The best business laptops in 2022

Best business laptops top pick, the thinkpad nano, on a desk
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The best business laptops make it easy to get work done and be more productive on the go. They're light enough to carry all day, with great keyboards and crisp, easy-to-read screens that are comfortable to look at during marathon sessions. Plus, they've got great battery life.

Once upon a time, if you wanted a laptop for business you were pretty much limited to Lenovo ThinkPads and HP EliteBooks. While these are still great laptops for office workers and business mavens on the go, recent advances in mobile components have given us a bumper crop of affordable ultraportables that are long-lasting, powerful, and svelte enough to slip into a briefcase or look stylish on a desk.

Of course, with all the options you have at your fingertips now for a great business-ready laptop, you're going to need some help sorting the wheat from the chaff. Read on for our guide on the best business laptops you can buy. 

Now that November is upon us we're rounding up the best Black Friday deals, too!

The best business laptops you can buy today

Why you can trust Tom's Guide Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

lenovo thinkpad nano, on a desk

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best business laptop overall

Specifications

Display: 13 inches; 2K
CPU: Intel Core i5-1130G7 | Intel Core i7-1160G7
GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
RAM: 8GB - 16GB
Storage: 256 - 1TB SSD
Weight: 2 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Great battery life
+
Lightweight
+
2K, anti-glare display

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited ports
-
Dull sound

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Nano is a great business laptop because it's powerful, long-lived, and easy to carry. Weighing in at just 2 pounds, the Nano is the lightest laptop on this list, but with a tested battery life of 12 hours it still has enough juice to last you through a day of work without needing a charger. You can also pay extra for 4G/5G connectivity, if you need to stay connected on the go.

Lenovo didn't sacrifice on performance or usability either. In addition to the standard suite of security features and durability ratings all ThinkPads have, the Nano's Intel 11th Gen Tiger Lake processors provide the speed you need for tons of productivity — and its keyboard provides a snappy and comfortable typing experience that lives up to the ThinkPad brand. You might want to pack a USB hub though, as it sports just two Thunderbolt / USB-C ports.

Read our full Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Nano review.

HP Spectre x360 14

(Image credit: Future)
The best 2-in-1 business laptop

Specifications

Display: 14-inch 1920 x 1280 FHD (as tested) or 3000 x 2000 OLED touchscreen
CPU: Intel Core i7-1165G7
GPU: Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics
RAM: 8 GB
Storage: 256GB to 512GB SSD
Weight: 2.95 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent sound quality
+
Stellar display
+
Intuitive touchscreen and pen controls
+
Ultra portable

Reasons to avoid

-
Very expensive
-
Limited port connectivity on lower-priced models
-
No 10-key option
-
Pen input finicky for left-handed users

The HP Spectre x360 14 is a powerful convertible business laptop with a sleek, elegant design that provides excellent performance for both work and play. Available in three colors (silver, black, and navy blue) and sporting an ultra-thin profile of just 0.67 inches, the HP Spectre x360 brings a touch of sophisticated style to your desk that perfectly complements its internal components. 

While the price can be steep if you configure it with top-tier components, we think the performance and sleek, sturdy design of the Spectre x360 are worth the asking price. It comes packaged with a rechargeable MPP2.0 Tilt Pen too, which is perfect for digital artists or anyone who prefers to take handwritten notes during meetings.

Read our full HP Spectre x360 14 review. 

macbook air with m1

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Apple's best business laptop

Specifications

Display: 13.3 inches; 2560x1600
CPU: Apple M1
GPU: Integrated 8-core GPU
RAM: 8GB-16GB
Storage: 256GB-2TB SSD
Weight: 2.8 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Remarkably fast performance
+
Strong legacy app support
+
Amazingly long battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
Still has thick bezels
-
Light on ports

Apple revolutionized its laptops with the M1 chip, and the MacBook Air was one of the first devices to get one. This chip delivers better performance than the Air's ever seen, as well as incredible battery life: it lasted 14 hours and 41 minutes on the Tom's Guide battery test. Plus, the MacBook Air's webcam is clearer and more color-accurate than ever, thanks to signal processing, and the Magic Keyboard still delivers a great typing experience.

All in all, if you need a MacBook for business purposes, you'd be hard-pressed to do better than the M1-equipped MacBook Air. It's powerful, long-lived, and capable enough to handle everything from meeting presentations to coffee shop work sessions.

