The 8 Best Business Laptops to Buy in 2018

Buy the top laptops guaranteed to meet your business needs

There are a few considerations to keep in mind when choosing a laptop that will be used for professional purposes, whether you are an accountant or artisan. Business laptops are specifically constructed to be sturdy, lightweight and performance-efficient at all times. But to find out which laptop might best suit your business needs, read our top eight picks below.

Best Overall: Lenovo ThinkPad T460

For most traditional office and boardroom applications, the clear winner for 2018 is the Lenovo ThinkPad T460. This model, while not as light as some others on our list, offers superior performance, long-lasting battery life (up to 13 hours) and effortless ease of use.

The ThinkPad weighs just 3.8 pounds, although at .83 inches thick it is not the thinnest laptop available. The 14” x 9” screen is generous enough to offer a nice, clear picture (with a resolution of 1920 x 1080) while being small enough to take on-the-go. The smart case also has 180-degree tilt motion for comfort and flexibility.

The deluxe physical features of the T460 include a comfortable, spill-proof keyboard, a red trackpoint between the g and h keys to aid in navigation and a highly accurate touchpad. This Lenovo model is loaded with useful connectivity. Available ports include USB, 3.5 mm sound jack, SD reader, Ethernet, HDMI out, and more.

Multiple versions of the T460 are available including powerful i7 versions with 16 GB of RAM, but a good value proposition is the T460 that comes with an Intel Core i5-6300U processor, 256 GB SSD and 8 GM of RAM. This gives it lots of performance power and plenty of storage space. Virtually all applications work quickly and efficiently on this computer, particularly those with low demands on the graphics card such as Microsoft Office.

The ThinkPad T460 offers premium security options useful in a business setting, including an Intel vPro-capable CPU, Trusted Platform Module (TPM), security features required by enterprise IT departments and even a fingerprint reader, making it a prime choice for enhanced business security.

On the downside, this laptop is not an ideal choice for those who need high quality sound or discrete video cards, such as 3D graphics artists or avid game players. The screen is clear, but the on-board graphics will struggle with 3D applications. Similarly, the speakers, which are bottom-front located, are capable of a fair degree of loudness, but distortion can occur at higher levels.

Need some more help finding what you're looking for? Read through our best Lenovo laptops​ article.

Best Budget: Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM

When you’re going to save on an economical business laptop, you don’t want price to skim out on performance. The Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM comes packed with a 7th generation 2.4 ghz Intel Core i3-7100U processor, a 15.6” full HD widescreen display and a 1TB internal hard drive – enough to handle most of your business demands.

The sleek and thin business laptop has 4GB DDR4 memory, allowing for optimal performance for programs such as Microsoft Excel, Word and PowerPoint, all of which can be bought as an affordable pre-installed add-on. For those long flights, the Acer Aspire E 15 gives users a backlit keyboard and up to 12 hours of battery life, so you’ll never have to worry about not getting work done.

Interested in reading more reviews? Take a look at our selection of the best laptops under $500

Best Battery Life: ASUS ZenBook UX330UA-AH54

If you’re a road warrior or you frequently work outside the office, there’s a good chance you need a laptop with good battery life. The Windows 10 ASUS ZenBook UX330UA-AH54 is your best bet with a mix of power, portability and a long-lasting battery.

First off, let’s talk battery. The ZenBook UX330UA-AH54 offers up a 57-watt-hour battery that can last more than six hours with heavy usage and more than 13 hours with light usage. So even if you work an eight-hour day outside of the office, you can likely go the whole day without a recharge (unless you are doing intensive tasks such as photo and video editing).

On top of this, the ZenBook UX330UA-AH54 is a well-rounded and powerful machine with 13.3-inch HD screen, a 7th generation Intel i5-7200U 2.5 GHz processor, 8GB of DDR3 RAM and a 256GB SSD hard drive. For ports, the ZenBook has three USB 3.0 ports, one USB 3.1 Type C port, micro-HDMI, SD card reader and a headphone jack. And even with all of this installed, the machine only weighs 2.6 pounds.

