What to Look for in Laptops for Your SMB

Edmund_McGowan
edited January 10 in Business

Whatever line of business you are in, laptops are a vitally important asset for your SMB (small and medium sized business). Providing your employees with portable tools to boost productivity, laptops equip your business with the power to thrive in today’s digital landscape. According to Forbes, over 25% of business is conducted online, and 76% of online shoppers visit a business’s website before they commit to visiting the actual store.

Over the past few years, the way we work has changed. Businesses worldwide were forced to resort to remote working during the pandemic, which led to a change in the status quo of where we work. Today, hybrid and remote work models have been embraced by many forward-thinking employers. To effectively work remotely, employees require suitable business laptops and an internet connection. Equipped with these, they can access company resources and work from nearly anywhere. 

Providing your employees with laptops also gives your SMB’s business productivity a shot in the arm. Employees with laptops are able to stay connected to their work anywhere, anytime. The business world today is global and runs 24/7, come rain or shine. Equipped with a laptop and an internet connection, employees can deal with tasks remotely without having to trek to the office. Furthermore, laptops add to the flexibility and convenience to the lives of your employees. Cloud-based applications  allow workers to connect and collaborate seamlessly, regardless of their physical location. From an employer’s perspective, laptops reduce the need for office space and fixed workstations, as they need minimal space compared to traditional desktops. In this article we will discuss the core features of laptops for SMBs, helping you to choose the best laptop to boost your business productivity. Read on to discover more!

Seven core features of business laptops and how they contribute to productivity

1. Processor power

A fast, powerful processor contributes to productivity, delivering fast performance and responsiveness. During the daily operations of your business, chances are that your employees will need to multitask and run multiple resource-intensive applications on their laptops. When choosing laptops for your SMB, opt for a high-performance processor such as Intel Core i5/i7/i9 or AMD Ryzen 5/7/9. These powerful processors will ensure efficient multitasking, while handling data processing tasks and demanding applications. Ample processor power also contributes to smooth video conferencing, improving communication, and collaboration.

2. Ample memory and fast storage 

You’ll want at least 16GB of RAM in your business laptop. Having enough memory will ensure smooth multitasking. Running multiple software and tools at the same time should not cause any slowdowns in computer performance, and sufficient RAM can help to keep operations speedy, and performance superior. Ample RAM also safeguards against glitches, lags and delays when loading and running applications, ensuring employees can access shared files and documents quickly. Pair sufficient RAM with an SSD for rapid data access and faster boot times. Providing employees with fast running laptops increases employee efficiency, responsiveness and productivity. 

3. Long battery life with fast charging

One of the main attractions of laptops is their portability, which is made possible by rechargeable batteries. Laptop battery life has come a long way in the past few years, with all-day use before recharging now a reality. Take advantage of long-lasting batteries and fast charging technology to give your employees the convenience to charge, re-charge and work without significant downtime while their laptops charge. Long battery life and infrequent charging also gives employees peace of mind. They can ensure business continuity by using their laptops while on-the-go, during flights, and in client-facing presentations where charging may not be convenient. 

4. High-quality display

A laptop screen is the window through which most of your employees’ day to day work will be conducted. Bigger is often better when choosing screen size, especially when multitasking is required. Choose a screen with good resolution that is comfortable to look at (14-15 inches). Increase productivity by trying a 16:10 screen ratio. This ratio increases vertical space, providing a larger workspace when working with multiple windows or applications. Prolonged screen use is a necessity for many of us, we can mitigate eye strain by opting for an OLED display for superior color accuracy and contrast. These display considerations are important for clarity, reducing eye damage and enhancing the overall user experience.

5. Lightweight and portable design

If your employees need to travel frequently, or work in different locations, then a lightweight, slim design is essential for easy transportation. Minimizing weight and bulk in a laptop increases user satisfaction, especially when traveling for business. A portable, lightweight laptop encourages employees to carry their devices and maintain productivity in various environments. For client-facing employees, lightweight laptops that can be quickly set up are necessary to maintain a professional image for your SMB. Portability, the foremost benefit of laptops, aligns with the increasing value placed on mobility in the modern workspace. 

