Modern technology never fails to introduce powerful travel laptops every year. With many great choices around, choosing which laptop to buy is not as easy anymore. You cannot just waste money and chances regardless of what you need it for. Here are 6 things to look for in a travel laptop.
Consider the specifications, size, and other features of a laptop or notebook for remote work or to travel based on your needs. Remember that buying an expensive brand does not always mean it is what you need. Here are the most important things to consider when looking for a travel laptop.
1. Operating System
Before going further, you have to choose the platform to use. You can choose between Windows, ChromeOS, and macOS for platform choices. They work almost in the same way although they have some slight differences when it comes to their features.
- Windows: Arguably, the most open-ended and widely used operating system from this list. It gets frequent updates with more software available making it the standard platform for business and gaming related applications. Some windows operated devices have touchscreen options and other interesting features.
- macOS: This operating system is the second widely used, although it is limited to Apple hardware. Due to exclusivity, Mac has a more limited lineup of devices. Unlike Windows, Mac devices do not have touchscreen features.
- Chrome OS: Powered by Google, this operating system uses the Chrome browser as its standard user interface. Chrome OS is mainly used for online activities such as browsing, video streaming, and document editing.
The standard size for a travel laptop is between 12.5 and 14 inches. Travel laptops of these sizes give you usability and portability advantages. Larger screens might make it difficult to bring when you travel, while smaller screens may compromise usability.
3. Battery Life
You must also consider battery life, especially when you use the device on your lap and not near the power source for most of the time. Laptops that have a battery life of up to 8 hours are the most ideal. Some longer-lasting laptop batteries may be too bulky and compromise portability.
On the other hand, if you travel often, you may want to include a secondary battery in your list of things to bring on your travels. Still, it’s best to consider reviews of real users on battery life rather than the manufacturer’s advertisement.
Smaller, less powerful laptops are already good for certain applications; for example, they are already good for kids’ use. However, for more demanding applications, consider the speed, storage, and performance above others. This means taking considerations on the graphics chip, RAM, and processor. Also, choose between a hard drive and SSD storage. For an easy checklist, the ideal current specs for a travel laptop should at least be:
- Ryzen 5 or Core i5
- 8GB RAM
- 1920 x 1080 pixels screen
- SSD storage
Keyboards in laptops vary in functionality depending on the size of the device. Smaller laptop models may have to omit some keys such as the Home, Page Up, Page Down, and End buttons because of limited space. Consider the gaps between each key and whether the buttons are sensitive enough when pressed.
Check the touchpads for functionality, too. Some models also come with a ‘nub’ or pointing stick. This looks like a pencil eraser between the G and H buttons so you can navigate the cursor without using the touchpad.
Powerful laptops with wider screens usually cost way more than the smaller, less functional models. However, you should avoid the thinking that an expensive laptop is what you need. You can go a long way with a reasonably priced brand when you have all the features and specs in it. If you require a more powerful laptop, a refurbished unit (for example, this Macbook Pro laptop) is worth considering, especially with a limited budget. Refurbished gadgets are cheaper than brand-new ones and can offer the same level of performance and functionality.
Avoid overspending and get the ideal laptop when you know the 6 things to look for in a travel laptop. Take a look at the specifications, operating system, keyboard functionality, portability, and battery life for smooth online browsing, gaming, and streaming experience.