How to get a better Windows 8.1 laptop: How to buy one and keep it running

The good: You can get an i7-6700K or an i5-7200U for less than $1,000, the entry-level model.

And that’s a bargain for a machine that’s still in the early days of Windows 8’s desktop update program.

The bad: You’re going to want to upgrade to Windows 10 to use the new Windows Store and the tablet/laptop hybrid setup will be much more powerful than it was with Windows 8, thanks to the addition of Surface Pro tablets and the Surface Pro 3, which is a desktop replacement.

If you can’t wait for the Windows 10 upgrade to arrive, we recommend the Surface Book for a good value. Read more