Technology and home gadgets have never been more important than from the start of 2020 onwards. This largely has to do with the COVID-19 pandemic that has swept over the planet, rendering the old ways of doing things impossible. As a result, work, education, entertainment, and shopping moved indoors and stayed in the homes of people with them.
This new norm resulted in laptops and other IT gadgets and devices leaving the store shelves at incredible speeds as manufacturers struggled to resupply their stock and warehouses. As a result, the industry experienced a steady period of growth revenue-wise since people who never had the need of a laptop in their home suddenly needed one. Moreover, more members of an average family needed separate devices since they all had to do their own thing at the same time.
The quarantine and isolation period extended after the new year and 2021 will see us doing much of the same. Work and school are still going to be done from home and entertainment like watching movies, TV shows, and playing games will remain a dominant part of our daily lives. This means that we still need laptops in 2021, and thanks to this article right here, you will learn about all of the thins worth considering when buying one on a budget.
1. The OS
The operating system (OS) of your next device is always important. The decision often comes down to brand and manufacturer support as Windows enthusiasts will hardly ever make a switch to Mac or Linux, and vice versa. If you are used to certain features and things of a familiar OS and do not want to set everything up again and get used to things, get a laptop with a familiar system. Your circumstances may require you to make a change, which a totally different thing. If you have all the freedom, maybe it would be best to stick with what you know in these uncertain times. You have to be as efficient as ever while operating from home after all.
2. Are You Playing Games?
Gaming laptops are very different from non-gaming models. First of all, they are more expensive thanks to the better components. Next, they are a completely different class made for more specific and challenging tasks. If you wish to occasionally game on your new budget laptop, you will require a dedicated graphics card (GPU) since integrated solutions rarely do the trick. You will also want something with at least 4 GB of RAM and an above average processor (CPU). There is no need to spend a fortune if you play rarely, but you still have to check certain boxes. Speaking of games, make sure to visit GamingBeasts for all the latest news and updates from this exciting branch of video entertainment.
3. Battery Life
There is nothing worse than having your laptop’s battery go empty in an inconvenient moment like during an important business meeting or as you are finishing a key paper for your studies. Therefore, make sure that the device you are getting has enough hours away from the power outlet. Depending on the brand and the model, the average battery life is between 2 and 4 hours of heavy and constant usage, and 6 to 8 hours of light work. The more brightness, video material, and sound you use, the quicker it will drain. Therefore, it all comes down to what you are doing with it. For meetings and school work, you need at least a few interrupted hours at all times so aim between 3 and 6.
Size does matter in the world of laptops because it is crucial for two key features. First is of course the screen size. Not everyone is satisfied with 13” of 15” inches, as many people prefer 17”. Again, like most of the time, this is a decision you should largely base on how and when you use it. If you need it for video work like Zoom meetings, Skype calls, and PowerPoint presentations, with an occasional movie here and there, the bigger the better. A higher resolution would also be preferable. If all you need it for is typing, browsing the internet, shopping, and staying in touch with friends and family, you can easily do it with as little as 13”. The other key thing is the keyboard size. People with larger hands and fingers will struggle on small and tight keyboards, which are almost always present on smaller laptops. If this is a problem for you, aim for a larger model.
5. Weight and Mobility
Staying mobile and keeping it light is what laptop computers are all about. They were originally made to make the lives of traveling workers and students easier. Therefore, there is no point in them being too heavy and too thick. Larger models are usually somewhat heavier, but not always. Nowadays you can find very light and thin models that have full keyboards and 17” screens. They do cost more but some compromises have to be made. There is no one and the same budget price for everyone either, so make sure you do enough browsing before making your final decision. If you are constantly on the move, mobility should be your priority.
There are numerous things that can improve the overall experience you will have with a laptop. The most important thing is a case or a bag that will both protect it and allow you to easily carry it. Some models come with a bag but it is usually best to by one of higher quality separately. Next, you should have a cleaning kit close by that will help you clean the screen and remove anything that may fall in-between the keys. If you prefer to work with a mouse (and most people do), invest in a small one that will easily fit into the bag. You will be much faster than on a touch pad. Travel-size keyboards are also fun, especially if you find a great model with a small keyboard. Last but not least, you should consider buying at least one external hard drive. Most people nowadays buy a laptop that has a fast and able SSD of between 120 and 240 GB, and keep everything else away from it on an external drive.