Best Business Laptop July 2023

The Best Australian Business Laptops for Work and Play (April 2024, Major Update)

We publish several, on-going, monthly, laptop group tests here at High Performance Laptops. However, the Best Business Laptop feature has always had issues. In the past, we’ve focused upon any laptop that can be used for work by small and medium businesses (SMBs) and Enterprise users but, in Australia, companies often eschew business-designated notebooks for high quality consumer models and so, that’s what we’ve listed. But, not any more.

We’ve been talking to laptop vendors and asked what core features are required for a business laptop to be a business laptop. The results were surprisingly consistent and so we’re going to have a primary list of laptops that meet our new, stringent criteria plus additional models for those workers who require something more than the cookie-cutter template that we’re about to define. We’ll also be listing plenty of models for those who want a laptop for both work and play – whatever that may look like.

Note, we’ve had to remove links from prices because of Google reasons.

What’s the difference between a business laptop and a normal laptop?

Our top choices for the best business laptop in 2024 will, from now on, all meet the following criteria (unless otherwise noted):

14-inch screen – This is considered the optimal size by IT managers, but we’re not going to be too harsh on laptops that have similarly-sized chassis and 15-to-16-inch screens.

Weighs under 1.8KG – Some vendors told us that their weight limit was lower, but we’re going by our ultraportable cut-off and we’re going to be strict by it. We’ll mention it when bulky power supply and cables might be an issue.

All-day battery life – We expect our business laptops to run our PCMark 10 Modern Office battery test (and lately, the Procyon Microsoft Office-based battery life benchmark) for at least eight hours.

Matte (non-glossy) screen – Eye strain and fatigue can seriously impact upon a worker’s productivity and adding reflections from a glossy screen to the mix can significantly make this worse. Some workers will want glossy touchscreens and notebooks with the vibrant colours and contrast associated with OLED displays but those will now be bumped down our list.

Legacy ports – Giving out laptops that only have USB-C ports came up as a major no no in our discussions. Users regularly need to connect directly to peripherals like mice, keyboards, monitors and projectors when travelling between locations. IT managers hate dongles as much as users because they get lost. So, while we’re aware that some (very few) super-fancy offices have embraced a USB-C only utopia, where one cable fits all, even those workers will need to visit other sites and connect to projectors and other hot desks occasionally and they’ll need legacy ports.

High quality web conferencing – In a world of hybrid work, this is a no-brainer. Fortunately, even the most gamiest gaming laptops have realised that they can’t ignore this any more. Some combinations of webcam and microphone(s) are certainly better than others. Plus, new Ai-processors are capable of improving performance (albeit for only a slight, power-efficiency gain). So long as the webcam and mics are functional to a professional degree, they’re allowed in.

Build quality – A source of contention has been that regular laptops don’t (usually) undergo the torture testing that their business-grade counterparts do. However, when a consumer-grade laptop has a military-grade MIL-STD-810 rating (or similar) we can’t punish it for not being tough enough. Still, for a business laptop to top our new charts, it will have to demonstrate some formal reliability promises in this regard.

On-device security – We don’t expect all business laptops to have Enterprise-grade smart-card readers but they do need to have at least a Windows Hello fingerprint or face recognition technology.

Windows Professional – It might seem obvious, but this demotes a bunch of cheap-and-cheerful, work-oriented ‘productivity’ laptops.

Ability to connect to external monitors – And preferably two of them. This is slightly similar to the legacy ports issue. While we’re not expecting to see ancient VGA ports anymore, HDMI, DisplayPort (even if it’s miniDP or via USB-C) and USB-C options are important.

Product consistency – Many businesses run ancient and bespoke software and subsequently delay Operating System updates for years in case they break something. This demand for consistency is echoed in hardware where businesses want as few, well-tested laptop SKUs on their network as possible. If a model changes every few months (which is common with consumer laptops), new models will bring with them new hardware with new drivers and new conflict-related problems. The top models on this list will either be updated infrequently or come with vendor guarantees for consistent hardware-software environments.

