5 Best Laptops For Remote Work in 2022
If you’re working at home, the chances are that you’ll need a laptop. It’s arguably the single most important work tool that you’ll ever use, but most of us don’t make informed decisions when we buy laptops for remote work.
If you work in a profession that has specialist computer requirements like graphic design, video editing, or coding, you might already have clear preferences based on your own experience. Many companies will simply issue workers with laptops.
If you’re a freelancer, or you’re building a business, it pays to do some research before you buy. In Israel, a top-of-the-range MacBook Pro (bought in your local mall) can set you back as much as ₪13,000. Even middle-range laptops can be significantly more expensive than in the US.
If you can define the tasks that you’ll perform with the laptop, and identify the device features and specs that you need, you can potentially save a lot of money. You can also ensure that you have the right machine for the job and can reach your full creative potential and productivity.
Why Buy a Laptop?
Laptops are portable and can run for hours on their battery. You can basically take your entire personal office anywhere you go, or if you’ve got a wifi connection, you can work anywhere. The advantages are obvious but aren’t universal and if you’re easily distracted, a desktop in a quiet home office might suit you better.
Your clients will expect you to bring a laptop to meetings and work sessions if you're a freelancer. If you’re making business trips or going to research locations, a laptop is a prerequisite. There’s no doubt that a laptop is a basic essential for almost anybody who works at home. The challenge is to understand the technology and buy a real bargain.
What Laptop Features are Important?
There are 5 key features that everybody should consider when they buy a laptop and how much priority you give each feature will depend on your job requirements and your own preferences.
- Battery Life
- Size and Weight
- Screen Size
- Keyboard & Touchscreen
- Storage and Memory
Laptop Battery Life
If you expect to be away from power sources for an extended period of time, it’s definitely worth checking out Apple MacBooks. They are already pushing towards 20-hour battery life, which is great if you’re lucky enough to spend a day working on the beach. If you live in Tel Aviv, Herzliya or Netanya, that’s entirely possible!
If you’re not a MacBook fan, there are plenty of good laptops with 12-hour battery life. Samsung’s Galaxy Book S comes close to Apple with a 17-hour battery. Battery technology is improving all the time. The next decade may bring super lightweight batteries with an ultra-long life.
Laptop Size and Weight
There are still a few good-quality laptops that weigh in over the 2 kg level. Some people like a chunky device with a robust feel, but the design trend is for lightweight laptops. If you’re traveling around, you’ll probably prefer a slimline device that only weighs 1.2 or 1.3 kg. An extra kilo of dead weight can make a big difference by the end of a long day.
The other feature to consider is screen size. If you’re doing anything with images or animations, a large screen with high resolution is a must. Big screens can also come in handy if you need to create PowerPoint presentations. The 16” screen on the latest MacBook Pro is ideal for visual work. It’s also great if you’re sitting with colleagues and looking at the same screen.
LapTop Keyboards and Touchscreens
Anybody whose job involves writing will appreciate the importance of laptop keyboard design. Typing and writing isn’t a skill that comes easily to everybody. If you have to produce thousands of words a day or chat in real-time, you need a large, well-designed keyboard. It’s not just a question of efficiency - repetitive stress injury is a reality. A user-friendly keyboard is essential.
If you need to work at night, or in low light conditions e.g. an airplane cabin, an illuminated keyboard is a big advantage. If you’ve ever tried hunting around for rarely used keys or symbols, you’ll understand why. The whole point of laptops is versatility and portability, low light capabilities are a great feature.
LapTop Memory and Storage
There’s some confusion about laptop memory and laptop storage. Memory refers to RAM or random access memory. It’s a short-term storage space that the computer uses when processing data. The memory chips work fast and write and rewrite data as you use your laptop. Most laptops come with 8GB of memory, but a few go way beyond that capability. The Microsoft Surface Book 3 provides a massive 32GB memory capacity.
Laptop storage is the hard drive capacity that lets you store material, whether it’s work files, programs, films, music, or pictures (basically everything that you use your computer for). In recent years, manufacturers moved away from high storage capacity. The move isn’t popular with customers and we may be seeing a shift back towards 500+ GB storage as a basic feature.
If storage is an issue for you, it’s worth checking out remote cloud storage. Laptops that support rapid data transfer are an asset. This is especially important if you’re backing up your drive remotely - something that too many of us neglect! One feature we like in the MacBook Pro is the dual Thunderbolt ports that can transfer data at a rate of 20GB - 4 times faster than a standard USB port.
Mac or PC?
The enduring question of whether to buy a Mac or PC is worth a separate blog post in its own right. Some people love Apple products and will only work on MacBooks. Most people don’t particularly care. They want a good basic operating system and are happy to stick with what they’re already familiar with. If you’re buying a new MacBook in Israel, expect to pay top prices.
Our opinion is that unless you’re already accustomed to Mac, have other Apple products like an iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV, etc., or work in a visual design field, you’re better off with a PC.
Mac Vs PC Pros and Cons
Mac and OS X
- Apple’s OS X is less likely to be attacked by viruses
- Apple is quick to launch new technology
- Mac can generally adapt Windows drives and software.
