Balancing function and price: What's the best (and least expensive) Mom Computer, especially if we're trying to go Mac?
Oh hey it's another tech question about my mom. I suppose this is basically the same question as this previous AskMe, but we're 2.5 years ahead and my mom is a little more advanced. Also, we've historically been a Mac family, though not in the last five years or so, so the learning curve shouldn't be bad.
My mom's last several computers have all been hand-me-down PCs. She gets very frustrated, and rightfully so, because for one reason or another they've all had kludgy internet and work verrrrry slooooowly. For someone on the low end of the computer spectrum, this is a huge barrier for her; she gives up very easily, and consequently she avoids using things like streaming Netflix. So between the size, tidiness and streamlined UI, I think it's time to go Mac.
She does your basic Gmail, Word, iTunes and web browsing, and she likes YouTube videos. She may eventually upload photos, but she will never use Photoshop.
So: what era should we be looking at? Is there a good way to keep it under $400? Are the Intel Core 2 Duos (2006 or so) good enough to last for maybe four years or more?
Or should we go another way -- PC laptop, etc.? (My husband wants to get her a netbook, but she will NEVER take it anywhere, and I would rather she have a nice big screen.)
Also, now that I think about it: she's 61 and has rapidly advancing arthritis in her fingers. What's the best keyboard -- do the low-profile Mac ones work better? Does the placement of laptop keyboards (e.g. with several inches of computer body and a trackpad) make things more uncomfortable for people with arthritis?