Have you recently started working from home? You must have realized that it isn’t as EASY as it sounds. You must be facing a lot of obstacles that make it difficult to balance your personal and professional life. Since you’re going through a lot already, a slow laptop isn’t something you have time for! Do you?
A lot of freelancers, digital nomads, and consultants have been working from home for a significant part of their careers. Be it the tech, business, creative, media sector, or even education, etc. you shall find a lot of people who earn their bread and butter working remotely.
A laptop that’s best suited for remote working can help the smoothly complete your work. Not only does it help you adjust in a home-based work environment, but it also ensures that you do not lose any key technological aspects essential to your work when you decide to interact with the company.
Factors like RAM, internal storage capacity, processor speed, GPU support, battery life, updates, system protection, and the price points become a lot more important than you can think because each aspect impacts your work dynamic, directly or indirectly.
Whether you’ve just begun working from home or have been working remotely for a large part of your career already, the laptops in this list will surely support you in your homebound work routine, taking budget, system requirements, nature of work, etc. into consideration.
- Minimum & Recommended System Requirements
- Best Laptops For Working From Home or Remotely
- 1. Best Overall: Apple MacBook Pro
- 2. Best Windows Laptop For Remote Working: Dell XPS 15 9500
- 3. Best For Digital Nomads: Acer Aspire 7
- 4. Best for Business Users: LG Gram 14
- 5. Best 2-in-1 Laptop: Microsoft Surface Pro 7
- 6. Best Under $1000: Asus ZenBook 13
- 7. Best Affordable MacBook: Apple MacBook Air M1
- 8. Best For Programmers: Dell Inspiron 5000
- 9. Best with Intel Core i3: Asus VivoBook 15
- Frequently Asked Questions
Minimum & Recommended System Requirements
Although, resources such as CPU, RAM, GPU, Battery, etc requirements changes based on the type of work. For instance, a writer might just want a laptop that can run a word processor but a freelance data scientist might want a machine that comes with better CPU, RAM, GPU, and SSD storage to be able to run high-end machine learning software.
Here’s a list of the minimum and recommended system requirements one must consider to make an informed buying decision and ensure that the system does not face any lag, heating issue or more while they are in the middle of a video conference call or writing program or code.
|Minimum System Requirements||Recommended System Requirements|
|CPU||8th Gen Intel Core i3||10th Gen Intel Core i7|
|Storage||256GB SSD||512GB SSD|
|Display||12.3-inch PixelSense (2736 x 1824)||15.6-inch FHD IPS (1920 x 1080)|
|GPU||Integrated Intel HD 620||2GB NVIDIA GeForce MX350|
|Battery||Up to 5 hours||Up to 8 hours|
Best Laptops For Working From Home or Remotely
|Apple MacBook Pro|
|Dell XPS 15 9500|
|Acer Aspire 7|
|LG Gram 14|
|Microsoft Surface Pro 7|
|Asus ZenBook 13|
|Apple MacBook Air M1|
|Dell Inspiron 5000|
|Asus VivoBook 15|
Whether you perform CPU intensive tasks, memory-intensive tasks, or tasks that require high graphics, or even tasks that require a combination of all the resources mentioned above. Our list includes the best-rated laptops that are highly suitable for remote working or working from home.
1. Best Overall: Apple MacBook Pro
If you are deciding to begin a new freelancer or digital nomad journey, this 16-inch Apple Macbook Pro shall be a great choice. It provides you with a great push to pursue your career with a wholesome, fully-decked laptop.
Apple has ensured delivery of features based on the customer feedback on their previous models through MacBook Pro 16 and it has been an absolute victory. With the MacBook Pro 16, professionals working from home are going to have a seamless experience thanks to all the upgrades that Apple decided to inculcate in this fresh model.
The MacBook Pro 16 has sought after the design inspiration from the previous MacBook models – thin, sleek, and gorgeous. The thin bezels ensure that the 16-inch display fits smoothly in the make of MacBook Pro 16 and the user reviews have been mostly about admiration.
