Buying Cheap Technology Is Not the Same As Buying No Frills Food

capncrunch.jpgAs parents, we always want to save money. We have tight budgets, limited incomes, mouths to feed and clothes to buy. When it comes to spending money on expensive food – cereal at $4, syrup at $3 and so on – we really want to save as much as we can.
Buying the “store brand” food is a good way to save money, The store brand and the name brand taste about the same and are probably even made by the same companies.
When buying technology, however, things are not so clear cut.
For example, maybe you’re in the market for a new notebook computer. Sure, you could save a few hundred dollars by NOT getting an integrated web cam or broad band wireless, but for your users who use these tools, the reduction in productivity you’ll have by not having notebooks with these common communication tools built into the notebook will be noticeably significant.
Everyone in your company might not need a web cam, but by making some of these features a standard part of your inventory, you’ll see more employees increasing their communication, boosting sales and increasing productivity like never before.
I’m testing out Dell’s new Latitude E6400, transferring files from my old Lenovo 3000 N100 notebook. What a difference a few years makes. Not only am I using a faster computer, with more hard disk space, but Dell’s Latitude has a built in webcam. No longer will I have to carry around a Logitech notebook webcam (which I highly recommend if you’re not upgrading your notebook and you’re looking for a good web cam). Dell is not the only vendor with a built in web cam and other fancy features of course, but my point is to ensure you get as much integrated hardware as you can with your next notebook purchase.
Maybe you’re not in the market for a notebook computer but buying software. Do you buy the cheapest version you can, with stripped down features or do you INVEST in the software you really need to make a productive difference.
What about printers. Sure you can get the $79 special from Staples or you can invest a few hundred dollars in a printer that has duplex printer and fast, beautiful color. When you win the next contract, from the competition who printed in black and white, or are able to save money on paper and ink – you’ll be glad you invested in technology.

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Ramon Ray, Editor & Technology Evangelist, Smallbiztechnology.com . Editor and Founder, Smart Hustle Magazine Full bio at http://www.ramonray.com . Check him out on Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook