Touchscreen Laptop vs. Non-touchscreen: Which is Right for You?
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There are plenty of factors to account for when you’re searching for a new laptop . Not only do you need to assess its specs and check its memory and hardware, but you also have to consider whether you need a regular non-touchscreen laptop, a fancy gaming model, or go for newer models with touchscreens. Today’s modern crop of touchscreen laptops has its pros and cons, just like any other laptop feature.
This article will discuss how the touchscreen feature works, its pros and cons, and some recommended models of touchscreen and non-touchscreen laptops.
Functions of a laptop’s touchscreen feature
The two widely used types of touchscreens in laptops are resistive and capacitive.
Two layers make up the resistive touchscreen: pressure from the user’s touch activates the screen. The layers are imbued with electric currents- one is conductive, and one is resistive- and is kept separate. When you touch the screen, the point of contact causes a change in the electric current, which is sensed by the software and used to perform its task of closing, opening, or swiping an app.
Capacitive touchscreens are composed of one layer, which functions as coordinates. The human body stores an electrical charge, and when we touch a capacitive touchscreen display, the point of contact shifts the electrical energy flow on the screen. Capacitive touchscreens can distinguish several points of contact, unlike resistive touchscreen, and can accommodate multiple fingers, multi-touch features, and zooming in and out.
Related: How Do Touchscreen Devices Work?
Having a laptop with a touchscreen can offer many benefits. As technology improves, these devices become more integrated within our lives. Here are some of the pros when buying a touchscreen laptop.
Easy, fast navigation
The main goal of having a touchscreen on laptops is to streamline navigation. Compared to trackpads and mouse devices, users can perform tasks more manageably, and it’s simpler to launch and shift between applications. Moreover, you can also use the touchscreen feature to get your work done if the trackpad or keyboard stops working.
Suitable for drawing and note-taking
Graphic designers and artists often prefer a touchscreen feature. There are laptop models equipped with a touchscreen display and stylus so users can efficiently generate sketches of artworks on the go at their convenience. A touchscreen and stylus display combo can be a highly convenient feature package for students, as it eliminates the need to have to carry around several heavy notebooks for classes.
Expressive, high-quality displays
Touchscreen laptops tend to come with fantastic brightness and superior color vibrancy, accuracy, and reproduction compared to non-touchscreen displays. The majority of touchscreen models feature displays with higher resolution. Glossy touchscreen displays respond to touch better than matte ones. Many users who work with color often typically choose touchscreen models due to their fantastic color brightness and accuracy.
There can be many benefits to having a touchscreen laptop. However, it’s not always a positive experience. Technology advances quickly, but there are still some faults with the systems that we use. Here are some cons about having a touchscreen laptop that you should be aware of.
Batteries drain quickly
Touchscreen features mean that the computer’s hardware has another set of processing tasks to take care of thanks to the touch panel. If you’re planning on frequently using the touchscreen feature, you will need to have a spare battery. Other battery-related questions to consider include the following:
Does touchscreen slow down a laptop?
While there’s no doubt that having a touchscreen can make some tasks easier, there are some pitfalls that come with the tech. While you most likely won’t notice any lag problems, there will be some extra strain on your PC battery and processing panel. Having the touchpad always on and ready to detect your fingerprint can quickly drain hours of battery life.
Will disabling touch screens improve performance?
It makes sense that if something is draining the battery that disabling it will increase performance. However, with touchscreens, that’s not the case. Even while disabled, the touchpad still seems to drain battery power.
Touchscreens are more expensive
Having a touchscreen feature will add to the price of the laptop. Some manufacturers offer higher-resolution touchscreen displays, which elevate the cost further.
Adding extra technology to the computer means it takes up more bulk and space, making the laptop heavier. Even though the difference is in grams, a small amount of weight is noticeable in laptops.
It’s hard to view in direct light
Laptops featuring touchscreen displays are great for dim lighting areas but can be difficult to use under direct lighting. The glossy finishes on touchscreen models respond faster to touch, but this kind of finish also easily attracts fingerprints, smudges, and the like.
