Note: Our comparison table only shows our top 5 picks. You can find the other recommendations within this article.
Although a professional PC may be something to consider, a laptop offers you various features like maximum portability, an excellent battery life, a high-resolution screen, and secure wireless integration to the internet and other devices.
However, not all laptops are the same.
This article highlights the various types of laptops and the different factors you should look at before investing in a business laptop.
Our Top Picks for Best Business Laptops
1. DELL PRECISION M5510 LAPTOP
Dell is well known for its better quality products and amazing after sale services. Here the company is presenting a laptop known as the Dell Precision M5510 that comes with unique and sophisticated built-in hardware.
This is an incredible machine in case you want to work on some heavy applications and programs.
A wide and sharp screen of 15.6 inches provides you royal experience. You can work efficiently with such size and also use it for entertainment purposes.
NVIDIA Quadro M1000m Graphic card is used to provide you superb picture quality. This screen is anti-glare and you can easily work on it for hours.
Great storage capacity is provided where you can store lots of pictures, HD videos, music and much more. In this notebook from Dell, you will find newly launched sensor that is used for securing your data and it can store up to 256 GB.
Dell is fulfilling all the requirements here by providing you with a long battery life of 16 hours. Now there is no botheration of charging the battery frequently. The express charge is a unique feature and comes with the 3-cell Lithium-ion battery.
There are 2 USB 3.0 ports available that give you the facility to transfer data fast and combo jack for headphone and microphone are also provided. One can also transfer data directly from SD card with SD card reader slot which supports up to 64 GB.
For the internet connectivity, excessive wireless options are included such as with Intel Dual Band wireless AC 5260 Wi-Fi. Security components are also intact with Intel Platform trust technology. Chassis lock slot support is inbuilt which keeps your data safe.
If your budget is pretty high and would like to buy one of the best business laptops, then this is as good as it can get.
2. ACER CHROMEBOOK 14
This is a beautiful chromebook by Acer and it is extremely attractive due to its silver color aluminum body.
The company promises 12 hours of battery life with remarkable hardware quality as well as performance.
Unlike usual chromebooks, the Acer Chromebook 14 is available with a large screen size of 14 inches with 1920 by 1080 screen resolution which gives you a great pleasure while working on this.
Intel HD Graphics is also inbuilt which gives you good experience while watching movies and videos.
Intel Celeron with 1.6 GHz is provided to work efficiently and RAM is just like other good machines with 4 GB DDR3 configuration. It is a perfect business laptop that comes with pre-installed Chrome OS.
You can use its wireless options to connect it with the internet and decent rate of data transfer is also possible with its USB 3.0 ports. It is good to have such features for an affordable price.
The storage capacity of Acer Chromebook 14 is excellent with 32 GB SSD. You can store plenty of your data files on it but for multimedia files you’ll have to use one of the cloud services.
Mostly people buy Chromebooks because they are extremely light weighted. Acer has worked really hard on this business laptop as it weighs around 3.4 pounds and it’s really easy to carry it with you anywhere.
3. LENOVO THINKPAD X1 CARBON
4th generation Lenovo ThinkPad is really an outstanding invention of Lenovo because of its thin and lightweight body. It is a terrific machine which is available on number of online ecommerce sites. With fingerprint reader, it is a well built and one of the complex configured machines.
It weighs only around 1.2 kg and can be easily carried around. Worthy carbon fiber is used in the manufacturing process which makes it perfect for rough and tough usage.
This particular machine has also passed lots of military grade tests to give you a perfect working experience during rough weather conditions.
Processor and RAM configuration matters a lot when you are expecting smooth and fast performance. It is well equipped with 6th Generation Intel Core i7-8650U with a working power of 2.8 GHz.
For multi-tasking and working on heavy programs and applications, 16GB RAM is included. This configuration is superb while working on Windows 10 which is pre-installed on this notebook.
Fingerprint technology is provided for the better safety with a very good fingerprint reader. Storage capacity is respectable with 512 GB SSD hard drive and that means you can store tons of your data files and other bulk data without worrying about the space.
