Buying a new computer (or 30 for your entire office) is a big and important purchase. Whether you’re outfitting your sales team with laptops they can take on the road or buying a single desktop for your retail store, it’s important to get the machine that does what you want, is easy to use and doesn’t break the bank.
Here’s how to pick the right computer for your business:
Decide how you’ll use the computer (or tablet)
Simply put, what do you need it for? Are you editing videos or making spreadsheets? Are you writing code or mostly surfing the internet? Do you need to be able to take your computer to meetings? Mobility is vital for most business owners.
Maybe you once owned a bulky laptop that you lugged to meetings, but you gave it up because it was just too heavy. New laptops and tablets are much smaller these days and often come with a docking station, so that you can still use your keyboard, mouse and multiple monitors at your office. If you’re worried about not having a full keyboard with a tablet, many of them now either come with them or give you the option of adding one.
A desktop may be the better choice if you have multiple employees sharing the same computer and you want it to stay in your office at all times.
Take a side in the endless debate: PC or Mac?
We’re fans of Apple computers here at TWT, because they generally last longer and need less support. That said, they are a bigger investment in the beginning. Macs also have a steep learning curve for new users, which can reduce efficiency in your office for employees who need time to adjust.
While most software these days offer both a Mac and PC version, research whether your preferred program works better on a particular operating system. Take the time to try out a Mac before buying if you’ve only ever used a PC to decide if you like it.
How fast do you want your computer to be?
Your computer’s CPU (central processing unit) and RAM (computer data storage) will determine how quickly it functions. The faster the computer, the more efficient you are. The faster the computer, the more it’s going to cost.
We equip all of our employees with the highest-performing laptops that Apple offers, because we know that the quicker they work, the faster they can resolve our clients’ tech issues. It may cost us an extra $1,000 or $1,500, but we easily cover the cost over the computers’ three to four-year lifespan.
Consider the computer’s warranty
You’ll be given many warranty options when you buy a computer. The longer the extended warranty, the more protected you are but the more it will cost. But fixing computers with no warranties will cost even more. For businesses, it’s usually most cost efficient to purchase business computers with a three-year warranty.
How much storage do you need?
How many files do you plan on storing on the computer itself? The more files you plan to store, the bigger your hard drive should be. If you have a server that holds most of your files, this may not be a big consideration. But if you use a cloud storage service and routinely sync your documents, you may need a large hard drive.
Need help picking out a new computer (or 30) for your office?
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