If you want to conduct a smooth and seamless Zoom teaching experience you need the best laptop that will support you every step of the way. Technology has taken over every aspect of our life and education is no different.
Nowadays, teachers need the best, most updated devices in order to ensure that they can research, prepare classes, grade assignments, interact with students and so much more. To do all this efficiently, you need a fast and speedy laptop that will help you deliver lessons so that you can do your job perfectly.
Laptops are much better in this regard because they can do the same things as a personal desktop and you can also carry them with you wherever you go and you can attach different things and alter the experience whenever you want, however you want.
Whether you’re already a teacher at a school or a college, or you’re someone who wants to start freelance teaching, this article is for you. We will be talking about 5 of the best laptops for zoom teaching in 2021, and we will help you understand the pros and cons of the popular laptops out there.
Buying a laptop is a major decision and this article is here to assist you and make sure you make an informed decision so that you don’t regret it later.
Best Laptops for Zoom Teaching and Video Conferencing
If the Macbook Pro feels a bit too expensive, but you still want an Apple laptop, then you should definitely try the Macbook Air. Costing less than a thousand dollars, this laptop has a smaller 13.3 inches screen and is less powerful than the MacBook Pro.
However, that doesn’t mean it should be underestimated. It still offers many impressive features like an 18-hour battery life that will continue serving you even after you’re done with all your online classes. Along with that, you’ll be getting 8GB of unified memory that makes your entire system speedy, efficient, and quite responsive.
This way you can open multiple tabs (while planning your classes) without having to worry about the speed and the load on the laptop. The laptop also has the latest Apple M1 chip which comes with an 8-core CPU and delivers up to 3.5x faster performance than the previous generation without compromising on the power.
Its special Intel Core i3 processor and the 256GB SSD, make it 2 times faster than its competitors. The MacBook Air also offers a fanless design which means that you can keep your laptop cool without the annoying voice there to disturb your work.
When it comes to laptops for teaching, many people prefer a touch screen device and while the MacBook Air does not offer that, it still has an improved keyboard and a trackpad that’s 20 percent better than the previous generations. Its thin and lightweight design is perfect for teachers who have to take their work home and need to carry their laptops all the time.
While the display might seem small to some, don’t forget that it comes with a brilliant retina display that has the unique True Tone Technology, ensuring that you don’t strain your eyes when you spend hours sitting in front of the screen.
We all know that the microphone is also a priority for most teachers, which is why you should know that this laptop features three microphone arrays that capture your voice more accurately, ensuring that your students can hear you perfectly. While it does promise an HD camera for all zoom classes, many people who have used Macbook Pro before will find this camera lacking.
Nonetheless, it’s still an amazing laptop, and the best part is it’s easy to use especially for those who are already used to the Mac OS. You can easily connect it with your iPhone, apple watch, iPad and take advantage of this amazing ecosystem.
The best part is that you get the best customer service with Apple Care so if anything goes wrong you know, you don’t have to worry. You have experts out there ready to help you!
- Extremely powerful
- All-day battery life
- Easy to use.
- Amazing customer support
- Small Display
Product’s Name: Macbook Air
Screen: 13.3 inches
Weight: 2.8 pounds
Dimensions: 0.63 x 11.97 x 8.36 inches
Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars.
When it comes to the specs of this laptop, it offers the AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Mobile Processor, which allows you to get all your work done regardless of how complex it is. Its 15.6″ Full HD IPS screen is the true star of the show.
With the Acer Color Intelligence, buyers can’t help but love just how sharp and crisp the visuals are on this thing, and as a teacher, you will love explaining your lessons on it. When work hours extend longer than usual you can always use the Acer BlueLightShield to protect your eyes from the strain.
The laptop also has a thin bezel that allows you to take this laptop with you wherever you are so that you can direct all your creativity into it. Combined with the AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Mobile Processor, the Radeon Vega 3 Graphics promises powerful performance and amazing battery life.
Alexa’s companionship allows you to simplify things, and you get efficient assistance for simple and tedious tasks like making to-do lists and keeping track of your calendar.
Many students and teachers have used this laptop and they love just how fast it is. Whether you’re making school papers or grading them this laptop won’t let you down and will give you exactly what you need.
You can easily navigate between web pages, Microsoft programs, and many other apps that you need to make your lesson plans. The keyboard also has a backlight that you can use when you’re working late at night, however, it goes away after a while so it won’t bother you while you’re doing something more laidback like relaxing and watching something.