4. Apple MacBook Pro MLW72LL/A
Apple is well known for the uniqueness whether it is software or hardware. In latest version of Apple MacBook Pro, you can see the Retina Display and Touch Bar option.
The retina display makes it very interesting to work and it will fully satisfy you with 15.4 inches of display and 2880 x1800 pixels screen resolution. A Radeon Pro 555X graphics processor is used to deliver the best picture quality.
All the latest inventions are used while making this wonderful machine and here you are getting 2.6 GHz Intel Core i7 processor for amazing processing speed with 16 GB RAM and 256 GB of storage for smooth multitasking.
The above mentioned configuration is amazing for working on Mac OS. This is a professional laptop that can enhance your productivity and efficiency in working. With the excellent battery life of 10 hours, you can work without any interruption.
The overall reviews of Apple Mac Book Pro are extremely positive and it comes in silver color weighing just about 4 pounds.
5. Dell Inspiron i5559-7080SLV
Dell Inspiron i5559-7080SLV is a compact machine with great capabilities of working. Numeric number keypad is also provided on the Keyboard for swift working with numeric data. The touch screen is also an advantage for working on many applications.
For the better and professional working, 15.6 inches screen is provided with 1920 x 1080 pixels of LED screen resolution. Working on this display will not hurt your eyes because it provides best graphics quality without any radiation.
Dell Inspiron i5559-7080SLV is fully loaded with high-quality hardware. 6th Generation Intel Core i7-6500U processor is used with 3.10 GHz.
In addition to this, 8 GB DDR3L RAM is included for flawless working. That is beyond the expectation and gives you freedom of powerful and excellent working speed.
Only a few Laptops come with this much storage capacity as it is packed with 1TB of hard drive all your games, HD movies and data files without any issues.
The wireless options of this laptop are decent as it comes with 3 USB ports and decent WiFi hardware.
6. Asis VivoBook S15
Asus is a well-known Japanese company known for its diverse products and superior quality. The company is proudly presenting a fantastic laptop, namely the Asus VivoBook 15.
It is built for giving you good experience with 8th generation of Intel Core i7-8250U processor and 8 GB of RAM is perfect for the people who like multi –tasking.
Display quality is very good with 1920 x 1080 pixels and the screen size is 15.6 inches. Intel HD graphics is integrated to give you nice picture quality.
It’ll be very easy to transfer data because there are 4 USB ports available in the device with 3.0 configurations for lightning speed. You can enjoy internet connectivity with 802.11 A/c wireless hardware.
Data storage capacity for this laptop is 256 GB and Windows 10 Home is pre-installed.
7. ASUS F556UA-AB54
Many of us prefer working on the latest version of windows. ASUS has launched the ASUS F556UA-AB54 with decent configuration and beautiful look for the amazingly low price. Windows 10 is installed for working comfortably on all kinds of latest programs.
You can enjoy swift working with 7th-generation Intel Core i5 processor with 2.5 GHz power. For working on more than one program, 8GB DDR4 SDRAM is installed. This is one of the best business laptops regardless of for what you are going to use.
Two USB ports are built-in to provide you with the ease of fast data transfer. One of them is USB 2.0 and another one is USB 3.0.
Most of the time battery life is a huge issue with portable laptops but ASUS has taken very good care of the issue and its battery can last 2 times more than a regular laptop.
It is normal to wait for the booting process. On the other side, ASUS F556UA-AB54 NB takes almost no time for booting.
Fast performance is assured with 256 GB SSD and now you can search files and folders on your laptop just in seconds without wasting any of your precious time.
Entertainment is also an essential part of life and laptops make no exception here. It provides you with a display of 15.6 inches with 1920 x 1080 pixels of screen resolution. You can easily work on this screen and also watch full HD movies.
8. Lenovo IdeaPad 720s
Almost all of the electronic products from Lenovo are known for durability and affordability. Intel processors are among the most popular ones these days and you’re getting a 8th generation Intel Core i5-8250U processor with up to 3.4 GHz processing speed.
