Picking the right laptop for remote work

Picking the right laptop for remote work

Struggling to choose the right laptop for remote work? You're not alone! With so many options on the market, picking a laptop can feel like a confusing maze. But don’t worry, we'll simplify the selection process by highlighting the essential features you need to consider in order to ensure a smooth and productive workflow, wherever you choose to work from.


Two key components determine how smoothly your laptop handles your workload: the processor and the RAM.

Think of the processor as your laptop's brain. It tackles everything you throw at it, from checking emails to running complex video editing software. Here's a quick guide to choosing the right processor based on your needs:

  • Basic tasks (email, web browsing) – An Intel Core i3 or AMD Ryzen 3 will do the trick.
  • Multitasking and moderate workloads – An Intel Core i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 offers smoother performance.
  • Heavy workloads (video editing, graphic design) – Go for the power of an Intel Core i7 or AMD Ryzen 7 processor.

The RAM, on the other hand, is like your laptop's short-term memory. The more RAM you have, the more applications you can run simultaneously without slowdowns. Here's a guide to picking the right amount of RAM for your needs:

  • Basic tasks – 8 GB of RAM is a good starting point.
  • Multitasking and moderate workloads – 16 GB of RAM is ideal for keeping things running smoothly.
  • Running heavy workloads – Consider a laptop with at least 32 GB of RAM.

Portability and battery life

Laptops are meant to be portable, and that means freedom from being chained to your desk. Aim for a laptop that can last at least eight hours on a single charge. This will allow you to work from a coffee shop, a quiet corner in the park, or even your couch without worrying about running out of juice in the middle of the workday.

If you travel a lot or work from various locations, a lightweight laptop is essential. It will save your back and make carrying it around a breeze.

Storage space

Storage space refers to where all your files, documents, and programs live. There are two main storage types to consider: solid-state drive (SSD) and hard disk drive (HDD).

SSDs use flash memory, like what's in your phone, to enable your laptop to boot up and launch programs in a flash. However, they tend to be pricier per gigabyte of storage compared to HDDs.

In contrast, HDDs offer significantly more storage space for your money, making them a great option if you need to store a lot of videos, photos, or documents. But because they rely on spinning platters to access data, they're noticeably slower than SSDs.

The good news is that many laptops come with a combination of SSD and HDD storage, allowing you to get the best of both worlds. The SSD can store your operating system and frequently used programs for a speedy experience, while the HDD provides ample space for your larger files.

Communication and connectivity

Staying connected is crucial for remote work. Ensure your laptop meets these communication needs:

  • Webcam and microphone – A built-in webcam and microphone are essential for video conferencing. Choose a laptop with a good-quality webcam and mic for clear communication.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity – Opt for a laptop with the latest Wi-Fi standards (Wi-Fi 6) to ensure a stable internet connection, especially if your remote work relies heavily on online collaboration tools.
  • USB ports – These are essential for connecting external devices such as printers, scanners, or external hard drives.
  • HDMI port – This allows you to connect your laptop to an external monitor.

While newer laptops might be thinner and sleeker, they might sacrifice ports for aesthetics. Make sure the laptop you choose has the ports you need to connect your essential devices.

Display quality

Invest in a high-quality laptop display that keeps you comfortable and productive throughout your workday. When it comes to resolution, aim for a bright, high-resolution screen. Full HD (1920 x 1080) is a great starting point, providing sharp visuals for everyday tasks. For even crisper images, consider higher resolutions like 4K, but take note that they can drain battery life faster.

Next, think about screen size. This will depend on your preferences and how you typically use your laptop. For ultimate portability, a 13-inch or 14-inch screen is ideal. If you require a huge screen for multitasking, a 15-inch or 16-inch display may be better for you. And if you need an even larger workspace, 17-inch displays provide maximum screen real estate but make for a heavier laptop.

Choosing the right laptops for your remote workforce can be overwhelming. That's where partnering with a managed IT services provider comes in handy. We can assess your needs, recommend suitable laptops within your budget, and manage the setup and configuration process for you. Get in touch with us today.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.