New Year, New Laptop

Anyone shopping for a new laptop was thrown a curveball last month when Consumer Reports came out with a poor review of the new MacBook Pros due to “highly inconsistent” battery life tests. Apple says their internal tests did not reveal any battery life issues, and the company plans to work with Consumer Reports to discover why the nonprofit organization may have arrived at those results. In meantime, if you can’t wait to upgrade your laptop, then consider these alternatives from other top computer companies.

Lenovo: 2-in-1 with 4K

If aesthetics is important to you than Lenovo’s Yoga 910 ($1,199 and up) offers a compelling choice. This 2-in-1 laptop/tablet has a 4K high-definition touchscreen so you can stream Netflix in Ultra HD on those long business trips. But the Yoga 910 is also a picturesque device with an elegant watchband hinge that provides a sophisticated look. Additionally, it has an always-on USB Type-C port that will charge your mobile devices even when the laptop is closed.

Samsung: Lighten Your Load

Samsung recently tweaked one of its top-selling line of laptops—the Notebook 9 ($999 and up). At 1.8 pounds, the Notebook 9 offers the lightest 13.3-inch laptop on the market. The laptop also fully charges in 80 minutes or provides about two hours of battery life after a 20-minute charge. And the latest USB Type-C port allows users to charge it via a cellphone charger as well as enables quick data transfer and connectivity to other devices.

Dell: Ring in the New Year with Gold

Dell also recently updated its popular XPS 13 model with a Rose Gold edition ($1,149 and up). The new XPS 13 is still the smallest 13-inch laptop available with an InfinityEdge display that stretches all the way to the borders to provide a 13.3-inch screen in an 11-inch frame. In addition to a new color, the laptop also packs more power with your choice of the Intel 7th Generation Core i5/i7 processors.

HP: Versatile Design

The advantage of 2-in-ls is they offer a variety of modes to fit your needs, including notebook mode for working, tablet mode for using on the go, tent mode for an easier way to share presentations, and stand mode for viewing movies or video conferencing. The HP Spectre x360 ($749 and up) offers all of that in a stunningly slim package (13.8 mm thin in the 13.3-inch display model and 15.9 mm in the 15.6-inch display model). The laptop also offers HP Fast Charge which can take you from fully drained to 50% charged in 30 minutes.

Microsoft: A Performance Upgrade

The latest edition to Microsoft’s laptop family is the Surface Book with Performance Base ($2,399). With performance in its name, performance is what you should expect. The most powerful Surface Book available delivers increased speed and graphics thanks to an Intel Core i7 processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 965M 2GB GPU, and up to 16 hours of battery life. It’s built to speed through professional-grade software such as SolidWorks 3D CAD, AutoCAD, Revit, and Adobe Premiere Pro 5—making it a solid choice for designers.


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