Buying Guide: What Features Should Students Look for in a Laptop?

Computers are becoming an essential part of education and some universities and colleges encourage students bring their laptops along with them in the classroom. Some majors such as engineering requires an intensive use of computer such for testing, simulation and designing products like circuits and diagrams while other majors require the use of computer to make presentations and assignments, write papers and conduct researches.

We will tell you about features and options which you should look for when you purchase a laptop for your studies.

Determine Your Budget

Students usually have a low budget and some of them can only afford to purchase a used laptop. So it is important to determine your budget and keep it in mind before going to the market. Try to find a laptop with some discount deal for students. New college season is the best time to buy a laptop because most manufacturers offer great deals and discount coupons during this season. Such as Apple that gives a free shopping voucher at their online app store when you purchase a Notebook or iMac. You can also purchase a computer at Apple on installments for your studies.

By Haris Amjad Screenshot of http://store.apple.com/us/browse/campaigns/back_to_school?aid=aic-aos-naus-sea-bts-june2012-education-indexhero

How Much Power is Good Enough?

Laptops are available with a wide range of processing power; too much power is expensive and too little power won’t help you in studies. You should know what you want to do with a laptop and what you expect from it in future. Acer Aspire 5349-2635 costing $328.97 at Walmart is a good choice for students. It has a 1.6GHz processor, 4GB RAM, 320GB hard drive, Ethernet and Wi-Fi, Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium and MS Office 2010 Starter — ideal specifications for students.

But if you have graphic design or production major, go for laptops with higher specifications.

Connections

This is a very important feature that you should look for when purchasing a laptop for studies. Students have limited resources and they keep experimenting with products they design during their studies. Having a variety of connections such as USB, HDMI, Wi-Fi and Ethernet can help them easily connect external devices. Students from computer and software design departments spends a lot of time working with electronic devices, and often needs to create computer networks and conduct tests, and this feature can be very helpful for them.

Size and Weight

Size and weight of a student laptop are two very important points because students will need to carry their laptops along with the backpack across the campus. A laptop with a screen size of 15.6” is ideal and perfect for general purpose use, and has a fair size keyword. Since you are taking it to college or university, it would be great if your laptop can easily fit inside your backpack, so try to look for a laptop that you can easily carry with you.

Operating System and Utilities

Most new laptops come with a preinstalled copy of Microsoft Windows 7 along with some useful software such as a copy of MS Office Starter but a student has the right to expect more. Ask the customer representative at the computer store about preinstalled software. If you are purchasing a laptop from online store such as Walmart or Bestbuy, check the detailed list of installed software; this will save you a good sum of money.

Keep in mind that you are a student and you need to get most of your money while having some future plans for the laptop.

Author: Haris Amjad


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