It comes with a 14 inch of FHD display and 1920x1080 resolution of LED backlight display. The display is bright and sharp. It's relatively small but this reduces the laptop size and makes it more portable. However, you might want to consider a large external monitor for use in the office.
When it comes to battery life, it provides a very respectable 14 hours for basic computing tasks. You’re also getting a fingerprint reader, 1 SD card reader, 1 USB 3.1 Type C Thunderbolt port for fast data transfer and charging.
Connectivity through wireless is quick and durable with 802.11 Wi-Fi and 4.0 Bluetooth can also establish an easy and fast connection with other devices.
Windows are always considered as user-friendly and easy-to-learn operating system. This business laptop is fully loaded with latest features and comes with pre-installed Windows 10 64-bit operating system.
9. Acer Aspire E 15
The Acer Aspire E 15 is a newly launched business laptop that comes with all the latest software and hardware.
The overall look of the laptop is stylish and cool. It can easily last up to 12 hours while watching movies and videos.
The big screen is always an added benefit and makes your working comfortable. It’s such a treat for those who love bigger display.
Screen size is 15.6 inches with 1920 x 1080 pixels of screen resolution. For better graphics quality Intel HD 620 is also there.
Decent RAM is essential if you want to use the laptop for multi-tasking work. It includes 6 GB of RAM and 2.4 GHz Intel Core i3 processor for maximum performance. You can upgrade the memory and storage yourself if you need more capacity.
It is a decent model for people who want to work without any interruption of charging battery. On a single charge it can easily last for around 11 hours and also comes with 2x USB 3.0 ports for quick data transfer.
10. ASUS ZenBook 13
ASUS ZenBook 13 is a decent laptop if you are looking for fingerprint reader. In addition to this, you can also log in through Windows Hello feature and that is pretty unique.
When it comes to looks, it’s a perfect machine with decent hardware and performance.
You can expect good performance from this machine due to its latest 7th generation Intel Core i5-8250U processor and 8 GB of DDR4 SDRAM.
You will experience amazing display with Intel UHD 620 graphics and 13-inch of full HD display with 1920 by 1080 pixels of resolution.
Battery life is pretty good with 14 hours of backup and it also includes 3 x 3.1 USB ports for all your connectivity needs.
Many prefer working in Windows 10 due to its speed and ease of usage, and this laptop comes pre-installed with the latest version of Windows 10.
This laptop weighs in at just 2.6 pounds and is extremely easy to carry it around. It also includes an 256 GB SSD storage drive which will help you with the overall speed of laptop.
What Differentiates a Business Laptop from a Consumer Laptop?
Several things differentiate a business laptop from a consumer version.
The main differences between them are as follows:
1. Business Laptops Last Long and are Sturdier
Laptop manufacturers create consumer devices with the assumption that they always want to stay on top of the latest trends.
They also have the idea that consumer users do not spend as much time on their laptops as business users.
All these ideas influence the way these laptops are built.
Business laptops are created for all-day usage and are durable.
Also, business laptop designs hardly vary from one year to the other; this makes them easier to maintain. The availability of batteries that can be swapped gives you an extended lifespan of business laptops.
Elite business devices are built with durability in mind, and most of them are dust and water resistant. Furthermore, many can withstand regular knocks and drops.
Consumer laptops are not as durable as they are not built to be used for multiple hours a week for years.
2. Business Laptops Have More Configuration Options
Most elite laptops are created with vast users in mind as most businesses don’t purchase one laptop at a time.
What this means is that you can enjoy plenty of configuration options with business laptops.
Although consumer laptops can offer some specs like a higher-quality display and extra storage capacity, the options are limited compared to what business machines have.
3. Business Laptops are built for IT management and Security
Standard business laptops come with biometric fingerprint scanners, a feature that is rare on consumer devices.
Business machines are built with software that allows you to secure and manage devices on enterprise-class networks.
Consumer laptops are built with looks in mind, and you’ll find glossy displays, eye-catching chassis, and modern-style keyboards. They do not have advanced security features that business devices have.