It doesn’t hurt that the laptop has a sleek design and it’ll look like an attractive companion that you can take with you everywhere you go.
- Great price to performance ratio
- Incredible display
- Cannot download apps other than Microsoft’s
Product’s Name: Acer Aspire 5
Screen: 15.6 inches
Weight: 3.97 pounds
Dimensions:14.31 x 9.74 x 0.71 inches
Rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars.
Looking for a fast, thin, and easy to use laptop? Well, then Asus Zenbook 13 ticks all the boxes for you! The laptop screen is the same size as the Macbook Air at 13.3 inches, however, over here you’re getting a wide-view Full HD 4-way NanoEdge bezel display.
Powered by the latest 10th generation Intel Core i5-1035G1 Core Processor (6M Cache, up to 3.6 GHz) with Intel UHD graphics, this laptop offers a robust and efficient system. Along with that, the ZenBook 13 features amazing 22-hour battery life and you’ll have ample battery left even after conducting all your classes. Not just that, you can also restore up to a 60% charge level in just 40 minutes.
The laptop comes with a Windows 10 home and fast storage and memory featuring 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD with 8GB LPDDR4X RAM. Sleek and lightweight this laptop is also easily portable and you can take it to wither you wherever you go. It also has multiple connections for HDMI 2.0b, Thunderbolt 3 via USB Type C, Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.0, USB 3.2 Type-A, and Micro SD card reader.
The best part about this laptop is that it offers ASUS AI Noise-Canceling Technology which employs machine learning to separate unwanted noise from human speech thereby ensuring the best communications experience. This is extremely valuable while you’re conducting your Zoom classes and you can make sure that your student doesn’t have to deal with any voice distortions from your side.
- Noise Cancellation Technology
- Lightweight and portable
- Multiple connections
- No headphone jack
Product’s Name: Asus Zenbook 13
Screen: 13.3 inches
Weight: 2.6 pounds
Dimensions: 12 x 8 x 0.55 inches
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.
If you’re looking for a multifunctional laptop that can be used as a tablet and a laptop then the Lenovo Flex 14 Convertible Laptop is perfect for you. The laptop has strong and dependable 300 degree hinges and you can easily convert it from a laptop to a tablet as you’re conducting classes and explaining a complex mathematical equation.
For those who have used the Lenovo Yoga Idea Pad, this laptop might let them down because it doesn’t fold up to 360 degrees, however, it does come with other more promising features.
Considering that it weighs just 3.52 pounds this laptop is easy to carry around as you’re going back and forth from work to home. The laptop offers a 14-inch display screen which is larger than the Macbook Air but smaller than the Acer Aspire 5.
The display has an impressive 1920 x 1080 full HD touch screen promising a truly immersive and vibrant experience. Most importantly the laptop is powered by the 2nd generation AMD Ryzen 5 processor which gives a stunning performance.
You can do multiple things like working, streaming videos, playing games, multitasking and all this will not compromise on the speed of the laptop. Not just that, you will also have the Radeon Vega 8 software allowing you to edit videos and photos at a speed.
The best part about this laptop is that along with the touch screen feature it also comes with an active pen, and as a teacher, you will love how you can write all your notes using different apps. If you’re a maths or chemistry teacher then you can easily solve equations on zoom in real-time.
But things don’t end here. For all the English, psychology, and humanities teacher you can easily check your essays, and make corrections on the screen. The best part is that it easily lasts up to 10 hours and you can charge more than 70% in just an hour.
One problem that you might face is that the laptop offers only 12 GB RAM, and you might not be able to save all your files on the laptop. In that situation, you can always upload enormous files on Cloud and save space this way.
- 2 in one tablet and laptop
- Lasts 10 hours
- Comes with an ActivePen
- Only 12 GB RAM
Product’s Name: Lenovo Flex 14 Convertible Laptop
Screen: 14 inches
Dimensions: 12.91 x 9.02 x 0.7 inches
Weight: 3.52 pounds
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.
The Dell Inspiron is another touch screen laptop on our list and some might find this perfect for their online teaching. The laptop features a 15.6-inch full HD screen and you get an amazing display with vibrant colors allowing for an immersive experience as you’re teaching your students.
The Dell Inspiron also offers integrated Intel HD Graphics 620 which is perfect for streaming videos, either in class or in meetings. It also has an HDMI port so you can easily connect it to a larger screen when you are planning your classes.
