and design of your budget laptop is another factor one must consider when shopping around. There are a lot of different designs and styles of these laptops, so one must really know what they are looking for. It can be confusing at times, so you should have a good idea of what you want before you start looking.

For students I would recommend looking at a laptop that has a longer battery life and is some what light weight. This is because most lecture halls do not always have outlets for you to charge your computer and this can be a burden on you. So, you should look for a laptop that is going to hold its charge and not die on you in the middle of class.
Pilot Google LaptopAlso, students do a lot of walking across campus so the idea weight of your laptop should be somewhat lightweight. This will take a lot of stress of your shoulders and not weigh down your backpack as much. However, you still want to make sure it is durable.

For those who plan on just using their laptop at home and not transporting it, then size and battery life should not be too much of an issue. Generally, with heavier budget laptops there is a lot more room for storage as the reason for the heavier weight is because of hard drivers and other accessories.

Features

We saved the best for last. There are lot of features these days on these budget laptops. When they first started out, the features were very limited. A lot of these cheaper laptops only had a few things they could. They were mainly meant for web browsing and were not meant for anything else. However, times have changed and there are a lot of things one could use these laptops for now.
 l40 LaptopThe most common use still remains for internet browsing. Not at all laptops are created equally when it comes to web browsing. Some are much better at web browsing than others. One way you could tell is if you read reviews. Often times people will tell how good the product is at web browsing and what its speed is. If you are mainly going to be using your budget laptop for web browsing, then you should look at a product that has good Wi-Fi receptors and also has reviews for web browsing. There are a lot of laptops out there that are meant for just this.

You can tell if a laptop is meant for web browsing by a few things. Often times they will have no hard drive or physical storage drive. This shows that they are not meant for creating videos or storing other things on them. This allows them to do the one thing they do best, and that is surf the web.

There are a good amount of laptops out there that do not have a physical storage drive. Instead, you save your files on the cloud or another thing similar thing like that. This has a few advantages. Firstly, it greatly decreases the weight of the computer. Without a hard drive, the laptop is much lighter and thinner. For those who are just looking to surf the web, this is something you should look for. You will still be able to save important files on a cloud drive and it will not affect your computing experience at all.

If you plan on listening to music or watching movies, then you will want to be looking for a budget laptop that has decent speakers. Sometimes with laptops that are meant for web browsing, the speakers will be not too great. This allows them to put more work into the web browsing aspect because they know that you will not need speakers nearly as much.

However, more and more people are starting to use these laptops as portable speakers or as a medium to watch movies. Generally, if the speakers are somewhat decent this will be noted in the product description.

If you are looking for a product that you will be listening to music on a lot or watching videos, then you should be looking for a few things. The first thing is a screen that is either HD or produces excellent graphics. This will make the viewing experience a lot better and will make the movie a lot better. Also, you should be looking for something that has decent speakers unless you plan on using headphones.

There are some budget laptops that have speakers that are just as good as the higher end computers that are almost five times as expensive as a budget laptop. These laptops usually have excellent reviews and reviewers cannot get enough of how high quality the speakers are.

For those who are looking to do more business or school oriented things, then you should look for a budget laptop that has more storage available and comes loaded with software. If you plan on doing a lot of word processing or creating spreadsheets you will thank yourself down the road that you went with a laptop that has decent storage. It can get annoying having to save all your files to a cloud drive and only being able to access them when you have Wi-Fi.

There are plenty of budget laptops under $200 out there that have decent storage. This will go a long way for those who are going to be using their computer for things other than surfing the web and watching movies.

Also, there are some cheap laptops out there that come loaded with Office. If you plan on using your laptop for anything business or school related, this will come in handy. This software on its own can be a couple of hundred of bucks, so this can really help you out. It will save you a lot of money if the computer comes loaded with software like Office. You will not have to go out and buy it on your own dime.

Office is becoming more and more of a necessity whether you like it or not. So many different jobs and schools require this software, so you might as well do yourself a favor and purchase it now. It will save you the money if you buy it in a combo pack like how it comes with some of these budget notebooks.

Conclusion

There are a lot of different factors that go into buying cheap laptops. Hopefully we have shown you what to look for when buying a laptop, and you will be able to use your knowledge that you have learned from this guide and apply it to your next purchase. If you know the features you are looking for, if it has good reviews, and if the size is right for you, then you have found yourself the best laptop.