Im always asked when is a good time to buy a new computer, I tell them the same thing.. "It all depends what retailer has what and when and when there's certain sales or clearance items, but as a good rule a thumb is summertime can always be a good time to buy consumer electronics. More specifically the back-to-school season and the time between Thanksgiving and right after Christmas are typically the best time to find the best deals for computers."
Until... A new release of Windows. Tech blogger and PC help guru Bob Rankin says " Traditionally, sales of new PCs slump a few months ahead of the release of a new version of Windows. Would-be buyers tend to postpone purchases because they want the next-generation operating system to be included "free" in their next PCs.
It was understandable for those suffering with Windows Vista, to hold their breath and jump on the Windows 7 bandwagon as soon as possible. But waiting for the release of Windows 8 may not be the best strategy for you. In fact, right now may be the best time to buy a Windows 7 PC.
Don't worry about obsolescence. Microsoft is not going to drop Windows 7 the day Windows 8 comes out. Even Windows XP, released eleven years ago, is still in use on about one-third of Windows computers."
The new Windows 8 operating system is scheduled to be released in October with much hype but you don't have to hurry to upgrade with just yet because with a new PC purchase you can upgrade to 8 for as little as $15! Personally I've never been one to quickly jump on the bandwagon of ANY new operating system right away until the bugs are worked out, regular updates start coming and the market has accepted it. Professionally speaking Ill be all over this faster then you can say "Bill Gates" so Ill know how to support it.
If you were to come to me and tell me you are looking for a basic yet reliable laptop that can hold it's own now and in the future without the big price tag so you can check email, surf the net and perhaps do some work - I would tell you to check out the brands that have a proven track record like HP (largest computer manufacturer), Acer (yes I said Acer, contrary to what your bother's co worker's mailman may have told you, I have one I got in 2005 and is still rockin), Lonovo (use to be IBM), and Toshiba. You may have noticed I didnt mention Dell and that wasn't by accident. It's not that their machines but I don't trust their company. They're invested in enterprise devices to make earnings while the commercial market for laptops and desktops is their less productive division. On top of that they're support is one of the worst. If I'm going to buy a new computer I want a reliable company behind it.
If you were looking for a desktop, I would almost certainly tell anyone to get a custom build one for the same price if not a little cheaper either from us or the two Twin Cities companies I trust is MicroCenter and General Nanosystems. With a custom machine you can swap out parts, upgrade, downgrade and modify to your desire. Factory desktops often come with a lot of proprietary issues from form factors, motherboard types to what sort of video card you can (or can't) have. Sure you may not have the support but the give and take is worth it.
So in conclusion I would say if you are looking for a laptop or even a new desktop kit for you savvy do-it-yourself'ers, shop now because I think summer 2012 will be the time to buy, and remember to check out those "open box", refurbished or clearance deals from reputable vendors like these from geeks.com, Micro Center or newegg If you have to wait, after Windows 8 comes out, check out holiday deals for Windows 7 machines!