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How to Choose a Business Laptop 2019

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What makes a business laptop different from a consumer laptop? Isn’t any laptop used for work a business laptop? In a BYOD context there’s truth in that—but for our intents and purposes, a business laptop (interchangeably called a business notebook) is one that a company buys and issues for work-specific tasks.

Every manufacturer has one or more “Pro” models designed to serve as a work-issued laptop. Certain models may have a discrete graphics card and high-power CPU (Intel Core i7 or Intel Xeon E3) which would classify them in the Mobile Workstation category.

Don’t worry too much about that right now. Comparing a business laptop vs. mobile workstation today is an exercise in semantics and categorization, and mostly inconsequential for choosing a business laptop that’s suitable for your company.

Signs that a laptop is meant for business use

  • It has Windows 10 Pro pre-installed (if it’s not a Chomebook or a Mac)
  • For Intel-based laptops, there is CPU support for vPro technology, which enables secure remote management features, wireless docking, and wireless screen casting.
  • A hardware microcontroller that supports the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) cryptography standard.
  • It supports two-factor logon functions (fingerprint, card reader) 

Recommended business laptops by brand

Click the links underneath, and you will find that each type of laptop has various configurations of components, screen size, resolution, and pricing.

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Premium business laptop
NVIDIA GTX 1050
PCIe SSD storage
17 hours of battery life
USB-C and USB 3.1 connectivity

 

HP Laptop 250 G6

Budget Laptop
Under $500

 

HP Laptop ProBook 470

Mainstream business class
Slim chassis
USB Type-C connectivity
 NVIDIA GeForce 930MX
17.3″ Full HD display

 

HP Laptop EliteBook 1040

Premium business laptop
SSD storage
Ultra-portable
Added manageability features
Fast-charging battery
14″ Full HD display

 

 HP Laptop Zbook Studio G3

Mobile workstation for creators
Intel Xeon E3-1505M
NVIDIA Quadro M1000M
Ultra-portable
15.6″ 4K display

 

ASUS Pro P5440UF

Premium business laptop
Intel Core i7 (8th Generation)
NVIDIA GeForce MX130
14″ Full HD display
Fingerprint reader

ASUS Pro P2540UB

Mainstream business laptop
SSD storage
NVIDIA GeForce MX110
9 hours of battery life
14″ Full HD display
Fingerprint reader

 

ASUS Laptop ZenBook

Mobile workstation for creators
Compact build
SSD storage
USB Type-C connectivity
13.3″ Full HD display

 

Lenovo Laptop V330

Budget laptop
Under $500
Added manageability features
15.6″ Standard HD display

 

Lenovo ThinkPad E580

Mainstream business laptop
SSD storage
15.6″ Full HD display

 

Lenovo X1 Carbon

Premium business laptop
Sleek, stylish build
SSD storage
Fingerprint reader
One-hour charge time
USB-C connectivity
14″ Full HD display

Lenovo ThinkPad P51

Mobile workstation for creators
Intel Core i7 (7th gen)
4 TB SSD storage
NVIDIA M1200M
15.6″ Full HD display

 

Dell Inspiron 3000 Series

Budget laptop
15.6″ Full HD display

Dell Laptop XPS

Mainstream business laptop
Ultra-portable
SSD storage
13.3″ Full HD display

Dell Latitude

Premium business laptop
Ultra-portable
SSD storage (512 GB)
16 GB system memory
13.3″ Full HD display

Dell Precision

Mobile workstation for creators
SSD storage
Sleek, portable build
Intel Core i7
Touch screen
15.6″ 4K display

MSI Laptop PS42

Premium business laptop
Thin-bezel design
Intel Core i7 (8th gen)
SSD storage
NVIDIA MX150
Fingerprint reader
14″ Full HD display

MSI P65 Creator

Mobile workstation for creators
Intel Core i7 (8th gen)
USB-C connectivity
PCIe SSD storage
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070
Fingerprint reader
15.6″ Full HD display

Acer TravelMate P249-M

Budget laptop
Under $500
SSD storage
14″ Standard HD display


The price each model of business laptop has a range connected to its specifications. More RAM, storage, CPU power, discrete graphics processing, and a high-definition display—each drives the cost.
How to appropriately pair laptop hardware with workload

To avoid overspending on features you won’t use, or purchasing an underpowered computer, know the basic hardware requirements for the tasks the laptop performs. Let business applications drive decisions about specifications for your laptops.

Hardware guidelines:

  • If your professionals are using multi-threaded applications (design, architecture, database management) they will need a more powerful CPU—a current generation Intel Core i7 in many cases. The a Dell Latitude has the reputation as the best laptop for engineering.
  • A laptop with more than 8 GB of memory helps a large application run in tandem with other applications.
  • Large-capacity storage drives (1 TB or more) are preferred when working with large files—like video, 3D renderings, and programming with large datasets.
  • Design applications (Autodesk, Solidworks, Premiere) require a workstation video card for pro performance. These are different from gaming graphics cards—NVIDIA Quadro and AMD FireEye instead of GeForce and Radeon.

 

Weighing display size, battery life, and portability

Each line of business laptop may have different options for display size and resolution. Displays range from 11.6 inches to 17 inches, measured corner to corner. Picture quality is measured by resolution, the number of pixels a screen has.

Most new laptops have 16:9 rectangular aspect ratio; a few exceptions exist and are 4:3

  • Standard HD – 1280 x 720 pixels
  • Full HD – 1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Quad HD or 2K – 2560 x 1440 pixels
  • 4K – 3840 x 2160 pixels

Larger displays tend to make the laptop heavier and consume battery faster. High resolution screens command a higher price. Only specialized photo and design work requires anything greater than HD resolution.

Most of the weight of a laptop is in the display, so the larger the screen the less portable it becomes. For a business traveler fielding e-mails and running basic office applications, a lightweight laptop with a smaller screen makes sense.

  • Heavyweight – 5.0 lbs. +
  • Middleweight – 3.5-5.0 lbs.
  • Lightweight – 2.5-3.5 lbs.

 

Finding the best laptop deals on NeweggBusiness

Base your decision-making on the type of work you do, and how much portability you need. That’s the best way to shop for a business laptop, and the correct approach for discovering value and finding deals during the process.

The fastest way to shop online at NeweggBusiness is by category, using filtering tools.

Let’s start at Laptops / Notebooks.

Use the menu to start. Find the Laptops / Notebooks category and subcategory.

That’s a lot of products! Let’s narrow it down using the site filters on the left side of the page.

Step One: Filter by the preferred OS. Step Two: Filter by specifications that match the software used for the job. Step Three: Filter by your display needs and preferences for portability. Step Four: Choose your budget range

That narrows it down to six choices!

Filters make it simpler to find a suitable business laptop for your team, but if you’re still in doubt, or need help with organizational purchasing, reach out to an Account Executive.

Summary
How to Choose a Business Laptop | 2017
Article Name
How to Choose a Business Laptop | 2017
Description
Every manufacturer has one or more “Pro” models designed to serve as a work-issued laptop. What makes a business laptop different from a consumer laptop?
Author
HardBoiled | NeweggBusiness
HardBoiled | NeweggBusiness
Adam Lovinus

Adam Lovinus

A tech writer and Raspberry Pi enthusiast from Orange County, California.

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