When you go shopping for a laptop, it is easy to be overwhelmed by all the different options available. There are so many types of laptops with different capabilities and features that the retail market for laptops in the US is worth a staggering $91.8 billion.
On top of that, it can be difficult to understand what those specs mean for your needs as a consumer.
For example, what exactly does “RAM” stand for? What does it mean if my laptop has an Intel® Core™ i5 processor? This article aims to better inform consumers about the different types of laptops and their technical specs.
Laptops come in many different types and styles, but to help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of the most common laptops that exist today. After reading this article, you should feel more informed and confident when deciding what type of laptop will best suit your personal needs.
Chromebooks are types of laptops manufactured by a number of different companies, including Acer, Asus, Google, HP, Lenovo, and many others. A Chromebook is capable of browsing the Internet from cloud servers called “chrome books.” The computers run on Google’s Chrome OS.
You can get the basic software free to install yourself, or you can buy one pre-installed from retailers such as Amazon or Walmart. Users often praise Chromebooks for their ease of use and reliability while being ideal for people who spend most of their computer time online.
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The name “ultrabook” is a trademark of the Intel Corporation. Ultrabooks are slim, streamlined laptops with a lightweight design and long battery life designed for use in various conditions.
For example, an ultrabook would work well if you’re traveling or commuting because they are less bulky than other types of laptops while still providing high-performance capabilities.
Ultrabooks also come with durable, unibody aluminum cases and can be equipped with high-performance solid-state drives (SSD). Most ultrabooks support WiFi and Bluetooth connections, and many of them use Intel processors.
Several types of ultrabooks exist, including super thin and light laptops. These include ultrabooks designed for maximum portability and ultra-powerful gaming laptops, which are a little bulkier than other ultrabooks but with more powerful graphics cards and processors.
A 2-in-1 laptop is also known as a convertible laptop or simply 2-in-1. These computers usually feature built-in keyboards that bend backward underneath the computer screen in order to turn the device into either a tablet or some type of media console.
Some 2-in-1s run operating systems such as Windows 7 or the Chrome OS.
Recently, however, Google announced that it would be putting its own line of 2-in-1 devices on sale known as Chromebook Pixels. The laptops feature a touchscreen and an accelerometer to switch modes between laptop and tablet.
A convertible laptop is a type of laptop that can function either in laptop mode or tablet mode. This is done by rotating the monitor and folding it over the keyboard (and pointing device) like a notebook computer.
When used in tablet mode, most convertibles utilize touch input from their monitors rather than using an external pointing device such as a mouse or touchpad. Like 2-in-1s, convertibles are often advertised as being thin and light.
A docking station is a type of laptop accessory that allows you to easily connect your laptop to multiple peripherals at once. You can then use your laptop’s monitor in place of your computer’s built-in display or mirror it on an external screen.
Docking stations allow users to access large displays for multiple workstations, apply effects such as video magnification, attach traditional keyboards and mice to their laptops via USB ports, etc.
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Gaming laptops are actually very different from your regular laptop. They’re generally more expensive but offer much higher performance in terms of graphical capabilities and memory, which is why they’re ideal for gamers. The main difference between gaming laptops and other types of laptops is the fact that gaming laptops are far more powerful.
You can often fit an entire computer tower inside a standard laptop casing, including high-end graphics cards with HDMI ports to connect to monitors or televisions. A gaming laptop has all of these things except the computer tower part, which is already built into the laptop itself.
You also have to keep in mind that there are a lot of different things you can do with a laptop besides just gaming. Most people use their laptops for social networking, watching videos, writing papers, and so on.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Laptop
Laptops come at all different price ranges and may include features beyond those listed below. However, as a laptop user, these factors are worth considering no matter how much you plan to spend on your laptop or what added features you might want.
The battery life of the laptop needs to be considered before you make your purchase. If you only plan on using your laptop near an outlet, you may not need to consider this factor very much in their decision. However, if you want the ability to take your laptop places without always having access to an outlet, it can be worth considering how long it will last on each battery charge.
When considering storage, it is essential to determine how much storage your laptop actually requires. Some people find that they need only minimal storage for their computer and may not care about having very many gigabytes or terabytes on their machine.
Other people will be using their laptops for multiple purposes, which means they need more space than this for all of their files.
The Operating System
There are presently two main types of operating systems, which are Windows and Mac. Many people prefer Windows to Mac, but there are some who find the opposite holds true for them. If you know what operating system is best for you, it can be worth looking at this before purchasing your laptop.
Although many laptops come with programs on them, sometimes these will not meet a person’s needs. Purchasing a laptop comes with the option of buying one that already has all the software you may need or purchasing a computer without any pre-loaded software.
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A laptop screen should be big enough for the laptop user to see clearly. If the screen is too small, it can be difficult for you to read what you’re working on. It may also prevent you from being able to play games or watch movies with ease.
