A Michigan college freshman holding the best laptop for academic success

How to Pick the Best Laptop for Your Needs: A Guide for Freshmen in Michigan’s Colleges

Technology has sure come a long way since the first laptop was released back in 1981, with Apple introducing its first portable Macintosh laptop in 1989. It seems almost comical to think people could do anything with only 512 KB of RAM. Now we have things like the Core i9 and Apple’s M2 Max with 32 gigs of RAM, it’s almost unbelievable. Finding the best laptops for Michigan college freshmen entering the state’s universities and community colleges, is more crucial than ever.

Importance of Internet Connectivity

Michigan college laptops

While technological advancements have pushed computer manufacturers toward rapid innovation, we’ve reached a point of saturation. You’ll find a ton of almost similarly-specced laptops with different branding. And if you’re in the market for a new laptop, it can get challenging. Fret not, we’ve listed all the things you need to know before you go shopping for a laptop. Read on to know more. In Michigan’s educational institutions, a reliable internet connection is essential for academic success.

One thing we’d like to emphasize is that you’ll need to do your own research after you get to know how things work because every user has a different use case. For that, make sure your internet is consistent and super-fast. That will also help you after you get the laptop and do things effortlessly, without any hiccups. Consider switching to CenturyLink Internet because of its excellent value proposition with unlimited data and no contracts.


budget laptops for students

Since Windows and macOS are the only two most-used operating systems, the pricing is relatively easier to understand. Apple laptops are generally pricier than their Windows counterparts for similar specs. For Michigan freshmen, budgeting is often a concern. Utilizing budgeting software or apps on your laptop can help you manage your expenses effectively. For example, the cheapest new MacBook you can get today is the M1 MacBook Air, which goes for around $800 nowadays depending on where you get it from. Alternatively, you can even get two new Windows laptops at this price.

Michigan-based stores and universities often offer student discounts, making laptops more affordable. Michigan State University has specific computer requirements that can also guide your budgeting.

Laptop Type

best laptops for Michigan college freshmen

Laptops can be classified into five main types; basic laptops, 2-in-1s, ultrabooks, gaming laptops, and business laptops. Basic laptops are designed to run light software to run relatively lighter tasks like typing, editing documents, some light browsing, etc. They’re usually the cheapest options and the specifications and build quality are reflective of the price. In Michigan colleges, engineering students may require more powerful laptops, making ultrabooks or business laptops a better fit. CAEN, the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan, provides specific recommendations.

Processor and RAM

The processor is the powerhouse of the laptop and provides the necessary computing power needed to complete the tasks. The amount of power needed differs depending on your use case. RAM refers to your computer’s storage that’s available for immediate use. The higher the RAM, the more things your PC can handle at once without sacrificing speed. For instance, if you’re an engineering student at the University of Michigan, you’ll need a laptop capable of running software like AutoCAD or MATLAB.

FAQ on Picking the Best Laptops For Michigan College Freshmen

What is the average cost of a good laptop for a Michigan college student?

The cost can range from $800 for a basic MacBook Air to upwards of $2,000 for high-performance laptops.

Are there any Michigan-specific stores that offer student discounts on laptops?

Yes, many Michigan-based stores and universities offer student discounts. Always check with your institution for available offers.

What are the laptop requirements for engineering students in Michigan colleges?

Engineering students often require high-performance laptops capable of running software like AutoCAD or MATLAB. Check with your college’s engineering department for specific recommendations.

Final Thoughts On Best Laptops for Michigan College Freshmen

Now you know what to look for when you’re out buying your next laptop. There are so many factors that can influence your decisions and it’s better to define your typical use case and select one accordingly. Be sure to go to a store and physically use the laptop for a bit so you can get a better idea. Michigan freshmen should also consider visiting tech centers, like the one at Western Michigan University, to get hands-on experience with different laptop models.


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Paul Austin

Paul is a noted freelance writer with hundreds of articles online and in print. His most recent project is cataloging unique events in Michigan History. You can find more of his work at Michigan 4 You.

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