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What are PC Notebooks?

By Ken Black
Updated May 16, 2024
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PC notebooks are highly portable computers that are capable of carrying out much of the same tasks as a more traditional desktop computer. PC stands for personal computer, often a term of delineation to separate a Windows™ system from a system designed by Apple™. Therefore, in most call cases, PC notebooks will be running Windows™ or some other operating system not designed by Apple™.

While the earliest PC notebooks lagged far behind the technology built into desktop models, that disparity has been largely closed over the past few years. Now, a PC computer notebook has much of the same functionality as a desktop. The one limiting factor may be the screen. While it is possible to hook up PC notebooks to larger screens, this is seldom done. Usually, a larger screen will only make a significant difference to a user who is working with drafting programs or playing games.

Another disparity largely bridged between PC notebooks and desktops is their costs in comparison of similar models with similar capabilities. Indeed, for those who have been waiting for a more reasonable time to purchase a computer notebook, the time has never been better. It is unlikely that a large disparity will ever return between desktops and PC notebooks, but it is possible.

Another advancement in mobile computing has been the evolution of the battery. Batteries now have a longer life, hold a longer charge, and can be recharged faster than ever before. For the one component that makes a PC notebook truly mobile, this represents a great advancement in the product. For a long time consumers had complained about the battery life and the unpredictability of the rechargeable batteries. Newer technology has helped the PC notebook user find a great deal more convenience than in years past.

Given these two advancements with the PC notebook product, there has been a switch in consumer sentiment toward the computers. Consumers have begun to recognize PC notebooks have something desktop computers could never have -- the ability to be transported easily. It represents yet another selling point. That is another reason why in 2008, PC notebooks exceeded the shipments of desktop computer for the first time in history.

The PC notebook used to be known simply as a laptop computer. However, while the term still would fit some circumstances, the industry felt calling the computers laptops would give individuals the wrong idea about how to use them. While some users may put them on their laps, this is not recommended. It supports poor posture, and the computer can get hot, possibly even causing burns on an individual's lap.

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