10 Things to Know Before You Buy Your Teen a Laptop

This post is sponsored by Intel, but the opinions expressed are our own.

Teens are expensive and their technology, well, that’s even more expensive and confusing. While we find ourselves saying “no” to many of the new devices they want, there is one that we know they truly need: their laptop.

When one of our kids started college he told us the two things he couldn’t live without as a freshman were a high quality laptop and comfortable mattress topper! For kids working their way through high school and those who will later go to college, their laptop is the one resource that holds all the tools and information to make them a successful student.

But selecting a laptop can be confusing. Storage, processing speed, and cost all need to be considered. We want something that will last and will give them access to the digital tools they will need to master in high school and college. We need something that they can use for taking notes in class, working on group projects, doing research, multitasking across loads of different apps and, truthfully, watching a movie to unwind at the end of a long week.

If you find yourself as confused as we were about some of the things to think about when picking out a laptop for your teen, here are the 10 major factors you will want to consider. And here’s where you can check out the great deals that Walmart has on the HP Chromebook powered by Intel® Core™ i3 Processors when you are ready to buy.

10 Ways to Compare Laptops

1. Screen size: Our kids found that a 15-inch screen worked well and that’s the size of the HP Chromebook with an 8th Gen Intel® Core™ i3 processor. It has enough screen space to read documents and assignments (and watch movies, just being honest!) but most importantly, a 15” laptop fits perfectly into a backpack or book bag.

2. Touchscreen: While a touchscreen is not on the “absolutely necessary” list, it’s a great and useful addition that we found on the HP Chromebook. Some students might be tempted to try and get away with just a tablet, but a full size keyboard is important when writing papers in high school and college.

3. Processing speed: Our teens expect their computer to be up and running at the push of a button. Some laptops can be slow to start, and reboots are nothing but frustration. They need the fast processing speed for so many of the things they do. The HP Chromebook is powered by an 8th Gen Intel® Core™ i3 Processors which allows them to upload videos twice as fast, browse 2.7x faster (2), and load Google Docs up to 3.6x faster (3)

4. Weight: Laptops need to be thin and light enough to carry everywhere in their backpack because, along with their phone, it will always be with them. This HP Chromebook came in just under 4 pounds and we would suggest that laptops weighing more than about 5 pounds become very burdensome after a long day.

5. Cloud backup included: We would love to believe that our kids won’t lose or damage their laptops but we have been moms far too long for that fantasy. We insist that our kids backup their school work in the cloud and were thrilled when we learned that the HP Chromebook comes with cloud storage, which is the optimal storage solution.

6. A good camera: Sure it’s fun video chatting with friends and the dog back home, but a good camera, and microphone are also important to students who are working on group projects remotely. And later, college students may find themselves Skyping interviews for internships and jobs and won’t want to appear as a fuzzy little photo in the corner of a screen.

7. Operating system: Different operating systems are suitable for different tasks and you need to pick one that works well for your student. Chrome OS that runs on Chromebooks is efficient for web-based work, Google Docs, web browsing and many, if not most, student needs. Students in degree programs that require specialized operating systems should always check carefully to make sure a laptop fits their needs.

8. Price: The truth is that you can pay almost any price for a laptop, from a few hundred dollars (often without enough power) to many thousands of dollars (with far more bells and whistles than your teen will ever use). The HP Chromebook powered by Intel® Core™ i3 Processors offers great performance for a great value. (1).

9. Battery Life: Any laptop for a highschooler needs to have a looooong battery life for teens who seem to forget their charger at home every…single…day. The HP Chromebook has up to 10 hours of battery life (35,39) which should be enough time to get them back home again to where they left their chargers by the back door!

10. Keyboard and track pad: We like backlit keyboards to work in a darkened room where a roommate might be sleeping. Again, this one is not an absolute necessity, but it’s a very nice and useful addition. We also love computers with island style keys (the ones with closed spaces between the keys) because no matter how many times we tell our kids not to eat near their computers they do it, and at least with the flat keyboards crumbs cannot gather under the keys.