Read our full Apple MacBook Air M1 (late 2020) review

Dell XPS 13 Plus open on desk viewed from front side

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best 13-inch Windows ultraportable for business

Specifications

Display: 13.4 inches (3456 x 2160) OLED touch (as reviewed)
CPU: 12th gen Core i7-1280P
GPU: Intel Iris Xe
RAM: 16GB
Storage: 512GB SSD
Weight: 2.77 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Gorgeous design
+
Bright and vibrant OLED display
+
Very comfortable keyboard
+
Strong performance
+
Powerful audio

Reasons to avoid

-
Relatively short battery life
-
Touchpad can be oversensitive
-
Bottom runs warm
-
Capacitive function row lacks feedback

Judging by the name, you might think that the Dell XPS 13 Plus is a bigger version of Dell’s iconic laptop. But it’s actually quite the opposite. This is as minimalist a design as we’ve ever seen from Dell.

There’s just two ports. There’s no headphone jack. And Dell even took away physical function keys, replacing them with a capacitive row. There’s not even lines to denmark the touchpad; the entire area beneath the keyboard is one smooth piece of glass.

But the XPS 13 Plus isn’t just a design statement. Dell managed to pack a 28W 12th gen Core i7 processor into this sleek 2.7-pound machine. And the result is a system that can outperform even the mighty MacBook Pro M2 on some tests. However, the short battery life and capacitive function row will give some pause. We also found the bottom gets a bit toasty when running at full power, so keep that in mind to avoid a scorched lap!

Read our full Dell XPS 13 Plus review.

Not interested in the Plus? Don't miss our Dell XPS 13 OLED review -- the base XPS 13 is still a great laptop that we recommend often.

Surface Laptop 5 open on patio table

(Image credit: Future)
Best Windows laptop for productivity

Specifications

Display: 15-inch touchscreen, 2496 x 1664 (201 PPI)
CPU: 12th gen Intel Core i5 / i7
GPU: Integrated Intel Iris Xe
RAM: 8GB - 32GB
Storage: 256GB to 1TB SSD
Weight: 3.4 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Spacious, comfy keyboard
+
Good speakers
+
3:2 display great for productivity
+
Finally, Thunderbolt 4 support

Reasons to avoid

-
Outdated design
-
Underwhelming performance
-
Middling battery life
-
720p webcam is a letdown

The Surface Laptop 5 isn't a bad device. The spacious keyboard and tall screen are great for getting work done, and the fact that Microsoft improved the brightness this time around makes the Surface Laptop 5 more usable outdoors than its predecessor. The newly-added Thunderbolt 4 support is also welcome, especially if you like to use external displays, and the upgrade to a 12th Gen Intel CPU delivers clear improvements in performance benchmarks.

But those are the only meaningful upgrades Microsoft appears to have delivered over last year's model, and they don't do enough to keep the Surface Laptop 5 competitive with some other laptops on the market. You can generally get better performance and more useful features for your money from competitors like the Acer Swift 5 and Dell XPS 15 OLED.

So while the Surface Laptop 5 is still a very serviceable laptop, it's a disappointing step forward from Microsoft. This is the company that Windows built, and it would be great to see it take a leading role in designing the ideal Windows 11 laptop. It's a decent enough productivity laptop, but it could have been better.

Read our full Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 review.

Acer Swift 3 (AMD)

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Best business laptop under $700

Specifications

Display: 14 inches; 1920x1080
CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 4700U
GPU: AMD Radeon graphics
RAM: 8GB
Storage: 512GB SSD
Weight: 2.7 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Amazing battery life
+
Powerful performance
+
Affordable

Reasons to avoid

-
Display is a little dim
-
Speakers aren't great

If your business is on a budget and you want the best bang for your buck, the Acer Swift 3 proves that you can get great performance at a surprisingly low price. Packing AMD harware, this laptop offers plenty of battery life (11:09) in a lightweight design. Plus, it's got more ports than some of the laptops listed above it here: a USB Type-C, HDMI, and a USB-A. Plus, you get a fingerprint reader too. 

The keyboard is also great for getting work done in an office, thanks to its quiet, satisfying keys. We just wish the Swift 3's display had more brightness and color, and that its speakers had a little more kick. But if you're looking to get things done on a budget, it's hard to argue with the value and performance provided by the AMD-based Acer Swift 3.

Read our full Acer Swift 3 (AMD) review.

