When insurance pays off

Before I went away to university I purchased a laptop to take with me and, as it would be transported around a lot, I took out an insurance on it to cover any mishap that might befall it. It was an Emachines but the model number escapes my memory. Anyway, it was a good laptop when I bought it but after 3 years hard service at university then 18 months of neglect it had developed an annoying fault. When the power button was pressed nothing happened apart from the fans would start blowing. I had used the insurance several times at university for odd faults but this was by far the most severe. I only had about six months left on the warranty for it so was keen to get a pick up and repair organised as soon as possible.

The laptop was duly collected and I patiently waited for a phone call or letter to inform me of the return date. No such communication came until Friday when my Mother informed me a letter had arrived back at her address where I haven’t lived for almost 4 years. Odd I thought so I asked her to open it up. It was a letter from my insurers stating that my laptop was beyond repair so please use this £420 voucher for a new one. Marvellous, and let me explain why. After university I had cleared my laptop of everything apart from anti-virus, World of Warcraft and an internet browser. It had been relegated to a convenience item for browsing the web on the sofa. It’s specifications when new nearly five years ago were pretty good but on the day it died, the laptop was pretty poor so to receive a letter stating it was worth £420 was a revelation. I really was very very pleased indeed. This letter could also not have arrived at a more opportune time. It landed on my Mother’s doormat the day before I was due to visit for a Birthday celebration. What timing!

So this weekend I happily trotted off to PC World (where the voucher was valid for) and purchased a HP G60-214EM laptop. I am very pleased indeed. It actually plays a better game of world of warcraft than my PC. The only irritation I have is that it comes with Windows Vista as the operating system. I have avoided vista for as long as I possibly could but now it had been forced upon me. So far, I find it much slower and too ‘fluffy’ around the edges for my experience. I realise it is probably fully customisable to remove the nicely rounded edges it has but I cannot be bothered to hunt for the well hidden settings in order to turn off all the pop ups and friendly hints. I wish Microsoft had an option for software they sell when you set it up that says something like this: –

‘If you would prefer not to be molly coddled through every step of your computer usage by annoying animated paper clips and other pop up boxes then please tick this box and we shan’t bother to install the needless megabytes of space all these things will require therefore making your machine run better as your RAM will not be eaten up by useless announcements you really didn’t need to see.’

Anyway, after I spent an hour or so uninstalling everything then reinstalling the programmes I run, I am very pleased with the result. It is extremely quiet and I particularly enjoy the number pad on the keyboard. The built in web cam and microphone also work well. Overall, it seems to be a very nice laptop but I have only had it for a day so a more in depth scrutiny shall have to wait.


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