Service Level Agreements – For many SMB and Enterprise buyers, the choices will be influenced by partnerships with Managed Service Providers who will usually have deals with specific laptop vendors. They will then lease the laptops to your workforce for a monthly fee that includes support, product refresh in three-or-four year cycles and secure disposal. This moves expenditure from being a high, up-front Capital Expense (CapEx) to a predictable, easily-managed, monthly Operating Expense (OpEx). The business laptops in our final, primary list are all offered with potential fleet management by MSPs.

Other factors include: Intel-based Wi-Fi was considered important due to its encryption (i.e. not Killer networking); version 6 (and above) Wi-Fi for its traffic management; Thunderbolt for charging was cited as very important by some, but not by others; ostentatious looks is a factor, but one that can be overlooked if it involves simply deactivating lights; 32GB (or more) of RAM is becoming more-frequently recommended because many workers have many Chrome tabs and Microsoft Teams open – which are memory vampires – but this is easily addressed through upgrades.

Neural Processing Units are not being regarded as important by some and yet and some experts say they represent potential security threats. At present, their primary benefit appears to be saving about 5 per cent power draw on background blur when web conferencing.

We’re also not deeming enterprise-grade security options, like Intel vPro, as imperative because, in Australia, hardly anyone uses them. We’ll certainly flag when they’re available but, for the most part, few buyers will need them.

All of the above factors means that our main list is very short indeed. Vendors tend not to provide business laptops for review, but we’ll be working with them to get more. For the moment, we’ll have our primary list and then other recommendations for those who require something a little different.

Top 10 Best Business Laptops (Australia, April 2024)

The following business laptops are all suitable for SMBs, MSPs, government and the enterprise.

1= HP Elite Dragonfly G4

Price: $4,075 | A gorgeous, ultraportable, enterprise-grade notebook. But, it’s expensive

HP Dragonfly Best Business Laptop 2024
HP Elite Dragonfly G4.

We used many of the laptops on this list as our daily drivers but the 14-inch HP Dragonfly was one that was particularly hard to say goodbye to. It’s a bona fide business laptop that’s even got a privacy-optimised ‘HP Sure View’ screen to stop people side-eyeing what you’re looking at.

HP Wolf Security is there to keep both workers and organisations secure and it has a Windows Hello-compatible fingerprint reader and webcam. The latter is a particularly impressive, high resolution 1,440p, model which works well with the excellent microphone array and speakers. It’s impressively built, only weighs 1.25KG and has a battery that lasts for 18 hours. These facets helped the Dragonfly become a former Best Portable Laptop winner, too.

There are a couple of minor caveats, mind. The business-focused screen impacts upon its multimedia prowess and the U-series Intel processor won’t do much beyond general office work. But, then, this is a business laptop, so we’re not docking points for that!

The price is high for individuals but MSPs will get it much cheaper and lease it to the target market which is probably made up of executives. Being HP, it should be widely available for lease so, if you’re an senior office worker, ask IT for one of these.

Read our HP Elite Dragonfly G4 review.

1= Venom BlackBook Zero 14 Phantom

Price: $3,699 | Australia’s own global laptop brand has a winning business laptop

Venom BlackBook Zero 14 Phantom Best Business Laptop 2024
Venom BlackBook Zero 14 Phantom.

We were pleased to see Venom back with another 14-inch BlackBook. The company does things a little differently by planning a spec that will remain consistent for the next three years and using parts that it deems high-quality enough to enable it to buy back the laptop for a guaranteed $500 up to seven years down the line! Now, we’ve been impressed with HP’s green credentials, but even it doesn’t complete the laptop life-cycle loop by using its users as suppliers of hardware to use in refreshed models down the line. Using Venom can potentially help your company’s own sustainability-based bottom line.

The chassis is a high-quality, CNC-milled, magnesium alloy, which is a big reason why Venom wants it back later. It weighs just 1.22KG and, usefully, comes with two, small chargers, so you can leave one neatly wired in at a desk while carrying the other around.

