Buying a laptop for business use

  Chris Walton 10:14 17 Sep 2006

Can someone please tell me the spec I need to use a laptop for business use. Standard office programmes to be used plus VISIO and MS PROJECT.
I am going to be working remotely from the home and office lots so battery power, reliability and weight are all important to me?

  Taff™ 11:45 17 Sep 2006

Check Battery Life before you buy. Take the claimed life and take off 20% as a rough guide. You can reckon on having to replace a battery every three years if you use the laptop every day on battery power.

Otherwise I`d say that most laptops these days will do what you have stated, even the cheap ones so start to think practically. A 15" monitor is a minimum spec and avoid a widescreen. (They`re great for DVD`s and spreadsheets but lousy for Word documents,Powerpoint etc - you keep having to scroll up and down)

I use a laptop all the time for business and you will benefit from a standard mouse and keyboard - put simply a laptop keyboard and touchpad are not the most ergonomical for prolonged use. I opt for a wireless keyboard and mouse set up - If I`m only going to use the laptop for short periods I use the laptop keyboard and a retractable mini-mouse. I don`t carry these about with me all the time, I tend to leave them where I am normally going to be based. When I do take them with me I use a small rigid framed case on wheels. Enough for laptop, Wireless KB & Mouse and plenty of room for files.

Lastly choose a laptop with plenty of RAM - minimum of 512Mb preferably 1 GB and a good speed processor. AMD Turion (?) or Pentium Centrino. I really don`t worry about the weight too much - the trolley bag sorts that out.

  Taff™ 12:09 17 Sep 2006

Oh and Wi-fi is essential these days. Most of my clients have a wireless access point these days and they are quite happy to let me use it. I also use a 3G datacard for hooking up to hotspots and downloading e-mails on the move. These often come free with the laptop from certain suppliers - the datacard is expensive to use on a PAYG basis but OK for emergencies.

click here - I recommend the supplier too.

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