First we had desktop computers, then laptops, and now a myriad of tablets and other mobile devices to satisfy our need for information and communication. Companies like Apple and Samsung are pushing the boundaries of portable computing, giving us great alternatives while overwhelming us with options! This month I want to provide some pointers to help you make the best decision for your computing needs.

Let’s tackle: Performance
This is usually where laptops rise to the top, because they have more room inside their case for advanced equipment and can offer more memory, bigger hard drives, better graphic cards and other advantages. However, the tide is turning with the advent of the hybrid laptop/tablet, like the Surface Pro from Microsoft, which put more of the laptop performance into a tablet. Combining their attachable keyboard and mouse, it’s a dream come true for the people on the go.

Jump over to: the Battery
Because of their smaller size, tablets win this category. Bigger screens with more performance put more drain on your battery. So a tablet is a great tool for everyday use, like surfing the web, checking email, or using social media.

Looking for: Portability & Display
A tablet display ranges from 7-11 inches, while laptops are 12-16 inches. The obvious winner for screen size is laptops. Tablets are lighter and therefore more portable, and the touch screens are easy and convenient. However, laptops are starting to follow the touchscreen trend. So overall, this comparison is a dead heat!

Next up: Software & Storage space
If you compare Apple’s macOS and their iPhone iOS you will see a difference in the software. iOS is focused more on apps, and not the operating system necessary for a laptop/desktop experience. The same is true for an Android phone and Windows PC; each is designed for a different purpose.

The storage space is also significantly different, and you will pay a much higher price for a bigger hard drive on your tablet compared to your laptop.

Another laptop advantage is that you can change the hard drive to any size or brand, where a tablet hard drive can’t be upgraded.

Finally: the Nitty Gritty
The trend clearly shows a move towards tablets as the main vehicle for computing. The majority of users gravitate toward a tablet for its portability and ease of use, leaving the laptop for more specific tasks. It really boils down to personal preference and how you use the technology. I hope this helps you better understand the pros and cons of each.