Laptops and tablets are so similar, yet so different devices. Over the past 5 years, the boundaries between them have become increasingly blurred. Every year the categories of high-tech tablets, ultrabooks, notebooks, transformers, Chromebooks, laptops are rapidly expanding. Choosing a suitable option in such a variety is not very easy. So, Laptop Vs Tablet Pros And Cons And Which Is Better? Let’s figure it out.
Table of Contents
Similarities of Laptops and tablets
Both types of devices have much in common: autonomy, lightweight, and compactness. You can use your tablet and laptop on the street, on trips, and in situations where power supply problems arise.
Unlike a computer, these devices are completely ready to use, without requiring the connection of additional accessories (mouse, keyboard, display).
IPS display with a resolution of 2560 × 1600 pixels, an 8-core processor, 8 GB of RAM, and a storage of 256 GB – what type of device are we talking about now? It may seem to many that this is a laptop, moreover, quite interesting for standard tasks. In fact, this is a 10.8-inch Huawei Matepad Pro tablet.
If you do not delve into the specifics of the components and the principles of operation of the devices, then in most cases the characteristics of laptops and tablets look similar. However, in terms of functionality and principles of operation, a tablet and a laptop are completely different devices. For example, according to Wikipedia, a laptop is a computer that houses typical PC components, including a display, keyboard, and pointing device. A tablet is, roughly speaking, a smartphone with a larger screen (from 7 to 12 inches), adapted for other tasks. Take a look at Best Laptop For 3d Modeling And Rendering.
performance Differences between Laptops vs Tablets
To begin with, let’s look at the key characteristics of a couple of tablet and laptop models within the same price range.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite tablet and Acer Aspire 3 A315 laptop.
|Display type, diagonal and resolution||PLS, 10.4 “, 2000 x 1200 pixels||TN + film, 15.6 “, 1920 × 1080 pixels|
|Processor model||Samsung Exynos 9611||Intel Pentium Silver N5000|
|Number of Cores||8||4|
|Frequency (GHz)||2,3||1.1 / 2.7 (acceleration)|
|Built-in memory||128 GB||1 TB|
Huawei Matepad Pro tablet and ASUS TUF Gaming FX505DT gaming laptop.
|Display type, diagonal and resolution||IPS, 10.8 “, 2560 × 1600 pixels||IPS, 15.6 “, 1920 × 1080 pixels|
|Processor model||HiSilicon Kirin 990||AMD Ryzen 5 3550H|
|Number of Cores||8||4 (8 threads)|
|Frequency (GHz)||2.86||2.1 / 3.7 (acceleration)|
|Built-in memory||256 GB||512 GB (SSD)|
A significant advantage of this gaming laptop is the presence of an integrated and discrete graphics card.
It may seem that the platforms are very close in terms of performance and processing power, but at the moment this is not the case. It is impossible to compare the processor of a laptop and a tablet by GHz alone. These are different architectures, algorithms, technologies, and solutions. Developers of mobile platforms pursue other goals: for PCs and laptops, performance is paramount, for tablets – autonomy and low heat generation.
You cannot fit a standard laptop processor into a tablet simply because it cannot be cooled properly. Overheating will lead to a decrease in the frequency of the processor and may damage other elements of the system.
For the sake of interest, you can watch a video with a very conditional comparison of the performance of a PC, laptop, and smartphone in Geekbench tests. As mentioned, most tablets use a mobile platform, so evaluating a smartphone can hardly be equated with evaluating a tablet.
Laptop Vs Tablet Pros And Cons
Let’s discuss the advantages and disadvantages of tablets and laptops
Tablet Pros And Cons
Lightweight, multi-functional, so simple that even children can handle it – that’s about a tablet. The gadget can replace many devices. Here you can listen to music, surf the Internet, use social networks, watch videos, play, take photos/videos, and much more.
The main Pros of the tablet.
- High pixel density touch screen . Provides convenience and ease of management. Obviously more convenient than the touchpad.
- Autonomy . Manufacturers use components with low power consumption, which allows the tablet to work for about 8-10 hours in active use mode, which is simply unattainable for most laptops under the same load.
- Lightness . Even large 10-inch models weigh about 500 – 600 g, and some ultra-light laptops weigh about 1 kg for more than $ 1000. In most cases, tablets are 4-5 times lighter – and this does not include the power adapter.
- Compactness . Except for pocket mini-laptops, the dimensions of the tablets are much smaller, which is quite natural. The one-piece design provides a minimum thickness comparable to a notebook.
- Quick start . With equal characteristics, the tablets turn on faster, and the transition from standby mode to working state occurs instantly – by pressing the power button.
