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Do you have a child heading off to college soon? As you know from their high school experience, the average 21st-century student needs a computer for just about everything these days. However, your college-bound student is going to need more than just a basic computer; they’re going to need one that’s stable, powerful, and chock full of the features they need to succeed in school. Fortunately, Apple’s Mac computers will do the job and then some.
Portability is a must for your college-bound child. Whether they’re toting their computer from their dorm to the classroom or using it after class at a local coffee shop, being able to easily carry their PC is critical. If you’re on the hunt for a lightweight computer that’s equally powerful and reliable, we’re here to help narrow your search down to the best Macs for college students.
Step 1: Don’t buy anything without first checking with the college.
Many college departments have specific requirements based on the software that students have to use in their classes. Generally, these revolve around processor type, amount of RAM, and storage space. Luckily, most current Macs should meet the requirements.
Don’t worry If your child’s college department requires the use of Windows because all Macs can run Windows with no problems, either by restarting in Apple’s Boot Camp or by using virtualization software like Parallels Desktop or VMware Fusion. With a Mac, you get the best of both worlds!
Step 2: Determine whether you should purchase an iPad or MacBook for college
Colleges often specify—and students usually prefer—laptops instead of desktop machines. Although the iMac is a great machine with a gorgeous screen, it’s too big and unwieldy for the transient lifestyle of the typical college student.
A laptop is much easier to pack during moves, and it can be taken out and about on campus every day. A student who’s accustomed to taking notes on an iPad Pro with a Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil might be able to use that along with a desktop Mac like an iMac or a Mac mini, but most people should focus on Apple’s laptops.
Step 3: Choose the right MacBook model
Choosing from Apple’s laptop line comparing and contrasting price, performance, and portability. Your options are slimmed down to three distinguished laptops: the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro (13-inch and 16-inch).
While your child may try to pressure you into buying the latest Macbook model available, there are plenty of older options that fit the bill (figuratively and literally). When you opt for an Apple computer, you can rest assured knowing that no matter what model you choose, it will perform perfectly in any academic setting.
Need some expert insight on the best Macbooks for college? Here are our top picks:
Pro-tip: Beyond getting your child the best MacBook for college, you’ll also want to protect their new laptop. Laptop backpack carriers will not only protect their notebook, but they will also help keep your college-bound student’s books and other school essentials organized and within reach.
Go with the MacBook if size and weight are more important than speed. For maximum performance, the 15-inch MacBook Pro is top of the line but could be heavy to lug around every day. You could compromise with the MacBook Air, which is quicker than the MacBook and smaller than the 15-inch MacBook Pro, but the sweet spot goes to the 13-inch MacBook Pro, which provides the best overall combination of price, performance, and portability.
Simply Mac: Simply the Best Place to Buy a MacBook for College Students!
Visit a Simply Mac location to explore different Mac computers and discuss options with one of our expert technicians. We know that college is expensive. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t get your child the best MacBook for college to help them succeed in school. We offer financing options that can help you get the perfect new MacBook, iPad, or other Apple computer.