Differences Between Laptop and Notebook

The laptop has many names today. Each manufacturer pushes for its own little elbow space in the market by promoting its products by customized names – MacBook, from Apple, IdeaPad (formerly referred to as ThinkPad from IBM) from Lenovo, TabletPC, Notepad, or Powerbook. The universally accepted name, ‘laptop’ is fast losing its stand and we are poised at a time when numerous avatars of the laptop are fast crowding the market.

The terms laptop and notebook are interchangeably used nowadays. But what are notebooks? The notebook computer generally refers to the lighter version of a traditional laptop and can easily fit into a briefcase. During the early years of technological development this distinction was prominent and notebooks used to be significantly lighter than the laptops. But today with its LCD screens, powerful performance and ultra-light weight most laptops are notebooks – compact and easily portable.

The other major distinguishing feature between a laptop and a notebook was that notebooks did not have built-in drives. However, these days many companies introduce their notebooks to the market with a built-in disk drive unit. For a true connoisseur of notebooks and a gizmo-loyal, the clinching factor for a notebook computer is its thickness or rather the lack of it. The thinner and lighter the notebook is the better.

Other than the above two features of weight and built-in drives laptops and notebooks can be distinguished based on the following factors:
• Battery life: Owing to the concept of greater portability for notebooks, these are supposed to have longer battery life (around 5 hours) than an ordinary laptop (around 2 hours).
• Keyboard: Notebooks are designed to have smaller keyboard area without affecting the usability while laptops have larger keyboard with full features.
• Screen: A laptop screen can go as wide as 17 inches while a notebook screen is mostly restricted to 14 inches. Again the weight factor comes in to play.
• Usability: A laptop is designed to sit on your lap while you can use your notebook on the go.

However over the years the differences between a laptop and a notebook have blurred. Most companies these days do not even have a separate section for laptops. They refer to all portable computers as notebooks. They try to pack in maximum features in the portable computer and still keep it ultra light and thin. Soon you will find only notebooks in the market – this is the age of portable data and let’s face it we all need greater accessibility and lesser burden.

So while you are out there to shop for your latest notebook, do keep in mind the following points:
1. That it is really portable.
2. It has a longer battery life.
3. It takes care of your specifications and is user friendly.
4. Above all it is upgradeable.

Most prominent manufacturers have their series of notebook computers to choose from. The latest ones are MacBook Air, Sony Vaio, Lenovo IdeaPad or Dell Inspiron. The respective websites of these companies will give you detailed feature of each product. Remember the line separating a notebook and a laptop is vanishing fast and tomorrow will be the age of notebook computers.


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