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Laptops

Get an Acer 11.6-inch touchscreen Chromebook for $179.99

This lean machine was priced at $300 when it debuted just over a year ago. Plus: super drone deal!

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White gold: The Acer Chromebook C720P is a steal at $179.99. Acer

Which would you rather have in a sub-$200 laptop: a bigger screen that doesn't respond to touch or a smaller screen that does?

I ask because in the past, I've shared similarly priced deals on Chromebooks that had 13- or even 14-inch screens, but that weren't finger-friendly.

Today, Best Buy has the Acer Chromebook C720p 11.6-inch touchscreen laptop in Moonstone White for $179.99. Shipping is free, but you'll most likely have to pony up sales tax.

For anyone who doesn't need specific Windows or Mac software but does want a laptop for email, Web, word processing and other basics, Chromebooks rock. You get lightning-fast bootup and shutdown, freedom from viruses and blue screens of death and, in this case, lots of connectivity (in the form of Bluetooth 4.0, USB 3.0, dual-band Wi-Fi and HDMI.)

Also, most budget-level Chromebooks come with just 16GB of storage, but the C720P gives you 32GB. That's a nice perk for users who like to keep things local, not just in the cloud.

Downsides? If you want my $0.02, Gmail remains the ugliest and most user-hostile Webmail service on the planet, and setting up Google Cloud Print can lead you straight to madness.

Minor complaints like that haven't stopped buyers from collectively rating the C720P 4.5 stars (out of 5), or CNET's own Scott Stein from giving the system a score of 7.0 (out of 10). His bottom line: "The Acer Chromebook C720P manages to get better at all the key things, adding up to a little laptop alternative that's better than any budget Chromebook we've seen before." (And that was based on the $299 price tag.)

All this brings me back to the original question: Do you really want a laptop with a touchscreen? Because if you'd prefer a bigger display, I guarantee you there's a similar non-touchscreen Chromebook deal just around the corner. Personally, I don't see much point in putting your mitts on a laptop screen, but at this price, who am I to argue?

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AEE

Bonus deal: Now that the snow has finally melted, it's drone-flying time! And I hope you saved up, because StackSocial is offering Cheapskate readers the AEE Toruk AP10 quad-copter for $611.10 shipped when you apply coupon code TORUK10 at checkout. (Click the little "Have a promo code?" link below the green Complete Order button.) It sells elsewhere for $699.

The AP10 features a built-in 1080p video camera, a GPS-powered return-to-launch function and a promised 25 minutes of flight time. You can learn more about the specs and features on AEE's Toruk AP10 product page (but the deal is available only via the previous link).