Yes, it is totally possible to start and run a business on a £100 laptop. No, you don't need to buy an overpriced Apple Mac to start your business like a lot of people would lead you to believe. And don't even think about trying to do it on an iPad. That's just asking for a world of pain. Of course, there is always PC's as well but they need constant updates, malware protection etc. and generally just hassles if you aren't computer savvy. They notoriously get extremely slow after a couple of years of buying it.
What you need to do is buy a Chromebook.
What's a Chromebook?
So what is a Chromebook? A Chromebook is a laptop that just runs Google's Chrome OS. So, basically a laptop that just has Google Chrome. An internet browser. Yup, you read that right. Using Google Chrome you can use spreadsheets, word documents, browse the internet, manage your website/social media, update your Google Ads and basic graphic design. All within Google's Chrome browser.
Chromebooks can be found from £70 upwards second hand on eBay, all the way up to over £1,000. This website you're currently on has been made on a £90 Chromebook. I kid you not. See the video below from Google on a brief overview of Chromebooks.
Ease of Use
Chromebooks unlike Windows or Apple laptops are very low maintenance. They are regularly updated by Google, which is done in the background and takes minutes to install. This includes added features and more importantly security updates. With a 15 second boot-up time after powering off your Chromebook, you can get your work done without delay.
Like your mobile phone, you click the App icon for the app you want to use and away you go. There's the familiar Chrome icon which will open Google Chrome where you will spend most of your time.
You can also use YouTube, Spotify, Netflix, Instagram etc.
And the best thing about a Chromebook which makes it brilliant for the non-tech savvy out there is that it backs everything up to the cloud for you. What does that mean? It means that if your laptop was stolen or destroyed by fire or water you will have everything saved in Googles Cloud. So if you go to a shop and buy a new Chromebook, all your settings, files etc. will download exactly how you had it on your old Chromebook. This is all done as standard with Chromebooks, You don't have to do anything. All those important business documents and family photos are constantly being backed up and protected.
Getting Work Done.
You can download Microsoft Word and Excel or you can use Google own versions which is Google Docs and Google Sheets. Unless you are doing crazy things with formulas in Microsoft Excel I highly recommend switching to Google Sheets and Google Docs. It all works seamlessly on a Chromebook and will open Microsoft Word documents without any issues. You can also work on the document at the same time as someone else using the sharing facility in Google. This is handy if you and colleague are needing to update the same document and it saves you saving the file and sending it via email every time.
Graphic design also isn't an issue, With great free graphic design software such as Canva and Gravit Designer, you can create professional graphics with ease. Both programmes come with templates with pre-made designs that you can use for social media etc. with Canva being better for those who are less adventurous. I would highly recommend these programmes no matter what computer you are using! Both can be used straight within your browser!
Unlike windows computers, security is all managed by Google and isn't something to be concerned about. Running a small business, you will have important documents etc. that you don't want others to see. With a Chromebook, there's no need to worry about installing and paying for any anti-virus software to protect your computer. Each time you use an app or web page it is in its own container, so if something malicious does pop up you don't have to worry about it infecting anything else on your computer. Google constantly checks itself on every bootup and if it does come across anything suspicious it will repair itself. Sorted.
There is no malware (Definition: Software that is specifically designed to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorised access to a computer system) to worry about unlike PCs and Apple Mac's. Apple Mac's which use to be malware free is now being targeted due to their popularity.
Apple Mac's are nice looking computers but do you really want to be spending over £1,000 on something that a £100 computer can just do the same. Unless you do extensive graphic design or video editing, I would highly recommend choosing a Chromebook as your next computer.Price start for £90 second hand
- NO hassle computing
- Everything is backed up on a daily basis
- Easily replaced
If you want me to recommend a suitable Chromebook for your needs just give me a shout on Twitter! Always happy to help!