Laptops today are more stylish and higher performing than they were even a few years ago. When looking to buy a new laptop it’s helpful to identify the main way you will use it before you get stuck into the technology and all the different options available. At Pick Your Best we spend a lot of time identifying how different technologies suit different lifestyles to help us match people to the right devices. Sometimes it’s easy to get swayed by the technological jargon – we want to help you identify the main reason you are buying a laptop first, as this will help us to match you to the right type of device when you use our Product Chooser.
Here we describe the main ways we believe most people might use a laptop – if you have another idea please do contact us and tell us – we’d love to hear from you. If you need help shortlisting three laptops that meet your needs try our Product Chooser.
Creativity and coding demand powerful laptops if you want the device to keep up with the pace at which you work, Pick Your Best shortlists high or very high performing laptops. They come with the higher price tags, but they won’t slow you down.
Serious about winning? Then you need a high or very high performing laptop that will give you an edge. Pick Your Best matches gamers to laptops specifically designed for gaming. These tend to be more expensive than other laptops because they pack more power. And, as they are powerful devices, if you do stop playing games you can pretty much do most other things on them too.
Its ok for your laptop to be a bit bigger and slightly heavier if you aren’t going to be whisking them down to the local coffee shop to work there. However, most laptops today are slimmer, lighter and more attractive than they were just a few years ago, so you don’t need to compromise on your tech style at work!
Kids mostly want to watch videos and play games while parents would prefer they did their homework. For this scenario Pick Your Best matches laptops that are great for primary and younger teens. Pick Your Best shortlists the smaller and lighter laptops with low to medium performance, that are ideal for homework, watching YouTube videos and basic web gaming. If your child is doing exams they might appreciate one of the higher performing laptops we match in our ‘Studying’ scenario.
Keeping it slim and light for work on the move, Pick Your Best shortlists laptops that have smaller screens with medium to high performance and longer battery life. Whether you simply like a bit of coffee-shop working or you just don’t work at the same desk every day, Pick Your Best will show the best matches for people who like to get things done in style, wherever they are.
Today a laptop is a great alternative to a more traditional TV for watching movies and TV programmes through online services. More flexible than a TV - you can take your laptop with you wherever you go and still benefit from viewing on a screen that’s much bigger than your smartphone. You can, of course, use it for other activities as well – that you can’t really do with your TV.
In computing terms, using the web to shop, pay bills, check information and engage on social media are at the simplest end of what a laptop can do, so you don’t need a high value device. However, if you think you are likely to use it for work or more heavy weight entertainment, like streaming movies, it might be worth considering a different scenario.
Now that we have so many messaging and video calling services that run over the internet it is much easier to communicate with people whether they are on the other side of the world – or just in a different room in the house! Pick Your Best shortlists laptops for communication that have high quality web cams – so you can look your best on camera when you video call.
When you are buying a laptop to support your studies it is important to choose one that will last the whole course. Pick Your Best shortlists medium to high performance laptops for lecture based studies, however if your course is more design or technical you may be better choosing our 'Creativity and coding’ section to be matched with very high performing laptops.
The graphics speed of your laptop defines how quickly and accurately things will be displayed on your laptop screen. For everyday use this isn't important but if you are planning on some serious gaming or being creative then you should consider this.
Controlling everything you do on your laptop there are 3 operating systems to consider and its mostly a personal preference. Windows is the most common and great for office apps and gaming. MacOS is only available on Apple laptops, but can be a good choice if you have an iPhone or iPad. ChromeOS is designed to connect with Google services like Google Docs and Google Drive.
When using your laptop, some things will be more demanding on the technology inside than others.
Screen size will be a big thing to decide on. Think about how you will use it - a large screen will give you comfortable browsing and a better movie-watching experience. If you are on the move a smaller screen will be more portable and easier to carry around in your bag.