It also has a maximum-sized, 99.9Wh battery which ran our PCMark Office Productivity tests for a decent 13 hours and 22 minutes and our new, UL Procyon Microsoft Office Productivity benchmark for 15 hours and 45 minutes – that’s almost two days. The BlackBook Zero 14 also uses one of Intel’s Performance core processors and is a major proponent of requiring lots of RAM.

While other business laptops offer poor ergonomics, we were impressed by the multimedia performance of the screen and speakers on offer.

If you’re buying one individually, there are plenty of configurable SKUs available, ranging from $2,099 to $6,299 for a fully tricked-out model. You can buy direct from Venom’s website or via its MSP partners which are located globally.

Read our Venom BlackBook Zero 14 Phantom review

3. Lenovo ThinkPad Z13

Price: $1,899 | Power, performance, portability and price tag: The AMD-based Z13 is very attractive

The Lenovo ThinkPad Z13 was a Number 1 business laptop. It's still great in April 24 in Australia.
Lenovo ThinkPad Z13.

Some office workers need a bit more grunt while retaining the best business features and Lenovo’s ThinkPad Z13 ticks almost all the boxes. It’s solidly built, weighs just 1.26KG, is only 14mm thick and has an almost-12-hour battery life. However, it’s worth noting that the the 1,920 x 1,200-resolution screen is slightly under the ‘ideal’ 14-inch threshold at 13.3-inches.

Meanwhile, the AMD processor punches harder than many other business laptops, especially with its integrated 3D performance, which will suit those who need to perform occasional rendering and encoding tasks. There’s also a Windows Hello-supporting webcam and a fingerprint reader.

April 2024 update: Our review spec is no longer available but the newer, refreshed models come in at a similar cost. It’s also on sale at almost half the price.

Read our Lenovo ThinkPad Z13 review.

4. Acer TravelMate P4 16

Price: $2,052 | A brilliant, ultraportable, 16-inch business laptop – but with availability issues

Acer TravelMate P4 R16 - Australian Best Business Laptop April 2024.
Acer TravelMate P4 16.

The Acer TravelMate P4 16 is an excellent, ultraportable, business laptop and another that’s great for people who want more security features (and much-better battery life) than many regular, consumer notebooks. It’s got both a Windows Hello-compatible fingerprint reader and compatible (Full HD) webcam. The eco-friendly, 16-inch chassis only weighs 1.6KG and it’s got a massive, 18-hour battery life.

The speakers are the only weak point in terms of physical foibles. However, the larger issue is, once again with Acer, availability. We’ve been told that MSPs can procure and support these models but, otherwise, you’re looking at Amazon and in the US to buy them individually. Hopefully, local, Australian availability will improve sooner rather than later as this is a seriously attractive, ultraportable, business laptop that will suit many travelling workers at any pay grade.

Read our Acer TravelMate P4 16 review.

5. HP Elitebook X360 1040 G9

Price: $2,849 | A fantastic ultraportable business laptop with Enterprise-grade security

HP Elitebook X360 1040 G9 - Australian Enterprise Laptop April 2024.
HP Elitebook X360 1040 G9.

HP’s Elitebook is its top-tier, best business laptop and it’s absolutely packed with security features. Like the SMB-friendly Envy, it doubles as a convertible tablet but it also features a 5G microSIM slot for WAN-based internet access.

Better-than-normal security features include HP Wolf Security technology and a smart card reader – making it the best business laptop for security-obsessed Enterprise and vertical markets.

It is relatively light at 1.48KG and it has an almost-11-hour battery life. It’s risen in price in April, but the MSPs that will be procuring it, will get heavy discounts for businesses.

Read our HP Elitebook X360 1040 G9 review.

6. Asus Expertbook B5

Price: $2,699 | An impressively light, 16-inch, business laptop

Asus Expertbook B5. Asus' business laptop range.
Asus Expertbook B5.

