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9 Best Laptops for Remote Work and Globally Distributed Teams

9 Best Laptops for Remote Work and Globally Distributed Teams

As more companies take advantage of a globally talented workforce and offer remote working to their current employees, they have to make sure they have the right equipment.

This means ensuring employees have a laptop that is easily transportable and can handle multiple programs and tabs at the same time. So, how do you find the right laptop to equip your new remote hire, and how do you get it to them?

This guide will help you choose the best laptops for remote work. By choosing the right laptop, you can easily manage a remote team efficiently.

Things to consider before buying a laptop for remote work-

So you might have just found a unicorn employee who is both skilled in paid digital marketing and is an SEO wizard. You want to send them a new Macbook, but they are based in Colombia and the shipping costs are through the roof.

Maybe you are onboarding a C++ developer from Nigeria and want to offer them a stipend for a new laptop but don't know how much to give. These issues will become increasingly more common as companies and startups expand their workforces for remote working.

best laptops for remote working

Companies will also have to reconsider what they offer as part of their remote onboarding plan to attract top international talent. The problem is distribution bottlenecks. The best laptops for remote work have substantial price differences depending on where you live or work from.

Most are readily available in the USA and Europe. While countries in Latin America and Africa have to spend large amounts of money on the same products. 

On top of all that, some remote employees are interested in changing their locations or want to work and travel. Depending on the job function, whether they are a developer or a marketer, their laptop requirements will be different. 

When looking for the right laptop for remote work, consider these categories:

a) Weight and size

Of course, a laptop's weight and size are considerations for digital nomads and those who want to clock-in while on vacation in the Caribbean. You want to have a lightweight laptop and not too bulky travel laptop so that it can fit in any carry-on luggage. 

However, these are also factors that should be taken into account when ordering and sending laptops to locations worldwide. The weight and size will impact how much you pay for shipping and the taxes at the border. 

best laptop for working remotely

A good-sized screen that won't make you squint but also is portable is around 13 inches. This makes it easy to transport and also won't require extensive packaging material when shipping. 

Anything above 1.5 kilograms or around 3 pounds will start to get a bit heavy for carrying around large distances. This also fits in the lower weight categories for most shipping services and taxes for going through customs.

b) Battery capacity

Another critical factor in remote working is how long your laptop can last on one charge. Think if you have to send an email in a bus station or airport without any available outlets. If you want to work several hours outside enjoying the fresh air, you will also need a high battery capacity. 

Laptop for remote work

Most laptops offer between 6-12 hours of battery life. The problem is that it is rare batteries actually maintain that capacity for more than the first several months of use. Battery life degrades over time depending on how often and how long you charge.

Battery capacity also varies depending on your settings and what programs you are running. It is good to get a laptop that advertises 10 hours of battery life, and that way, you are left with 6-8 hours for years to come.

c) Processor

Your processor is what renders everything you see on your screen. This is often a tricky subject for those not familiar with the difference between dual, core processors or I5 processor and I7 processor.  

best laptops with i5 core for remote work

The question you have to ask yourself is, what does the team member's or your job require? If they are working with multiple programs and have to save various files to their hard drive, they would probably do better with an I5 and up. 

If they do basic data entry and surf the web, then I3 or a dual-processor should be enough to get the job done. 

d) Functionality

Laptops these days don't make it easy for the consumer. New generation Macs require you to buy separate adapters for anything that isn't an apple product. Think USBs and HDMI cords.  

Other computer manufacturers follow suit with many new laptops only having one or two USB outlets and HDMI ports. 

laptop for remote work

Consider how much you are willing to spend on a new reliable laptop for yourself or remote employees and always include 50-100 USD for adapters and cords. You may also want to think about whether a touch screen and tablet functionality are essential.

