Difference Between Laptops and Notebooks

Difference Between Laptops and Notebooks

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Rashmi
Rashmi Karan
Manager - Content
Updated on Sep 11, 2023 17:57 IST

Learn what is a laptop and a notebook and explore the major differences between a laptop and a notebook based on different criteria.

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These days, choosing and buying a computer that suits what we need is a challenge,  mainly because of the large number of models and brands on the market, but above all, because the types of computers available are very different. This article will explore the most important difference between laptops and notebooks.

Content

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What is a Laptop?

A laptop is a portable personal computer with a built-in screen and keyboard. It is named a laptop since it is typically small enough to be placed on a person’s lap. It also has a battery or AC adapter to provide power and is designed to be easily transported. Laptops are typically used for internet browsing, emailing, document editing, and streaming media. 

Laptops were designed to replace desktop computers. Over time, both types of computers have established themselves in the market.

Laptops integrate a liquid screen and are powered by alternating current as by battery. Depending on the model, they can last more than two hours without being connected. They also integrate a keyboard and a touch panel that allows you to operate without a mouse.

Another fundamental aspect of the laptop is that it can reproduce images in high definition.

This way, a laptop can do the same things as a desktop computer since it has extensive memory, huge hard drive capacity, large monitors, and advanced processors.

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What is a Notebook?

It is a type of electronic equipment similar to a laptop. It is a small, lightweight, portable computer that offers a performance that, although not low, is not at the level of performance provided by other computers, such as laptops.

Notebooks are commonly used for data science and scientific computing, as they allow users to organize and document their work easily, run code, and view the results within the same document.

Notebooks are a great option for students or people who use the computer for work but only for a short time. In another concept, the notebook can be a perfect computer if what you want to do with it does not require very high performance.

The notebooks came out as an option to be an electronic notebook, as its name indicates. Although, over time, developers have been enhancing their technical capacity.

A consequence of the size of the notebook is its battery. As its battery is small, the performance is not high.

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Major Differences between Laptops and Notebooks

The main difference between a laptop and a notebook is that laptops are usually larger and heavier than notebooks and have high-performance power. 

We have compared the main differences between a laptop and a notebook based on different criteria.

Portability

Nowadays, laptops and notebooks are highly portable. Usually, laptops are bigger, with screen sizes measuring from 10 – 18 inches. Laptops can be slim or bulky, depending on the manufacturer’s brand.

The average weight range of a laptop is 3 – 10 lbs, but that, again, depends on the model you choose. 

On the other hand, notebook laptops are sleeker and smaller, with screen sizes of 15 inches or less. Their weight is less than 5 lbs and less than 3 inches thick. Notebooks are very lightweight and more portable than laptops. Their small size ensures they easily fit into backpacks, briefcases, and large purses.

Cost

Laptops come with price tags of $150 – 2,500, while notebooks are priced at $150 – 400. There are also many more variables to consider when determining a laptop’s cost, of which the primary are the processing power, screen size, etc. 

In short, the drastic price difference comes with a difference in functionalities.

Performance and Power

Features like CPU, GPU, RAM, disk speed, etc., determine a computer’s performance and power.

Most modern computers have the processing power and good displays to provide quality performance. 

Even lower-priced laptops and notebooks offer adequate processing power for the PC novice. Generally speaking, the higher the price of a notebook or a laptop, the higher the feature quality.

Since laptops come with higher price tags, their features and performance are better. Standard notebooks have minimalist features, but they have the sufficient processing power to complete their computing tasks without hassle.

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Functionality

A typical laptop has 256GB – 1TB of solid-state drive (SSD) and 8 – 32 GB RAM. Typical notebooks come with 512GB HDD and 2 – 4GB RAM. 

High-Performance Computing (HPC) 

Laptops: Professionals working in fields like artificial intelligence and machine learning, Drug discovery, Data Science and Analysis, software development and testing, Climate modeling, etc., need high-performance computing.

Notebooks: People or professionals primarily using their PC for document creation and web browsing do not necessarily need HPC and thus can manage their work with a simpler notebook.

Battery Performance 

The higher performance power of laptops demands higher battery performance. So we can say that laptops come with weaker battery life. The average run time of laptops is 2 – 6 hours unplugged, while the average run time of a notebook is 7 – 14 hours unplugged.

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Main Manufacturers

With a newfound understanding of the difference between a laptop and a notebook, you probably wonder, “Where can I buy one?”

We have listed down some of the top makers of laptops and notebooks to help you in your search. 

Top Laptop Manufacturers

  • Dell 
  • Lenovo 
  • MSI 
  • Samsung 
  • Apple 
  • HP 
  • Acer
  • Asus
  • Sony
  • Toshiba
  • Microsoft

Top Notebook Manufacturers

  • Dell 
  • Lenovo 
  • MSI 
  • Samsung 
  • Apple 
  • HP 
  • Acer 
  • Fujitsu

Laptop vs Notebooks – Comparison table

Laptop Notebook
Definition  A laptop is a portable computer. Laptops completely replace desktop computers.   A notebook is a portable computer. Unlike a laptop, a notebook has (slightly) lower performance than a laptop. 
Audience  A laptop is a computer aimed at people who work for long periods on the computer. A notebook is a better option for students or people who use a computer to work but only for a short time.
Size Laptops are larger than notebooks. Notebooks are usually smaller and more portable than laptops. 
Screen size The screen can reproduce images in high resolution. A notebook screen has the same high resolution as a laptop. It is often smaller than a laptop
Task Support  a laptop can carry out the same tasks as a desktop computer. It performs the same tasks as a laptop but with less capacity and lower performance.

Select a laptop or a notebook basis their technical characteristics and specific functions, and most importantly, your requirements. Hope this article helped you in your decision-making to invest in a new laptop/notebook.

About the Author
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Rashmi Karan
Manager - Content

Rashmi is a postgraduate in Biotechnology with a flair for research-oriented work and has an experience of over 13 years in content creation and social media handling. She has a diversified writing portfolio and aim... Read Full Bio