PCs and Windows
- PCs are cheaper and there is much greater choice
- There is a much greater range of software for PCs
- PCs are ahead of the game with touchscreens
- PCs are definitely better for gaming
If you’re looking for reasonably priced laptops for remote work, with middle-of-the-range features and capabilities, PC and Windows is definitely the way ahead. PC is simpler, more adaptable, has greater versatility in terms of USB ports, and is generally better suited to wider software and hardware products.
New vs Second Hand Laptops For Remote Work
Buying a second-hand laptop is a possibility that is often overlooked. If you know what you’re doing, you can find some real bargains and avoid most of the risks that come with a second-hand purchase.
One of the advantages of living in Israel is that many neighborhoods have at least one independent computer store. These are usually small shops (sometimes a little bigger than kiosks) run by an enterprising tech guy or a couple of partners. They sell phones, computers, and accessories, perform repairs, and often have a sideline in second-hand phones and laptops.
These local businesses value their reputations and get a lot of trade via word of mouth. If you find a reliable local computer store, get to know them. A second-hand laptop is a pretty safe bet. They’ll have checked and reconditioned anything they sell, and won’t let you go home with a dud. If there is a problem, or you need an upgrade, they’ll fix it. Small independents can be a lot faster than big companies like Dell, Lenovo, or Apple when it comes to repairs. If they’re located five minutes from your home, that’s a major bonus!
5 Best Laptops For Remote Work in 2022
These are the 5 best laptops for remote work in 2022. It’s not an exhaustive list, and we deliberately left out a couple of popular models. With the exception of the MacBook Pro, these 5 were mainly selected on the basis of being good all-rounders for the average work user. Some have more advanced features than others.
Apple fans will immediately focus on the MacBook Pro and wonder if their budgets are up to the purchase. If you like OS X and Apple’s stylish design, the MacBook Pro is a seriously tempting laptop. The downside is that if you buy it in Israel, you won’t get much change from NIS 13,000.
- Large 16’’ screen
- 256 GB or 512 GB storage
- 8 GB RAM
- 1.4 kg weight
- Super fast thunderbolt ports (but no USBs)
- Outstanding 20-hour battery life
Acer Aspire 7
The Acer Aspire 7 is a good choice if you’re focused on writing-based tasks (pretty much all day-to-day business requirements). It’s not the best for graphic design or film editing, but you can easily improve its capabilities with a plug-in SD converter. Battery life is below average at 7 hours, but the operating system is fast and there’s a big screen. Acer is a workhorse that shouldn’t let you down.
- Large 15.6’’ screen
- Useful 512 GB storage
- 8 GB RAM
- 2.2KG weight
- 2 USB ports
Dell XPS 13
Dell has a solid reputation in Israel and offers buyers US standards of warranties and customer service. The Dell XPS 13 is a good work tool that gives you everything you need for most tasks. One definite advantage is the unusually large 16 GB memory - great if you’re putting tough demands on the operating systems. The 12.4’’ screen isn’t massive, but it has 4K resolution, so the image quality is good. The Dell XPS 13 is on the middle-range laptops for remote work with some useful features.
- 4K 13.4’’ screen
- 512 GB of storage (with 1TB upgrade available)
- Excellent 16 GB RAM memory
- Convenient 1.3 kg weight
- 12 hour battery life
Samsung Galaxy Book S
Samsung is pushing hard to rival Apple. The Galaxy Book S is a slim and stylish device that runs on an adapted smartphone processor. This innovative design feature reduces the Galaxy Book’s weight to just 0.95 kg. Its lightweight is complimented by a superb 17-hour battery life - this is a great laptop for urban nomads. Overall, the laptop has enough features and capabilities for most professional roles and would be a good line of laptops for remote work. The screen size, storage, and memory are average, so the Galaxy probably isn’t the best choice for designers and filmmakers.
- 13.3’’ screen
- 256 GB storage
- 8 GB RAM memory
- Ultralite 0.95 kg weight
- 17 hour battery life
Asus Zenbook 15
The Asus Zenbook 15 is definitely worth a second look. Asus designers managed to combine some excellent features to create well above average laptops for remote work. If it’s as reliable as other Asus products, it could be an excellent buy. We liked the ultra-slim design and the weight is easily manageable if you’re mobile. The screen is bigger than average (although the resolution isn’t up to graphic design standards). What is good is the powerful RAM memory and 512GB storage. The Asus Zenbook 15 is ideal for most tasks.
- 15.6’’ screen
- 512 GB storage
- 16 GB RAM memory
- 1.6 kg weight
- 10 hour battery life
If you’re planning to work at home in 2022 and need a new laptop, it really pays to do your research and shop around. Don’t be afraid to ask questions in English and insist on clear answers about the warranty, as well as any extra costs or payments. Most Israelis pay over the odds for their laptops. If you plan ahead, you might be surprised by how much money you can save.
If you’re running a home office, buying the right laptop is only your first step towards achieving your full potential. You’ll also need reliable high-speed internet with no peak hour disruption. TCS can help you out in more ways than one. Our native English-speaking reps will be happy to talk to you about a comprehensive communications plan.
- Choose from a flexible home plan, or special business plan
- Rationalize all your internet, mobile, landline and TV in a single package
- Get clear itemized monthly billing in English
- Benefit from free upgrades whenever technology and infrastructures improve
Talk to a TCS expert now with no obligation. We can switch providers for you and get you connected to TCS free of charge.