Asus’ Expertbook B5 feels incredibly light for a wide, 16-inch business laptop (1.55KG). If you need a big OLED screen that’s portable, this is well worth considering – especially as the OLED screen has a semi-gloss coating that doesn’t act as much like a mirror. It’s got a Windows Hello-compatible fingerprint reader and webcam (which is an HD model) and the latter also has a physical privacy slide. It also has a 10+ hour battery life and a great keyboard.

If you can live with a somewhat-wobbly screen (the hinge is still strong) and a (surprising for Asus) mediocre webcam, it’s a great choice for a business notebook.

In April the price of this line of Asus’ business laptops is rather high, but you can buy multiple, refreshed SKUs at different prices.

Read our Asus Expertbook B5 review.

7. Dynabook Portégé X40L-K

Price: $1,578 | A solidly-built, corporate-blue, convertible alternative to a world of grey

Dynabook Portégé X40L-K  - Australian Best Business Laptop April 2024.
Dynabook Portégé X40L-K.

The 14-inch Dynabook Portégé X-40L represents decent value for a laptop with such high build quality, performance and portability. However, it’s in a crowded segment, made more competitive by the low product refresh cycle of ultraportable business laptops. This means there are many other models that offer similar (or better) features at better price points [update – at least at launch. Now that the Dynabook has been around for a while, it’s plummeted in price and become one of the cheapest]. Still, its smooth, metallic blue livery offers something different in terms of corporate-friendly looks.

It has an eye-health-conscious, 1,920 x 1,200 touchscreen with a matte finish and, above that, there’s an HD webcam. Despite the robust, military-spec-rated (MIL-STD-810H), 18mm metal chassis, it weighs only 1.48KG and feels borderline indestructible. It ran our PCMark Battery Test for 11 hours and 10 minutes. Just make make sure you keep a cloth nearby as it’s quite the fingerprint magnet!

Read our Dynabook Portégé X40L-K review.

Great consumer laptops for work and play

As we mentioned above, we’ll be adding more models to our straight-business laptop list sooner rather than later. However, many people will want laptops for work and play – whether it’s for themselves or as part of an employee-based BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) scheme. These will have screens and components that facilitate multimedia (and potentially gaming) and we’ve a large selection below to suit all combinations. Don’t forget to check out the Venom above, though, as it, too, is a great crossover laptop.

Asus Vivobook S 14

Price: $1,099 | An excellent, multimedia laptop at a low price

Asus Vivobook S 14.
Asus Vivobook S 14.

The 14-inch Asus Vivobook S 14 is a very good, general-purpose laptop. It might not stand-out in one (physical) area, but it has few weak points and offers a well-rounded combination of ergonomics, features and performance in addition to value.

The 1.4KG workhorse is available with up-to Core-i9 Intel processors and our review unit had a Windows Hello-compatible fingerprint reader, webcam privacy shutter and a battery that lasted almost 16 hours. The decent screen has a matte finish and a 1,920 x 1,200 resolution and the speakers offer reasonable fidelity. It’s a great business laptop for those who want to work and watch multimedia on a budget. Just remember that it’s not a gaming laptop.

Read our Asus Vivobook S 14 review.

Asus Zenbook 14 OLED

Price: $2,099 | This high-quality, AMD-powered laptop almost has it all

Asus Zenbook 14 - Best Aussie Business Laptop April 2024.
Asus Zenbook 14 OLED.

Asus’ Zenbook 14s are knocking it out of the park at the moment and there’s much to like about this OLED-sporting, 14-inch workhorse. The AMD Ryzen 7 7730U processor is relatively powerful – especially for a 1.4KG ultraportable – and it has a battery life of more-than 17 hours. There’s plenty of connectivity and the OLED screen has a faster-than-usual 90Hz refresh rate (not that you can play many games on it, but that’s still quick).

While it costs substantially more than the lesser Vivobook, it’s got more quality in every area and is still good value when compared to other business laptops.

