10 Best Laptop for Programming For Software Developers in 2022

There are a lot of laptop users out there who regularly use their laptops for programming. Whether you are a developer by profession or currently a student, having a powerful laptop for programming is quite great.

These allow you to write code and make all sorts of programs while on the go. If you also want a laptop for the same, then make sure to check out the best laptops for programming listed down below that have been selected as per these factors:

  • CPU: Just like all other programs and tasks on your computer, programming also relies on your laptop CPU. And if you are compiling and running complex and long code for your programming needs, having a powerful CPU like the Apple M1, Apple M1 Max, Intel Core i7, and other similar options is highly important.
  • RAM & Storage: If you are creating a lot of large programs, you are going to need a lot of primary and secondary memory. While having high capacity RAM like 16 GB or 32 GB helps in code compiling, having 512 GB or 1 TB GB storage means that you can create and store a lot of source code and programs on your laptop with ease.
  • GPU: Even though the GPU of your laptop is not used by programming applications in the same way as games do, there are still many scenarios where you might need a powerful GPU. If your programming application requires making GUI and other graphical elements, then checking and going with a powerful integrated GPU is highly important. Thankfully, both Intel Iris and Apple integrated GPUs are quite powerful for the same.

While these factors are some of the most important ones, there is still much more to consider while going with such laptops. Hence, all the best laptops for programming given down below also have their important aspects and features explained with them. We have also given a detailed “Buying Guide” and some major FAQs for the best laptops for programming allowing you to pick the right one by going through this list.

10 Best Laptops for Programming 2022

Best Laptops for Programming Screen Size CPU RAM & Storage GPU Buy Now
Apple MacBook Air Laptop 2020 13.3 Inches Apple M1 8 core 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD Apple M1 7 Core Check On Amazon
Dell XPS Laptop 15 Inches Intel Core i7 10750H 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti Check On Amazon
Microsoft Surface Laptop 13.5 Inches Intel Core i5 1135G7 8 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD Intel Xe Graphics Check On Amazon
Apple MacBook Pro 2021 14.2 Inches Apple M1 Pro 8 Core 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD Apple M1 Pro 14 Core Check On Amazon
LG Gram 17Z90P Laptop 17 Inches Intel Core i7 1165G7 16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD Intel Xe Graphics Check On Amazon
Dell Inspiron FHD Laptop 14 Inches Intel Core i7 1165G7 32 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD Intel Xe Graphics Check On Amazon
HP Spectre x360 13T Laptop 2021 13.3 Inches Intel Core i7 1165G7 16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD Intel Xe Graphics Check On Amazon
Apple MacBook Pro 2021 16.2 Inches Apple M1 Pro 10 Core 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD Apple M1 Pro 16 Core Check On Amazon
Lenovo ThinkPad E15 2021 15.6 Inches Intel Core i5 10210U 16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD Intel UHD 620 Check On Amazon
MSI Prestige 14 Evo Laptop 14 Inches Intel Core i5 1135G7 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD Intel Xe Graphics Check On Amazon

Best Laptops for Programming Reviews

1. Apple MacBook Air Laptop 2020

Apple is an electronics brand which needs no introduction since it offers all kinds of high performance and premium products including laptops which can be great for programming too.

The Apple MacBook Air laptop for programming comes at the 1st position of this list since it is the cheapest option given here despite being from Apple. Unlike what you would expect from an entry level Apple laptop, it performs even better than most Intel based alternatives thanks to its Apple M1 8 core CPU. While it only offers 8 GB RAM and a 256 GB SSD, it still performs quite amazing thanks to its ARM architecture. As for its GPU, it uses the fairly powerful Apple M1 7 core GPU.

