Why your next laptop may be an Android

Android isn't just for phones and tablets. Here's why you should consider it for a laptop as well.

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If you're looking for the best combination of price, power, and simplicity, your next laptop may not be a Windows PC or a Mac. Instead, consider an Android laptop, which offers portability, low price, and plenty of apps.

For those who work for themselves, or are looking to make their technology budget stretch far while getting top productivity, Android could be ideal. It's now being used in everything from tablets to tablet/laptop combos, to laptops, and even desktops. Most people know it's great for phones and tablets, but it is surprisingly well suited to laptops as well. That's why HP and Lenovo have committed to producing Android laptops. Expect other PC makers to follow suit.

Consider the HP SlateBook x2. It's a dual tablets/laptop with a detachable keyboard, and a 10.1-inch 1080p display. To extend battery life, it's got two batteries, one in the tablet, and another it its keyboard dock. And with a quad-core processor, it's no laggard. At $480, it's budget-priced.

Specs for the upcoming Lenovo IdeaPad A10 Android laptop were recently leaked. No price was available, but the specs show it's likely to be a budget device as well, with an Arm quad-core 1.6GHz processor, 1GB or 2GB of RAM, and 16GB or 32GB of storage. Also included will be a 0.3 megapixel camera, a microSD card slot and an HDMI port.

Android has plenty of productivity and other apps, so these laptops aren't be mere toys. Although Microsoft Office isn't available for them, they'll run Google's free Quickoffice suite, as well as Google Docs, and many other free suites.

If you're considering an Android laptop, but are worried that Android might not do the job, you can essentially give the mobile OS a tryout on an existing Windows PC. Download YouWave, which lets you run Android on a Windows machine. If you're happy with what you see, an Android laptop might be in your future.

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