Ease of use
As a laptop user, the easier your laptop is to use, the more likely you are going to enjoy using it every day. You should consider how easy it would be to get used to using one particular type before buying it. This could mean trying out one or two of them before making a final decision.
One feature that many people are looking for when buying their laptops is the ability to transfer files wirelessly. This means not having to connect any wires in order to transfer files between devices. Although this may seem like it isn’t very important, it can actually save someone a lot of time in the long run.
When transferring files onto your laptop, you wouldn’t have to worry about being near an outlet or remembering how to connect things via a USB port.
Another feature that makes a difference in whether someone wants one laptop over another is the sound quality coming from built-in speakers. This factor should be considered if you plan on watching movies or playing games on your laptop with others.
People who are looking to buy laptops should be concerned about how stable they are when placed on a flat surface, such as the floor or the desk
One type of laptop may make it easy for people to view what is on their screen at all times, while another might not do this well. It’s important that the laptop lies completely flat when in use in order for your work or gameplay session to go smoothly.
Types of Laptops: Differences in Laptop Hardware
There are many features that set different types of laptops apart. For a great PC experience, it’s crucial that you consider all the differences listed below to gain insight into what’s necessary.
The processor is one of the most critical components of any electronic device. It is responsible for processing all commands sent to it by other parts of the computer, as well as processing data it receives from outside sources like USBs or SD cards. Processors are usually classified using numbers, such as Intel® Core™ i5 or AMD A4-7300.
These numbers represent model numbers, with different manufacturers making their own slight variations on these models. For example, the Intel® Core™ i5-4200U is being produced by Intel®, but there are other companies making very similar processors, such as the AMD A4-5000.
Computer memory or RAM is extremely important to computing. It determines how many different apps you can have open at once and your laptop performance. It determines how fast your computer will load files and webpages and even how much high-resolution video or audio it can handle before slowing down or crashing.
The more memory your laptop has, the better it will run. Laptops tend not to need as much RAM as desktops. This is because the amount of RAM laptops require depends on how well you multitask, so having too much memory may not matter for a laptop user.
Storage memory is another vital component of your laptop. It determines how many files you can have saved simultaneously and how large those files are. The more storage memory your laptop has, the more movies or music it can store at once.
There are two types of storage memory usually discussed when talking about laptops: hard drive and solid-state drive (SSD). A hard drive is a traditional spinning disk where information is stored magnetically.
SSDs are much faster to read from and write to, but they tend to be more expensive than hard drives. Most laptops come with either SSDs or hard drives, but rarely both.
Graphics Processing Unit (GPU)
GPUs are extremely important to processing images and videos on your laptop. They process the graphics that you see when using your computer, so having a better GPU can make games look much smoother. The most common type of GPU is an integrated one, which comes as part of the CPU.
For example, Intel® Core™ i7-4510U has Intel® HD Graphics 4400 as its integrated GPU. However, sometimes these GPUs can’t adequately handle more intense video games or photo/video editing software, which means you will need a dedicated graphics card. Dedicated GPUs are usually installed into the PCI slot on a laptop and come with their own cooling system to prevent it from overheating.
The size of your laptop’s display is also an essential factor in what type you should buy. Smaller laptops tend to be easier to transport, but larger displays allow you to see more content at once, which can make it easier for some people to use their computers.
In general, 13-inch laptops are suitable for portability, while 15+ inch laptops offer a better viewing experience. Also, note that different companies may use different sizes for their laptops by using a non-standardized naming convention. For instance, a “15 inch” laptop from one company may be smaller than a “15 inch” laptop from another.
Laptops come with all sorts of ports for you to connect your accessories to. These include USBs, which tend to have multiple different types. These may include an SD card reader, an audio port (usually a headphone/microphone combination jack), and HDMI or VGA ports for external monitors or projectors.
In general, different types of laptops will have at least two USBs and one audio jack. Laptop designers usually prioritize the use of certain ports over others.
Sometimes an HDMI port is prioritized over a VGA port because HDMI is becoming more important as new television sets require it to function properly. In addition, an increasing number of laptops are starting to use USB-C ports because it is a newer and faster standard.
Lastly, the laptop’s brand is also important to consider. Each company has its own design language that tries to set it apart from other companies. For instance, Lenovo uses the “watchband hinge” design while Apple uses its “unibody” style. Some brands focus on more than looks, though.
For instance, Dell focuses on business users, while Razer focuses on gamers. Most major companies produce both consumer-focused and business-focused models, but some companies only sell their products to businesses, like IBM ThinkPads. Keep in mind that prices will differ among brands as well.
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Choosing the Best Amongst Many Different Types of Laptops
There are many types of laptops to choose from, depending on your needs. The most important ones to consider are storage memory, display size, graphics processing unit (GPU), portability, and brand.
Do some research before you decide what type of laptop you should finally settle for. Hopefully, this article has opened your mind and will help you make an informed decision.
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