Some people prefer the compactness of tablets like an Ipad pro or a surface laptop with the ability to add a keyboard and mouse. These are great for remote working but are limited to what they can do.

e) Price

Whether you are equipping your remote team or looking to upgrade, budget plays the most crucial role. Be careful with selecting the lowest priced option as this is a device someone will be using day-in and day-out.

Don't sacrifice functionality or power for a low price point. You may be investing in a device that will only last a year when for a couple of hundred dollars more, it could last five. Think about the longevity of your equipment.

There is always the option for resale, or if a remote worker leaves, they can send back the computer, and you can offer it to someone else. The point is you are paying for productivity and getting the job done. A budget laptop prevents that. 

best laptop for remote work

You will have to also factor in shipping costs. The best option is to choose a standard model that all new employees receive and then adjust your budget accordingly depending on their location. Luckily some services handle the selection and distribution of laptops all from one platform. 

How much RAM do you need for working from home?

If we compile all this information, we are still left with how much RAM and storage is necessary to work from home. Your processor is important, but these components are what make up the power and performance of your operating system.  

How much RAM do you need working from home

  • Part-time remote work or standard administration: Ram 4GB, Storage 60GB-120GB
  • Full-time remote work: Ram 8GB, Storage 250GB-500GB
  • Complex Job Tasks (Design or programming): Ram 16GB, Storage 500GB-1TB

What is the best laptop for remote work in 2021?

Full disclosure: We love Apple. There are just too many positives in regards to processing power, portability, and design. There is also the fact that with GroWrk, you can get these laptops shipped to over 150+ countries and pay back the costs in monthly installments. 

We still included several options like the Google Pixelbook and for the Windows lovers out there. A portable computer like the Lenovo Thinkpad x1 carbon, Microsoft Surface, HP Envy, Acer Aspire, and the Dell XPS 13 can also be great choices. 

Want these options shipped to your address immediately? Woffer PC Options and distribution services for your current inventory

1. Apple MacBook Pro -16"

The premium laptop for remote work is the 2020 Apple MacBook Pro. This laptop is perfect for designers. It comes equipped with a super-fast Intel Core i9 processor and 32 GB of memory to ensure optimum application responsiveness.

You will never need an external hard drive with 1 TB of onboard storage capacity. The 16-inch Retina display is perfect for an immersive viewing experience. The AMD Radeon Pro graphics card accelerates any type of design task.

The Best laptop for remote work

Features:

  • Includes AppleCare+
  • Screen Size: 16"
  • Processor: Intel Core i9 (2.4GHz)
  • 32GB RAM
  • Hard Drive: 1TB SSD
  • Weight: 1.83kg

2. Apple MacBook Pro - 13"

The new Apple M1 chip operating system gives the 13-inch MacBook Pro up to 2.8x CPU performance. Up to 5x the graphics speed. The advanced Neural Engine for up to 11x faster machine learning. And up to 20 hours of battery life.

mac laptop for working from home

Features:

  • Includes AppleCare+
  • Screen Size: 13.3"
  • Processor: M1 8-core GPU
  • 8 GB RAM
  • Hard Drive: 512 GB SSD
  • Weight: 1.37kg

3. Apple MacBook Air 13"

This thin, light powerful laptop is standard among many remote workers across the globe. The Apple M1 chip has completely transformed it with CPU speeds up to 3.5x faster, and GPU speeds up to 5x faster.

laptop for working remotely

Features:

  • Includes AppleCare+
  • Screen Size: 13"
  • Processor: M1 8-core GPU
  • 8 GB RAM
  • Hard Drive: 512 GB SSD
  • Weight: 1kg

4. Lenovo Thinkpad x1 Carbon

If we only listed Macs on this list, we might as well be working for Apple. The bias, of course, for most remote teams is that they should select a brand and model to stick with when purchasing a business laptop. Lenovo features a wide variety of durable and powerful laptops.