Taking a look at the display of this laptop for programming, it comes with a 13.3 inch 2560 x 1600 display which not only looks amazing but also results in a highly portable laptop. However, one issue with this laptop is that you only get 2 x USB type C Thunderbolt 3 ports and a combo audio jack with this laptop. Fortunately, you do get WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 support with it for high performance networking. Thanks to the ARM architecture of its processor, you can get up to 18 hours of battery life from this laptop.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Apple M1 8 core CPU
  • Offers 8 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Apple M1 7 core GPU
  • Includes a 13.3 inch 2560 x 1600 display
  • Offers 2 x USB type C Thunderbolt 3, 1 x combo audio jack
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 18 hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1 year long warranty

Pros:

  • Highly portable laptop for programming thanks to a compact and amazing display
  • Superb performance for a fanless laptop thanks to Apple M1 CPU
  • Excellent battery life for portability and on the go usage

Cons:

  • Limited storage space with no upgrade options
  • Only offers two connectivity ports on the side

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2. Dell XPS 15-Inch Laptop

Dell XPS 15-Inch LaptopYou can also consider Dell and its laptop offerings if you are looking for something powerful and premium but want to go with Intel and Windows-based options instead of Apple ones.

Dell’s XPS 15 laptop for programming comes at the 2nd position of this listicle as it is the best performing Windows-based laptop given here. Even though it uses the older 10th gen Intel Core i7 10750H, it performs better than the 11th Gen options as it is an H series processor which has a higher TDP than G and U series alternatives. To ensure that you get the most out of this processor, Dell has also offered 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD storage with it. Unlike all other laptops for programming given here, the Dell XPS 15 also comes with the Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti GPU which means that you can also play games on it.

Another unique feature of this laptop for programming which you won’t find in Apple laptops is that its 15.6 inch 1920 x 1200 display supports touch input as well. While its connectivity options are not the best, you do get 1 x USB type C 3.1, 2 x USB Type C Thunderbolt 3, 1 x SD card slot, and 1 x combo audio jack with this laptop which is better than nothing. Similarly, it also offers high performance wireless networking options in the form of WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5. Despite having a dedicated graphics card, Dell rates this laptop for a battery life of up to 21 hours which is quite amazing.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel i7 10750H CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti GPU
  • Includes a 15.6 inch 1920 x 1200 touchscreen display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 21 hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1-year warranty

Pros:

  • Amazing performance for a Windows laptop with included dedicated GPU
  • High-performance connectivity options for ease of use
  • One of the best keyboard and touchpad combos for programming

Cons:

  • A bit on the heavier side due to dedicated graphics
  • Only a 1080p display even at a premium price

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3. Microsoft Surface 13.5-Inch Laptop 4 Touch

Microsoft Surface 13.5-Inch Laptop 4 TouchMicrosoft not only offers Windows and other software products, but also offers a few unique laptop options under its Microsoft Surface lineup of laptops which are highly portable.

This Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 laptop for programming comes at the 3rd position of this article because it is the only option given here which offers a superb balance between a laptop and a tablet. Taking a look at its internals, you will find the Intel Core i5 1135G7 CPU inside it. While its CPU is still decent for programming, the performance of this laptop gets limited by its 8 GB RAM. Thankfully, you do get 512 GB SSD storage and Intel Xe Graphics in this laptop where both perform quite great.

Coming to the tablet form factor of this laptop, it is made possible thanks to its 13.5 inch 2256 x 1504 display which also supports touch input. Considering that this laptop is essentially a tablet with a keyboard, the given connectivity options of 1 x USB type A 3.0, 1 x USB type C 3.0, 1 x micro SD card reader, and 1 x combo audio jack. Similar to other moden laptops, this one also includes WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 wireless connectivity. Thanks to the smaller sized display used by this laptop, it is able to last for up to 17 hours on a single charge.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel i5 1135G7 CPU
  • Offers 8 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Intel Xe Graphics GPU
  • Includes a 13.5 inch 2256 x 1504 touchscreen display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 17 hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1 year long warranty

Pros:

  • Excellent option for portable usage with a unique tablet like design
  • Great looking display with touch input support and a tall aspect ratio
  • Fairly long battery life thanks to small display and a large battery

Cons:

  • Included RAM is quite restrictive
  • Not the best for using on your lap due to a tablet like design

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4. Apple MacBook Pro 14-Inch 2021

Apple MacBook Pro 2021If budget is not an issue for you and you want one of the best laptops for programming out there, then Apple and its MacBook Pro lineup of laptops can be a great option for most.

