What should you look for when you buy a new computer?

I received a request from a client and her husband for advice on how to buy a new computer. Her husband’s office had just received a special offer from Dell, and they wanted to take advantage of it. She didn’t know if she should purchase a laptop or a tablet.

My client was kind enough to allow me to share with you the recommendations I put together for her and her husband. You might not be in the market specifically for a Dell, but the more general criteria that follows for what to consider when you buy a new computer will be helpful no matter which brand you prefer.

“Here’s my roundup of computer purchase information to consider.

Dell Computers

Dell doesn’t have tablets. They have what they call 2-in-1 laptops because it’s a laptop with a screen that folds backwards and acts like a tablet.

Based on your needs, anything in the $329 – $429 should do.

If you want plenty of storage for movies, books and photos, look in the $449-$599 range.

If you’re more interested in a laptop, look at these selections. The first one at $799 will be more than enough for your needs.

If you need more details about buying a new computer, here’s some info to think about….

Overall Choices

Processing power – People who enjoy gaming or working with photo and video software choose laptops because they’re more powerful. If you’re only checking email, doing some internet browsing or watching a movie here and there, a tablet will be sufficient.

Screen size – Tablets are smaller and not as easy to see as laptops.

Keyboard size – Laptops provide full keyboard space. You’ll want at least a 10” for easier viewing and typing.

Storage size – Laptops offer more storage space (movies, documents, photos), but there are work-arounds for tablets. (See below)

Operating system – A Dell laptop will have Windows. Tablets offer Windows, Apple or Android. All have pros and cons. With Apple specifically, you’re limited to only Apple-approved apps (but you’d be used to this because you have an iPhone).

Battery life – If you want to use this on the road, include battery life comparison when choosing. Most tablets should last 8 hours minimum. Laptops should last at least three.

Operating Memory

RAM – laptop – recommended 8 GB or more

This article has a great explanation of how much RAM you need.

RAM – tablet – recommended 2 GB or more, quad-core processor

This article explains processing speeds in tablets.

Hard Drive Storage


HDD – 1 TB for storing photos, movies to watch while traveling (without streaming, like on an airplane or if there’s no Wifi)

SSD –  256 GB minimum

This article has a complete explanation about hard drive storage for laptops.

Tablets: minimum 16 GB

Laptops or Devices

This article gives tips on how to have more storage on the road if your device doesn’t have room.

Here’s a little Apple vs Android tablets comparison.

During our session Tuesday, I can walk you through this and answer any questions.”

As I mentioned, these recommendations are based on her specific needs, but the general information about computers and tablets can give you a springboard to use in your particular search.

Happy computer shopping!

About Helene Segura, M.A. Ed., CPO®

As The Inefficiency Assassin™, Time Management Fixer Helene Segura empowers professionals on the go with the tools to slay lost time. Personal inefficiency at work leads to increased stress levels, lower morale, higher absenteeism, more turnover – and rising spending on employee health care and hiring. Why not improve productivity, decrease stress levels, and increase profits instead?The author of four books – two of which were Amazon best-sellers – Helene Segura has been the featured organization expert in more than 200 media interviews. She has coached hundreds of clients to productivity success and performance improvement by applying neuroscience and behavioral modification techniques to wipe out destructive, time-wasting habits.Helene turns time management on its head by sharing both client case studies and pop culture examples to teach her mind-bending framework for decreasing interruptions, distractions and procrastination so that companies can spend more time generating revenue.

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