Read our Asus Zenbook 14 OLED review.

Lenovo Yoga Pro 7i (8th Gen)

Price: $2,497 | An almost flawless, ultraportable, Creator-friendly notebook that even plays games

Lenovo Yoga Pro 7i - Best Business Laptop in Australia April 2024.
The Lenovo Yoga Pro 7i won our Best Business Laptop award on 9 November 2023.

We’ve been treating Lenovo’s Yoga range like business laptops for some time now, but they’re actually part of the consumer line. The Pro 7i is a laptop that’s designed for potentially professional Creators but is also good for office work too (it can also play some games).

The 14.5-inch, 19mm-thick laptop only weighs one-and-a-half kilos and it has a 13-hour battery life. Its magnesium chassis is solid and feels luxurious.

The speakers are excellent. Its high-resolution, 3,072 x 1,920, matte screen is excellent for multimedia, but its quick, 120Hz refresh rate means it can also display low-end, fast-and-frantic, casual-and-competitive games which are powered by a 6GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 GPU.

Its Full HD webcam supports Windows Hello facial-recognition login. It’a previous winner of our Best Business Laptop award and it will be very attractive to anyone who wants a do-it-all laptop for work and play.

Read our Lenovo Yoga Pro 7i (8th Gen) review.

Lenovo Yoga 7i (8th Gen)

Price: $2,367 | A 16-inch, convertible tablet with long battery life. A former Number 1 Business Laptop

Lenovo Yoga 7i - a former top, Australian Business Notebook. Still great in April 2024
The Lenovo Yoga 7i became our Best Business Laptop on 3 May 2023.

Our review unit of the Lenovo Yoga 7i was a 16-inch, 2-in-1, convertible tablet with a beefy 13th-Gen, Core i7, Intel processing chip inside. The non-Pro moniker means that there’s no discreet graphics processor and so it’s not a games machine in its spare time.

The glossy, IPS screen has a high, 2,560 x 1,600 resolution and works well with the included stylus when folded all the way round on itself to become a tablet.

It ran our PCMark 10 battery-life test for 18 hours – that’s two days out of the office! The robust chassis is military-spec, MIL-STD-810H rated.

It should satisfy the business requirements of many SMB, Enterprise and vertical buyers who want a convertible tablet – despite the glossy screen. Our only gripe is the slightly firm keyboard.

Note too that it weighs a bit more than other business laptops – at 2KG – but this is offset somewhat by the phone-like, USB-C charger which only adds 174g to the mix (and can be used for your phone – if compatible).

Read our Lenovo Yoga 7i (8th Gen) review.

HP Pavilion X360 14

Price: $1,399 | A cheap-and-cheerful, work-and-play laptop for undemanding users

HP Pavilion X360 14 - Best Australian Business Laptop April 2024.
HP Pavilion X360 14.

It doesn’t excel in many places but, as business-friendly, workhorse laptops go, the HP Pavilion X360 14 has got a lot to offer. The Intel Core i5 processor is reasonably powerful and the small, 256GB hard drive is functional for office tasks. It’s easy to cart around owing to its 1.41KG weight and its battery lasted 9-hours-and-10-minutes in our PCMark 10 test.

It’s in a crowded, work-and-play, business laptop market, but it’s certainly worth considering if you’re on a tight budget and many MSPs will likely be able to get it even cheaper. There aren’t any additional security options to speak of but, beyond that, it’s a decent laptop that you can do work on. April update – Every time we check the price of this business laptop, it changes by about $300. It’s often available for under $1,100.

Read our HP Pavilion X360 14 review.

MSI Stealth 16 Studio

Price: $3,377 | A 16-inch, gamer-friendly, former Best Creator Laptop and former Best Business Laptop

MSI Stealth 16 Studio - A former Best Business Laptop in Australia in April 2024
The MSI Stealth 16 Studio won our Best Business Laptop award on 30 January 2024.

