Tag Archives: computers

Is it a Netbook or a Laptop?

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Often a single mom who is researching her computer needs has a hard time figuring out if the product she is looking at is considered a laptop or a netbook. That’s because there are fewer features that are different enough to make them stand out.

The easy to carry netbook can replace the need to upgrade your cell phone to a BlackBerry or iPhone just so you can be connected anywhere you go, but the newer versions can do so much more. In fact, the right netbook can often serve to help you with all of your computing needs.

The keyboard of a netbook is smaller than the keyboard of a laptop, but not by much. Most of the keyboards on netbooks are approximately 92 percent of the size of a regular keyboard, although some are smaller. It doesn’t take much time for the user to adjust to the smaller size, and most people find they have no problem moving from the smaller netbook keyboard to the full size keyboard several times during the day.

The difference in the processor is the most important feature the person researching a portable computer will look at.  But, with the blurring of the lines between a laptop and a netbook, many people are opting for the less expensive netbook as the tool to serve their own computer needs, not only for people on the go. The netbook is also cutting into the sales numbers of the desktop computer.

The marketing departments in the computer industry are facing a dilemma as the differences between the netbook and laptop computer are becoming fewer. Naturally, they’d like to sell the higher priced laptop. But why would a consumer purchase it when they can find all of the features they need in a netbook that costs less?

The bigger netbooks usually have a 10 inch screen. A laptop has a larger screen, usually from 12 to 17 inches. The larger screens are more popular if they are going to be used for more than just internet surfing, social media and email.

If the screen is too small, the user may find she has to choose between scrolling across the page or straining her eyes to read the small print. This is not a problem for mom if she’s just checking her email, the news headlines or chatting. It could be a problem if she is doing research and writing papers and needs more than one program to show up on the screen.

The best advice for the single mom who is in the market for a computer to meet her back to school needs is to determine what she is going to use the gadget for. Decide what size screen she needs to be able to comfortably able to do not only her note taking and communication needs, but to fulfill all of her computing needs. This is especially true if the new purchase will be her main computer. Then, just ignore the label. Whether it is marketed as a laptop or a netbook really makes no difference as long as it fulfills the needs you have in your computing device.

How To Buy The Right Computer For College

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Many college courses require access to a computer. Other courses will allow you to bring a laptop to class so you can type notes directly into the computer. It may be possible to avoid buying a computer if you have access to those in the computer lab or at the local library. Use id free but you are limited by lab time availability and whether or not other students are using them.

Choosing the Right Computer

You should consider your computing needs for the next two to three years when considering a purchase. You may not have many classes that require the use of a computer right now or only need basic functions but what about as you progress through your courses? Will need better graphics capabilities? What kinds of programs will you need to be able to run? Will you need to bring a computer to class or to study groups?

Getting Help

Many electronic superstores like Comp USA or Best Buy have departments with staff that can assess your needs and recommend a computer for you. Local computer outlets can often custom build what you need. While you may think this might be more expensive, the opposite is often true. The big stores buy in bulk and jam what they believe are the most popular features onto the computers. In some cases you may be paying for add-ons or software that you don’t need. With a custom built computer, you get exactly what you need.

Laptop or Desktop

Desktops are the traditional computer. They can come with more features like multiple CD or DVD drives, more ports for attaching other devices and often more power and speed. However, they are not mobile. A laptop can go with you just about anywhere. Lightweight models can easily be carried in a briefcase, backpack or even a large purse. They often have many of the features of their desktop cousins.


Pricing will naturally be a major concern. Watch the local sales papers and check online often if you are leaning toward a conventional model or brand. The big box stores often have sales. Even places like Wal-Mart have sales on laptops from time to time. A good time to catch a computer on sale is during the Black Friday sales following Thanksgiving. Basic laptops and desktops, with limited features can often be found for just a few hundred dollars. These often have last year’s operating system and software so make sure they are compatible with your needs before buying.

College Laptop Buying Tips 2010

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A laptop is a valuable tool for people returning to school. Look here for tips about pricing, as well as how to evaluate what kind of computer you will need according to what programs you will be running and how you will be using it.