Sunday, September 22, 2013

A message to laptop manufacturers

You have failed.

I want to buy a new Windows laptop and have a good budget but am really struggling with what is on the market today. I don't think my requirements are excessive but, well, lets go through them:

Screen: I don't need anything more than HD but when you have installed Windows 8 you do need a touch screen, so why aren't they on top end Samsungs? BTW higher than HD is IMHO a waste of effort - there are other things to fix

Keyboard: this is pretty essential and has to be good. Other manufacturers: go look at Samsung - theirs are very nice. Acer yours are too thin and Sony a bit 1980s calculator

Trackpads: again, must just work.

Wifi: absolutely has to work. I tried a Sony for a bit but it stopped all other devices accessing my home network and had a low through-put half of the time, dropped lots of connections and generally made me go aarrrhhh! It failed to play a Vimeo video my Chromebook, which is a fifth the price of the Sony, did without sweat

Fans: hate them. One of the joys of the Chromebook is its quiet

Hard disk: my old Samsung's crashed taking all my stuff with it so I was going to invest in SSD but guys 128 gb is pointless. My photos take over 120 gb and the system typically takes 24 gb or so just for restore. You do the maths

Width and weight: Ultrabooks are thin enough and light enough: don't spend time of this, fix the other stuff. Indeed too light and you get keyboard flex and increased danger of screen damage, hence another fail

Speed: i3s too slow, 4 GB RAM not really enough

Crapware: really really don't want any of this. See comment on lack of space in SSDs above.

McAfee: why is this soaking up 67% of CPU when I'm trying to do something useful?

Stupid buttons: the Sony has a button called Assist that opens a user guide which tells you absolutely nothing worth knowing.

Battery life: seems ok now. Didn't keep the Sony long enough to try that out to be honest.

Maybe I missed one - if I have let me know!


Anonymous said...

I share your dislike of useless buttons and fans. The makers are all looking for a USP, which should really be getting the essentials right for a good price. (I actually disconnected the overly loud fan on my original model eeePC, it runs a little hot sometimes, but still sits happily in the corner of my living room on active Skype duty)

Anonymous said...

Oh, and crap/bloatware (including McAfee). I guess it was a bad day for you. Rest assured: taking a hammer to misbehaving technology is very satisfying!

JP said...

HP's latest wheeze is sensors as per xbox kinetic so you just wave at the screen.

Call me crazy but I think good keyboard, working wifi and enough SSD space are more important.