The 16-inch MSI Stealth 16 Studio might not be the first thing that springs to your mind as a business laptop offering but, while it’s a professional tool that focuses upon Creators and designers, it’s myriad benefits will suit anyone who wants a laptop for work.

Before we delve into the specs, it’s also worth noting that it appeared with a twin – the hugely desirable MSI Stealth 16 Mercedes AMG Motorsport – which offers similar specs and a bunch of limited-edition accoutrements. So, check that out if you want something that will really impress your coleagues.

The Studio arrived with with a powerful Intel Core i7-13700H CPU; Nvidia RTX 4070 graphics for gaming 3D rendering tasks; a UHD, colour-accurate, fast screen for gaming to ensure that fast-moving objects are rendered clearly; great speakers for watching and listening to multimedia web-conferencing; and a bunch of decent security options like a webcam privacy shutter and Windows Hello fingerprint reader and facial-recognition log-in.

It also has a large battery that lasts almost 10 hours and it weighs just 2KG (we’re looking the other way as that’s still low for a 16-inch notebook with gamer-oriented internals). Many people need a laptop for both work and play – and people treat their work tools better if they rely upon them for downtime too – and this makes the MSI Stealth 16 Studio something that, at least individuals, should strongly consider when choosing their ideal business laptop. Oh, and it’s available for more than $600 off in April!

Read our MSI Stealth 16 Studio review.

MSI Stealth 14 AI Studio

Price: $3,999 | MSI’s 14th-Gen Creator laptop is great for multimedia and high-performance tasks

MSI Stealth 14 Ai Studio A1V.
MSI Stealth 14 Ai Studio A1V.

The latest update to MSI’s 14-inch Stealth 14 Creator laptop has a Windows HDR-compatible, high-resolution (2,880 x 1,800) glossy OLED screen which is colour accurate, offers amazing vibrancy and contrast and, with its 120Hz refresh rate, is also good for gaming.

This, matched with excellent ergonomics and features makes it highly desirable on its own, but it also has Intel’s new NPU-sporting ‘Meteor Lake’ 14th-Gen Core Ultra 9 185H processor and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 GPU, so it’s powerful too.

It’s got four, amazing-sounding speakers has cutting-edge Wi-Fi 7 for wireless UHD video work, it weighs 1.64KG and has a magnesium-aluminium alloy chassis that should easily survive life on the road. There’s just the major caveat in that it’s got a 6-hour battery life, so you’ll need to carry the large, 750g charger around with this business laptop.

Read our MSI Stealth 14 AI Studio review

Acer Swift Edge 16

Price: $1,729 | A 16-inch triumph of engineering, but it still has availability issues

Acer Swift Edge 16 - Best Aussie Business Notebook February 2024.
Acer Swift Edge 16.

Acer’s Swift Edge 16 is a 16-inch laptop that only weighs 1.24KG and is 15mm thick. Despite that, it looks corporate; has a 9-hour battery life; is built well enough to survive life on the road; has a superb, UHD, glossy, OLED, HDR screen; and has excellent ergonomics.

It also uses AMD’s A.I. processor – the first we’ve seen on an x86 (i.e. not Apple) laptop. This doesn’t just provide extra power to the Edge 16, it enhances the performance (and background blurring) of the UHD webcam and does an excellent job of cutting out loud, background noise when webconferencing. An outstanding business laptop (or any laptop for that matter). Just note that, in April, it’s still very difficult to find one in the stores, so you’ll either have to import it from America or ask your company’s MSP. Also note that, as we went to press, its price just plummeted by over $500.

Read our Acer Swift Edge 16 review.

Lenovo Legion Pro 5i (Gen 8)

Price: $4,419 | A great gaming laptop that wears a suit and tie

Lenovo Legion 5i Pro - Best Business Laptop April 2024 (Australia).
Lenovo Legion Pro 5i.

When we first reviewed the Gen 8 Legion Pro 5i, we viewed it more as a gaming laptop. However, it’s the epitome of a Clark-Kent-Superman machine. It looks corporate in almost every way and yet it’s also one of the best gaming laptops around.