- AppStore and Google Play stores . Present in tablets for iOS and Android, respectively. Installing and removing software takes a minimum of time, and the download itself is carried out from a reliable source. Many applications are free, but some of them are stripped-down and trial versions of paid programs.
- The simplicity of the operating system . So far, this can only be said about iOS and Android, which are installed on most tablets. The simplicity of the system contributes to quick learning and comfortable interaction with the device.
- Camera . Laptops also have, but frankly weak: suitable only for video communication. A good front camera with a resolution of 3, 5 or 8 megapixels can be used in tablets, and the rear camera can consist of several lenses with a higher resolution.
- Multifunctionality . Tablets are often used as a GPS navigator, an alternative to e-books, and more. A laptop can do this too, but a tablet is more convenient.
- Stylus . Comes in a set or is purchased separately. The device is used for writing, drawing, and can also perform additional functions, for example, remote camera control. A separate advantage is the magnetic mount.
- Installing a SIM card . Supported on many tablets. The mobile network is used for communication (an alternative to a smartphone) or for Internet access where Wi-Fi is not caught.
A mid-range tablet costs the same as most budget notebook models while offering more powerful hardware. For example, a 10-core Dexp Ursus M210, surfing the internet, and many other daily tasks will be clearly faster than many entry-level laptops.
Cons of a tablet:
- touch keyboard;
- the need for additional display protection;
- the complexity of the repair;
- no upgrade option (except for installing memory cards);
- relatively small storage capacity;
- in most cases, there is no support for familiar Windows programs;
- no high-quality cooling;
- there is no full-fledged alternative for many computer programs;
Laptops Pros And Cons
Compared to a tablet, there is plenty of room inside a laptop case to build a more efficient and productive system. The main advantage of laptops is just their high performance and processing power, but this is already evident in the models of the middle and upper echelon.
Read also Best AMD Processor For Laptop.
Pros of laptops:
- Convenient keyboard . It is much more convenient to type text on it than on the screen.
- Launching more complex resource-intensive programs . Tablet software can rarely replace professional solutions for laptops and computers.
- Familiar OS . Laptops use Windows, linux or macOS, which are more functional than iOS and Android.
- Launching computer games . The vast majority of computer games are not compatible with iOS and Android mobile devices. In compatible games, the laptop will provide a higher FPS.
- Big screen . Compared to internet tablets. The screen diagonal of 15.6 “is considered standard. Watching movies and working here will be more convenient, because you do not have to peer into small details and use scaling.
- Cooling system . Several fans can be installed inside the case, a system of heat pipes and radiators for cooling components.
- More connectivity interfaces . Outputs to an additional external monitor, USB for connecting various accessories and devices, memory card readers, Ethernet port for wired Internet connection.
- Storage capacity . Modern performance laptops can be equipped with a drive with a capacity of 500 GB, 1 TB or more.
- The possibility of modernization . Not always present. In standard cases, the user can independently install additional RAM modules and drives.
- Maintainability . It is far from the desktop level, but the procedure for replacing most of the components is easier than in the case of tablets.
- Can replace PC . Although this statement is made with a slight stretch, but when compared with a tablet, it will definitely become one of the main advantages.
Laptop Vs Tablet Price
Price tags for tablets start from 100 dollars. For this money, do not expect much the technical characteristics of such devices are designed maximum for social networks, the Internet, and the simplest games. Better to report a few thousand and purchase something from well-known brands. The Lenovo Tab M8 might be a good all-round option:
The most popular models cost about 500$. For this amount, you can even buy an iPad from previous years. It will be a better decision than buying an Android tablet for the same money.
If your budget allows, you can buy a new iPad Air for 500 to 700 usd. A huge display of the best quality, all the delights of the iOS ecosystem, support for the Magic Keyboard, and the Apple Pencil stylus will open up great possibilities that other companies’ tablets never dreamed of.
The bulk of laptops is concentrated in the range of 300 to 1000usd. Such a laptop will serve as a worthy replacement for a desktop computer and is capable of performing complex tasks that are not possible for a tablet and its operating system.
If you need a branded mobile computer of high power, with components for gaming purposes or for professional work programs, pay attention to the price segment of 1000$. and higher. The ideal workhorse is the MacBook.
laptops vs tablets: Operating system and applications
Most mobile gadgets are based on the Android OS. A little less often – on iOS (Apple tablets), and very rarely – on Windows (mainly Chinese Chuwi). Is it worth mentioning once again that this is a pure content and entertainment environment? Objections are accepted. Someone will say: stop it, Word and Excel are there, applications for trading/betting / communicating with colleagues are very convenient on a mobile device, almost all sites have long been adapted for mobile displays … However, those who worked on the conventional iPad and MacBook, will not let you lie: 90% of work tasks are easier, faster, and more efficient to perform in a Mac, Linux, or Windows environment.
