Laptop sales grew by 6% in 2020 up to 7.9 million units shipped worldwide! If you have a desktop and you are quite attached to it (thank you very much), you might be wondering why people are obsessed with laptops so much. Good for you!
On the other hand, if you are sick and tired of your desktop and all its cumbersome issues, then you might be thinking about purchasing a laptop soon. Unsure of which laptop features should be on top of your list? Keep reading our laptop buying guide below and get acquainted with features your new laptop shouldn’t be without.
Lots of Storage Space
The great thing about owning a personal laptop is that you are carrying your entire office with you everywhere you go. If you don’t like the idea of storing everything on the cloud, especially if you have meetings on the go where internet connections might not be the best, then you will want to purchase a laptop that has at least 500GB or 1TB of storage.
You might think that’s a lot, but with the number of videos and images people take nowadays, along with documents, PDFs, and PowerPoint presentations, you will soon be using up even this terabyte of space pretty fast.
In addition, you will also be downloading lots of desktop apps for music, to-do lists, and more. Don’t skimp on the storage and get a new laptop with more than enough storage for all your needs.
Many people confuse RAM (random access memory) with storage, but they are quite different! Here’s how.
RAM is where information is stored while it’s in use. It allows you to access documents much faster than if you had to go back into the hard drive every single time you had to access a document (think of it as the documents you have on your desk vs. the ones in the filing cabinet). Storage is where your computer stores all documents that are not being currently used.
You don’t want RAM that’s too high, because that will drain your power and battery much faster. But you also don’t want to cut corners on this. Consider your needs and get a big enough RAM that will ensure your computer doesn’t slow down every time you are working on several documents and/or programs at once.
A Fast Processor
The faster your processor, the more work your laptop can do. If you are using your laptop only for browsing the internet and watching Netflix, then a big processor won’t matter that much.
But if you have to do lots of video editing work or you are involved in complex graphic design work, then a faster processor is a must. Consider an Intel Evo platform for an exceptional experience with your new laptop (click the link to learn more about what that entails).
A Dazzling Display
As laptops advance faster and faster, one thing that has kept pace with these innovations is the display. Nowadays, your laptop’s display can be as dazzling, bright, and clear as that 70-inch television that sits in your bedroom.
Why does this matter? Well, no one wants to look at an unclear display for 8 hours a day (or more depending on your workdays). Also, with all the graphic design, video editing, and PowerPoint creation that people are doing on their laptops, a clear display is essential to ensure good quality work.
Finally, if you are going to use your new laptop to watch Netflix and do Zoom or Facetime calls with friends, family, or colleagues, then you will want a display worth looking at.
If you are going to carry your laptop around with you to offsite meetings, or from home to office and back, then you will want something sturdy and well-built. A quality laptop will not feel flimsy to the touch and will be able to handle rough handling as you travel from place to place.
You don’t want to buy a laptop that feels like it’s made of glass. You are distracted by a thousand other things, so you don’t have time to baby your laptop.
It should be strong enough to handle whatever you throw at it. Otherwise, what’s the point?
A High-Resolution Webcam
A lot of people nowadays don’t have a desktop at all but do all their work on their laptops. Also, a laptop is used not only for work but for play as well. You are probably going to end up watching more funny cat videos on your laptop than work presentations.
As businesses move towards more and more remote work and telecommuting, people are going to want a laptop with a great webcam, to ensure that their work calls aren’t grainy or unclear. Most people also don’t have a landline anymore but do all their calls on their laptops or phone. All this requires a high-resolution webcam.
Lightweight and Portable
You might think that you won’t feel the ravages of carrying a hefty laptop on your back since it’s only a few minutes a day. But, imagine standing in a security lineup at the airport, with a heavy laptop on your back. The horror!
The more lightweight (and sturdy) and portable your laptop would be, the easier it will make your work and home life. You won’t have to think twice about taking your laptop home with you every day and you won’t cry in pain carrying your laptop on those long commutes or travel trips.
This is a recent add-on to laptops on the market, but it’s something that you shouldn’t discount when buying a new laptop. It might seem like an unnecessary thing at first, but when you think about how much time you spend with touchscreens on your tablet and smartphone, then you will understand how much a touchscreen matters when it comes to laptops as well.
If you have work that involves graphic design or lots of creative work, then having the option to move things around on your laptop screen using just your fingers is highly useful.
Great Battery Life
Even though the world is changing fast, and you can usually find a power outlet in most coffee shops, meeting rooms, and airports, it’s still not as ubiquitous as laptop users would like. Does this mean that you need to give up on the idea of working on those long flights or train rides without enough juice?
Well, if you have a laptop with great battery life, you won’t need to. You can work on some laptops for 8-10 hours without the need for a power outlet! That’s amazing.
Of course, a bigger battery could mean a heavier personal laptop but as technology grows by leaps and bounds, laptop battery lives are improving without too much additional weight added in.
Also, keep battery replacement in mind. Some batteries are completely integrated into the laptop’s body, so they can’t be replaced, which means that you can’t just upgrade your battery every few years to keep up with your extended workload.
This is a new trend on the market as well. Lots of laptops are becoming convertible, that is, they can be flipped around and about so that they aren’t just a clamshell rigid laptop as a MacBook Air or Pro would be.
Why would this feature matter to you? If you are interested in doing graphic design work on your laptop or you would like the flexibility to sit in other spots besides your office or home desk, then a convertible laptop is quite useful. Also, a lot of convertible laptops allow you to use a stylus on their touchscreens which makes them even more convenient.
If you are constantly moving around, then a convertible laptop is the best option for you, as it allows greater flexibility and power.
Some Laptop Features Are Ubiquitous, Others Not So Much
There’s so much competition in the laptop market nowadays, that a lot of laptop features are becoming commonplace and standard. Others, like the touchscreen and convertibility, aren’t so common, but they might become so in the future.
If you are still searching for the best new laptop for yourself or your children, then consider the laptop buying guide above and think about what you will be using your laptop for primarily. That will dictate which features will matter more than others.
No two people will have the same work or school or design needs and this will influence their laptop purchase.
Don’t forget to check out other technology-related articles on our website. We always have the latest red-hot articles waiting for your perusal.
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