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Tablet or laptop: which is better for university?

Tech advice | by Denise Timmis | Feb 18, 2022

Tablet or laptop: which is better for university?

Should I get a laptop or a tablet for university?

If you are starting college or uni this year, buying a computer is essential. Even more so at the moment, with lots of course content happening online for many students. The question is which is better, a refurbished laptop or a tablet? In this article, we'll explore the pros and cons of each device so that you can make an informed decision on which product is best to add to your uni essentials kit. From writing essays to managing the student life, we have all the info you need! Jump to: refurbished Dell laptops | Ultimate guide for students

Related blog: The Top Digital Learning Apps For Students

Tablet Pros: Tablet Cons:
  • Small
  • Portable
  • Great displays
  • Long battery life
  • Can't fold
  • Risk of screen cracking

One thing laptops and tablets have in common is that they cost a lot of money (although you can save a lot by buying refurbished technology from us at Envirofone). So, let's make sure you get the best value. But, above all, let's make sure you end up with the most practical and helpful technology for your studies. We have the best laptop under 1000 pounds on Envirofone waiting for you as well as the best uk tech tablets available too. So let's decide is it better to use a laptop or a tablet?

Laptop Pros: Laptop Cons:
  • Can fold and protect screen
  • Compact
  • Good screens
  • Powerful
  • Overheat easily
  • Battery life can be poor


Is it better to travel with a laptop or tablet?

Thin, lightweight tablets win hands down when it comes to ease of carrying around. Laptops are larger, and their bigger batteries and processors make them much heavier. So even if your laptop fits into a backpack, you'll definitely know it's there, whereas the other option weighs little more than a paperback. It also leaves more room for lunch in your bag.

Winner: tablet.


Is a laptop or tablet better for productivity?

Smaller, thinner devices are much more adaptable and easier to use in awkward places. The built-in keyboard on a laptop can make it quite unwieldy at times, great on a desk but less suitable if you need to, say, sit your device against a whiteboard to show a video or display some design work.

Multi-tasking can also be trickier on a laptop. With a tablet, you can have several windows open simultaneously, with multiple programs running and just swipe a finger to jump between them.

On the other hand, if you just need to sit at a desk and focus on one piece of work, a laptop's bigger, higher definition screen and integrated keyboard have the edge.

Winner: tablet for most people.


Is a tablet or laptop better for writing?

With essays and projects coming at you non-stop, you're going to be doing a good deal of typing and inputting whatever your course. So you'll find that much easier and more comfortable with a laptop's built-in physical keyboard.

The phone-style virtual keyboard on a tablet may seem fine at first, but there's a strong chance you'll have changed your mind by the time you're halfway through your first 3,000-word assignment. However, the gap between the two is closing fast, thanks to the many wireless keyboards on the market.

Winner: laptop or tablet with wireless keyboard.


Which is a better screen laptop or tablet?

Most people have watched a movie or sporting event on a tablet and found the Full HD (1080p) display quality fine. However, laptops often have superior Quad HD displays. Current tablets can't compete because a higher resolution display would compromise the touch-screen commands.

Winner: laptop


Which is better for programming tablet or laptop?

Laptops certainly have the edge over tablets when running anything more than essential word processing software. Programs such as Photoshop can be used on a tablet, but are faster and easier to work with on a laptop. However, the gap is starting to close, and the latest models are fine for running all but the most advanced software. This brings us to the next category.

Winner: it depends on your course


What lasts longer a tablet or a laptop?

Most laptop batteries run down quickly, and you'll notice that battery life is getting shorter after just a few months of regular use. You also have to carry a big charging cable around with your device. Smart tech batteries last longer, and they're as easy to charge as a smartphone.

Winner: tablet

Related blog: Best Budget Smartphones



Can an iPad replace a laptop? For most students on most courses, the answer is yes and its a great choice for tech. The days when tablets were only good for streaming Netflix or YouTube and checking social media are long gone. If you're studying a science, technology, engineering or maths-based course, you may need the processing power of a laptop to run the specialist software. However, for everyone else, a tablet with an external keyboard will perform all the computing functions you need.

Ready to choose your tech for the upcoming term? Check out the choice of refurbished tablets at affordable prices now available at the Envirofone shop. Still prefer a laptop? We do those too. Check out our student laptop deals now.

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