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Ask Arthur: Must a business computer be the business?

A reader wants to know if a consumer computer will suffice for the corporate world, ARTHUR GOLDSTUCK asks Acer for the answer.

Q: Do I need a different kind of laptop if it is for business use? Isn’t my home laptop good enough?

I asked a company that is best-known for its consumer laptops, but also happens to have a strong business range, namely Acer, with its Travelmate series.

A business device, they said, requires performance, security, durability, and support to handle a busy schedule’s demands.

“When you’re buying a device for business, it’s something that you’re using in the corporate world that you will open and close a lot, take on trips and use for many different tasks such as writing reports, video chats, and presenting at meetings,” said Renasha Papiah, Acer Africa’s commercial manager. “The ideal business devices are designed for those needs. They have much better security features, and are more durable and sustainable. It makes the difference between years of service or struggling with an underperforming computer.”

She recommends judging the device and its ecosystem on three levels:

Security: Look for security enhancements such as fingerprint and facial readers, camera covers, pre-boot authentication and hardware-trusted platform modules.

Durability: Business devices are workhorses and perform longer with sturdy keyboards, strong casing, and robust hinges that can handle a lot of activity.

Sustainability: Ideally, a suitable business device will last years, migrate between users and deliver much more value to the business.

Support: Bad things happen. Devices break. The right support and warranty programmes can quickly resolve these problems so you don’t waste time. Specifically, look at the device’s on-site warranty options and if the brand offers convenient walk-in service centres.

Ports and Features: A typical business device does many different things and needs the right ports to complete those jobs. For example, an HDMI port is standard for interfacing with boardroom projectors, and suitable WiFi keeps network connections fast and reliable.

Business devices are an investment, she says. “They help professionals work faster and smarter; the right features will ensure the device delivers value for years. Don’t cut corners that will cost you more in the long run.” 

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