Buying a New PC? Better Start Shakin’ that Cup…

Microsoft’s latest discount involves you or your student(s) lobbying family and friends to help pay for the cost of their next PC.


Finding the right PC for you isn’t always as easy as heading down to the local Wal-Mart and buying whatever they have on sale. While that may get you a PC quickly, its probably not the kind of computer that’s going to take your high school or college-aged student through four years of studying. Which is too bad…PC’s, and other major electronics should not be disposable…

Microsoft’s Surface tablets aren’t among the cheap offerings you will find at Wal-Mart or other discount stores. Surface RT starts at $499. Surface Pro starts at $899. If you go the Surface Pro route, don’t’ buy the low end model. The only difference between it and the high end model is the amount of storage space, and for $100, the extra 64GB of room is worth it, though Surface Pro does come with a microSD card slot with support for 64GB microSDXC Class 10 cards. Amazon has these for roughly $50USD.

Anyway, after $999 for a 128GB Surface Pro tablet/ulatrabook, and $129 for a Type Cover, you’re going to spend over $1100USD before tax. In order to help you out, Microsoft has decided to offer a program where they will offer up a 10% discount on the cost of the PC purchased via the Microsoft Store (they have more than Surface RT and Surface Pro in their stores) as well as a copy of Office 365 University. The kicker is that you have to provide the rest; and MS allows you to build a crowdsourcing campaign to fund the remaining 90%. Dubbed the Chip In program, MS allows anyone with a .edu email address to join the program and fund a PC.

There are a couple items of note here

  1. The MS Store doesn’t charge a restocking fee, so you should be able to find the PC you need
  2. Your school or university might have a better deal. Make sure you check out all your options before you invest in crowdsourcing a computer

I can’t say how well this option might work, but Kickstarter has been doing pretty well… however, its unlikely people you don’t know will help fund your PC. Its also unknown how many times you may have to mow grandma’s yard before she kicks in some money to help you get the Windows tablet of your dreams…

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