Making Your Work Life Easier
Since the introduction of the MacBook Air in 2008, the technology industry has been on a quest to create ever faster and lighter laptops with more features and longer battery life. The undeniable winner of this competition has been the consumer, who has seen prices drop and choices multiply in recent years.
The iPad makes things easier
When the iPad was first introduced in 2010, many critics considered it merely a toy. Sure, it was useful if you wanted to read a book or watch a movie, but if you had real work to do that was mostly not possible. In the past four years, this has begun to change, and you can now create business documents, update presentations, and even edit video on your tablet.
But even with these advancements, there are times when a tablet machine will not do the job. You need the powerful processor and software capabilities of true laptop. And if you’ve ever had to take your laptop to a customer site or on a trip, you know the advantages of a machine that is lighter and thinner without sacrificing power.
Ultrabooks for immense productivity
The first Ultrabooks were introduced in 2012, along with a with a $300-million fund announced by Intel to support new technologies that could be incorporated into better, thinner, lighter notebooks. In order to be considered an Ultrabook, a laptop must meet certain standards. They must use Intel Core-series processors, run Windows, be no wider than 22 mm and have a battery life of at least 5 hours.
The Toshiba Kira is slim and light (weighing just 1.35 kg), but also incredibly powerful. It’s beautiful, high-resolution fingerprint-resistant touch screen lets you have the flexibility of using the keyboard or treating it more like a tablet. The HP EliteBook Folio 1040 and Sony VAIO Pro are similarly priced high-end Ultrabook with similar features.
If you can’t decide between an Ultrabook or a tablet and don’t want to carry both, an emerging hybrid category may make your life easier. Some hybrid devices are more laptop than tablet, while for others the balanced is reversed.
Hybrids for the best of both worlds
Devices like the Lenovo Yoga 2 fit the mostly laptop model. These machines have full sized keyboards and act like a laptop in every way, except that the screen is designed to flip or fold into a tablet configuration. Devices like the Microsoft Surface are primarily tablets and may have slide-out or optional keyboards.
But hybrids have their drawbacks too. Laptop-first hybrids tend to be more expensive than other Ultrabooks and can also weigh more and have a lower overall battery life. Tablet-first machines are not as feature-filled and powerful as an Ultrabook. So there is something to be said for specialization in function. Despite these drawbacks, this is an intriguing category worth keeping an eye on as technology continues to improve in the next few years.
Choosing the best fit when purchasing new technology is a matter of understanding the way you work. Technology is always improving and every year brings more choices and better performance to make your work life easier.