A Guide to Buying the best Laptop for Programming

What is a laptop for programming?

Laptops made for programming can be defined as advanced and updated versions of regular computers that support the highly complex programming and coding requirements without compromising the quality or speed of the work. They are highly efficient laptops that are equipped with high-end processors and high storage which are the essential requirements for carrying out programming. Quick responding memory, highly advanced core, etc. are the other chief features of an ideal programming laptop. Programming laptops mostly give importance to the comfort and convenience of the user and thus, provides ergonomically designed keypads and touchpads which does not cause severe exhaustion for the user. The design of the programming laptops is done with efficiency in mind and thus features, long battery life, high clarity display screens, expandable storage space, etc.

How does a laptop for programming work?

A programming laptop, although serves higher functions than a regular laptop, makes use of the same or similar parts as a regular laptop as its components. Some of the major components of a programming laptop are the display screen, keypad, palm rest assembly, speaker assembly, thermal cooling assembly, cooling fan, mousepad, system board, main battery, modular bay device, memory module cover, RAM, etc. Some of the crucial parts of a programming laptop which carry out the different advanced functions in it are given below.

best laptop for programming

Display screen

The display screen is nothing but what the monitor is for a desktop. It is the screen on which the output images and other elements are shown in a programming laptop. The quality and specifications of a display screen vary according to the manufacturer of the device. There are two types of display screens available for programming laptops: touch screens and non-touch screens. Touch screens let the users choose and use various applications and icons by simply touching the respective part on the screen, and most manufacturers provide an extra layer of protection for the screen if employing the touch feature.

Keypad

The keypad or keyboard of a programming laptop is just like that of a regular computer, except for the fact that they are not an external device in the laptop. They are built into the laptop and follow one of many layouts presently available. Although there are numerous keypad layouts available like QWERTZ, AZERTY, HCESAR, etc., it is the QWERTY keypad that is presently in the highest prominence.

Touchpad

A touchpad or trackpad is a flat surface in the lower half of the laptop which is equipped with sensors to register and recognize the movements on it and serves the functions that a mouse serves on a desktop computer. It is simply a pointing device that uses its movements on it to input commands and information into the laptop. Although the programming laptops support the use of an externally connectable mouse, the touchpad proves to be highly convenient on numerous occasions including traveling.

Battery

The battery is a crucial part of a programming laptop. It is used as a backup power source for the programming laptop if the device is disconnected from the power supply. Although there are numerous types of batteries available, the most commonly used battery packs in programming laptops are nickel cadmium, lithium-ion, and nickel metal hydride.

What are the benefits of a laptop for programming and what you can expect?

Earlier, programmers used to work at office desks and work on desktop computers. But the changing times come with changed prospects and possibilities. The advancement in technology and possibilities caused the creation of laptops dedicated specifically to programming. Programming laptops offer numerous advantages over regular laptops and although they cost more, they are worth the price they are paid for. Some of the most celebrated advantages and benefits of owning a programming laptop are mentioned below for further reference.

Convenience

Convenience is the primary benefit offered by a programming laptop. The desktop computers can only be used at the office desks and do not offer the flexibility to work from anywhere the user want. Programming laptops overcome that problem and offer the support to work from anywhere, even on a moving vehicle. They can also take the laptops along with them for necessary meetings and presentations, completely ruling out the need for another device for such occasions. The changing times had caused the lion’s share of the population to work from home and it is only convenient for the programming laptop to make work from home efficiently possible. The programmers can also take their laptops to clients to provide updates on their work and orders.

High storage

Programming laptops, as they are built for carrying out heavy programming works and storing complex files and tools, they come with in-built storage which is one of the biggest capacities available for a handheld electronic device. The storage is much better than that of a regular laptop and this offer the user to use complicated work tools without having to worry about running out of space or slowing the system down. Programming laptops also offer better expandable storage than regular laptops too.

best laptop for programming

High performing processor

Many service providers are coming up with upgrades to existing processors so that they will better suit the programming laptops and their requirements. The processors built for programming laptops have an upper hand in both performance and efficiency over a regular desktop computer. The processor in a programming laptop enables the user to operate multiple applications at the same time without having to compromise on the speed or the quality of the work being done.

No external devices required

When it comes to a programming laptop, unlike an office desk computer, no external devices are required for carrying out the programming. As all the input devices of the system are built-in to the laptop, there is no need to spend money on any external devices, not even for storage. The programming laptop act as an all-in-one system that can work on its own as a single unit.

Portability

Portability is one of the chief benefits associated with a programming laptop. Unlike an office desktop, they are highly portable and are easy to use irrespective of the place and time. They are built with low weight and sleek designs to support maximum portability.

Source of power

Programming laptops offer greater convenience in terms of power sources also. While the office desktops work only on continuous electricity supply, the programming laptops can be worked in electric supply and battery packs both. This feature of a programming laptop makes it possible to work uninterruptedly despite power failure or any difficulties in terms of the electricity supply. This feature also adds to the portability and ease of use of the programming laptop, as it can be worked even while on a go, despite having no electric outlets nearby.

Easy to assemble

The programming laptops do not come with many external devices and it is more a device that can be used right out of the box. Less to no assembly is required for a programming laptop unlike an office computer for programming that comes with many hardware parts that require professional assistance for installation.

Internet connectivity

Programming is a process that demands to have uninterrupted internet connectivity as long as the work is being carried out. For an office desk, having internet connectivity is a little complicated procedure and demands extra device installation. But when it comes to a programming laptop or any laptop internet connectivity is quite easy and convenient to make possible. No extra devices are required to facilitate the connectivity and the user can even share the network of the mobile phone that he or she is using with the programming laptop. This ensures that the programming work being carried out on the laptop will not get affected even if one of the network providers fails to do so.

