If you're in the market for a new computer this question has undoubtedly came up once or twice. It is only getting harder with smart phones and tablets now making a laptop seem like a thing of the past. Desktop sales have fallen even further and have been on a decline ever since 2010, personal home computing has taken a noticeable change away from having to sit at a desk every time and more towards computing your way. For certain things though there is no replacing a desktop computer and some people still need one, let's see the advantages of a laptop vs. a desktop when used as a personal computer.
What Makes A Laptop Computer Better?
There are definitely times a laptop is better than a desktop and the main reason is of course portability. Having a computer with you on the move is great especially if you're a student, your job keeps your out of the office, or you prefer sitting outside or on a couch versus your desk.
Students are one of the biggest users of laptops and that doesn't seem to be changing, you can't type a paper on a smart phone and it's still very awkward and slow on a table with their detachable keyboards. If you're going from classes to the library and back it leaves almost no time to go home and makes a laptop a must have. You can now write papers, do research, and connect to social media in your off time between classes all without having to drive or take the bus home, it saves you time and money in the long run. As a student a laptop with email, internet and a word editor is a must unless you don't value your time out of classes.
If you work in an office chances are you have a desktop, but what happens when you have a job that takes you outside of the office for extended amounts of time from hours to days? You might not need one for anything or you might need to be connected to the office all day, if this is the case a laptop or tablet is probably something you have on you. Since most work places are still more professional than casual chances are they don't use tablets since they still haven't found a place into every office especially the more traditional ones. This leaves you needing a laptop and with options ranging from 10” screens to 17” models there is a laptop for everything you need to do for your job.
What if you're not a student or just don't like having to sit at a physical desk all day? A laptop gives you the freedom to take your computer on the couch, to the park, or over to a friends house to play video games or listen to music anywhere you want to. If you're a casual user of a computer chances are the laptop is the one you chose due to how versatile and handy they have become.
What Advantages Does A Desktop Still Have?
Although their sales are declining it does not mean the desktop is no longer being used. There are some things that will always require a desktop due to the fact they are faster, more powerful computers with room to upgrade. While laptops try to catch up every year in performance the desktop constantly has new hardware coming out that a laptop just can't compete with. If you're doing any sort of movie editing or high end video games a desktop will always be superior, their processors are able to use more power which equates to being faster and you can run video cards a laptop just can't. If you need the ultimate in performance a desktop will always be the way to go.
A desktop has typically been cheaper than a laptop but in the last few years that has switched to where you can get entry level laptops for less money than a desktop which is probably contributing to the decline in their sales. If you're in the market for a desktop it's not all bad news you can actually get one relatively close in price that will still far out perform the laptop if you don't need it to be portable. Checking sites like New Egg and Tiger Direct will get you a great deal without the hassle of going into a store.
The last place that is still common for desktops is a work environment. This is mostly due to companies buying large quantities will get a very good deal on some basic low end computers. It doesn't mean a laptop wouldn't be better they can just be had for a far lower cost so if you're trying to save money buying a desktop new or used will get you a better deal. Their screens can also be changed at anytime unlike a laptop, getting a 21” or 24” LCD monitor is very inexpensive now compared to what they use to be so a desktop will always have the better options for viewing especially if you use it as your entertainment PC with movies, Netflix or anything media related. You can also change their mouse or keyboard in case you don't like the laptops built in versions so they are all around more customizable than a laptop.
Both Desktops and Laptops are Still Needed
If you still can't decide between the two maybe the best thing to do would be go to a store and see which works best for you. You obviously can't take it outside to try it but some people can't stand a laptops keyboard and mouse and that would be a reason to not buy a desktop in itself. There is no right answer with laptops versus desktops and it will always be debated so make your own choice off of your budget, requirements and which one fits your life style the best.