We often think of technology and it’s capabilities in chronological order, with the latest released items being the best. For this reason, we usually think that laptops are better than desktops. However, in an unlikely twist, it seems that desktops are experiencing a renewed relevance with the increase of remote work.
It’s not necessarily about moving backward, it’s more about practicality. In fact, the capabilities of a desktop can be equal to, or even better than, a laptop depending on what you’re looking for.
Below, we take a look at the renewed interest in desktops, due to COVID-19, and help you to decide if it’s the right option for you.
Are Desktops Making A Comeback?
In the pre-COVID-19 world, a laptop was almost always the better option. This is because laptops allow you to take your work with you on the road and allow you to be productive no matter where you find yourself.
However, in the COVID-19 era, we all find ourselves at home, taking meetings online, and not leaving the house as much. The need to have a portable work machine is now at an all-time low. In fact, in many places, movement and gatherings are totally restricted, which means the need for a portable device is almost void to many.
In line with this train of thought, portable devices, and laptops specifically, are quite a bit pricier than desktops are in general. For those wanting to set up a permanent home office, a desktop may be a much more reasonable choice. Remote work allows for a lack of portability and it means that less money is spent on unnecessary equipment for workers.
In July, Forbes reported that desktop sales have surged this year as a result of increased remote work. While they argue that this is due to a “short-term” need to remote work, others have argued that many will remain remote even after the pandemic subsides. For this reason, the comeback of the desktop may be long term.
There are many benefits that come with a desktop too. These, of course, have also played a part in the return of the desktop.
Advantages Of A Desktop For Remote Work
As with everything in life, desktops come with some cons like the space they take up and the fact that they are stationary – meaning you can’t work from your couch. However, there are several advantages of a desktop for remote work that make it a worthy option for remote workers.
The parts that make up a desktop are usually considerably more affordable than a laptop. If you’re not looking for high specification items, the price of a desktop will be much cheaper than a laptop and you’ll still be able to do all the same things.
If you’ll be doing remote work for the foreseeable future, a desktop is the best option price-wise. As you don’t have to move around for work, the fact that it is stationary makes no difference.
Additionally, you’ll get to save some extra money that you would have spent on a laptop.
Since you’re pocketing extra money by choosing a desktop over a laptop for remote work, you can also spend that extra cash on additional tools that will make you more productive.
You could spend the money on a stronger processor, a graphics card, or additional RAM, which speeds up your desktop and, in turn, boosts your productivity.
An extra monitor for dual-display to assist with work is another option. Rather than flipping back and forth between browsers, documents, and windows, you can have reference documents open on one monitor and your work open on the other.
Certain accessories, like a webcam and noise-canceling headphones, are essential for remote work as more meetings are taking place online. So, you can spend the extra money on investing in some good quality accessories to improve your workstation.
One of the worst things about a laptop is that it is easy to steal and, thus, the security of your work is compromised. A desktop is much bulkier and is less likely to be stolen.
A desktop is great for setting up an unmovable workstation. This is ideal for remote work for two main reasons.
The first is that you’re unlikely to get disturbed by at-home activities, like TV or roommates, when you’re at your workstation – making you more productive.
The second is that it does well to create a good sense of separation between work and home life. It gets difficult to maintain a work-life balance when you work from home, but a desktop and a dedicated workstation help to create a divide between the two.
Is It The Right Choice For You?
Of course, a desktop is not the best choice for everyone. If you still need to be on the move, you should consider a laptop instead. Another consideration is space. If you don’t have a specific area that you can dedicate to a desktop, then a laptop is the way to go.
For those who like a change of scenery every now and then, or enjoy working from bed in the mornings or evenings, a laptop may be the better choice.
But, desktops have proven to be an effective and more affordable option for remote workers with a dedicated “office” space or workstation. When mobility is less of a concern, you can focus on optimizing your fixed workstation with a desktop computer and better peripherals, like an extra monitor.
For remote work, a desktop comes with many advantages like creating a work-life balance and saving money. Since you probably won’t be traveling much in the foreseeable future, the mobility of a laptop is not a top priority.
In addition, you can usually get the same specifications for less with a desktop. So, why not go for the more affordable option and spend the extra money on useful accessories to optimize your remote workspace?