subzero
n. A computer that costs less than $1,000. Also: sub-zero.

Example Citations:
Yes, the “subzeros”—the flock of sub-$1,000 PCs that have taken over the majority of the home market—are out in great number and improved over last Christmas season’s models.
—Jim Seymour, “This Year’s ‘Christmas PCs’,” PC Magazine, December 15, 1998

Last, but not least, Intel‘s own research shows there‘s a huge market for what in the U.S. is called the “sub-zero” computer. In U.S. terms, that means a system selling for under $1,000. In the Canadian market, the magic number appears to be about $1,499.
—Myles White, “Intel gets into the $1,000 PC game,” The Toronto Star, March 12, 1998

Earliest Citation:
Perik said entire children‘s software industry had strong 2nd half in 1997, “largely fueled by the so-called sub-zero (sub-$1,000) PC penetration.”
—“Learning Co. sales jump,” Consumer Multimedia Report, February 23, 1998

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