Thinking of buying a new PC? These days there are so many different options on the market, and those options aren’t just about the brand or model. There was a time when, if you wanted a PC, you just had to figure out which brand you liked, because they were all desktop PCs. Now, you have a desktop or laptop PCs, and increasingly, you have tablet PCs as well.
With all these options on the market, it might feel a bit overwhelming trying to figure out what type of PC is best for you. There are many questions you need to ask yourself about what you’ll be using it for, what your budget is, what qualities you favor over others, etc. We spoke with a provider of outsourced IT support London organizations have been going to for technical advice and support for over a decade – a London-based company called TechQuarters. They have always provided their customers with PCs, whether they wanted desktops, laptops, or tablets. According to TechQuarters, all 3 types of PCs can be suitable for both personal and work usage, it all depends on what you need them for.
What most people think of when they hear ‘PC’ is a desktop. These types of computers are a single unit containing a number of connection points, enabling you to connect a display output (such as a PC monitor, or even a TV), as input devices such as a keyboard and a mouse.
A desktop PC requires a constant power supply, usually via a cable that connects it to mains/utility power (a wall socket). Desktop PCs generally are the most powerful type of computer, because they are larger, and have a constant power supply, therefore they are capable of supporting more power-intensive hardware.
These days, only tasks that require serious computing power really require the use of a desktop PC. Such tasks include things like 3D design and modelling, graphic design, video editing and intensive color correction, and intensive gaming.
For those people wanting a more lightweight, portable PC, laptops are usually the first choice. These foldable, all-in-one units feature their own built-in display, keyboard, and ‘mouse’ (though it is more like a trackpad). Laptops have the huge advantage of being portable. They have a built-in rechargeable battery, and a form factor that means you can carry it around in a suitable bag, and use it wherever you like – as the name suggests, you just prop it on your lap, and you’re good to go.
Technology has come on in leaps and bounds in the last few years, meaning that many laptops have the power and capability that was once reserved for desktop PCs. Many jobs that would usually require a desktop can now be performed with a laptop.
The average office job can be completed entirely with the use of a modern laptop. Photographers and videographers often review footage on a laptop in the field and, although most reserve the full workload for a powerful desktop, they may also edit and manipulate footage on a sufficiently powerful laptop.
For personal usage, a laptop is usually the best option. It offers the right balance of portability with power. If you’re interested in light gaming, browsing the internet, and streaming music or video, a laptop is ideal.
Around a decade ago, touch-screen technology really took off. This lead to the vast majority of modern mobile phones produced being touch-screen ‘smartphones’ – mobile phones that had computing components, allowing them to be used in much the same way as a computer. This technology has kept on advancing to the point that a new type of device emerged: The Tablet. Combining mobile and computing technologies, this new brand of powerful, portable PCs are becoming more and more sophisticated (and popular).
Tablets are perfect for personal usage for those who do not require serious power from their PC. Tablets have their own applications and programs designed for them – which can include video and music streaming apps, news apps, games, etc.
As technology advances, however, more tablets are coming with quite impressive computing power. The iPad Pro, for example, is powerful enough to support video editing, and has been adopted by many creative professionals are a lightweight, but a highly capable tool for fieldwork.
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