Personal Computers are one of the best deals out there, says the Consumer Price Index

Personal Computers are one of the best deals out there, says the Consumer Price Index

A day does not pass by without hearing my eighty year old grandma and her septuagenarian friends complain about constantly increasing costs of living. According to the Grandma Index (GI), all price tags have indiscriminately been adding more and more digits. Clearly, my grandma has not heard of CPI. The Consumer Price Index is a measure by which individuals and governments estimate the average change over time in the prices of consumer goods and services purchased by households. A simple CPI calculation could give a fairly accurate estimate of the relative cost of a currently traded consumer good and/or technology in a specific year in history. In other words, if a high end business laptop costs $1500 today, CPI figures allow interested parties to calculate how much a consumer would pay for the same technology package back in 1982. According to the statistics showcased in this resourceful infographic, such a computer would cost $18000 in 1982.

Should my grandma have been fortunate enough to deal with a blue page of death, the Grandma Index (GI) would take into account how computer prices have changed over the years all over the world. According to data, the relative cost of computers has decreased significantly over the years, whereas most consumer goods and services have seen significant increases in their relative costs. The above infographic presents this interesting fact in the starkest and clearest terms possible. It uses a currently traded Dell Inspiron computer package priced at $849 as an example for a currently traded good and provides an estimate for how much the same technology package would cost in March 1982. Utilizing official CPI figures, it is estimated that the same Dell Inspiron package would cost $10358 in 1982. The helpful illustration goes further by listing a few examples of non-electronic goods and their relative costs over the last two decades. Clearly, computer technology and electronics became cheaper and cheaper over the years whereas a packet of cigarettes has seen skyrocketing cost that have been reflected onto the consumers.

The infographic concludes with a handy map that informs interested Aussies of the current price tags for the aforementioned Dell Inspiron package in different locations in Australia. Computer costs have been in a downward trend for a long time. Given the above context, one can be confident that almost all computer deals are good deals.

The original infographic is located at

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