- The 16-inch Retina Display with Two-Tone Technology steals the show due to the large screen size and a 3072 x 1920 pixel resolution. This provides the machine with crisp and intense image quality which also makes it one of the best machines for watching movies.
- Coming with a 2.6GHz 6-core Intel Core i7 processor that basically seals the deal for the potential buyer, it is highly suitable for college students, Engineers, Computer programmers, etc.
- There’s a 512GB SSD internal storage accompanied by 16GB DDR4 RAM. Combine it with the hexacore CPU, what else could you ask for in a machine?
- The graphics unit on this laptop is the showstopper. AMD Radeon Pro 5300M with GDDR6 VRAM GPU is an absolute upgrade from its previous models and the MacBook Pro 16 works wonders with such specifications when it comes to video editing, routine documentation, development in various fields such as Android development and Game Development.
Although it weighs 4.3 pounds which is quite heavy for laptops, considering the specs it packs, the durable and robust build quality, one can’t complain about it being heavy.
An interesting tweak to note is the keyboard on MacBook Pro 16. The Butterfly switches have been replaced by Scissor which ensures that the keys do not become unresponsive when dust collects between the keys. The key travel has increased decently even as the MacBook remains slim.
Moreover, the new, shortened Touch Bar and dedicated ESC key is such a great add-on directed to the coders by Apple. This makes the users have a good typing experience thereby making the MacBook Pro 16 a preferred choice for those working from home.
There is also a 6-speaker system that is supported by 4 canceling-woofers to enhance the audio experience which could be really helpful to you when listening to music or during a skype call with your client.
As for the battery life, the MacBook Pro 16 comes with up to 11 hours of consistent performance on a single charge which is a boon for developers. The other features include four Thunderbolt 3 USB type C ports, WiFi, Bluetooth, a microphone jack, FaceTime HD Webcam, and a Touch ID.
If you are looking for a steal deal in terms of the configuration of an upper-segment laptop meant for tech developers, creative editors, and business professionals working on-the-go, Apple MacBook Pro 16 is your best bet.
NOTE: Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch variant is also available online for digital nomads who wish for great portability with specifications such as 2.3GHz Quad core Intel Core i5 CPU, 128MB SDRAM, 256GB SSD, up to 10 hours of battery life.
- The most powerful and productivity-inclined MacBook
- Impressive battery life
- Backlit keyboard for typing with ease
- Addition of Esc key and shortened TouchBar
- Formidable GPU
- Increased key travel
- On the higher end of price point
2. Best Windows Laptop For Remote Working: Dell XPS 15 9500
The Dell XPS 15 9500 is a definite upgrade from the 2019-2020 XPS models in terms of configuration and is still affordable for those working from home.
The Dell XPS 15 9500 has a strong Dell aesthetic design and the laptop itself have noticeable changes as compared to the previous XPS models. Aluminum has been used to build the lid and the bottom. Carbon fiber gives the sides, deck, and hinges a premium look.
The inclusion of two Thunderbolt 3 ports is useful in that it gives users the ability to charge the laptop and connects to USB-C ports. Three USB 3.2, DisplayPort 1.4, headphone jack, battery meter button, and a light indicator to let you check power even when the laptop is not in use.
XPS 15 9500 comes with a 15.6-inch Ultra HD 4K touchscreen panel that is rich in color and ensures wide viewing angles. With a 3840 x 2400 pixel resolution, the ultra-thin bezels screen gives a very vivid viewing experience to users. The luminosity on this laptop is excellent. Hence, for those working from anywhere in-home or on-the-go, this laptop does the needful.
With sufficient key travel, the XPS 15 9500 brings to the users a decent typing experience as the palm rest is very comfortable. Tactile feedback is great and the Touchpad works quite well. The accuracy of the Touchpad, as well as the response, is an attractive feature.
A 2.6GHz Intel Core i7-10750H CPU is configured into Dell’s XPS 15 9500. The turbo clock speeds have significantly increased thanks to the powerful processor, and the laptop displays great efficiency. With the support of 16GB DDR4 RAM and 512GB of SSD storage, the device is quick during routine professional or business use like documentation, Microsoft Office, web browsing, switching between tabs, and video playback. This laptop is a boon for those working from home.
With dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti and a respected battery life of up to 8 hours, the XPS 15 is a decent machine if one pursues mid-level gaming and is an excellent choice for everyday work needs.
However, the one thing on this laptop that is disappointing is the quality of the webcam. Hence, we highly recommend you to get an external webcam if you’re someone who attends a lot of online meetings. The hinge itself is quite sturdy and at 4.5 pounds, and the machine is comfortably light and easy to carry.
- Excellent performance
- Feasible price point
- striking UHD display
- Decent graphics card
- Decent battery life
- Seamless typing experience
- Poor webcam
3. Best For Digital Nomads: Acer Aspire 7
Launched as an everyday performer for those who deal with routine work-from-home, the Acer Aspire 7 is meant to provide them with a quick and reliable performance that they expect from a recommended system.
The Aspire 7 is designed to look like a high-end machine with a black chassis, lid, and deck. The laptop itself weighs 4.74 pounds, which is an exciting feature for those who travel a lot with their laptops. The configuration is a cherry on the top.
Laced with a 2.4GHz Intel Core i5-9300H processor, the laptop is configured with 8GB DDR4 RAM and an astonishing 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD internal storage. This set up is well-chosen amongst digital nomads and who work by themselves at home or are freelancers. This is further supported by a powerful NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card which is a value addition under the budget.
With a 15.6-inch display, Acer Aspire 7 competes well with the likes of high-end ASUS VivoBook laptops. The IPS FHD screen has a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels which provides clear picture quality. However, the viewing angles are not wide. The keyboard works well and is accompanied by a responsive touchpad that allows multi-touch inputs. This makes the keyboard comfortable to use and provides tracking accuracy. Speakers provide average sound quality when listening to music.
The Aspire 7 is also known for its fusion connectivity features. Alongside the Gigabit ethernet port, and an HDMI port with HDCP support, you will also find one USB 3.2 Type C and two USB 3.2 ports. This is further supported by WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity which makes Aspire 7 a preferred choice for working professionals. Shockingly, there is no provision of an SD Card slot.
Lastly, the battery life on Acer Aspire 7 can last up to 8.5 hours which is above average for laptops meant for work from home and it goes a long way for standard use.
- Good performance
- Thin and lightweight
- Decent level of GPU
- Impressive battery life
- Multi-touch keypad
- Value for money
- No SD Card slot
- Average design
4. Best for Business Users: LG Gram 14
With remote working being a necessary aspect to rely on in the post-pandemic era, it might just be appropriate to invest in a portable yet powerful notebook. This is where the LG Gram 14 comes forth as the most relevant addition to the list, courtesy of the insanely powerful battery and an otherwise bankable specs sheet.
Taking care of the processing requirements is the Intel Core i7-1065G7 chipset. Despite not being the most powerful i7 mobile SoC in the retail arena, the featured CPU is still a good enough choice for several multithreaded tasks like photo editing and video creation. Besides, the highest possible single-core, Turbo Clock speed of up to 3.9GHz makes it a relatively smart choice for Illustrator CC, MS-Excel management, and relevant tasks.
Assisting the CPU is the integrated Iris Plus Graphics co-processor, a good enough resource for casual games and edits. Then again, the LG Gram 14 hardly runs out of multitasking juice, courtesy of the 16GB DDR4 RAM. As per the featured processor, the existing chunk of system memory is one of the fastest processing modules on a productivity-centric notebook, at 3200MHz. Storage-centric requirements are met by the 512GB SSD unit.
As LG accommodates an NVMe-compatible storage module, you can expect the same to load applications and boot-up the pre-existing Windows 10 Home OS, in a heartbeat. Then again, it is the 14-inch IPS screen that excites us the most, courtesy of the sharpest visuals and the work-focused color accuracy. In terms of resolution, LG offers 1920 x 1080 pixels, to be exact.
Following the class-leading specs sheet are several productivity-centric resources, which qualify the LG Gram 14 as the perfect WFH notebook. Firstly, it is the illuminated and spacious keyboard that makes a positive difference to productivity. Besides, you also get access to a decent set of stereo speakers that boast of 3D audio and DTS: X enhancement. As work from home requires you to protect confidential data, LG accommodates a nifty fingerprint scanner for the job.