Apple’s MacBook Pro 14 laptop for programming is the most powerful option given here when you are considering smaller and more compact options. While it might not be the highest-end CPU offering from Apple, the Apple M1 Pro 8 core CPU used by it is much more powerful than any Intel option out there. Not only but it is also combined along with 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD storage. And if you want to have powerful GPU performance as well, then you will be glad to know that it uses the Apple M1 Pro 14 core GPU.

The primary reason for this laptop being highly compact is its 14 inch 3024 x 1964 display which is one of the best looking options out there. Despite being an Apple laptop, it offers fairly versatile connectivity options including 3 x USB type C Thunderbolt 4, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x SD card reader, and 1 x combo audio jack. Since this is a highly premium laptop for programming, it also includes WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 connectivity. While it might not be the highest, the given battery life rating of up to 17 hours is still quite amazing considering its given performance numbers.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Apple M1 Pro 8 core CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Apple M1 Pro 14 core GPU
  • Includes a 14 inch 3024 x 1964 display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 17 hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1 year long warranty

Pros:

  • Amazing performance for a laptop of this size and form factor
  • Superb display with great colors and and a high resolution
  • Pretty great connectivity options including physical ports

Cons:

  • Slightly thicker than other Apple laptops
  • Offers a notch in the middle of the display

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5. LG Gram 17Z90P 17-Inch Laptop

LG Gram 17Z90P 17-Inch LaptopLG not only makes all kinds of home appliances, but also offers thin and light laptops under its Gram series of laptops which are known to be quite lightweight and ideal for portable usage.

This LG Gram 17Z90P laptop for programming is the lightest and most portable laptop given here at the given screen size. But taking a look at its internals first, you will be glad to know that this laptop is powered by a high-end Intel Core i7 1165G7 CPU. Because you also get 16 GB RAM and a 1 TB SSD drive inside this laptop, the performance offered by it is quite great. Another great thing about this laptop is that it is powered by the Intel Xe Graphics GPU.

The best thing about this laptop for programming is that despite being one of the lightest options out there, it still offers a massive 17 inch 2560 x 1600 making it perfect for multitasking while programming. Another great benefit of such a large laptop is that it offers 2 x USB type A 3.1, 2 x USB Type C Thunderbolt 3, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x micro SD card slot, and 1 x combo audio jack on the side. Since it uses the latest Intel processor, you also get WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 connectivity with it. And even with such a large display, this laptop is able to offer a battery life of up to 19.5 hours which is much longer than others.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel Core i7 1165G7 CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 1 TB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Intel Xe Graphics GPU
  • Includes a 17 inch 2560 x 1600 display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 19.5-hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1 year warranty

Pros:

  • Amazing keyboard for a tactile typing experience while programming
  • Highly versatile and high performance connectivity options
  • Fairly powerful for given processor and included processor

Cons:

  • Might be too big for some users
  • Large and lightweight construction results in some body flex

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6. Dell Inspiron 5000 14-Inch FHD Laptop

Dell Inspiron 5000 14-Inch FHD LaptopDell also offers much cheaper and highly affordable options under its Inspiron lineup for all those who are looking for powerful and unique laptops that can work great for programming.

The Dell Inspiron 5000 laptop for programming is one of the best value for money options listed here since it not only performs great, but also offers unique features. Starting with its performance, this Dell laptop is powered by the Intel Core i7 1165G7 CPU. But the best thing about this laptop is that it comes with 32 GB RAM and a 1 TB SSD drive which is better than most high-end options out there. Similar to most other 11th Gen CPUs, the Core i7 of this laptop also includes the Intel Xe Graphics GPU.