While we’re not encouraging corporate procurement types to furnish their workforces with gaming machines, many of the best hybrid-work-oriented business laptops double as personal laptops as people take more care of them. There are also workloads that require a hefty GPU – like rendering, code-compiling, CAD and other power-user applications.

The Legion Pro 5i has an excellent 16-inch, matte, 240Hz, 2,560 x 1,600, IPS display, a Full HD webcam and only its speakers let the ergonomics down.

Just note that it’s not light at 2.56KG and the battery life is poor at only 5 hours. The power brick and cables also add another 1KG to the bulk. It can fast-charge to 80 per cent in 30 minutes but there’s no getting away from the fact it’s heavy and not very portable. Still, if you work hard and play hard, this should be on your shortlist.

Read our Lenovo Legion Pro 5i (Gen 8) review.

Asus Vivobook Pro 15 OLED

Price: $1,178 | It’s long in the tooth, but it’s still attractive and the price has tumbled

asus vivobook pro 15 oled - Australian Best Business Laptop February 2024.

The 15-inch, OLED-sporting, AMD-based Asus Vivobook Pro 15 OLED laptop is one that we haven’t thought about for a while. However, our overhauled group test criteria, which favours price more than before, helped bring it back to the fore.

It’s another winner from Asus that’s still relevant today despite being launched in 2022. Harvey Norman is now selling it for just over a grand meaning that if you need more of a casual computer than a business laptop – one that has a good, OLED screen for general work – and you don’t mind eschewing additional security credentials – it’s great for general work tasks.

Read our Asus Vivobook Pro 15 OLED review.

Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED

Price: $2,999 | Our Best Portable Laptop is also great for road warriors and mobile workers

Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED - Best portable Business Laptop in Australia in April 2024.
The Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED remains our Best Portable Laptop in April 2024.

Yet another winning business-like laptop from Asus. It’s built of a whole, new material called ceramic aluminium which is apparently as eco-friendly as it gets. And yet, it’s also one of the toughest notebooks we’ve ever seen. As if that’s not enough, it only weighs 1KG and is 1cm thick. It also has a battery that lasts 16 hours 15 minutes! The 13th-Gen Intel Core i7-1355U is no slouch either.

The 13.3-inch screen is a glossy, high resolution 2,880 x 1,800 OLED affair which will or won’t suit different workers’ needs. Above it, the Full HD webcam supports Windows Hello facial recognition. This beauty should be near the top of anyone who wants an ultraportable business laptop.

Read our Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED review.

Acer Swift Go 14

Price: $1,899 | Acer’s latest Go is a desirable, all-round, workhorse in a portable package

Acer Swift Go 14 - Australian Best Business Laptop April 2024.
Acer Swift Go 14.

It’s not quite as super-human as its Edge 16 sibling (above), but the 1.33KG, 14-inch Acer Swift Go 14 is still very attractive for casual workers who mainly want a laptop that is classy, portable and pretty powerful. It’s a 14-inch ultraportable with an OLED screen, a punchy 13th-Gen Intel processor, a 1.33KG chassis plus, it has an 11+ hour battery life and the webcam is a high-resolution, 1440p unit.

It’s a joy to use, robustly built and was our personal workhorse for a long time. Just note the lack of security features. There are plenty of variants with different internals and they start from around $1,299. All casual workers should be able to find a model they like.

Read our Acer Swift Go 14 review.

MSI Modern 14 C13M

Price: $949 | We’ve criticised it in the past, but MSI’s super-cheap Modern is a work-friendly bargain

MSI Modern 14 C13M  - Best Business Notebook April 2024. Photo from an Australian beach.
MSI Modern 14 C13M.

The 14-inch Modern 14 C13M comes from MSI’s business-oriented, productivity range. As we’ve noted about MSI’s Modern business laptops in the past, the C13M is (once again) a capable, general-purpose, portable computer that doesn’t stray far from the ordinary.

