Tips on Purchasing a Laptop

AA046810Despite the rise of devices such as smartphones and tablets, there is still a very real need for the processing power and sheer versatility of a computer. For reasons including size and mobility, many computer users prefer laptops over desktop models. If you’re new to the world of laptops, the wide selection of available options may make it difficult to find just the right computer for you. However, with a few tips, you should find a model that fits your budget and your computing needs.

Which Operating System?

There are three major players in the world of laptop operating systems: Microsoft’s Windows, Apple’s Mac OS and Google’s Chrome OS. Windows is found on computers from a broad range of manufacturers, while Mac OS only appears on computers made by Apple. Chrome OS appears on laptops known as Chromebooks, made by several computer manufacturers. If you want to maximize your range of potential computer features (e.g., graphics packages, available applications and processing power), you may prefer the Windows OS. Apple users tend to favor Macs for their design aesthetics and unique approach to computer interface design. The Chrome OS has relatively limited functionality compared to Windows or Mac OS, but Chromebooks don’t cost much money .

Screen Size

Laptops have computer screens that range in size from a minimum of roughly 11 inches to a maximum of roughly 18 inches. If you’re buying a laptop mainly for its portability, you may prefer a model with a relatively small screen. On the other hand, if you want your laptop to serve as a mostly stationary replacement for a desktop computer, you may prefer to maximize your available screen real estate.

Other Specifications

In addition to screen size, important laptop specifications include the power of the processor or CPU, the amount of available memory (RAM), the amount of available storage space on the hard drive(s), the quality of the graphics chip and the resolution of the display. Power laptop users may choose to maximize the specs in each of these categories. However, depending on your needs, you may value certain specifications far more than others. Most laptops are middle-of-the-road models that appeal to the average non-power user who still needs a decently powerful machine.


The cheapest laptop “notebook” computer will only cost you roughly $150 to $250. However, the most expensive laptops (often advanced rigs designed for serious video gaming) may cost as much as several thousand dollars. Within your budget, you can typically find a range of suitable options, especially if your needs fall somewhere between barebones computing and high-end gaming.

With these tips in mind, your laptop purchasing experience should be much easier. If you found this information useful, be sure to “Like” us and “Follow” us here for future posts on virtually anything found around the Web.