Coming to the unique feature of this laptop, it is a highly versatile laptop thanks to its 14 inch 1920 x 1080 display which comes in a 2 in 1 design with touch input. Taking a look at the sides of this laptop, you will be glad to find 2 x USB type A 3.1, 1 x USB type C 3.1, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x SD card reader, and 1 x combo audio jack. You also get the latest wireless connectivity options in the form of WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 with this laptop. However, one area where this laptop reflects its cheaper price tag is its 5-hour long battery life which is certainly lower than others.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel Core i7 1165G7 CPU
  • Offers 32 GB RAM and 1 TB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Intel Xe Graphics GPU
  • Includes a 14 inch 1920 x 1080 2 in 1 touchscreen display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 5-hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1-year long warranty

Pros:

  • Excellent performance for given price and form factor
  • Unique 2 in 1 design with a touchscreen display
  • Large number of physical and wireless connectivity options for versatility

Cons:

  • Poor battery life compared to other options
  • 2 in 1 design might not be for everyone

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7. HP Spectre x360 13T Laptop 2021

HP Spectre x360 13T Laptop 2021While most laptops offered by HP are quite affordable, its Spectre lineup of laptops are on the premium side and can be a viable option for those who want something powerful yet compact.

HP’s Spectre x360 13T laptop for programming is one of the most compact and portable options out there thanks to its given form factor. Despite being highly compact, this laptop still comes with the Intel Core i7 1165G7 CPU. As this processor is paired along with 16 GB RAM and a 512 GB SSD, this laptop offers quite great performance. You also get the Intel Xe Graphics GPU inside this laptop which should be more than enough for your programming needs.

In order to make this laptop one of the smallest options, it uses a very small 13.3 inch display which manages to look one of the best as it is an OLED 4K UHD 3840 x 2160 touchscreen display. Unfortunately, the smaller form factor of this laptop does result in poor connectivity options in the form of just 1 x USB type A 3.1, 2 x USB type C Thunderbolt 4, and 1 x combo audio jack. That being said, you still get WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 support with this laptop which is to be expected from such a premium laptop. Since it uses a small OLED display and OLED panels are highly efficient, you also get an excellent battery life of up to 19 hours with it.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel Core i7 1165G7 CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 1 TB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Intel Xe Graphics GPU
  • Includes a 13.3 inch 3840 x 2160 OLED display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 19 hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1 year long warranty

Pros:

  • Highly compact and portable laptop for programming
  • Class leading display with 4K resolution and OLED panel
  • Decently powerful considering given size and form factor

Cons:

  • Very limited connectivity options
  • Poor expansion and upgrade options

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8. Apple MacBook Pro 16-Inch 2021

Apple MacBook Pro 16-Inch 2021Apple also offers even more powerful laptops for programming for all those who do not have any budget restrictions and simply want the best performance for programming and even more.

This Apple MacBook Pro 16 laptop for programming is hands down the most powerful option given here if the size of this laptop is not an issue. To be more exact, this laptop for programming uses the Apple M1 Pro 10 core CPU which is way more than what you need for programming. And to ensure that you are able to run any program of your choice, this laptop comes with 16 GB RAM and a 512 GB SSD inside. Another benefit of going with this larger MacBook Pro is that it features the Apple M1 Pro 16 core GPU.

Apart from its notch, the 16-inch display used by it looks amazing thanks to the given resolution of 3456 x 2234. Similar to the smaller 14-inch model, this one also offers various connectivity options including 3 x USB Type C Thunderbolt 4, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x SD card reader, and 1 x combo audio jack. Moving to its wireless connectivity options, you will also get WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 connectivity with this laptop. Apart from including a larger display and more powerful CPU, this higher-end Apple MacBook Pro also includes a larger battery inside resulting in a battery life of up to 21 hours which is one of the best out there.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Apple M1 Pro 10 core CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Apple M1 Pro 16 core GPU
  • Includes a 14 inch 3024 x 1964 display
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 21-hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1-year warranty

Pros:

  • Excellent performance numbers with the most powerful CPU in its class
  • One of the best displays with a high resolution and mini LEDs
  • Fairly large number of connectivity options and ports on both sides

Cons:

  • Quite an expensive laptop for programming
  • Not everyone will prefer its display with a notch on the top

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9. Lenovo ThinkPad E15 2021

Lenovo ThinkPad E15 2021Lenovo also offers even cheaper laptops for programming under its ThinkPad series of laptops which is able to offer a lower price tag by using a previous generation processor.

