Buying a computer for your firm can be a tricky business. There are so many confusing technical specifications available, where do you start?
In this blog, we’re going to look at what type of computer you should be using in your business.
To help you understand the different components inside of a PC, we’re going to be comparing the different parts of a computer to a restaurant!
Don’t use Home PC’s
Now I am going to start with a quick story.
I recently visited a business owner who had steadily grown his business from working alone to four full-time employees. He was now at a time where he needed more specialist help.
What he’d done in the past is gone to PC World to buy his computers, which is what a lot of people do when they’re starting out.
Unfortunately, he had been sold the wrong computers. The computers he had were designed for home use and not for the business world.
Now that he wanted to grow his computer network, he first had to spend more money on upgrading the computers he had already bought.
So in this blog, I want to make buying a computer for your business a little easier
The CPU is the Chef
The first thing we’re going to talk about is something inside of a computer called a processor or CPU
Now think about visiting a restaurant. The processor is like the chef.
The faster the chef is, the quicker you’re going to get your food. If your chef works slowly and takes his time, then your computer will be slow.
If you have a processor that uses dual-core - then you have just got yourself, two chefs, preparing the food.
In the marketplace today, you will see lots of different processors around.
Some of the common ones are:
- Intel i3
- Intel i5
- Intel i7
For a good business computer, you will want to buy a computer with an Intel i5 processor.
The Memory is the Chef’s table
Let’s now move onto memory - this can be also known as RAM (nothing to do with sheep). Memory is like the chef’s table where he prepares his food.
The bigger his table is, the more food he can prepare at once. When he hasn’t got enough table space, he can only work on one recipe at once.
If a recipe calls for lots of ingredients - he might be struggling and there will be a delay in getting your food.
Likewise, with computer programs. Some take up alot of RAM, so if your table isn’t big enough or your table isn’t big enough, the programs will run very slow.
A common problem is when people have lots of Google Chrome tabs open. Each one can take up a lot of memory.
So if you have a slow chef (processor) and he hasn’t got a big table, you’re going to be in trouble.
When it comes to buying a computer you will see computers with memory sizes such as these
For a good business computer, you want as much memory as the budget will permit. But a standard computer we supply would have 8GB of memory.
The Hard Drive is the Chef’s cupboards
Now, there is also the hard drive.
Back to our restaurant - the hard drive is the size of the chef’s cupboards. He needs to keep all of the ingredients that he needs for the food he prepares. When his cupboards get full, he needs to clear out some older things that he doesn’t need anymore.
When looking to buy a computer, you will see hard drive spaces such as these
- 128GB SSD
- 256GB SSD
- 500GB SATA
- 1TB SATA
Now the bigger the drive, the more it holds. But one tip here - you want to buy a computer with an SSD and not a SATA
An SSD stands for solid state drive…. And they work much much faster than SATA drives.
So for your business, you want the 256GB SSD as standard
Windows 10 Version
You’ll be glad to know that we’re at the end of the restaurant analogy. But I have some more recommendations. The next thing to talk about is software.
All laptops currently available have Windows 10 installed. Windows 10 is what you want for your business.
But you want Windows 10 Professional and not Windows 10 Home
Windows 10 Home is, as the name suggests for home use. There are certain features in Windows 10 Home that make it difficult to use in a workplace.
Windows 10 Professional on the other hand is designed for business use.
That is where my customer that I talked about at the start of this blog went wrong. He had purchased PC’s which had Windows 10 Home installed.
Best PC Manufacturer?
What about manufacturers? Which PC manufacturer is the best?
This topic can really polarise opinion. Just like cars, people can have their favourite and trusted brands that they’ve used for years.
For me, when it comes to business I would always recommend Dell or HP. These are good quality business laptops. If you were wanting to cut costs, then the Lenovo brand would come in third place.
Size of Screen
There are a few other factors that influence the price of computers and laptops. The first one is the size.
Laptop sizes are measured by their screen size. The standard laptop screen size is 15.6 inches.
You can get a smaller screen which measures around 13.3 inches. These laptops are generally more lightweight.
Or you can get a laptop with a bigger screen of around 17.6inches.
Laptops which are bigger or smaller will probably be more expensive than those of a standard size.
Quality of Chassis
Another thing that will make a laptop more expensive is the quality or the chassis/cover.
It might have exactly the same hardware under the bonnet, but if the covering is plastic and cheap, then the laptop will be less money for a more steel finish.
Extended Warranty is Wise
Most of the standard business laptops will have a one-year manufacturer's warranty. This warranty covers the hardware, not the software.
If anything goes wrong with the hardware within the first 12 months, the manufacturer will send an engineer to replace the faulty hardware.
My recommendation is always to buy an extended warranty for your device. You want your laptop to last around 3-5 years, so it makes sense to get a 3-5 extended warranty. This level of warranty would probably cost you around £50-£100.
So, there you have it, my recommendation for the best business laptop.
Just to summarise, if you were going to buy a standard business laptop today that would perform well, you should be looking for:
- A Dell, HP or Lenovo
- Core i5 Processor
- 8GB Memory
- 256GB SSD
- Windows 10 Professional