A desktop computer (PC) and a laptop make it possible to use the full range of functions incorporated by the developer into a particular application. Tablet users will have to settle for stripped-down versions.
On the other hand, watching YouTube, movies, and TV series in streaming content services is much more convenient and easier on the tablet. The apps here are optimized for a few finger taps. It is more convenient for “geeks” to get by with pirated content, which saves money, but violates the copyright.
Differences in Transitional options
It has already been mentioned that in recent years the line between tablet and laptop has become thinner. Many tablets come with a stand, keyboard cover, or a separate detachable keyboard such as a magnet. The solution is interesting, but the compact keyboard is not as comfortable as a standard laptop keyboard or full-size PC keyboard. If desired, it can be purchased separately, but this will affect the portability of the device. You can also buy a mouse for the tablet, but the question of expediency arises: isn’t it better, in this case, to choose a laptop right away?
The popularity of 2-in-1 laptops or transformers with a touch screen, equipped with a hinge with a 360 ° rotation of the lid, which allows them to be used as a laptop and as a tablet, is gaining popularity. For example, Lenovo showed off a laptop with a flexible display.
The design assumes a thin body, so there are difficulties with the cooling system. Developers are forced to use elements with low heat dissipation. Windows and Chrome OS are equally used as operating systems.
Laptop vs tablet for Different Purposes
What is still missing for comparison is clear examples of life situations, which will make it possible to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of devices more clearly.
When it comes to using complex professional software, the laptop is the clear favorite. This is due to the resource intensity of the software. It is difficult to organize professional software in applications for mobile platforms. The laptop is suitable for those who are engaged in the development, working with texts, processing audio, photo, and video content. When it comes to multitasking, laptops are well ahead of tablets.
In some cases, a tablet is also useful. For example, if you need to quickly jot down text, make a sketch, take a photo or video without a smartphone at hand. It is convenient to hold conferences and communicate from a tablet in general
They take laptops with them to work if necessary. The large storage capacity allows you to store data, movies, music, and photos on your laptop. The laptop is better suited for business travel, business trips, and long-distance travel.
You can take the tablet for a picnic or a short walk. Thanks to its good autonomy, the device will brighten up the trip, allowing you to listen to music, play games, watch movies or use the mobile Internet. Taking a power bank with you can stretch the pleasure for a long time.
For mobile platforms, augmented reality is actively developing – virtual layers that are superimposed on the real world. They do not require additional equipment. All you need is a device camera and special applications.
In traditional computers, virtual reality is increasingly used every year – a world entirely created by a computer. To immerse yourself in it, you need an appropriate headset and a sufficiently powerful discrete graphics card.
Many games for Android and iOS have a multi-million audience, and the main emphasis is on the online component.
PC and laptop games are better in terms of graphics, gameplay, and storyline. The online component is inherent in many of them but is usually an addition to the offline version. This is not surprising given how much system resources they consume. Modern gaming laptops have powerful components, an advanced cooling system for high multi-hour loads, and are able to maintain high-quality graphics.
You can easily connect a controller or racing wheel to your laptop. However, you can also buy a gamepad for a tablet. It can be either a separate device or an accessory that attaches to the sides of the device. The gamepad can be supplied with a tablet.
Mobile platforms have another advantage vibration feedback. This is an additional effect to enhance the immersion in the gameplay. The technology implementation looks more interesting every year. It has already reached the point that they are trying to introduce vibration feedback into music reproduction.
Which is better for studying: a laptop or tablet?
Pupils and students have different needs. For a school, the choice may be neither one nor the other. A laptop that is cumbersome for a child to carry with him is not an option, but the tablet will be used more for games, and it is not a fact that it will last a long time for a little fidget. A good choice, in this case, is a desktop home computer.
For students, in turn, mobility is much more important. A full-size PC cannot be used, and it will not be easy to choose between a tablet and a laptop. A student of a technical specialty that requires the use of special programs is more likely to come in handy with a laptop.
A tablet computer is enough for typing lectures, printing abstracts, reading books, searching for information on the Internet. But for typing in large volumes, term papers, theses, and other student papers, you will need a comfortable keyboard.
This includes drawing on a tablet with a stylus, for which there are special applications. A graphics tablet can be connected to a laptop for this purpose, but this means additional costs.
Overall, the tablet offers a more comfortable and intuitive experience, so it can be bought for a child or seniors. There is a whole category of children’s tablets with educational programs and educational games.
A tablet is more convenient for listening to music: you can carry it with you while on the move. The quality of the speakers in the models of the middle and upper price segment will not cause any complaints. For watching movies, the screen size is more important, so in this case, the favorite is obvious a laptop.
