Deciding to buy a new laptop is the easy part – choosing the specification, functionality, and operating system is the part that needs a little homework. Consider everything from USB ports to the size screen you need. Balancing practicality with computing power is essential for assessing a new laptop with your requirements.
Most of all, equip yourself with the knowledge to make the best possible choice to combine your budget with the best possible PC. This article helps you look for laptops for sale, and choose the best machine to fit your needs.
What is your modus operandi?
Deciding on your operating system is one of the first things you need to consider. Windows, Chrome or MacOS are viable options depending on personal preference and functional requirements.
To some extent, the choice of OS will be tied in with your budget. Windows or macOS devices are popular but come at a cost. Chrome OS is emerging as a more affordable alternative for specific devices.
Your hardware requirements
PCs with Windows operating systems are common and are available to many different specifications. All of the big PC manufacturers make them, and businesses tailor them to different users’ individual requirements with the 365 suite. The highest specification Windows devices will surpass pretty much any others in terms of performance.
The choice with a Windows PC comes down to the user’s requirements. Defining your main priorities is required to hone your search for the best device. To do this, shortlist some key criteria you need from your machine. These factors could include minimal weight for portability, detachable screens, more ports, faster processors, etc. With Windows PCs, the options are plentiful, so it is down to you to narrow the list and decide what matters most for you.
You should also consider your longer-term plan when you look for a laptop. Putting all your data into the Office 365 suite is unwise for example if you think you may look for a Mac at a later time. Doing so, would involve migrating your data between different operating systems and cloud storage providers which could create an unnecessary burden.
Same for the software
As well as hardware, you also need to consider what software is essential to your laptop experience. For access to the widest catalog of compatible software, Windows PCs are second to none. Windows versions are also updated regularly in order to fix bugs, make improvements, and close recognized security loopholes. These take place at least twice every year compared to on an annual basis with MacOS. Developing games and code is also more accessible with Windows operating systems.
Evaluate the pros and cons
The pros and cons of different devices are plentiful. One to take into account when considering a Mac is that it is almost impossible to get any upgrades on components. This means that you cannot upgrade your spec if your requirements change or more CPU is needed. At the same time, Macs are always built to a good factory spec anyway, so you can rely on their solidity and quality of the build.
Sometimes the cons of a device can be solved with a workaround. Although no Macs have touchscreen functionality, it is possible to use the ‘Sidecar’ option. This enables an iPad to be integrated wirelessly to provide touchscreen functionality.
Being realistic with your budget
Cheap laptops are like anything to some extent – you get what you pay for. However, there are some low-end devices that are good value for money for more occasional PC users. This avoids an unnecessary or unrealistic expenditure and provides the user with a decent PC for their use case. Carrying out basic tasks such as checking email, reading news, conducting research online, and watching SD video can be done on a low-end PC. Laptops for sale start at around $500, so there should be an option to fit all budgets. These PCs are built with no frills and efficient construction of components.
Because of this, they generally come light on RAM and CPU. This means lower-spec laptops can struggle with high-definition videos and graphics-intensive games. Their performance can be just fine if expectations are realistic. Chrome OS machines come with a good combination of value for money alongside well-built internal hardware.
Making your choice
Ultimately the choice is yours. Purchasing a new laptop is a buyers’ market, and the big PC brands and lesser-known challengers all have compelling options. Defining your use case and preferred OS is the first step to this as you make your shortlist.