The Lenovo ThinkPad E15 laptop for programming is the perfect pick for those who want an excellent typing experience without paying a premium for the same. For offering this same ThinkPad laptop at a lower price tag, it uses the slightly older Intel Core i5 10210U CPU inside. Because of this, you also get the older Intel UHD 620 GPU inside this laptop. Fortunately, you do get 16 GB RAM and a 1 TB SSD with this laptop which does result in decent performance for most users.

As you can guess by the name, this ThinkPad E15 laptop uses a 15.6 inch display which offers a 1920 x 1080 resolution. Another great thing about this laptop is that you get a fairly large number of connectivity options on the side including 1 x USB type A 2.0, 1 x USB type A 3.2, 1 x USB Type C Thunderbolt 4, 1 x HDMI 1.4, 1 x Ethernet, and 1 x combo audio jack. However, since this is an older laptop generation, it only comes with WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 4 connectivity. That being said, you do get the same decently long battery life of up to 11 hours with this Lenovo ThinkPad laptop.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel i5 10210U CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 1 TB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Intel UHD 620 Graphics GPU
  • Includes a 15.6 inch 1920 x 1080 display
  • Features WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 4 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 11-hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1-year warranty

Pros:

  • Quite an amazing keyboard and touchpad combo for the price
  • Large and high quality display for the given price tag
  • Multiple connectivity options to choose from including physical ports

Cons:

  • Uses an older generation of processor
  • Poor wireless networking performance due to lack of WiFi 6

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10. MSI Prestige 14 Evo Professional Laptop

MSI Prestige 14 Evo Professional LaptopMSI is primarily known for offering gaming laptops which are generally quite great if you want value for money models which is also true for its laptops for programming like the one given here.

MSI’s Prestige 14 Evo laptop for programming is the cheapest option given here if you are looking for a Windows and Intel-based system. Since this is an entry-level Intel-based laptop for programming, it uses the Intel Core i5 1135G7 CPU. Despite the lower price tag, you still get 16 GB RAM and a 512 GB SSD storage drive with this laptop. You will also find the Intel Xe Graphics GPU inside this laptop for all your graphical needs.

Taking a look at the display of this laptop for programming, it also uses a 14 inch 1920 x 1080 display which offers a great balance between portability and screen space. Speaking of space, this laptop offers a decent number of connectivity options for the given price which includes 1 x USB type A 3.1, 2 x USB Type C Thunderbolt 4, 1 x micro SD card reader, and 1 x combo audio jack. Even with its fairly low price tag, you can still use this laptop with WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 devices if you want. And while it may not be the best, the given battery life rating of up to 12 hours is fairly good for most users out there.

Best Features:

  • Uses the Intel i5 1135G7 CPU
  • Offers 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD storage
  • Powered by the Intel Xe Graphics GPU
  • Includes a 14 inch 1920 x 1080 display
  • Offers 1 x USB type A 3.1, 2 x USB type C Thunderbolt 4, 1 x micro SD card reader, 1 x combo audio jack
  • Features WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 for wireless connectivity
  • Rated for up to 12-hour long battery life
  • Backed by a 1-year warranty

Pros:

  • Affordable Windows-based laptop for programming with powerful internals
  • Decently versatile and practical connectivity options
  • Good looking display with a fairly compact form factor

Cons:

  • Build quality is a bit on the average side
  • Can get a bit hot under sustained and heavy workloads

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Buying Guide for the Best Laptops for Programming

Even though a laptop can be used for all kinds of things, running heavier tasks like programming applications and IDEs requires a powerful laptop. To ensure that you can write, compile, and run any code of your choice, getting a laptop accordingly is highly important.

Hence, we have already given some of the best laptops for programming earlier in this list. This list also has all of the major specifications and features of these best laptops for programming explained along with them. And those of you who want to know more can check out this extensive buying guide for the best laptops for programming:

1. CPU

The most important factor to consider while buying a laptop for programming is the processor. This is due to the reason that all of the tasks which are a part of programming are handled by the CPU. As a result, going with a powerful CPU like the Intel Core i5, Intel Core i7, Apple M1, or the Apple M1 Pro is highly important. Out of these options, the Apple M1 Pro will perform the best in all tasks since it is a highly efficient ARM-based processor.