The laptop also promises a full-size backlit keyboard with a numeric keypad which becomes pretty useful while you’re encoding grades or answering chat inquiries. Not just that the laptop is powered by a speedy and efficient 7th Gen Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, and a 256 solid-state drive, and together all this allows you to multitask on your laptop without compromising on the speed.
While it does have multiple ports for USB, VGA, and HDMI connections, keep in mind that it has no DVD optical drive. Another thing you should know is that the deal does not include a valid license to activate Windows 10. That is something you will have to purchase separately.
However, what you will have is an integrated Bluetooth 4.0 technology that allows short-range wireless data transfer. This can come in handy if you want to share teaching material with other teachers near you.
All in all, it’s safe to say that considering the laptop weighs 5 pounds, it might not be the best laptop to carry with you everywhere you go, however, it has performed well for many other teachers, and its specs have served them well.
- Great Price to performance ratio
- 15.6-inch full HD screen
- Incredibly Fast
- No optic drive
- No DVD drive
Product’s Name: Dell Inspiron
Screen: 15.6 inches
Weight: 5.07 pounds
Dimensions: 19.5 x 13.7 x 3 inches
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.
What are some of the things you should be looking for in the best laptops for Zoom teaching?
Your video camera allows your students to see you and connect with you in a virtual setting. This is why it’s extremely important that while looking for a laptop you should look for one that has a high definition in-built webcam that doesn’t give grainy video footage.
It’ll also be easier to have a high-quality webcam on your laptop than trying to get a separate webcam, attaching it, and dealing with all that fuss. Thankfully all good, modern laptops come with these webcams, you just need to make sure they have HD integrated in them.
As a teacher, you’ll have to open multiple tabs to show videos, present your teaching material, and so on. This is why the smallest laptop screen you should consider should be at least 13 inches. Anything smaller than this will cramp all your content and you might face difficulties while teaching. When you set out to buy laptops, you’ll come across many different varieties including 13-inch laptops, 15 inches, 17 inches, and so on. If you want something bigger, keep in mind that this means they won’t portable so you won’t be able to carry them with you!
When it comes to the CPU, the laptop should have at least an Intel Core i5 or above. This will ensure that it can perform efficiently and speedily.
If you’re teaching solely with Zoom the 4 GB RAM will also work for you. However, if you’re also other applications along with Zoom then it’s best that you get a laptop with 8 GB Ram or above.
When it comes to storage we all know that the bigger the better. Unfortunately, that’ll cost more as well. This is why it’s important to know that while a device with 128 or 256 GB of storage will be great for online teaching, you can also upload huge files on Cloud and use that as support. Another thing you should know is that a solid-state drive (SSD) is better than a hard disk drive (HHD) because it’s must faster.
Your laptop for online teaching should have Windows 7, 8, or 10, or Mac OS 10x or higher. The laptops listed below all have one of these operating systems.
Touch Screen (Optional)
While the touch screen isn’t necessary, many teachers especially those teaching younger classes or those teaching something unstructured prefer touch screens on their laptops. This comes in handy while making notes, drawing, underlining, circling, and so on. However many others have this opinion that a touch screen on a laptop is unnecessary and in that case, you can always use an iPad for the things we just mentioned. Honestly, it’s up to you and your priorities.
A high-quality laptop doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Nowadays you have many budget-friendly options out there that perform incredibly well. (Such as the Acer Aspire 5 or the Dell Inspiron) You can always start off with something affordable and then later invest in something more expensive.
What about Chromebooks?
You might have noticed that we haven’t added any Chromebooks to this list even though they are quite affordable and they can get the work done. The reason why they aren’t on this list is that many times they aren’t compatible with different systems and different applications. This is why it’s always better to invest in a laptop that can help you on your teaching journey.
How much RAM do I need for teaching online?
A laptop with at least 4GB of RAM should be sufficient for online teaching.
Can I teach online using a tablet?
There are many benefits to teaching online with a tablet overusing your phone. For starters, tablets are much more convenient and versatile as they offer the user access through various apps like Skype or FaceTime which makes it easy for them to teach from anywhere at any time of day.
Which is better a Chromebook or a laptop?
A Chromebook is an amazing alternative to expensive Windows laptops and MacBooks. It runs on Google’s operating system, which means that only ChromeOS programs will work.
A Chromebook is the perfect choice for those who are on a budget, need long battery life, or want increased security. Otherwise, most laptop users would choose one over another depending on what they are looking to do with their devices.
We have listed some of the best laptops for zoom meeting and the buying too which will help you find the best choice for yourself. Don’t forget to share your opinion and experience with us. Thanks for reading!