Prices of laptops have skyrocketed amid the pandemic. The price hike is much evident in the budget laptop range with an increase of up to 35% which which adversely affects common people looking for a device for their kid's online classes.
Covid-19 has hit the world with an iron hammer. We have been locked down in our houses ever since. This pandemic has rewritten all equations of life and people are slowly accepting the new normal. People have begun using online platforms more to meet their daily needs. This has resulted in increased revenue for online marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, BigBasket. People use Zoom for conferences, Youtube and Facebook for content creation, live to stream and entertainment. As schools are also completely shut until further notification, online education has become the new normal. E-learning if implemented correctly will make education accessible and affordable for each and every citizen of our country.
Digital Infrastructure & E-Leaning
In-order to make e-learning successful we need two things:
- Extensive Internet coverage
- Laptops and Desktops at affordable prices
Extensive internet coverage at goods speed is available in India, thanks to Jio. We have the cheapest 4G tariffs in the whole world. But the bottleneck is created by ever-increasing prices of laptops in the country. I have noticed it because I have been watching the prices of affordable laptops from January 2020(of-course to buy one). I have also taken screenshots of the laptops available at that time so that I can share the same with my friends to get the feedback on the same.
Price Comparision of Laptops: Feb 2020 vs July 2020
Look at the price of a gaming laptop before and after the pandemic. The price of this laptop has increased from Rs.51,990 to Rs.64,990 an increase of Rs.13,000 or 25%.
When we come to a mid-segment laptop for personal use, the price of this laptop has increased from Rs.33,530 to Rs.41,990 which is an increase of Rs.8460 (25%).
Now, look at the super-budget segment where there is the highest demand. The price of this old generation laptop has increased from Rs.16,383 to Rs.22,498 (an increase of 37%).
I am not blaming the online marketplaces for increased prices. They only facilitate sales by providing a platform.
Should we buy a laptop
As per the current scenario, laptops are overpriced by at least 25%. In the budget segment where there is more demand, the price hike is around 30% to 35%. This will remain until the supply-chain issue is resolved. In my opinion, it is better not to go for a laptop in the current scenario.
Go back to desktops
As prices of laptops have increased and have gone out of my budget, I decided to assemble a desktop. Desktop gives me the option of upgrading the system. I watched some videos on YouTube to understand the complexity of the build process. Here are the videos I have referred to.
After realizing that I can do it, I started surfing online to get the parts at the most affordable cost.These are the parts I bought for my PC build:
- Ryzen 5 2400G
- Asus Ex-A320M Mother Board
- Kingston A400 240GB Hard disk
- Cooler Master MWE 450 Power supply
- Corsair Vengence 8Gb RAM
- Ant Esports Cabinet
- Acer 19.5 inch HD monitor
- Keyboard + Mouse combo from HP
People who are not confident enough to build a PC by themselves can opt for pre-built PCs which is plug and play ready. Desktops can be upgraded in the future and can be continuously used for hours due to better heat dissipation. This makes it best suited for students who would like to watch online lecturers and then refer online resources to get better understanding of the topic. Moreover we are not moving out of the house much due to lockdown which nullify the portability advantage of a laptop.
These are some of the places from where you can buy affordable pre-built PC:
You can also check with your local computer shops for prices of components and pre-built PCs, compare with online prices, and then do the purchase.