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Laptop vs Tablet for students: which is better?

Student laptops have been around for a while now and as one of the most crucial gadgets for studies. Using one makes more sense than ever for students who want to use technology in the classroom, but there are some drawbacks too.

Tablets are another useful tool that has become available to many schools. They give people access to all kinds of information at their fingertips.

There’s simply so much you can do with a tablet or laptop and nowadays it isn’t very expensive either (although you would expect them to be if you’ve just bought one). The real question is which device offers the best value.

Is it worth paying hundreds of dollars on a laptop when an equally capable alternative is available for $200?

A laptop vs tablet comparison will help you decide which device suits your needs more in terms of portability vs functionality.

Laptop vs Tablet for studying

The majority of students consider buying a laptop computer for schoolwork.

However, with the increasing popularity of tablets like iPads and Galaxy Tabs among both younger and older generations, more students question whether they should buy a tablet instead; specifically, it can be argued that tablets offer advantages over traditional laptops.

1. Tablets are cheaper than laptops

In the last decade, laptops were very expensive. Because of their high price, tablets could be a good option for students who want to buy a computer.

However, now laptop prices are very low compared to a few years ago. Therefore, we can say that they are still not cheaper than tablet computers.

Laptops have become more affordable over the last few years so not much of a price difference exists nowadays when comparing them directly.

But there is another great advantage in favor of laptops: they offer much more applications and accessories than smartphones or tablets do. Students can easily find applications for almost any area such as programming, data analysis, etc. That is why laptops for engineering students are always powerful and can complete tasks tablets would struggle to.

2. Laptops have a longer battery life

As a general rule, a tablet will last anywhere from 6 to 8 hours before needing a recharge, and an average laptop should get you between 5 and 12 hours of use per charge.

Although the power requirements for today’s high-end ultraportable laptops don’t differ much from netbooks (low-power lightweight notebooks), these ultraportables still have longer battery life than tablets.

That’s because most tablets have larger displays with higher resolutions that consume more energy than typical PC displays. They also lack mechanical disks and optical drives, which aren’t very common on laptops anymore anyway — but which require additional power even when in sleep mode.

3. Display

For the price, lightness and portability tablets may on top, but the larger display laptop has advantages over most of them.

Tablet favors portability while retaining more powerful processing hardware as compared to a laptop of the same price. This is achieved by using smaller displays with lower resolutions (720p vs 1080p for example). But even a high-resolution tablet still can’t approach a laptop’s display real estate in terms of usability and viewing comfort.

It doesn’t help that many tablets are 3:2 ratio, offering around 15% less vertical space than their widescreen counterparts, further restricting what you can do with them at one time.

4. Laptop vs tablet portability and weight

Tablets are lighter than most laptops, making them easy to carry.  Even if you want a larger screen then one of the new iPad Air models might be enough for what you need.

The biggest difference between using a laptop or tablet for your studies will come down to how much you want to carry around.

Wrap up

Both laptops and tablets come with pros and cons, and the final decision depends only on personal preferences.

What are your thoughts about the comparison of laptops and tablets? What do you think is more important between weight, performance and screen size?

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Kanisha is an all-around geek who loves learning new stuff every day. With a background in computer science and a passion for web-based technologies and Gadgets, she focuses on writing about Web Trends, Smartphones and Tablets. You can contact her at kanisha@pc-tablet.com.