6. Robust connectivity options

A business laptop requires diverse ports to make the most of the many peripherals and devices required today. As standard, USB-C, Thunderbolt 4, and HDMI ports will ensure streamlined connections to any devices that you may need to connect to. Physical ports aside, advanced wireless capabilities: 4G LTE and 5G are needed for reliable, high-speed internet access. Robust connectivity options will support the dynamic nature of your business operations. By leveraging the power of the internet, employee collaborations, remote work and video conferencing can all contribute to your SMB’s productivity and competitiveness. 

7. Enhanced security features

Your SMB has a responsibility to keep company data, as well as customers’ data secure. As we discussed in a previous article, SMBs are increasingly targeted by cybercriminals. Increase your laptop security by choosing certified Secured-core PCs, and models that feature biometric authentication (fingerprint readers or facial recognition), as well as TPM (Trusted Platform Module). Depending on your line of work, device tracking and remote wipe capabilities may provide you with an increased layer of protection. Laptops with enhanced security features can also ensure your SMB’s regulatory compliance, in turn promoting customer trust and increasing business productivity. 

How TravelMate laptops boost productivity

Acer’s TravelMate laptops address the seven core features discussed above, providing a modern, innovative laptop for SMBs. Here we’ll cover some of the standout features of the TravelMate series, focusing on how they can boost your SMBs productivity

1. Introducing the Intel vPro Platform 

TravelMate laptops feature 13th Gen Intel Core processors, providing a strong foundation for real-world business computing. The updated P-core design offers up to 10% improvement in application performance compared to 12th Gen processors. The TravelMate’s core processors deliver unmatched speed and intelligence, providing seamless transitions with platform validation across the three most recent Windows releases. 13th Gen Intel Core processors offer the best in laptop connectivity, providing your SMB with real world tested performance to address your most demanding challenges. Armed with a powerful processor, multitasking and resource-intensive applications will run smoothly, helping your employees to focus on their work, without worrying that their laptop may let them down.

2. Fast charging

To meet the mobility needs of the modern businessperson, selected models of the TravelMate P series feature fast-charging capability. Fast-charging technology significantly reduces the time it takes to recharge your laptop, charging up to 50% of battery capacity in half an hour, or 80% in an hour. This capability is particularly useful if you’re moving from A to B and don’t have access to a power outlet for extended periods. Fast charging also provides your employees with more flexibility as they won't need to be tethered to a power source.  Finally, fast charging contributes to improved productivity: less time spent charging means more time working.

3. Sensational OLED display

Don’t be surprised if you find yourself amazed by the life-like brilliance of 2.8K 120Hz OLED display. If you work in a creative field and require exceptional color grading and image quality on a 16:10 display, Acer TravelMate P6 14 may be the laptop you have been looking for. Featuring superior brightness, higher contrast imagery, and reduced eye strain, thanks to its low-blue light design, OLED display can enhance your SMB employees’ productivity and user experience. What’s more, the 16:10 display offers more vertical screen space to get tasks done painlessly. 

4. Harness AI to help your employees to work smarter with Microsoft 365 Copilot

Microsoft 365 Copilot is an AI-powered personal assistant that can help you across Microsoft 365 applications. With Copilot, you’ll never have to worry about starting with a blank slate ever again. Copilot uses NLP (natural language processing) and machine learning algorithms to comprehend your questions and offer real-time answers and solutions. Unleash your creativity with the power of AI: Copilot increases employee productivity through task automation as well as generating document drafts, summaries and transforming text into readable tables. Employees will have more time to focus on important tasks, while AI takes care of the repetitive tasks, optimizing work time and boosting productivity. What’s more, 365 Copilot safeguards the privacy of your business data, inheriting your security, compliance and privacy policies set up in Microsoft 365.  