Professionals can also make good use of the standard webcam and serviceable microphones. Regardless of these inclusions, the LG Gram 14 continues to be one of the lightest gadgets on the list at 2.2 pounds. This attribute ensures that you need not be restricted to a particular workstation and might contribute towards professional productivity, even on the move.
LG ensures that the metal-clad chassis is MIL-STD certified and accommodates a decent set of connectivity-centric specs; include Type-A, HDMI 2.0, and the elusive Thunderbolt 3 port for the fastest possible data transfers. Besides, you also get access to high-speed wired and wireless connectivity standards, allowing you to set up secured WFH networks.
The battery on the Gram 14 continues to steal the show with an 18.5-hour backup. Therefore, if you are seeking a portable and efficient gadget for your WFH indulgences, the LG Gram 14 readily shows up as a worthy investment to make.
- 10th gen chipset
- Feathery notebook
- Long-lasting battery
- Stellar display
- Ultrafast RAM module
- Glossy panel restricts sunlight visibility
- A bit noisy
5. Best 2-in-1 Laptop: Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Launched as an ultralight and versatile machine, the new Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is a winner when it comes to the super lightweight 2-in-1 models.
With the presence of a tablet, laptop, and studio modes, the Surface Pro 7 comes with a matte-black finish and appears to be a thin machine. Fingerprints are resisted, thanks to the black exterior and the texture make the user grip the 2-in-1 laptop well.
The build is sturdy but the thick bezels around the display may not be an attractive feature for some. But weighing at just 1.70 pounds, the Surface Pro 7 is still a steal deal for professionals working from home who also travels a lot.
The leap in performance on this Surface Pro model comes due to the 10th Gen Intel Core i7 processor paired with an integrated Iris Plus graphics support. Multitasking becomes smooth with the addition of 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD internal storage. You can switch between multiple apps on the browser without facing any lag.
The 12.3-inch PixelSense display on this laptop is competitive amidst the convertibles. The resolution of 2736 x 1824 pixels is vivid and bright. The sRGB color gamut is excellent and accurate, something you expect usually from an iPad Pro. Coders and video editors will find it good to use this screen as it will be easy on the eyes and ensure accuracy.
As for the keyboard, everyday users will find it easy to gauge through the keys on the Surface Pro laptop. The key travel on the thin Type Cover (which has to be additionally purchased) or the keyboard is great. The Touchpad on this laptop is effective when it comes to precision. Switching between apps is smooth through the glass Touchpad. However, it may be loud and clicky.
There is an addition of Surface Pen at extra cost which ensures good sensitivity and comes with an eraser on the back. It can support artists to draw and sketch on the apps available on Surface Pro. Professionals and art students can use this to create handwritten notes or editing documents.
The longevity on this laptop is probably one of the key highlights. Surface Pro can endure up to 10.5 hours of laptop use at high brightness and constant web-surfing. This makes the Surface Pro 7 an optimal choice for everyday users working from home and travelers.
- Extremely lightweight and convertible
- PixelSense display with vivid colors
- Keyboard functions very well
- Battery life is improved up to 10.5 hours
- Multitasking is easy with high performance
- Smaller display
6. Best Under $1000: Asus ZenBook 13
While ASUS laptops are known for their reliability and convenience, the ASUS ZenBook 13 laptop seems to be one of the most exciting laptop models by the brand by far. Plus, the convenient budget has been a point of attraction for routine professionals.
With a 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-8265U processor, the performance on this laptop is fairly decent. This is paired with 8GB LPDDR3 RAM for standard multitasking. Moreover, the 512GB PCIe M.2 SSD internal storage helps better the overall performance of the laptop.
The GPU for Asus ZenBook 13 is packed with Intel HD Graphics 620 to provide an average display quality in order to support tech professionals, editors, and entry-level gamers.