4. Business Laptops are Expensive unlike Consumer Laptops
While both types of machines have similar components and run on the same operating system and software, the primary factor that differentiates them is the price.
Business machines cost more than consumer models. The price tag difference is because most business wants devices that are easy to maintain and those that are built to last.
Business-oriented devices also have robust tech support, extended warranties, remote-management capabilities, more security features, and extra replacement parts.
Why You Should Avoid Convertible Laptops and Ultrabooks
Convertible laptops are thicker and weigh more than regular laptops.
Also, they have poor viewing angles compared to regular laptops. Although there are some business laptops with non-reflective screens, most of them are glossy which limits viewing angles.
Ultrabooks are created to work with solid state hard drives.
If you’re planning to have lots of data stored, these laptops are not your best option as they have smaller storage capacity and you can’t replace the drive.
You won’t find a CD drive, VGA or HDMI connections on an ultrabook. Ultrabooks with dedicated graphics can get hot when pushed, which makes them unsuitable if you’re always working from your laptop.
What Specifications Should You Look For In a Business Laptop?
Business laptops have specific desirable specifications that you should look for when buying.
Some of these specifications include:
Size of the Laptop
Knowing the external physical dimensions is essential when shipping in a laptop.
All laptops will list three physical aspects that are the height, width, and depth.
The Screen Size
A laptop’s screen size is a critical factor that you should carefully evaluate. Business devices have a screen size of 12 inches to 17 inches. The 12-inch models are more portable.
Laptops with large display sizes improve productivity but might not be ideal if you intend to carry your laptop for business meetings. A business laptop with a 14-inch screen size is considered an equal size that is guaranteed to meet your business needs.
It’s essential to go for a laptop with a narrow screen size if you’re looking for a big display. That gives you the brightness you need without affecting the size of the machine.
The screen and resolution go hand in hand. Premium range resolution is considered to be 1920 x 1080 pixels. High-end models have a resolution that goes up to 4K. Also, advanced business devices have Ultra-high Definition with 3840 x 2160 pixels.
The Weight of the Laptop
The weight of a laptop affects its portability.
As someone who frequently works from the office or your home, weight is not an essential factor.
However, if you’re a regular business traveler, you can attest to the fact that a lighter machine is comfortable to carry even though you may lack the functionality of a bigger device.
You’ll find it difficult to identify what’s included in the weight as most laptop companies state the weight of the computer with a battery installed.
Sometimes, they may list a weight which depends on the battery type or media bay installed. What the weight may not include detachable keyboards or power adapters.
It’s critical to look at the travel weight to get an accurate estimate of the laptop’s real weight. A precise figure should include the weight of the laptop with its media bays and power adapters.
Nonetheless, weight should not be a significant factor if you’ll have the device plugged in most of the time.
The Battery Life
When purchasing a business laptop, it’s critical to consider how much battery life you’ll need.
You should note that having a big screen and using your built-in DVD slot a lot of times will drain your battery in no time.
Previously you’d find Ni-Cad and NiMH batteries, but they have been replaced by Lithium-Ion batteries. These batteries are efficient and have a low discharge rate. Although some laptops claim to provide up to five hours of uptime, this is not necessarily the case.
That time could be how long the battery lasts if it had a blank screen saver and you didn’t use it for five hours. Under continual use, you should have at least 2-3 hours of battery charge. You might consider buying an extra battery if you plan to be on a bus or a train for ten hours at a time.
Laptop manufacturers list the number of cells, where a cell has a specific capacity. A 6-cell battery has 50% less capacity than a 9-cell battery. Also, some manufacturers make add-on batteries at an extra cost. While this can improve your battery life, it can also lead to extra weight on the machine.
The lifetime of a battery depends on the battery type, its age, and how often the battery is used. Knowing these factors will help you decide on a laptop that fits the amount of battery life you’re looking for.
The Specs of the Laptop
After comparing several laptops that fit your budget and everyday needs, it’s time to evaluate specific specs.
It can be difficult to look at the specs if you’re unfamiliar with all the tech terms. Here are some specs in simple terms.
