Laptops are something that we used to dream about, now they are a part of our life.With so many different brands, with different sized hard drives, and different ram and processors they would be confused. How could a senior or anyone that is not tech savvy decide which one to buy?Or should we rent a laptop instead.I can understand the dilemma facing a person that has never used or even looked at a computer before, let alone know which sort to buy.


Do not laugh. Even today everyone is still not tech savvy. Especially some of the senior citizens that have been busy working all their lives and have never used a computer on the internet.Let's face it, they had enough trouble trying to work out how to use that confounded little mobile phone.That was a nightmare. Therefore this article is for those people new to technical jargon.



Private Tuition


Before you spend any of your hard earned money, I would suggest that you have a couple of lessons to see if you really want to go down this road.Do not do this in a classroom situation as it will lead to embarrassment. Look in the yellow pages for a personal tutor someone to teach you in the privacy of your own home in a one to one situation. You will build up your confidence more this way and learn more.



If you decide to have lessons make sure that you are the person sitting behind the laptop. So the teacher tells you how to do things.Do not let them show you on the computer, because you will never remember how they did it. Ask for them to leave you notes on what they taught you, you will need them for revision.



Decision to Buy or rent a Laptop



Since having the lessons you will now have a clearer idea as to whether you would enjoy using a computer and like to buy or rent one. If you answered yes then read on.



Rent a Laptop



You could rent a computer for the shortest amount of time to make sure you are not wasting your money. With renting you will not be tied down to the same equipment as technology changes.


Companies will want you to rent a laptop and eagerly offer you:



  • Immediate access to the internet with the latest technology.
  • They will be so keen to obtain your custom they will offer quick approval
  • More than likely offering it on no deposit with simple fixed monthly payments
  • Some will offer you after sales support.

Before signing with any company, take the time to compare prices and deals with other companies to make sure you have the best deal with the latest equipment.Ask for a print out so you can read each one in the comfort of your own home without being under any pressure.


Buy a Laptop


You also have the option of buying your own laptop. Although, you still have the problem of knowing which type of laptop to buy.First of all, go to a variety of computer suppliers and ask for their advice.I would avoid spending thousands of dollars on your first computer though, just in case you find you are not really keen on using a computer after a few weeks. I would hate to see you waste money and be disappointed.


Again ask for a print out of the deals each one is offering you. Then take them home and compare notes.Work out which company will offer you the most for the least amount of money. Some may throw in a cheap printer to go with the laptop.


Do not let anyone pressure you into buying one without giving you time to compare the benefits.


Basic computer components


Some computers will have:


  • Ram- 1 or 2 gig more is always better, this gives you more speed for loading photos
  • Hard drive- 2 gig this is what you store all your information and programs on, again larger is best.Ask for this to be partitioned into 2 drives. That way you can put all programs of C: drive and save all personal info on D: drive.If there is a problem with computer you can have the C: drive formatted which will leave your entire personal info safe on the D: drive.
  • Processor – 1.6 ghzSpeed of your computer again higher is better
  • Size of screen – A larger laptop screen will be easier to see for seniors
  • Mouse- Many people have problems with the laptop mouse, to prevent this problem, ask if they can supply a separate mouse for you to plug into your laptop.
  • DVD- This is a slide out drive that you put your DVD disk in and allows you to listen to music or play your DVD movies
  • Internet- You will have to organize an internet provider yourself to have access to the internet. Laptops are normally setup with standard internet features.Make sure computer is supplied with Virus Protectionand setup to automatically update.


That is the basic things to check before deciding on your new laptop.I did warn you that it would be a bit complicated.At least now you should have some idea what you need to look out for.


Secondhand Laptops


This may be the way to go if you are not sure what you want in a laptop.Although, you can buy new computers that will do most of the things you require for around about $500.No, this would not be a top notch laptop, but it would be a great laptop to learn and make mistakes on.


You can be assured that you will make mistakes.We all do, even the most experienced computer guru's make mistakes from time to time.


The main thing to remember is not to be scared of a computer.You cannot hurt it as long as you never delete things that you yourself did not put on there.Inexperienced people have seen the word Cookies, and thought gee we are not supposed to have them and promptly deleted that file. WRONG.There are good and bad cookies.Never delete files on a computer because you think you do not need it, because you may be deleting part of the program that is keeping your computer running.


I once spoke to a young lad who wanted to play a game on his computer.So he merrily went about deleting files to make room for his game.He rang me and said his computer had stopped working.Yes, he had been removing part of the windows program files.


I have written this article in the hope that it will help someone, which is new to modern technology.I hope it will help give them a better understanding on what choices they have on how to buy or rent a laptop.