At only 2.5 pounds, ZenBook 13 is a thin and lightweight device that ensures portability and a WideView Full HD LED display of 13.3-inch. The resolution on this laptop is configured at 1920 x 1080 pixels. However, the image quality might not be up to the mark. The keyboard is slightly cramped and the Touchpad works alright with no lag.
As for the connectivity, the Zenbook comes with 2 USB 3.0 ports, 1 USB 2.0 port, 1 HDMI port, a built-in media reader, WiFi, Bluetooth, and a headphone jack. The speakers provide a decent listening experience.
Overall, it is a decent laptop with a surprisingly long battery life lasting up to 10 hours. This is a good option for young professionals and students who are on a budget and regularly work from home.
- Doesn’t cost a fortune
- Full HD LED display
- Lightweight machine
- Long battery life
- Above-average configuration
- Modest connectivity under this range
- The keyboard is not up to the mark
- Display quality is below average
7. Best Affordable MacBook: Apple MacBook Air M1
With a robust design and a sturdy body-build, the M1-powered MacBook Air is here to do its only job – provide endurance and convenience to the work-from-home professionals. Following the previous MacBook model’s design approach, MacBook Air M1 is an enjoyable laptop with an elegant aesthetic.
Apple MacBook Air is quite lightweight as compared to a few counterparts. This 2.8 pounds machine is quite suitable for portability and it does stand out for its excellent performance. The 7-Core Apple M1 chip boosts the laptop’s value for money. It gives the professionals reason to use the device to work with Adobe Photoshop and everyday documentation purposes without hassle.
The high-quality processor is further paired with an efficient 8GB RAM which provides Apple MacBook Air with speed and easy access to programs and applications. Moving to the internal storage of this high power laptop, a 256GB SSD storage configuration goes a long way for those who work on the laptop routinely.
As for the display, a 13.3-inch LED IPS screen helps provide the professional with a more than decent viewing experience. The resolution of 2560 x 1600 pixels on this True Tone Technology display is a valuable feature too, given the long duration which the professionals working from home spend in front of the laptop screens.
The fascinating Graphics unit on Apple MacBook Air is laced with the power of the Apple 8-core integrated GPU that enhances the performance slightly amidst the mid-range laptops for programming.
However, the keyboard unit is not the best-in-class although it comes with RGB backlit features. The typing experience is decent even as key travel is not quite deep. The speakers on Apple MacBook Air are pretty good at a reasonable price given that you tweak the sound-settings on the laptop.
The battery life on MacBook Air is above-average with up to 18 hours and you can adjust the performance of the processor, GPU, and RAM on this laptop. Ergo, the Apple MacBook Air is a good buy for those who are looking for an entry-level, mid-range laptop for everyday professional use whether at home or on the go to fit under their budget.
- Elegant body design
- High-resolution display
- Seamless work experience
- Good speaker quality
- Sleek and robust build
- Thunderbolt 3 port
- Affordable price
- No Ethernet port
8. Best For Programmers: Dell Inspiron 5000
The Dell Inspiron 5000 is known for its affordability and good performance. With a robust design and a sturdy body-build, Inspiron 5000 falls a bit short on the aesthetic of the design.
The Inspiron 5000 comes with a 1080p display surrounded by massive bezels which might put a few users off. However, it also provides the professionals with a fingerprint reader which increases productivity. At 4.54 pounds, the Dell Inspiron 5000 is a slim machine and not too bad for a convertible laptop.
As for the connectivity, this 2-in-1 laptop comes with an HDMI port, 3 USB 3 ports, an SD Card slot, an Ethernet jack, and a headphone jack. The speakers on Dell Inspiron 5000 are pretty good at a reasonable price, given that you tweak the sound-settings on the laptop.
Even with a 15.6-inch display accompanied by a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, this machine falls behind when it comes to displaying innovation. The picture quality might not be the greatest when compared to the others in the same budget range, but the colors are moderately better. With 1.4 mm of key travel, the keyboard is decent but the typing experience may not be the most comfortable. However, the Touchpad on Inspiron 5000 is quite impressive, with the provision of performing multiple gestures.