Laptop Vs Tablet: Games and performance
On other content sites and blogs, you can find comparisons of laptop and tablet video cards. Really? Maybe it’s not the hardware that needs to be compared, but the games themselves? Compare mobile PUBG and Fortnite to their PC counterparts. Cartoons vs. adult cinema. Nobody says that cartoonishness and modest graphics are bad. If you’re in your 20s or 25s, you might not mind playing something like Brawl Stars. In this case, your best bet is a pill. Here’s a great gaming tablet, for example:
For those whose gaming preferences go beyond the capabilities of Android and iOS, a laptop is the best choice. And even better (and more justified in terms of price) is a desktop computer. Cyberpunk 2077, Witcher 3, RDR2, Mafia, GTA, FIFA / PES, Battlefield, Assasin’s Creed – the modern gaming industry is striking in its scale. Sometimes the realism of the graphics is such that it feels like you are watching a movie or video from real life.
And what about the speed of the system? We must understand that the compact size of the device = the compact size of the components. Minimizing iron does nothing to increase productivity. Technologies are moving forward, but it is impossible to fit the same powerful components into a small tablet as in a laptop with a size of 1.5-2 times larger.
One of the key parameters of small mobile devices is autonomy, battery life. The internal “filling” must be energy efficient, that is, use a minimum of energy, efficiently remove heat and operate at sufficient power. The smaller the device, the less productive and more energy-efficient hardware it has.
external devices with laptop and tablets
Data input devices differ in appearance and capabilities: in a tablet, it is a touchscreen display, in a laptop, it is a keyboard. Alternatively, you can purchase a keyboard for the first one. But which is better a tablet with a keyboard or a laptop? What do the reviews say?
Real-life experience shows that connecting a keyboard to a tablet with a screen diagonal of 8-10 inches does not provide the same typing convenience as on a laptop. The reason is obvious – small physical size. If you have small hands, if the device is bought for a child or a fragile girl, this option can still be considered. If, for an adult with thumbs, it is better not to test the nervous system.
The tablet can be used in mobile mode like a smartphone. This is useful when there is no Wi-Fi connection available. To connect to mobile Internet on a laptop, you have to buy a 3G / 4G modem.
There is also a difference in the way the battery is replenished. The tablet is charged using a standard USB or Lightning cable. The laptop charger is not so versatile, so if you are visiting with a laptop without your own charger, it is not a fact that you will borrow from someone.
You can connect a third-party mouse, keyboard, router (directly), monitor, external hard drive, USB-flash drive, printer, TV, “smart” equipment to a laptop. The OTG adapter for the tablet only partially compensates for the lack of interaction. The possibilities of using a laptop in conjunction with other devices are much wider.
Why is a laptop better than a tablet?
Let’s present a single list of the pros and cons of a laptop in front of a tablet.
- Bigger display
- Windows / Linux / Mac OS
- Full keyboard
- More ports (interfaces)
- More powerful hardware, work with resource-intensive applications
- Computer games
- Upgradeability (not always available)
- Cheaper drives (256/512/1024 GB tablets are very expensive)
- Can replace desktop computer
- More tangible dimensions
- Often less battery life
- Higher cost
- Undergoes repairs more often
Why is a tablet better than a laptop?
Let’s present a single list of the pros and cons of a tablet in front of a laptop.
- Minimum thickness and weight
- Longer battery life
- Android Convenience for Content Viewing and Entertainment
- More attractive price
- Stronger body
- Ease of use of cameras
- A good replacement for an e-book or GPS navigator
- No physical keyboard
- Small and awkward external keyboards
- Fragile display
- Reduced functionality of “computer” applications
- Unsuitable for most work tasks
best tablet alternative to laptop and tablets
Neither does it work? Buy a convertible laptop, a 2-in-1 device. A transforming laptop provides access to programs and games of a laptop with the compactness and lightness of a tablet, it is a touchscreen display + a full keyboard, it is a modern appearance and transformation into a variety of positions. Combining the benefits of the two form factors in one device is noteworthy. The only negative is the higher price. If you are making a choice between a tablet or a convertible laptop, the second one looks more preferable. Must Check Tablet Vs 2 In 1 Laptop.
Let’s sum up
It is impossible to identify a clear leader between laptops and tablets. Each of the opponents can offer something that the other does not have. However, some conclusions can be drawn from the above Laptop Vs Tablet Pros And Cons.
For most common tasks and entertainment on a small budget, a tablet is enough. The same solution is better suited for children and people of age. For demanding applications, professional programs, and games, it’s best to choose a laptop that can handle the heavy workload.
Otherwise, you should rely on your needs, choosing a device that will be more practical and convenient in typical tasks.