Should Businesses Abandon the Desktop Computers?


ddComputers have come a long way. Do you remember the DOS based systems which required the programming and floppy disk? Thankfully, the technology has advanced since that time, so much so that the computer from 2 years ago is considered outdated. And with the advancement in the computer has come the advancement in the laptop and the tablet. These advances not only in the storage capabilities but also in the processing and performance of the machines have led to the question “is the desktop relevant for the modern small business?”. Here are a few considerations on both sides of the argument.

The Laptop computer allows for a non-physical office

Laptops are known for their ability to be easily moved from location to location. For the sole proprietary business and for the small business this may be ideal. Meeting with clients at a coffee shop or at their office does provide the customer service advantage over having the customer come to your establishment. Additionally, the mobile function allows for business man or woman to maximize their time on a project and at their leisure. However, the laptop may also give off the ambiance that your business is not well grounded. The consumer mat see the laptop not as a mobile tool but as a lack of funding, or a lack of structure to the business, especially if the laptop being used is from a lower end manufacturer. Using a MAC over a PC in this instance would be preferred as most businesses understand that even the laptops are a high expense.

Storage has about leveled out

One of the major drawbacks to the laptop in times past was the lack of storage space. Yet, with the laptops offering 2Ts and the USB ports supporting external hard drives that can store the same if not more, storage on any computer is a moot point. If you want the storage space, it is available. It is just a matter of how you wish to obtain it. Whether you want to use an external, a USB, the internal memory, or even the cloud for your storage is up to you. Desktop or Laptop it does not matter, you will not run out of space if you know where to look for space.


The margin of the processing and performance of a computer is growing slimmer between the Desktop and the Laptop. In most cases, a person will not see a difference between the two. However, industries such as those which use 3D models and animation will still see a lag on the laptop and it is not recommended that you push the processor in a laptop with rendering. Yet, for investors, marketing, graphic artist, contractors, etc. which do not require high processor usage, the laptop works fine.


One of the main concerns that a business needs to consider in determining whether to abandon the desktop for the laptop computer is the perception of security. Desktops are fixed at a location which the client generally assumes to be secured. They are therefore more confident that their personal data is safe from prying eyes and that their business is confidential. Laptops pose a bit of a problem in this area. Due to the fact that the laptop is designed for mobile use, some clients may be put off by a company that uses the laptop computer as their primary computer. Those companies which use a laptop should give specific assurances to their clientele on how their data will be protected.

From the business finance and liability perspective

Where laptops are generally a bit less expensive than the desktop, the financial responsibility of the business is a bit greater. Again, due to the mobile nature of the laptop, businesses will need to allocate funding to securing data and personal information to reduce liability of such data loss. Additionally, small businesses may find that laptops are not covered in office insurance if damage occurs to the property outside of the office setting. Granted, there may be a warranty and loss protection plan available, but traditional insurance may not work to cover the devices.


For most businesses, it is suggested that you stick with the desktop computer as your primary and use the laptop as your secondary computer. The laptop excels in showcasing work to clients, presenting 3D models and prototype conceptualizations at meetings, and in writing the quick memo, but the lack in security confidence, the liability for information and data loss, the probability of eventual damage outside of the work environment, and the overall perception of non-professionalism should keep the business from dedicating their attentions solely to it. Laptops are only ideal for a primary computer for those businesses which work remotely and have no interaction with physical clients.

Published by Kidal Delonix (959 Posts)

Kidal Delonix is a contributor to Mr. Hoffman's blog. The views and opinions are entirely his/her own and may not reflect Mr Hoffman's views.

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