An IT Guy’s Guide to Buying a Laptop

In this go-go world of ours, it seems like a laptop is now an essential for the small business.  Open any Sunday circular and you’ll be bombarded with ads for laptops.  So what to spend your hard earned money on?

Laptop vs Tablet

There are more and more crossovers between laptops and tablets.  For example, the new Windows tablet and the Asus Transformer both have the option to use a keyboard.  However, they still cater to two different crowds.  Tablets tend to be lighter and smaller since they’re designed to be really used with two thumbs or one hand.  This means there is less space for things like memory and processing power.  So a tablet would suite someone who’s constantly on the go and never to really has a home base.  Otherwise, the laptop still has the advantage and processing power and versatility.

The RAM has touched the wall

For the typical user 4GB of RAM is enough.  RAM stands for random access memory.  It’s essentially the amount of resources that your company has to do the tasks at hand.  Lots of deals in circulars advertise refurbished laptops with 2GB of RAM.  In this day and age, it’s not enough for a smooth running experience.

SSD is the way to go

SSD stands for solid state drive.  Unlike older hard drive technology, SSD has no moving parts.  This means that it lasts longer and is quicker.  Laptops with SSD tend to wake from sleep faster and have shorter boot up times.  The tradeoff is that they have less storage space.  However, with cloud storage being all the rage, 128GB of space should be plenty.

What about the processors?

I wrote this article under the assumption that the average small business owner uses their computer for excel, web browsing, and word processing.  Though if you business relies on photo editing or movie making, then a more powerful CPU or a dedicated graphics card would not go amiss.  However, the average user isn’t going to need the extra power or want the added cost.