Dell XPS 15 OLED on a table

(Image credit: Future)
Best 15-inch OLED business laptop

Specifications

Display: 15.6 inches; 3.5K
CPU: 11th Gen Intel Core i7
GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti
RAM: 16 GB
Storage: 512 GB SSD
Weight: 4.2 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
3.5K OLED display impresses with beautiful contrasts
+
Remarkable performance
+
Spacious, comfy keyboard
+
Svelte chassis still looks great

Reasons to avoid

-
Disappointing battery life
-
720p webcam delivers grainy, washed-out images

If you need your business laptop to have a nice big screen, we recommend the XPS 15 because it's surprisingly slim and stylish for its size, with the same great performance and beautiful thin-bezelled design of its XPS siblings. The new XPS 15 is also made better by some smart design tweaks, such as bigger keycaps and a responsive touchpad that’s over 60% larger than that of the previous generation.

Plus, in 2021 Dell began offering the XPS 15 with a 3.5K OLED touchscreen option. If you can afford the extra $1k or so it costs (though you get a few upgraded components bundled in with that, in addition to the OLED screen) it's well worth the investment, as the OLED's deep, inky blacks, vibrant colors, and high contrast ratios really shine when mounted in the XPS 15's eye-catching InfinityEdge design.

Read our full Dell XPS 15 OLED review.

Not interested in OLED? Don't miss our Dell XPS 15 (2020) review.

Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360Tom's Guide Awards 2022 logo

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best AMOLED 2-in-1 for business

Specifications

Display: 13.3- or 15.6-inch 1080p Super AMOLED
CPU: Intel Core i7
RAM: 8-16 GB
Storage: 256 GB - 1 TB
Weight: 3.11 pounds
Size: 13.97 x 8.98 x 0.47 inches

Reasons to buy

+
Gorgeous 15.6-inch AMOLED display
+
Fetching ultra-thin design
+
Extremely portable
+
Speedy performance
+
Roomy keyboard and responsive touchpad

Reasons to avoid

-
Samsung apps can feel like bloatware
-
1080p max resolution disappoints

The Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 ($1,249 to start) is an ultra-thin 2-in-1 laptop that's tailor-made for people who are always on the go. Like last year's Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360, this iteration features a gorgeous AMOLED screen that's perfect for media consumption. It's also ideal for work thanks to its speedy performance.

Though a Windows laptop at its core, the Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 comes loaded with a slew of Samsung software. This could be good or bad, depending on how invested you are in the Samsung ecosystem. If you are, then you'll find that this 2-in-1 pairs nicely with your Samsung tablets and phones. Otherwise, all of these applications are effectively bloatware.

Despite the middling webcam and Samsung bloatware, the Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 has a lot going for it and is a 2-in-1 we highly recommend to those who are in the market for a powerful, portable laptop that pairs nicely with Samsung devices.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 review.

Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
A solid 2-in-1

Specifications

Display: 14-inch (1920 x 1080 pixels)
CPU: 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1260P
RAM: 8GB
Storage: 512GB
Weight: 3.09 pounds
Size: 12.52 x 9.06 x 0.6 inches

Reasons to buy

+
Bright 14-inch OLED display
+
Large keyboard and touchpad
+
Powerful, booming audio
+
Snappy performance

Reasons to avoid

-
Too big to use as a tablet for long
-
Battery life could be better

The Yoga 9i Gen 7 is an excellent 2-in-1 for business. The beefy 12th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and bountiful RAM allow for seamless multi-tasking, while the spacious keyboard lets you work comfortably for hours. The improved webcam and roaring speakers are also highlights. While the battery life on our configuration is less than the previous model, you should be able to get through most of an average workday.

The only major complaint we have with this laptop is that it makes for a somewhat awkward tablet. Yes, the touch interface is snappy and easy to use, but the laptop's size means you can't comfortably hold it in one hand as you would with smaller tablets. But it's entirely possible some folks will consider the Yoga 9i as a perfectly capable Windows tablet despite its size.

Minor qualms aside, this is one of the best 2-in-1 laptops we've tested and is one worth considering.

Read our full Lenovo Yoga 9i Gen 7 review.

Asus Zenbook 13 OLEDTom's Guide Awards 2022 logo

(Image credit: Future)
The best cheap OLED business laptop

Specifications

Display: 13.3-inch 1080p OLED
CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5700U
GPU: Integrated Radeon graphics
RAM: 8 GB
Storage: 512 GB
Weight: 2.5 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Stellar battery life
+
Beautiful 1080p OLED display
+
Great performance

Reasons to avoid

-
Middling sound quality
-
Inconsistent webcam
-
No headphone jack

The AMD-equipped Asus Zenbook 13 OLED is an excellent value, offering an eye-catching 1080p OLED display and exceptional 15-hour battery life in a slim, lightweight package for less than a thousand bucks.