5. Dust defense

Due to their portable nature, laptops travel great distances in the line of duty. They are exposed to a variety of environments, from the inside of dusty bags to office environments. Alongside water and sugary drinks, dust is the enemy of laptop longevity. Laptops rely on airflow through the heat pipe and fin to expel heat. After extended use, dust accumulates on the fin, obstructing air flow, resulting in lower thermal performance, potentially resulting in lag and irreversible damage. TravelMate laptops feature Acer DustDefender, a specially designed fan system that can spin clockwise and counterclockwise, automatically removing dust from your laptop when you power on, and after every 6 hours of use. 

6. Acer Active Stylus

Embrace the joy of writing by hand with Acer Active Stylus. This digital pen allows you to interact with your TravelMate laptop in a precise, direct way. An essential tool for creative professionals, artists, as well as anyone who prefers pen/pencil type input. Durable and comfortable, the Active Stylus also features fast charging from the security of its own dedicated dock. Just 15 seconds in the dock offers up to 90 minutes of use. Ideal for SMB employees working remotely, each Active stylus features a unique ID,  for cloud-based linking across platforms and devices. 

7. Connectivity

TravelMate laptops are equipped to meet the changing demands of technology. These laptops are incorporated with ample Sub-6 5G connectivity, ensuring consistent, high-speed wireless connection with eSim/uSim-enabled 5G technology. Provide your SMB employees with fast speeds, low latency, and the world is at their fingertips. TravelMate laptops also feature Type-C Thunderbolt 4 ports, enabling rapid data transfer, video output as well as power delivery, all in a single cable. There will be no transfer delays with Thunderbolt, guaranteeing 40 Gbps total bandwidth, dynamically allocated for video and data. Thunderbolt also supports premium monitors of all types, for low latency immersive creation and simplified productivity. 

Highlights of the TravelMate 

TravelMate laptops feature a comprehensive suite of innovative features that make them the perfect laptop for SMBs today. Individual users aside, from an IT management perspective, the TravelMate series is particularly appealing because of its ease of administration. This simplicity is consistent across all models in the series, providing a significant advantage for IT administrators when they need to make company-wide firmware and software updates.

Balancing comprehensive functionality with quality, and affordability, TravelMate laptops are a unique tool, ideally suited to the diverse needs of SMBs today. Combining innovative features to boost productivity, these laptops are minimalist in design, enhancing the user experience and device manageability.

Finally, TravelMate laptops can contribute to the well-being of your SMB’s employees. Acer’s User Sensing Software enhances the user experience by providing reminders for breaks, as well as monitoring user-computer distance in order to reduce eye-strain. Forgot your password? Don’t sweat it, TravelMate laptops also feature automatic login and logout based on user proximity to the device.

The takeaway

We hope that you’ve enjoyed reading this article, and are now better informed of the core features of business laptops and how they can contribute to your SMB’s productivity. When selecting laptops for your SMB, high processor power coupled with ample memory and fast (SSD) storage is a good place to start. For today’s mobile workforce, fast charging and all-day battery life are vital to keep your employees productive while unplugged. Screens are important too, OLED display with 16:10 ratio is the perfect canvas with ample space and resolution to get your work done. Next we discussed the portability of laptops: don’t add any more strain to your employees, lightweight and slim design presents a professional, well-prepared image. Connectivity is key, so ensure that your diverse port needs are met, as well as advanced wireless capabilities. Finally, device security features can contribute to protecting all of your hard work from cyber criminals and their nefarious intent. 

By addressing these needs, business laptops can increase your SMB’s productivity. As we outlined in the second half of this article, Acer TravelMate laptops provide a user-friendly, efficient solution to both personal and professional computing needs. Unlock your employees’ productivity with TravelMate, featuring 13th Gen Intel core processors, fast charging capability and OLED display. Microsoft 365 Copilot offers enhanced performance through innovative AI assistance, further complemented by Acer Active Stylus for a natural writing experience. Finally, DustDefender keeps your laptop clean inside and robust connectivity options keep you connected, wherever your work may take you. 

Edmund is an English copywriter based in New Taipei City, Taiwan. He is a widely published writer and translator with two decades of experience in the field of bridging linguistic and cultural gaps between Chinese and English.

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