CPU refers to the central processing unit or the processor.
The CPU is like the engine of your car, which means it affects a laptop’s usability. Many people spend a lot of money on high-end processors when they could do with a simple, functional one.
Low-end processors like Intel Pentium, Intel Atom, and Intel Celeron are best for light use and won’t work for business use. Midrange processors like Intel core M series are found in hybrid and lightweight laptops.
With this type of processor, you can handle essential work like sending emails or taking notes occasionally. You’ll need more power if your business runs robust programs.
Most businesses function well with Intel Core i3 and Core i5. These type of processors are ideal if you run massive programs a core i3 works for standard business uses like photo storage, media streaming, and sending emails.
Laptops with core i5 are best suited for extensive programs like QuickBooks. Core i7 processors are found in high-end laptops and work best for a business user who multitasks on a laptop. You’ll be better with a core i7 if you are involved in 3D modeling or video editing.
AMD processors are considered low-end. You can find AMD A, FX, or E Series in some laptops. The company refers to them as APUs instead of CPUs. They provide excellent performance for the money that allows you to stream media, surf the web, and get some tasks done.
The memory of a laptop is a vital factor that you should not overlook when comparing business laptops.
The short-term memory that a laptop has is called RAM or random access memory. RAM is what the laptop needs to run data and applications.
A laptop with a RAM of 4GB or 8GB would perfectly suit your business. If you’re running heavy graphics work or fame playing on your notebook, you’ll need more RAM.
Some laptops allow you to upgrade your RAM if you don/t have the budget to purchase a laptop with a higher RAM. Check to see that the laptop you’ve chosen can take an upgrade.
You might be wondering what the difference between DDR3 and DDR4 RAM is if you’re in the market for more RAM. DDR4 operates at a low voltage when compared to DDR3. Speed is another difference between these two RAMS. DDR3 started at 800 MT/s and, some go as high as 2133. DDR4 starts at 2133 MHz with the latter; you can enjoy an increase in bandwidth.
As a business person, finding a laptop that fits your storage needs is critical. Most computers have a hard disk drive while others have a solid-state drive and a hard drive. Some only have a solid-state drive for long-term storage.
SSDs replace the spinning disk with memory chips that are the same as those you’d find on a USB storage stick or a camera.
Solid-state drives are increasingly popular although they are newer than hard drives. The reason for this is because they are faster and do not have any moving parts, which guarantees durability.
They are also compact and consume less power, unlike standard hard drives. Solid state drives are ideal if you can work with a smaller capacity drive and you don’t mind the price.
Remember that the more space you have, the better your business will run. You should be able to factor in speed when evaluating a hard drive.
The new PCle x4 among SSDs offer triple the speed of regular SATA drives. Some units use eMMC memory, a solid state drive, but it’s not as fast as a mechanical hard drive.
Graphics Card or the GPU
Choosing the graphics card on a laptop is sometimes a difficult decision.
You’ll come across laptops with either an integrated GPU or a dedicated GPU.
Integrated graphics processing units use the system’s memory instead of the RAM. If your laptop has 4GB RAM, the video card uses at least 5% of the available memory for graphics processing. The percentage may differ based on the task performed.
An integrated GPU unit is inexpensive, uses less power, and generates less heat. This type of GPU is perfect for people editing videos and those involved in 2D gaming.
A dedicated graphics processing unit has its separate source of video memory. If you have 8GB memory and you’re using a GeForce GTX 680M video card with its memory, your system’s memory is independent. The dedicated GPU is ideal for professional graphic designers and those into 3D gaming.
The downside of dedicated graphics is that they consume more power which decreases the battery life. Also, laptops with this graphics are more expensive than those with integrated GPU.
The Operating System Installed
Buying a business laptop means that you need to have an operating system that you’re comfortable working with.
The right operating system should run all the programs you need and perform efficiently.
Deciding on a particular brand depends more on aesthetics than performance. There are three primary operating systems mainly:
Windows operating system is popular and is one of the standards for work laptops.