Which type of laptop is better?
Users of touchscreen laptops mention that the touchscreen feature assists with productivity since it helps them get tasks done faster. Touchscreen models are highly feasible for specific tasks, such as doing creative work from sketching to drawing and taking quick notes. The display is more easily navigated because you can directly use your fingers. Moreover, touchscreen models are aesthetically-pleasing and offer exceptional color brightness and accuracy, which is excellent for those who work with color a lot.
As we discussed above, these models also offer certain disadvantages. They are heavier, more expensive, and use more batteries than regular laptops. When it comes to the touchscreen feature, you should consider your personal needs and think about how the advantages of touchscreen laptops meet those needs.
What’s the difference between a touchscreen laptop and a 2-in-1 laptop?
A laptop with a touchscreen is precisely that. This refers to a computer with a keyboard, mouse settings, and ports like a standard laptop, but it does feature a touch-sensitive screen.
In contrast, a 2-in-1 or hybrid laptop is similar. Many of these will also feature standard ports like USB. The most significant difference is that this laptop is more interactive and can be used as a tablet as well. Often the keyboard is hinged or detachable for ultimate versatility.
Top choices for touchscreen laptops
Razor Book 13 (2021)
One of the best non-gaming laptops of the year. This ultraportable is one of the first touchscreen laptops that can compete with the MacBook Air. A top of the line Core i7 processor and endless plugin features makes this laptop all around top notch. USB Type-A, HDMI, and USB Type-C ports make this ultraportable an easy favorite.
HP Spectre x360 (2021)
This HP laptop is back with more powerful components like Intel Iris Plus graphics and 10th-generation Intel Core processors and feature their amazing Bang & Olufsen speakers and extra security. This laptop is for those who care about aesthetics as much as overall quality and performance.
Dell XPS 13 (2021)
The Dell XPS 13 holds a high ranking in every list of best touchscreen laptops and remains one of the best laptops on the market years after its first release. This luxurious device comes with reliable performance, an all-day battery life, and a streamlined design. While the price tag is on the higher end, the Dell XPS 13 is worth every cent.
What is the best touchscreen laptop under $500?
The HP Flagship High-Performance Touchscreen Laptop might be the best touchscreen laptop that you can get on a limited budget. Don’t expect it to do everything, but this little 15.6 inch HD laptop can do quite a bit.
This user-friendly touchscreen offers 4GB RAM and a processing speed of 2.16GHz. 500GB of storage on the hard drive alone provides plenty of space, but you can always expand with the use of its USB ports.
Top choices for non-touchscreen laptops
HP Laptops, Premium 2019 Flagship 15.6 HD Laptop
The number of people working from home increases every single day. Remote workers need a laptop with a minimum of 8GB of RAM, a powerful processor, and solid battery life. This HP non-touchscreen laptop is ideal for teaching remotely , offering 12 hours of battery life, 8GB of RAM, and a fast processor. If you prioritize battery life, non-touchscreen laptops are typically the best choice since touchscreen displays eat up battery rapidly.
2019 Newest Dell Vostro 5000 15.6″ FHD Laptop
Engineered for both work and games, these Dell laptops offer a robust structure and build. If you’re looking for a powerful laptop, this laptop comes with a Core i7 processor that is fantastic for accounting and software engineering along with gaming. Nvidia Graphics is the best GPU for fluent gaming, which this laptop also has. This laptop offers a luxurious 16GB of RAM plus DDR4, which means a double data rate 4 for maximum speed.
Microsoft Surface Laptop 2
Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 provides the user with a powerful and pure Windows 10 laptop experience. The Surface Laptop 2 does not have modern ports, but this problem can be circumvented since the spec improvements make the laptop force to be reckoned with.
Whether you choose a laptop with touchscreen features or not is up to your individual needs. And whatever you go with, the Vibe blog has you covered with advice on how to install a dual monitor setup , how to clean your laptop (or other tech) , and how to take a screenshot .
[Editor’s note: this post was originally published on January 26, 2021 and updated on July 19, 2021.]
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