  • Detailed CPU Specifications

Even if two different laptops have an Intel Core i7 CPU or even the Apple M1 Pro, they will not perform the same. And to get an idea of their performance difference, you first need to check the CPU generation. This is due to the reason that an 11th gen Intel Core i7 CPU will perform better than a 10th gen one.

You can also check the core count of these CPUs as the 10 core Apple M1 Pro performs better than the 8 core Apple M1 Pro. If you are going with Intel CPUs, you can also check the clock speeds of your processor. When compared with each other, higher clock speeds of 2.5 GHz base and 4.5 GHz boost will perform quite better than clock speeds of 2.0 GHz base and 4.1 GHz boost.

2. RAM & Storage

Other than the CPU of your laptop for programming, both the RAM and storage can also affect the programming experience quite a lot. Whether you are writing a code, compiling a code, or running your code, all of its data and the complete code gets stored in the RAM. As a result, having enough RAM for the same is highly important.

While entry-level laptops for programming may include only 8 GB of RAM, higher-end options will offer 16 GB or 32 GB memory which is much better for heavier programming tasks. Coming to the storage of your laptop for programming, all modern options come with high-speed SSD drives instead of hard drives.

Although, you still need to check the capacity of this SSD drive since going with a 512 GB or a 1 TB SSD is much more practical than a 256 GB SSD. You need to have enough space for the operating system, programs, personal files, and most importantly all of your source code and compiled programs.

3. GPU

Unlike the CPU, RAM, and storage, the GPU of your laptop is not used as much for programming tasks. However, if your program code needs to render a lot of graphical elements for its GUI, then having a powerful GPU is quite important. Fortunately, most modern laptops have powerful enough integrated GPUs for the same. Whether you are using an Apple M1 iGPU or Intel Iris iGPU, both will be adequate for your programming needs. In fact, some laptops for programming may also include external GPUs like the Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti which allows you to use your laptop for much more than just programming.

4. Display

Whether you need to develop the GUI for your program or not, having a good display in your laptop for programming is highly important. A great looking display ensures that all of the text is easy to read and you can comfortably use your laptop’s display for multiple hours in one stretch. If you also want such a display, you should first check the display resolution.

Even though an FHD 1080p display is good enough for basic usage, high-end laptops come with 4K UHD 2160p displays which offer much better text sharpness. Similarly, going with a larger display size like 15.6 or 16 inches is also much better than smaller 13.3 or 14-inch displays.

Many modern laptops for programming also come with 16:10 displays instead of 16:9 ones for even more space for productivity. In some cases, a given laptop for programming may also include a touchscreen display which can be quite handy for creating a GUI for your programs.

5. Keyboard and Touchpad

If you are a programmer, then you must know that even for making a small and basic program, you have to write a lot of code. As a result, having a great keyboard and touchpad is highly important. While the keyboard is used for typing, a good touchpad is important for designing all of your GUI elements. Therefore, make sure to go with a laptop that offers a large and precise touchpad that also supports multi-finger gestures. As for the keyboard, going with a large keyboard with properly spaced keys that feel tactile is quite important. If your laptop for programming also includes backlighting options, that is always a great bonus to have.

6. Connectivity Options

While you do not need to connect any external devices in order to use your laptop for programming, you will still find yourself connecting various external peripherals for the best efficiency. This can include things like a mouse, keyboard, multiple monitors, extra storage devices, audio devices, and even specific testing devices as per your programming needs. For connecting all such external devices, you should go with a laptop that offers multiple connectivity options.


  • Physical Connectivity Options

Some of the common connectivity ports that you will find in laptops for programming include USB type-A ports, USB type C, HDMI and DisplayPort ports, ethernet for networking, SD card slots, audio ports, and much more depending on the laptop that you are going for. While checking for such physical ports, it is always recommended to go with multiple ports. You should also prefer more recent versions of ports as USB 3.2 performs better than USB 3.0, HDMI 2.1 performs better than HDMI 1.4, and so on.


  • Wireless Connectivity Options

Apart from physical connectivity options, you can also find wireless connectivity options in all modern laptops. And if you are going to use your laptop for programming, cloud development, networking, and other tasks, having these is highly important.