The speakers aren't amazing, the webcam leaves something to be desired, and there's no headphone jack, but these are stumbling blocks you can work around. If you need a zippy little business laptop with a great screen that will last you all day long, you can't do better than the OLED-equipped Asus Zenbook 13 at this price.

Read our full Asus Zenbook 13 OLED review.

HP Pavilion Aero 13 on counter

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best premium business laptop for travel

Specifications

Display: 13.3-inch 1920 x 1200
CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 - 7
GPU: Integrated Radeon graphics
RAM: 8 - 16 GB
Storage: 512GB - 1TB
Weight: 2.2 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Bright, colorful display
+
Clicky keyboard feels satisfying
+
Well-priced
+
Good performance
+
Lightweight

Reasons to avoid

-
Small deck
-
No microSD card slot

If you’re looking for a great all-around ultraportable laptop for under $1,000, then I think you need the HP Pavilion Aero 13 ($839 as reviewed).

That’s because the HP Pavilion Aero 13 offers a powerful AMD Ryzen 7 CPU backed by a bright, colorful 13.3-inch display along with a clicky keyboard and a superlight chassis, all for a great price. However, some people may not like the small keyboard deck and the lack of a microSD card slot.

But those are cons you could easily get over when you consider it delivers great performance in a lightweight laptop that's easy to carry and satisfying to type on. It’s easily one of the best laptops you can buy.

Read our full HP Pavilion Aero 13 review.

HP Elite Dragonfly

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Another great 2-in-1 business laptop

Specifications

Display: 13.3 inches; 1920x1200 or 3840x2160
CPU: 8th-Gen Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7
GPU: Intel HD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB / 16GB / 32GB
Storage: 128GB / 256GB / 512GB / 1TB / 2TB SSD
Weight: 2.5 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Beautiful, eye-catching design
+
Epic battery life (with optional upgrade)
+
Bright and colorful screen
+
Comfortable keyboard

Reasons to avoid

-
Can be much more expensive than other laptops on this list

The HP Elite Dragonfly is another 2-in-1 laptop that's great for business because it's incredibly thin and light, with excellent battery life (12+ hours) and a nice comfy keyboard. 

Plus, it offers a crisp, beautiful display and all the robust security features that the HP Elite line is known for, including a physical webcam privacy shutter and the promise of having passed 19 MIL-STD-810 tests, giving you some peace of mind when someone inevitably knocks it off a desk. The biggest potential pitfall is the expense, as this laptop's price can climb up into the $2k range if you kit it out with all the bells and whistles.

Read our full HP Elite Dragonfly review.

How to choose the best business laptop for you

Performance: If you only need something basic for tackling emails and surfing the web, you'll be fine with a mid-range CPU (think: Core i5 or an AMD A10) and 4-8 GB of RAM. However, if you want something that can tackle anything you throw at it (short of heavy-duty gaming and video editing) splurge for a Core i7 and 16 GB of RAM.

Graphics and gaming: Business laptops are rarely built to do much serious gaming, but if you just want to unwind with older or undemanding games like Civilization, you should be fine as long as you have at least a Core i5 CPU and 8 GB of RAM. For more demanding games, look into one of the best gaming laptops instead — a few have designs subtle enough to not look out of place in a boardroom.

Size: Consider how mobile you want your business laptop to be. Machines such as the Dell ThinkPad X1 Nano and HP Elite Dragonfly are slim and feather-light, whereas machines with larger screens (like the Dell XPS 15) are a bit bulkier and more painful to carry all day.

Whichever system you decide on, you may also want to pick up the best mouse for your particular work situation.

How we test the best business laptops

To find the best laptops, we run every machine through a rigorous suite of benchmarks and real-world tests to gauge how it will perform during everyday use. 

We measure the average brightness and color quality of each laptop's display using our in-house light meter and colorimeter. For general performance, we run our machines through tests that include Geekbench 5 (CPU performance), as well as various 3DMark tests to measure graphics capabilities. We also run a file transfer test to measure how fast a machine's hard drive is, and a custom battery test that has the machine browse the internet over Wi-Fi until it runs out of juice.

And because we know everyone likes to play games sometimes, we run every laptop we review through the Sid Meier's Civilization VI: Gathering Storm graphical benchmarking test to see how well it handles light gaming.

For more information, check out our how we test page for Tom's Guide.

Alex Wawro is a lifelong tech and games enthusiast with more than a decade of experience covering both for outlets like Game Developer, Black Hat, and PC World magazine. A lifelong PC builder, he currently serves as a senior editor at Tom's Guide covering all things computing, from laptops and desktops to keyboards and mice.