When you are looking for a new laptop, whether it is your first computer or an update from the laptop you already own, it is important to pinpoint your needs and what you’re looking for. Here are some questions that you may find useful to ask:
- What do I need this laptop for?
Decide what it is that you want to be able to do with your new laptop. Is it primarily for emailing, and using the Internet? Or do you need to run photo editing software or store large video files? Most laptops now come with an Office suite included, with word processing and spreadsheet software. However, more specific purposes, such as photo editing, will require the inclusion of technical software, a quality processor and printer. Likewise, if you’re a gamer, and want to use your laptop to run large games, your laptop will need a good-size memory, and a decent graphics card.
- How much can I spend on this laptop?
The next thing to think about is budget. If you have a relatively small budget, this may limit the technical capabilities of the laptop that you buy. For around £150, however, you can still get a laptop perfectly suitable for word processing and surfing the Internet. If your budget is a little higher, you will be able to afford a computer with more memory, and better processing capabilities, meaning that you can play games with quality graphics, or install software that requires a large amount of memory. When considering the budget you have available, remember to take factors such as the cost of insurance and additional appliances into consideration.
- What hardware would I like the laptop to have?
There are a myriad of different options when choosing a laptop. Some laptops have built-in extra hardware that you may find useful, or may even consider a necessity. A built-in webcam, for example, would be handy if you often use a program like Skype to make video calls. Disc drives are also something to consider, if you like to watch films or to listen to music on your laptop. Although you can buy drives that connect to your laptop via USB, it is generally easier to buy a laptop that already has a disc drive built in.
- Are there any other features I would like the laptop to have?
There are of course other things to consider when you’re looking for the perfect laptop. For example, how important is appearance to you? Do you have a particular colour or style of laptop that you like? Likewise, if you are planning to travel with your laptop then you should work out what battery life you will need and how big the screen should be.
Once you’ve listed all of the qualities you need or would like your laptop to have, you’ll be very close to finding your ideal model.