How to choose a laptop for programming?

Choosing an ideal laptop for your programming needs may not always be a cakewalk. But rather, it could be a daunting task, especially if you have little to no expertise in working a programming laptop. The numerous options available in the market are going to seem quite confusing and further complicated and the best way to find an ideal programming laptop is to check for certain essential qualities and requirements that a programming laptop has to have, which are concisely detailed below.

RAM

The RAM of the laptop is an important criterion to consider while purchasing a programming laptop. Generally, the tools and files of programming occupy more space and it is thus, extremely important to have sophisticated RAM. As programming also involves the requirement of running multiple files and applications, having plenty of RAM which supports the smooth functioning of the laptop despite the workload is a must. The requirement of RAM depends on the kind of programming being done in the system. Mostly, the highest requirement is seen amongst game developers. Buying a laptop with at least 16 GB with the provision to expand memory is generally advised to the potential buyers.

Keyboard

Programming is a process that takes up a good number of hours, especially spending on keyboards. So, it takes a good keyboard to avoid any kind of discomfort from happening. Having sturdy keys, having a backlit feature on the keyboard, etc. are of extreme importance when it comes to a programming laptop. Many laptops still follow the former layout of the keyboard which could make some confusion for the user and may have to take some time to get used to. Rather than taking a chance on such keyboards, make sure that you purchase a programming laptop that is equipped with a comfortable and easy-to-use keyboard, preferably a USB one.

Processor

The processor plays a crucial role in the smooth functioning of all laptops. For a programming laptop, it plays an inevitable role. As programming involves the use of multiple windows, multiple features, and multiple tools, having a strong processor that supports fast processing is of high importance. A subpar processor would cause the programming to slow down and can cost a good number of hours.

Screen

Another important feature to look for in a programming laptop is the screen. Although the screen may not come off as an important feature as obvious as many others, the quality and the space of the screen are some of the most crucial features for programming. Programming takes up much time for the programmer in front of the screen of the laptop and thus, it is ideal to have a laptop screen that causes as little strain to the eyes as possible. For that, try to pick a bigger screen which can reduce the strain left on the eyes of the user by smaller screens. Also, be attentive to the resolution of the screen while purchasing, as a higher resolution or full HD screen, is the best option for the programming. Another thing to check regarding the screen of the laptop is the finishing of the screen. Matte screens are much more preferable than the normal ones as they cause less reflection than the latter, thereby causing less distraction and more convenience for the user.

Mobility

Mobility is one such feature that is comparatively less discussed but proves to be an inevitable one. As programming laptops are available in numerous sizes and weights, chances are high for the buyers to be more attentive to the technical specifications of the laptop and craving for the most advanced technical features of the laptop. But at times, the best laptops in terms of technical details appear to be heavier and bigger. It could pose great practical difficulties if the job of the buyer involves travel and constant displacement. So, it is always better to identify the nature of the job and the requirements regarding the mobility of the laptop being used and then choose a programming laptop that fits the needs just right.

best laptop for programming

Storage

Every laptop buyer is brought with two options regarding the storage type and they are a standard hard drive and a Solid-State Drive or SSD. While both have their fair share of pros and cons and they have an almost equal market share, as far as programming is concerned, choosing an SSD storage will be the most viable option. An SSD storage ensures faster operation than a standard hard drive. Regular hard drives make processes like booting, code creation, project loading, etc. quite slow and difficult. Experts advise that a programming laptop should at least have a storage of 256 GB SSD. Laptops with more SSD may cost more but it makes sure that the speed and the performance of the laptop are not being compromised. It is also possible for the buyers who have a limited budget to purchase a programming laptop of comparatively lesser SSD which is just enough to carry out all the programming functions and then have an external hard drive to store all the other personal files like music, photos, etc.

Battery life

Although battery life is an important feature for almost all electronic gadgets, it is of greater significance when it comes to a programming laptop. Being time-consuming and heavy-loaded work, programming can take a serious toll on the battery life of the device used. So, having a good battery pack that is able to retain power for a good number of hours is more than important for programming. It is observed that a good programming laptop should at least have a battery that can retain power for 6 hours. Buyers should also remember that the battery life claims given by the manufacturers may or may not be true always, and thus, the buyer is advised to go through online reviews and feedback from previous customers before jumping to any conclusions on battery life.

Operating system

There are personal choices for everyone when it comes to the operating system, especially for tech-savvy people like programmers. But while purchasing a programming laptop as a long-term buy, it would be ideal to buy a device that supports some of the best operating systems. There are no watertight compartments as to which operating system is best for programming and which one is not. It is just that buying a laptop that supports operating systems like Linux will come up with more opportunities and possibilities unlike operating systems like the macOS, which are only available in Apple gadgets like MacBook.

Graphics card

A Graphics card is something that programmers specifically look for in a programming laptop. A Graphics card is a tool that feeds the monitor or any other display tools with the right amount of output images. It is one of the most important criteria which could be used to identify the quality and smoothness of the programming laptop. The Graphics card comes in two versions: a dedicated graphics card and an integrated graphics card. A dedicated graphics card or discrete graphics card, although provides great performance, is not always necessary when it comes to programming. Also, it could cost a bit more than an integrated graphics card. So, it is preferable and ideal to have a good integrated graphics card while purchasing a programming laptop.