Want to take a look at some other options? See our guide to the best ASUS laptops

Best Value: Acer Swift 3

The Swift 3 may be the entry-level iteration of Acer’s Swift family of ultraportables, but that does not mean it delivers entry-level performance. From its sleek all-aluminum body to its powerful 2.3 GHz Intel i5 processor, this laptop delivers quality design and performance, all for less than $700.

The design and performance are comparable to the Macbook Air. It is slender with a 14-inch high-definition screen with matte finishing and an IPS panel. Its hinges allow the screen to be folded 180 degrees, and the backlit keyboard has a nice soft finishing.

This machine is fast, especially for the price range. The i5 processor is complemented by 8 GB RAM and an Intel Integrated GPU. The battery lasts an impressive 10 hours, but this comes partly at expense of screen brightness, which is the laptop’s biggest drawback.

Interested in reading more reviews? Take a look at our selection of the best Acer laptops

Runner-Up, Best Overall: Dell Precision 15 5000 (5510)

Another worthy candidate for a business laptop is the Dell Precision 15 5000 series (5510). It weighs 5.67 pounds, which is a bit heavier than the usual on-the-go laptop, yet measures a slender .66” x 14.06” x 9.27”. The casing is made of superior, premium materials; the exterior is made of aluminum, and the keyboard deck is constructed of carbon fiber, which offers a smooth and comfortable feel. Battery life is not the best, just about five hours.

This laptop is available in a wealth of configurations, the most premium of which will get an office powerhouse running an Intel Xeon 2.8 gigahertz processor. Windows 10 comes standard, and the model includes 8 GB of RAM (upgradable to 16 GB) and a generous 512 GB SSD hard drive. The twin speakers are loud, and offer both power and clarity for sound presentations.

The Dell Precision 15 uses Infinity display technology and an NVIDIA Quadro graphics card. The 15.6-inch Ultra High Definition touch screen offers a splendid resolution of 3,840 x 2,160, with eight million pixels.

Runner-Up, Best Budget: Dell Inspirion TouchScreen HD

Dell is updating its Inspirion line for 2018, and it packs plenty of practical features for capable performance and usability. The device is powered by an i5-5200U Dual-Core Processor that clocks in at 2.2GHz but can be turbo boosted to 2.7GHz. This zippy processor is complemented by 8 GB RAM and integrated Intel Graphics that will handle all day-to-day applications. Store all of your files on the hefty 1TB HDD and take advantage of the three USB ports and HDMI port. A 720p HD Webcam lets you chat over Skype, and 802.11ac wireless connectivity means you will get top speeds on WiFi. The 15.6-inch screen has touch capability and 1366 x 768-pixel resolution.

Best Portability: Dell XPS 13

Tipping the scales at a mere 2.67 pounds and a slender 0.3 inches thick at its thinnest point, the Dell XPS 13 is one of the most portable laptops on the market. Even though it’s thin and light, it has the power you need in the office or on the road with 8th-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors and three handy USB Type-C ports for attaching any accessories you need to make your job easier, as well as a microSD slot. The laptop comes with 16GB of RAM and a 2.8GH.z quad-core CPU for faster processing. Take the laptop anywhere to work, even outside, thanks to the anti-glare screen coating that blocks light and makes your work viewable from anywhere. Plus, with the stylish Alpine White finish, you’ll look good in that coffee shop, hotel lobby or airplane - even if you’re riding coach. 

Best Style: Microsoft Surface Laptop

Clean and elegant, the Microsoft Surface Laptop is one of the most stylish laptops available with its luxurious Alcantara fabric-covered keyboard and a lightweight exterior aluminum casing that comes in a choice of four rich tone-on-tone color combinations. Choose from a refreshingly grown-up selection of platinum, burgundy, cobalt blue, and graphite gold – muted, sophisticated color choices with an elegant, professional appearance. The vibrant, edge-to-edge 13.5” PixelSense Display provides realistic color and definition, and an ultra-thin bezel creates clean lines without visual distractions. Best of all, the Microsoft Surface Laptop features a 7th generation Intel Core i7 processor, 512 GB of storage, 16 GB RAM and up to 14.5 hours of video playback, so it works as well as it looks. The Microsoft Surface Laptop is designed for Windows 10 S with Microsoft-verified apps delivered via the Windows Store so you can stay connected even on the go. 

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