Beth is sending her daughter to school and needs to get her an affordable laptop in the $600 range. Her daughter wants a Mac, though. Leo says that the cheapest Mac is the MacBook Air at $999. She can shave off a hundred or so by going with the Refurbished Macs, but she should only get them through Apple. That way she'll also get a warranty.
The Windows Surface 3 tablet would be a very affordable option as well at $499 plus $129 for a keyboard. But there's an advantage of getting her the computer she wants. She'll likely use it for the entire four years, rather than have to buy a new computer two years down the road because it was cheaper.