The best business laptop
When you're relying on a laptop to help your business, it needs to deliver a high level of performance. It also has to be extremely trustworthy. You can't afford to lose your data or your ability to work on the go.
If purchasing a computer is a daunting task for you, understanding the jargon involved will help. When you better understand how each of the components works, you'll have more success finding just the right laptop.
Our favorite business laptop is the LG Gram Thin and Light Laptop. It has a large screen, so you can work in exactly the way you want. It's also a lightweight piece of hardware, allowing you to work wherever you need.
Considerations when choosing business laptops
Understanding the hardware inside a business laptop will help you find a model to match your work requirements.
Processor: Also called the CPU, the processor determines the speed with which the laptop will run. You'll save money with a less powerful processor, but complex software requires pricier processors.
RAM: Random access memory is the temporary storage area in the laptop where software is stored while it's running. Extra RAM is expensive, but it delivers significant performance improvements.
Storage: Laptops either use hard disk drives (HDD) or solid state drives (SSD) to store data. SSDs are expensive per GB of storage, but they access data much faster than HDDs.
Battery: Business laptops use a rechargeable battery. Maximum battery life can range from six to 18 hours, depending on the laptop model.
Form factor: The majority of laptops have a traditional clamshell design, where the screen folds down and covers the keyboard when not in use. However, you might want to choose a 2-in-1 laptop, where the touchscreen display rotates fully, allowing it to work like a tablet.
We've listed the features in business laptops that are of primary importance to customers:
Screen size: A large display screen is helpful for people who like to have multiple windows open on the screen at one time. It's also helpful for watching training videos or video conference calls.
Input options: If you must type a lot on your business laptop, a standard-size keyboard will be comfortable to use. Some laptops have below-average-size keyboards, which may lead to keystroke errors. Touchscreen displays are becoming more common, too.
Connection options: WiFi and Ethernet connectivity are common on all laptops. The majority of models also can make a Bluetooth connection to headphones. Some laptops even have USB-C ports that allow you to charge a smartphone from the laptop battery.
Business laptop prices
The general rule regarding the price point of laptops is that you'll pay extra for more computing power. Laptops in the $200 to $500 range will be simple machines that work best for internet use and cloud-based software. Mid-range laptops cost $500 to $1,000, and they'll have decent processing speeds. If you use software that requires maximum processing power and speeds, you can expect to spend $1,000 to $2,500.
Q. How do I protect my data on a business laptop?
A. Pick a strong password to access the laptop, just in case it's ever stolen. Fingerprint scanners and facial recognition software yield even stricter levels of security. Additionally, you should regularly back up your data. You can set up the laptop to automatically back up your data to a secure cloud account. Or create backup copies of your data on a thumb drive or external hard drive. And don't forget to protect the hardware itself with a good sleeve.
Q. How do I know when it's time to replace my business laptop?
A. If you consistently find yourself frustrated with the speed of an older machine, it may be time for an upgrade. A machine commonly shows its age in deteriorating processing speeds. Depending on your needs, business laptops should last two to five years before an upgrade in technology is in order.
Business laptops we recommend
Best of the best: LG Gram Thin and Light Laptop
Our take: Huge 17-inch display screen allows you to have multiple windows open on the screen at one time.
What we like: Includes a 512GB SSD to provide plenty of speed. Delivers an excellent level of battery life for all-day work sessions.
What we dislike: This model is expensive. Might be more computing power than some people need.
Best bang for your buck: Lenovo Flex 11 2-in-1 Convertible Laptop
Our take: Excellent price point for a laptop with a touchscreen that's made for on-the-go work.
What we like: Recently updated keyboard design is comfortable to use. Has an HD-quality display screen measuring 11.6 inches.
What we dislike: Not the most powerful machine with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of SSD storage.
Choice 3: HP Pavilion Business Flagship Laptop
Our take: Nice mix of powerful computing components and value in a lightweight business laptop.
What we like: Display screen measures 15.6 inches to allow multiple windows to be open at once. Has 1TB of hard-drive storage space.
What we dislike: Screen resolution is not full HD. Doesn't have SSD storage technology.
Kyle Schurman is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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