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Buying A Student’s Laptop? Here’s What You Should Look For

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Computers, specifically laptops, have become an indispensable part of the lives of many students. From taking notes to completing projects, students may find themselves hard-pressed to complete their academic work without this versatile gadget.

If you are searching for options when it comes to buying a  new laptop for the student in your family, you could be overwhelmed with the sheer number of available choices out there. To help you narrow down your laptop search, here are a few essential factors that will allow you to make a better choice.

Take into account the usage requirement

If your child is going to use the laptop primarily for online research, writing assignments, and for entertainment, you do not need to buy one with powerful specs. In fact, you might want to opt for one that delivers basic features to perform the basic necessities.

On the other hand, if your child is going to run powerful software like AutoCAD, Adobe Photoshop, and other such programs, you will need a capable laptop that can handle the requirements of these programs.

Setting a budget

Once you have a fair idea of how your kid will use the computer, the next task that you need to accomplish is to set a budget. For some consumers, the act of overspending can be challenging to avoid. However, if your child will be using his new laptop for basic tasks, there is no need to spend more than what is needed.

On the converse side of the coin, avoid the temptation of finding heavily discounted machines that were manufactured years ago. Unless you have the budget and you are planning on purchasing a new laptop every year, you should take into account that laptops, like any other machine, can turn obsolete and may need upgrades.

Invest in durability

If there is one area that you should consider splurging on, that would be durability. This is particularly important if your child will use his laptop to school on a regular basis.

In this regard, consider buying a business-class laptop for him. This type of laptop is manufactured with a specific market segment in mind – people who travel regularly. And your student might just fit that bill.

Battery life

One of the significant portability tradeoffs is battery life. The last thing that your child needs is to have a laptop that’s about to run out of juice just when he is about to give a presentation in front of his class.

The best workaround here is to purchase a laptop with a battery that can last for eight hours or even more. Alternatively, you can just buy an external battery pack which can extend the battery life of the machine.

Screen size

Bigger is not necessarily better. For screen size, you would want to find a happy medium between portability and comfort. Too small and your kid will have a difficult time viewing what’s on the laptop’s monitor. Too big and he’ll have a difficult time carrying around a big and bulky laptop.

Storage size

This depends heavily on usage. For laptops that are to be used for basic tasks like assignments, essay writing, and the occasional movie and music streaming, a hard drive with low storage capacity is often adequate for the task at hand. Plus, most apps, including storage, are Cloud-based. Opting for a solid-state drive with a lower storage capacity affords users the benefit of speed and longer battery life.

On the other hand, if the machine is going to be used for resource-hungry software, you have to factor in storage size into the equation.

Explore all available options

Once you have created a shortlist of potential laptops to buy, it is a good idea to check for online reviews of each model on your list. Apart from visiting tech-related sites, it can be worthwhile to check actual user reviews of the product. This will allow you to make an informed choice on which laptop to purchase for your child even before you go to an offline or online electronics store.


George Azar is Co-Founder and CEO of He has extensive work experience with blue chip multinational organizations on both regional and global levels. George is also the founder of companies in the fields of advertising and media buying, professional trainings and development.