It takes a lot to run a successful business, whether you’re managing a small-to-medium sized organisation, or working at a large enterprise scale. Second to top-notch talent, the most important thing required is top-notch machinery: high functioning, cost-efficient, and easy-to-use computers.
1. HP 255 G4
A reliable workhorse that certainly won’t break the bank
Very affordable price
Legacy ports and optical drive
The 255 G4 is HP’s entry-level business laptop and is a solid candidate should you be looking for a straightforward, reliable, workhorse at a bargain price. Don’t expect any fireworks as it is a basic model; it just does the job without much ado. One thing that works for this machine though is its price – the G4 battles with Lenovo for the cheapest business laptop on the market.
2. Dell Inspiron 15-5559
A business ultraportable that punches above its weight
Dedicated graphics card and 16GB RAM
Believe it or not, Dell classifies the Inspiron as a business laptop, albeit one that is geared towards a home office environment. This ultraportable laptop – as Dell puts it – punches above its weight with Windows 10 Pro across the entire range as well as rather attractive pricing. The top of the range model we’ve favoured here tips the scales at around £750 with some very tasty specs, but the entry-level machine costs about 20% less.
3. Toshiba Portege Z30-C-138
A notebook which boasts great connectivity and battery longevity
Up to 11 hours battery life
So, you want the most powerful system on the market with plenty of connectivity but don’t want to compromise on size or portability or battery life. Mission impossible? Well, not really. Take this Portege laptop from Toshiba. The Japanese manufacturer managed to squeeze an extraordinary amount of components in this device including a VGA port, a fingerprint reader and even a 4G/LTE modem and A-GPS!
4. Lenovo ThinkPad X240
An old favourite, but still a very worthy notebook
Hot swappable batteries
Great fingerprint reader
Mention the word ThinkPad to older geeks and many of them will wax lyrical on how that laptop range set the benchmark for enterprise notebooks. The X240 might be a couple of years old already but its feature set means that it simply cannot be ignored at its current asking price. Sure it doesn’t have the latest CPU or a touchscreen but that probably won’t matter for the audience the X240 is aimed at.
5. Lenovo B51-80
A not particularly portable powerhouse
If you are willing to sacrifice portability for sheer power, then this laptop is worth considering. Oddly enough, although it is part of Lenovo’s B-series (essentially aiming for the SMB market), it comes with Windows Home rather than Professional. Other than this, the B51 is a very decent all-rounder that hits almost all the right notes: from the powerful CPU to the full HD display and the discrete GPU.
6. HP EliteBook 745 G2
A great budget offering
MIL-STD 810G compliance
Business laptops do not have to be expensive. This EliteBook from HP embodies that idea, bringing together some very decent components at a rock bottom price. How HP manages to do that beggars belief, because this notebook is loaded with a powerful AMD CPU, 4GB of RAM, a fast SSD and it gives you up to 10 hours battery life.
7. Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch Retina Display 2015
A great performer with an excellent screen
Superb Retina Display
Great battery life
Should a member of Apple’s award winning MacBook Pro family be included in a best business laptop shortlist? Certainly as it hits all the right notes especially as IBM has boosted Apple’s credentials as an enterprise player. And Apple’s top of the range models are certainly not overly expensive compared to their Windows-based counterparts, especially if you buy them from trusted third-party websites.
8. Fujitsu LifeBook E736 Retina Display 2015
This notebook delivers on all fronts, but has quite the price tag
Impressive performance levels
Modularity and expansion
This is the other Japanese laptop company that we often hear about and while Fujitsu is rarely seen as an innovator, its newest range of notebooks may well change that perception by bundling a lot of features that are often regarded as optional by the competition. From the two-year standard warranty to the massive battery and 4G/LTE integrated modem, there’s a lot to love about this machine.
9. Dell Latitude E7470
A solid performer backed by Dell’s quality aftersales
Impressive performance levels
Strong on connectivity
Dell’s decision to bypass the E7460 series to launch an E7470 left a few analysts puzzled but the PC vendor managed to deliver a magnificent piece of kit which it says is the most secure, most reliable and most manageable business-class laptop. It does come at a hefty price though and compared to the competition, this notebook may feel underwhelming. However, Dell’s forte lies in its services and aftersales.
10. Lenovo ThinkPad T560 Retina Display 2015
Powerful yet still nicely slim and portable
Three-year onsite warranty as standard
Lenovo calls the newest member of the ThinkPad T-series family the ‘new standard for highly mobile laptops’. What makes it so special is the fact that it blurs the line between traditional business devices and more powerful mobile workstations. The top-end spec highlighted here boasts some of the highest configuration levels we’ve seen on any laptop and yet manages to pack everything into a very portable and elegant Ultrabook-esque form factor.