Apple is the most well-known brand, but this windows laptop has almost all the same power as a Mac book.

best pc for remote work

Features:

  • Screen size: 14"
  • Processor: Up to Intel® Core™ vPro™ i7-7600U processor
  • RAM: 4GB-16GB
  • Hard Drive: 128 GB - 1TB SSD
  • Weight: 1.2 kg

5. Dell XPS 9500

This ideal computing device is powered with a Intel Core i7-10750H (10th Gen) with 2.6 GHz clock speed that lets you multitask without any lags or interruptions.

You can work for extended working hours with the utmost convenience on this laptop as it comes with a sturdy, full-length, and ergonomically designed English International Non- Keyboard. Also, there are zero chances of battery overheating or battery swelling.

Dell XPS for working from home

Features:

  • Screen size: 15.6"
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-10750H (10th Gen)
  • 32 GB RAM 
  • Battery: Li-Ion
  • Weight: 1.83 Kg
  • Performance: NVIDIA Geforce GTX 1650 Ti

6. Google Pixelbook

In general, except for some models from Asus and HP, Chromebooks are usually not very powerful devices, and quite bulky compared to an ultrabook like Macbooks.

However, Google has wanted to change that with its new Pixelbook, which has dimensions very contained for everything it offers us.

Google Pixelbook

Source: Andro4all.com

Features:

  • Screen size: Touch screen 12.3 inches at 2,560 x 1,700 resolution
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 or Intel Core i7
  • 16 GB RAM
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD
  • Weight: 1 kg

7. Microsoft Surface Pro 7

At the office, at home or en route, new Surface Pro 7 adapts to the way you work — and delivers more power than ever, with a laptop-class Intel Core processor, all-day battery, Instant On, graphics, and more multitasking connections.

Microsoft Surface Pro 7 instantly transforms from laptop to tablet to portable studio. Pair with a colorful Surface Type Cover (included) and Surface Pen to complete your experience.

Microsoft Surface

Features:

  • Screen size: 12.3" 2736 x 1824 PixelSense Touchscreen
  • Processor: 1.1 GHz Intel Core i5-1035G4
  • 8GB LPDDR4x RAM
  • 256GB SSD
  • Weight: 2.31 Kg

8. HP Envy x360

The sturdy, full-length, and ergonomically designed full-size island-style keyboard with a cool numeric keypad in this laptop will let you work with comfort for a longer time duration. Furthermore, the HP Envy x360 m6-aq105dx (W2K44UA) laptop is housed with a high-quality Lithium Ion battery that does not overheat.

Hence, you can easily carry this lightweight and compact laptop in your backpack while you are going out somewhere.

HP envy

Features:

  • Screen size: 15.6" (39.62 cm) display, 1920 x 1080 px
  • Processor: Intel Core i7 (7th Gen) Processor
  • 16 GB DDR4 RAM
  • Storage: 1 TB HDD

9. Acer Aspire 5

The Aspire 5 packs a lot of power into the chassis with a choice of either Intel® or AMD processors, and either NVIDIA® or AMD graphics1. With up to 24GB memory, users have all the power to suit your multi-tasking needs.

Thanks to the narrow border and an 81.61%1 screen-to-body ratio, you can enjoy color-rich Full HD IPS. To further enhance visual appearance and protect the your eyes, it includes Acer Color Intelligence™1. Also, users get easy updates to the latest information with a full range of connectivity options.

acer aspire

Features:

  • Screen size:15.6" Full HD In-plane Switching (IPS) Technology
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080
  • Processor: AMD Quad-Core Ryzen 5 Processor
  • 8 GB DDR4 RAM
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD

Wrapping things up-

Once you have figured out the easiest way to equip your distributed team with laptops, don't stop there. 

Ask your employees about their current home office setup and fill in the gaps by offering a home office stipend.

You can then use Growrk's end-to-end inventory management system for the remote work era.

 

Grow remote with GroWrk. We provide and manage laptops, devices, other equipment and services to remote teams in over 150 countries.

 

Schedule a call now 

 

Growrk remote partners
GroWrk Team

February 27

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