Walmart has great prices on the HP Chromebook powered by Intel® Core™ i3 Processors for back-to-school this fall which you can learn more about here. 
#UpgradeYourExpectations #Walmart

LEGAL DISCLAIMERS
• 1. Intel® technologies’ features and benefits depend on system configuration and may require enabled hardware, software or service activation. Performance varies depending on system configuration. No computer system can be absolutely secure. Check with your system manufacturer or retailer or learn more at http://support.intel.com.

• 2. Performance results are based on testing as of March 6, 2019 and may not reflect all publicly available security updates. See configuration disclosure for details. No product can be absolutely secure.
• Software and workloads used in performance tests may have been optimized for performance only on Intel microprocessors. Performance tests, such as SYSmark and MobileMark, are measured using specific computer systems, components, software, operations and functions. Any change to any of those factors may cause the results to vary. You should consult other information and performance tests to assist you in fully evaluating your contemplated purchases, including the performance of that product when combined with other products. For more complete information about performance and benchmark results, visit http://www.intel.com/benchmarks
• Measurements based on WebXPRT 3 Chrome Browser – Overall Score
• System configurations: Intel® Celeron® Processor N3350 (1.1 GHz base up to 2.4 GHz, 2T/2C, 2 MB cache, 6 W TDP) measured on Acer Spin 11 model CP511, 4GB DRAM, 32GB SSD, 1366×768 display OS: Chrome version 71.0.3578.127 vs.
Intel® Core™ i3-8130U Processor (2.2 GHz base up to 3.4 GHz, 4T/2C, 4 MB cache, 10 W TDP) measured on HP Chromebook X360 14, 8GB DRAM, 64 GB eMMC, 1920 x 1080 display OS: Chrome version 71.0.3578.127

• 3. Performance results are based on testing as of March 6, 2019 and may not reflect all publicly available security updates. See configuration disclosure for details. No product can be absolutely secure.
• Software and workloads used in performance tests may have been optimized for performance only on Intel microprocessors. Performance tests, such as SYSmark and MobileMark, are measured using specific computer systems, components, software, operations and functions. Any change to any of those factors may cause the results to vary. You should consult other information and performance tests to assist you in fully evaluating your contemplated purchases, including the performance of that product when combined with other products. For more complete information about performance and benchmark results, visit http://www.intel.com/benchmarks
• Measurements based on Google Docs Time to load a Document
• System configurations: Intel® Celeron® Processor N3350 (1.1 GHz base up to 2.4 GHz, 2T/2C, 2 MB cache, 6 W TDP) measured on Acer Spin 11 model CP511, 4GB DRAM, 32GB SSD, 1366×768 display OS: Chrome version 71.0.3578.127 vs. Intel® Core™ i3-8130U Processor (2.2 GHz base up to 3.4 GHz, 4T/2C, 4 MB cache, 10 W TDP) measured on HP Chromebook X360 14, 8GB DRAM, 64 GB eMMC, 1920 x 1080 display OS: Chrome version 71.0.3578.127

• 35. As projected on Intel® Reference Platform using a 40WHr battery and 25×14 Panel on Windows 10* 1080p 24fps Local Video Playback: Intel® Core™ i7-8550U Processor, PL1=15W TDP, 4C8T, Turbo up to 4.0GHz, Memory: 8GB DDR4-2400, Storage: Intel® 600p SSD, Intel® UHD Graphics 620, OS: Windows* 10, Battery Size: 40WHr, Screen: 25×14 12”,Windows 10 Power Slider – Better Performance

• 39. Performance results are based on testing as of Aug. 1, 2018 and may not reflect all publicly available security updates. See configuration disclosure for details. No product can be absolutely secure.

Don't miss out!
Want more like this? Get updates straight to your inbox.