For the same, all modern laptops come with both WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. However, while entry-level laptops may offer only WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 4 connectivity, newer and higher-end models can also support WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for much better performance and improved compatibility with newer devices.

7. Battery Life

Even if a given laptop for programming is highly powerful, it won’t be practical for portable and on-the-go usage if it does not offer a long battery life. In general, you can expect Apple laptops to be much better in this regard thanks to their highly efficient ARM-based processors. Thankfully, there are also many Intel-based laptops that offer a decently long battery.

Regarding the battery life rating, you can find options like up to 8 hours, up to 12 hours, up to 16 hours, and even longer battery life ratings. As you would expect, going with a higher battery life rating is always the better option for portable options. Similarly, going with a higher capacity battery like a 90 Whr battery over a 70 Whr or a 50 Whr battery will be better for better portability.

8. Warranty

If you are going with a premium laptop for programming, you would expect it to last for as long as possible. This not only includes lasting for a long time in terms of offering adequate performance, but also being reliable enough. Therefore, checking the included warranty of your laptop for programming is always a great idea.

Even though most laptops for programming available out there feature a 1-year warranty or similar, there are also other options out there which can include a 2 or 3-year warranty. Some laptops for programming may also offer extended warranty programs that you should also check if you want a laptop made for long-term usage.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Which is the better option for programming out of Intel and Apple-based systems?

Ans: Despite being recently launched, Apple-based systems also offer pretty great support and compatibility with all the popular IDEs and programming applications out there. So you can go with either Intel or Apple-based systems for programming. You just need to make sure that a given laptop offers enough performance along with the features that you need for your programming needs.

2. What are the key components of a laptop that get used for programming?

Ans: Even though having a great looking display, a long battery life, and connectivity options are handy to have in a laptop, the programming performance primarily relies on the internal components. While the CPU of your laptop is the most important component in terms of determining the programming performance you can expect, the RAM and storage can also affect the same. You should also check the touchpad and keyboard of your laptop since you will be typing a lot while programming on your laptop.

3. Can you upgrade the internals of your laptop for programming in the future?

Ans: When compared to a desktop, one of the biggest drawbacks of laptops for programming is that most of them cannot be upgraded. In order to achieve a thin and light form factor, most laptops for programming have soldered internals. Thankfully, there are still a few laptops that allow you to upgrade the RAM and storage if needed which can also affect the programming experience as mentioned earlier.

Conclusion:

You can find all kinds of laptops out there which include all-rounder laptops, thin and light laptops, gaming laptops, and much more. But when you are looking to get a laptop for programming, you will need something which is not only powerful enough for your programming needs but allows you to do the same while on the go. For the same, we have already listed a few of the best laptops for programming up above in this article.

In order to ensure that you are picking the right laptop, all of these best laptops for programming also have various significant details and points given along with them. While we have also given a complete buying guide and some of the common FAQs for the best laptops for programming, you can go with one of our ideal picks if you are still confused:

  • Even though it is certainly quite an expensive laptop for programming, the Apple MacBook Pro 16-Inch is the best performing option given above. Thanks to its Apple M1 Pro 10 core CPU, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, and Apple M1 Pro 16 core GPU, it performs much better than all other options. You also get an amazing 16 inch 3456×2234 display with this laptop making it an excellent complete package.
  • Taking a look at the other end of the spectrum, the Apple MacBook Air happens to be the cheapest option given above. And while it may not be the most powerful option, its Apple M1 8 core CPU, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, and Apple M1 7 core GPU make it as powerful as high-end Intel-based options. Since this is the entry-level offering from Apple, it uses the smaller 13.3 inch 2560 x 1600 display which still looks quite amazing.
  • If you want to go with an Intel and Windows-based laptop for programming that can be used for gaming too, then you can go with the Dell XPS 15-Inch. Because it uses the Intel Core i7 10750H, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, and Nvidia GTX 1650 Ti, it can handle everything that you throw at it. Unlike the Apple options, the 15.6 inch 1920 x 1200 display of this laptop even supports touch input making it highly versatile.

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