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When (and Why) a Laptop Is a Better Choice Than a Desktop as Your Main Home Computer


The debate on whether laptops or desktops are better for home (or even work) use has essentially been raging since the invention of laptops, with the merits of each side of the argument largely remaining the same throughout. The portability of laptops versus the power and upgradeability of desktops is an inevitable point of contention in the debate. Yet, if you’re at the stage where you’re either going to invest in a laptop or a desktop, it may be worth leaning towards the advantages of the former.

That decision is perhaps slightly easier in 2019 than it was a few years ago. The climate crisis has continued to deteriorate, with individuals required to make serious choices about their energy consumption. Unless a desktop is going to fulfill a very specific purpose, it is worth purchasing a laptop that contributes far less to your carbon footprint in comparison. While the power of a desktop can be an asset, it can also be a drain on energy supplies.

However, that doesn’t mean there are no circumstances where the purchase of a desktop can be justified. There are still areas in which a desktop can boast supremacy over its portable counterparts:

  • longevity – within 3-4 years, laptops can often decline in performance to the point where a full replacement is needed
  • performance – because desktops use full-size components, they can run demanding software with greater ease
  • cost – Business Insider notes that when comparing laptops and desktops that have theoretically equal performance, desktops are the cheaper option most of the time

These factors make desktops attractive in locations with a static workspace, such as an office or in the study of someone who works from home. If someone needs to run multiple programs at once or use specialist software as part of their job, a desktop may be the only option.

Yet, more casual users may have less need for a fixed computer, something which now applies to gamers. Even budget laptops can run most games without a hitch. It also comes down to the genre of games that you prefer. for instance, iGaming websites, such as the online casino Regal Wins, offer games that simply need a browser and an updated version of Flash to play the games on offer (and sometimes not even that, seeing how many platforms use HTML5 nowadays), something that essentially all laptops can accommodate. Even slots with more complex graphics can be easily handled by a laptop. If browser gaming is the extent of your needs, then the higher performance of a desktop will hardly be felt.

Hardcore games also have the option to purchase specialist gaming laptops, with companies like MSI producing machines that can handle the demanding specs of the Assassin’s Creed series. Laptops can also be hooked up to a bigger monitor to provide a grander experience, which is ideal for someone without the room for a desktop to take up permanent residence. With a laptop, anywhere can become somewhere for gaming. This gives you the freedom to design your home interior without having to worry about where to stick your desktop forever. 

A laptop’s portability is obviously attractive when traveling to work or moving around within the home. This is why many desktop owners also purchase a laptop to fulfill their needs on the go. That in itself should be a persuasive argument for someone torn between a new laptop or desktop. While a desktop can be a powerful luxury, a laptop is a near necessity in 2019.

If space is at a premium, a portable machine can become the main PC in the home. With the ability to connect to larger screens, use portable hard drives and attach computer hardware, laptops can increasingly meet the needs that could once only be fulfilled by a desktop.  


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