07/06/2011

By Ben Weiner, CEO of Conjungo

In recent times there’s been a plethora of developments within the computing market. Up until fairly recently, if you needed a computer your choice was either a PC otherwise known as a desktop or a laptop. The change with the development of the notebook which retained similar features to laptops but were smaller even more portable as a result. Today, we have a greater choice, net books and now tablets. Even more confusing are devices that sit between tablets and mobile phones which muddies the water even more!

So when you’re faced with a choice of what to buy, it can be confusing to say the very least. Naturally, the most important factor is your budget and it’s true to say that you need to buy the most powerful system and maximise your budget. However, I’m faced with this choice myself at the moment and having done some relatively rigorous research, I thought I’d clarify which does what and what technology is best...

Most people are au fait with the traditional PC (personal computer), generally speaking, powerful but takes up a large amount of space (though that’s changing) but for a typical office environment is good value. The down side is they lack portability or mobility. Netbooks are another choice but lack the power and functionality of a PC. They don’t have for example, a built in DVD read/writer/player though of course that’s not the end of the world. As the name implies, they are good for web browsing, emails etc but their strength is not for real hard work i.e. if you’re thinking of using it for generating spreadsheets, presentations and documents. The upside is that they are light in weight, small and hence eminently portable.

Now, this is where it gets even more confusing, the development and launch by Apple last year of Tablet computing. As with all of Apple’s products, sleek, well designed and again portable. Other manufacturers have entered the market using Google’s Android operating system to run applications.

Some, like Apple offer an external keyboard and functionality similar to a generic PC but the reality is that they lack power and with touch screen technology are better used for multi-media environments, browsing and games. Finally, of course there are the more traditional laptops or notebooks, all offer similar functionality in that they are able to be used for work purposes and produce spreadsheets, documents, presentations, surf the web and play DVD’s.

They can differ in size from some 13” to larger 17” screens. So what do you need to be aware of? Best bet is to try a couple. Do they have full size keyboards, are they too small and potentially impractical or perhaps too big and bulky to be truly mobile? How much does it weigh? How long will the battery last? If you really travel a lot then you want a device that lasts a few hours.

And so to my advice, for what it’s worth. What should you buy? Well, bottom line, if you want the best of all worlds, power, mobility and flexibility then a laptop or notebook does it for me every time. Don’t take my word for it, try a couple and see what you prefer but remember you have to live with the device you’ve bought and while some computers look great and funky, consider your real needs before forking out. If you’re still unsure, drop me line, I’d be able to help - bweiner@conjungo.com


Watch the video below featuring Jemima Gibbons of AAB Engage discussing ow social media can positively impact your business.

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