You’ll have more options to choose from when you go with a Windows operating system than if you select another option. The best part is that you can find Windows machines in any price range and with every configuration you want.
The latest version of this operating system is Windows 10, which has plenty of features to boost your productivity. What’s more, the OS has a virtual assistant app, Cortana can perform various tasks like checking the weather or scheduling meetings. You can also set up multiple virtual desktops using Task View.
Apple OS X
If you’re able to pay a premium price for a machine with a well-designed interface, a MacBook that runs on Apple’s OS X is an excellent choice.
Creative professionals are known to use Apple laptops due to their ability to run programs like Dreamweaver, high screen quality, and function keys.
However, the brand has lost part of its popularity as most devices have less RAM than previous models. Also, Apple laptops seem to target a mass audience instead of a niche.
Chrome OS by Google is found in all Chromebooks, and it’s based around browsing and the company’s products.
Everything you do on a Chromebook is completed through a Chrome or a Google app. The best part is that you can download a variety of Chrome apps.
Chrome operating system is an excellent system if you spend most of your time on the web browsing. Also, it’s cheaper compared to other operating systems. With a Chromebook, the operating system automatically downloads and install the updates, a feature that can save you time.
If you’re looking for a Chromebook, choose one that has at least 16GB storage, 4GB RAM, and a 1920 x 1080 resolution.
The only major drawback is that the Chrome operating system is only based on Chrome/ Google software. You can’t install applications or programs outside of Chrome.
Other Features to Look Out For
You shouldn’t buy a laptop that doesn’t have a USB 3.0 port.
The laptop should have multiple ports that allow you to plug in a keyboard or a mouse when the need arises.
Most laptops in the market will have HDMI and USB 3.0 ports, but you’ll find some laptops will have Thunderbolt 3 or USB Type-C ports that are USB Type-Compatible.
A Type-C port is a great addition as you can use it to connect to docks and universal chargers.
Why are Apple Laptops Popular with Business People?
Apple laptops are a favorite for business people for various reasons.
Macs come with excellent software that makes it easy to work, transfer photos, and edit videos or photos. The best part is that the software is available for free unlike in Windows PCs where you have to pay for the software.
The interconnectivity between devices is another fantastic feature that comes with Apple laptops.
If you already have an iPad or iPhone, you’ll find it easier as they work well together. You can check your emails, work on your iPad and transfer the files to your Mac with ease.
Many people do not back up their computer on a regular basis. However, with Apple laptops, you don’t have to worry as they come with Time Machine and the Cloud, which backs up your files automatically.
Also, Apple Care is worth the money. Their customer service is unmatched, and you can have your machine assessed and fixed in no time.
Price Range of Business Laptops
Business laptops vary in price.
You can find a good laptop that ranges from $899 to $1400 depending on the features available. These laptops are expensive than consumer laptops because they have extra features to meet business needs.
Elite laptops have Trusted Platform Module for secure access, facial recognition, and fingerprint readers, and Intel-vPro-certified networking and power management.
Also, you’ll have access to a professional version of Windows and less bloatware as compared to consumer laptops.
Business Laptop Accessories
Having business laptop accessories makes it easy to perform multiple beneficial tasks.
They help to enhance your productivity. Some of these must-have accessories include:
Business Laptop Accessories Importance of Warranty
Business laptops, unlike consumer laptops, are built to withstand harsh conditions, the reason why laptop manufacturers advertise spill-proofing and durability.
However, no laptop is full-proof, and sometimes a simple drop can lead to a huge mess.
Check a manufacturer’s warranty when buying a business laptop. Most consumer laptops offer up to a standard one year warranty, but as a business person, you should look for a device that offers up to three years of warranty.
Don’t forget that you’ll have to handle a downtime if your machine breaks.
Check to see if the manufacturer offers on-site support on the same day or the next day. Knowing this will help you decide on a backup plan or wait until your computer gets repaired.
After going through these factors, you can now narrow down your choice of business laptops based on your needs and budget.
Business devices offer more features than consumer laptops but at a higher price point. Do your homework and find a laptop that offers the best deal.