Because of real (the number of searches on CNET) and perceived (that whoosh sound you hear is trillions of dollars leaving our economy) interest in the cheap $300 Wal-Mart laptop, I set out at the start of the week to see if I could find the Compaq CQ50-139WM. I wondered whether supplies were so limited that the laptop sold out during its one-day sale last Saturday, or how much it'd cost me if there were still units to be had this week. With some help, I found that some Wal-Mart stores had the Compaq CQ50-139WM in stock for a post-sale price of $398 (it wasn't for sale online). CNET copy editor Daren Darrow found it at the Henryetta, OK store, and CNET readers e-mailed me to say they found it in Glenwood Springs, CO; Athens, GA; and Oklahoma City, OK.
This morning, a CNET reader e-mailed me to say the Compaq CQ50-139WM is for sale on Wal-Mart's site, but only as part of a $448 bundle that includes a laptop bag and optical mouse. At this price, however, the single-core Celeron-based Compaq CQ50-139WM is creeping up in price to the point that it's not much less than a low-end dual-core laptop, like the $499 Acer Aspire 5735-4624 (though it looks like this model has quickly sold out at Best Buy) or the HP G60-125nr, which is currently discounted to $549.
Discuss $300 Wal-Mart laptop: For sale online as...