The high-speed 2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U processor is further paired with an efficient 8GB DDR4 RAM which helps the professionals perform multitasking. Moving to the internal storage of this high power laptop, a 1TB HDD storage configuration goes a long way for those who work on the laptop routinely. Intel HD Graphics 620 support further adds to the value of this affordable 2-in-1 laptop that ensures productivity on a daily basis.
The battery life on Dell Inspiron 5000 is average with up to 6 hours. This mid-range laptop is meant for everyday professional use whether at home or on the go to fit under their budget.
- Decent performance
- Smooth multitasking
- Affordable price
- Good speaker quality
- Sturdy body build
- Average battery life
9. Best with Intel Core i3: Asus VivoBook 15
The Asus VivoBook 15 is one of the most lightweight and sleek 15-inch laptops in the market currently. It is highly portable and is a preferred choice of digital nomads, thanks to the ease of carrying it around.
At 3.75 pounds, this lightweight machine is courtesy of a small footprint and a light chassis which is an evident improvement from the past models of Asus. Also, the lid is built of aluminum while the base is born out of plastic, which gives it slight flexibility. The approach to the design of this laptop has been minimal and simplistic with a metal finish.
Asus VivoBook 15 comes with a 15.6-inch display which provides a FullHD viewing experience. This NanoEdge screen is accompanied by a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and is known for the wide viewing angles. While the brightness is consistent, the color vividness might not be the best.
Along with 2 USB 2.0Type A ports and a microSD card slot, Asus VivoBook provides connectivity through a USB 3 Type-A port, HDMI port, USB 3 Type C port, headphone jack, and a charging slot. The keyboard doesn’t include Numpad but provides everyday professionals with a good typing experience. The Touchpad, operating on the Microsoft Precision drivers, includes a fingerprint scanner.
The battery life is a disappointment, lasting up to only 5 hours. However, for a mainstream machine, the Asus VivoBook 15 comes with a powerful configuration in the form of 2.1GHz Intel Core i3-8145U processor and the GPU support of Intel Ultra Hd Graphics 620. This is further accompanied by 8GB DDR4 RAM and an internal storage capacity of 128GB M.2 SSD. The overall performance of this laptop is magnificent and is therefore recommended for those working from home.
- Powerful performance
- Highly value for money
- Smooth multitasking
- Affordable price
- Extremely lightweight
- Good connectivity
- Average display quality
- Below-average battery life
Frequently Asked Questions
Usually, professionals who work remotely, be it home or away from the office, focus on the three key aspects to choose the best laptop for their professional use: connection, communication, and performance. These factors help us understand which configuration is best-suited for a laptop for work from home.
The best laptops for work from home purposes must include Intel i5 or higher processors. They provide high performance. The higher the number of cores, the more optimal the speed of the laptop. However, if you don’t wish to choose the Intel processor, you can find laptops with newer AMD processors too.
If a professional’s personal priority is big display size, 13-inch laptops wouldn’t be ideal for professional use. However, more than the screen size, the display quality matters when considering laptops for working from home. So, a 13-inch laptop with a Full HD Display and a high resolution will be feasible for work from home purposes.
The best laptops for work from home purposes ensure that the users can perform multitasking, they can switch between tasks without lag, and that the battery life is above average. These laptops have an above-average configuration and are considered portable.
Not necessarily. For high-end tech professionals like coders and creative professionals like video editors, specific configurations are essential thereby increasing the cost of the laptop. However, for standard professional users who need routine documentation and web browsing, mid-range laptops can provide the required specifications for work from home too.
When it comes to working from home, the users do not have to be very specific about their choice of laptop. This might confuse them and therefore they need to know the significant factors affecting their choices like processor speed, productivity, display quality, storage capacity, accessibility, and budget restrictions.
The aforementioned laptops are the best laptops for work from home listed for users who are looking to buy laptops under diverse price ranges, especially in the current wake of a global pandemic. Not only do most of the aforementioned laptops provide effective overall performance, but these machines have also outdone their predecessors and have created a benchmark for many professional users from a variety of fields.
You must go through every product description mentioned above so as to make an informed decision based on your laptop requirements that fulfill your work from home purpose.