The Full HD, matte screen is adequate, the 13th-Gen Core i5 Intel processor is fine for most office tasks and undemanding users who need a fully-functional laptop won’t have many issues.

Above the screen, there’s an HD webcam. The small battery managed to power the 1.45KG machine for an impressive 10 hours. Just note that there aren’t many built-in security features. Nonetheless, at this price, it’s a bargain and it was a worthy winner of our Great Value Laptop award.

Read our MSI Modern 14 C13M review.

HP Envy X360 2-in-1

Price: $2,078 | HP’s ultraportable, convertible tablet is a former Best Business notebook

HP Envy x360 best business laptop in 2024 in Australia.
The HP Envy x360 2-in-1 won its first awards back in December 2022.

The HP Envy should be high up the list of anyone choosing a business laptop for many different industries. It’s technically from HP’s consumer range but has got impressive business credentials that will see it thrive, both in an office environment and on the road. It’s also designed with Creators in mind.

The 13.3-inch screen is great – albeit glossy – and it folds ‘360-degrees’ to transform into a tablet – replete with stylus. It’s got some very nifty web-conferencing software, connectivity is decent and it’s not too slow. Did we mention that it’s solidly built, weighs just 1.4KG and has a battery life of 19.5 hours? It’s also won our Best Portable Laptop award… in the past.

The fact it’s still relevant is testament to how good it is. The fact that it’s actually available is enormously important in the world of work laptops as consistency of availability is critical in this area. Ultimately, it’s a fantastic portable workhorse for anyone who needs to work on the move.

Read our HP Envy X360 review.

Acer Swift Go 16

Price: $1,999 | The Go 16 is a good-value 16-inch, portable, business-like laptop and more than just a larger Go 14

Acer Swift Go 16 - Australian Best Business Laptop April 2024.
Acer Swift Go 16.

This 16-inch, business-like laptop is just 15mm thick and weighs only 1.64KG yet its robust chassis is well-suited to road-warrior workers. It’s got very good ergonomics, including a fast OLED screen and it’s more portable than many other thin-and-light laptops. It has a 9 hour 20 minute battery life, too.

It’s got a Windows-Hello-compatible fingerprint reader for extra security and an excellent UHD webcam and microphone combination for web-conferencing. While it’s not formally a business laptop, it’s very close to being a bona fide model.

Read our Acer Swift Go 16 review.

MSI Prestige 14 Evo

Price: $1,499 | A premium, highly portable laptop that’s got genuine business chops

The MSI Prestige 14 can be the best business laptop if you want to look stylish or occasionally do gaming.
Even the city-scape vents on the posterior of the Prestige posit its potential pursuits.

We’ve been massive fans of MSI’s Prestige range for a while. It’s a business notebook that can be purchased in colours like Hot Pink and can even squeeze-in secret, gaming-and-creator-friendly graphics chips while remaining office friendly. It supports both Windows Hello webcam and fingerprint log-in.

We recently saw the latest, 13th-Gen, 13-inch, 18mm-thick variant at the unveiling of the new MSI Business laptops and were very impressed.

As with all best business laptops, there are many different SKUs to choose from – from powerful, expensive options to low-powered, ultraportable, wallet-friendly alternatives. Whatever you choose, this premium business notebook will impress you.

Read our MSI Prestige 14 Evo review.

Dell Inspiron 14

Price: $1,549 | The Big Mac of business-like laptops

Dell Inspiron 14 - A top business laptop for workers.
Dell Inspiron 14.

If you wanted a safe option to recommend to someone who doesn’t know very much about laptops – and who you know didn’t want to do much more beyond trivial office-like tasks – then Dell’s Inspiron line would be something to put to the top of the list. If you were to compare business laptops to food, then the Dell Inspiron 14 5420 is arguably the Big Mac. There are plenty of alternatives, but this arguably represents the baseline of acceptable quality and value in the world of work-designated laptops.

Variants with latest-gen processors are now appearing but we don’t expect major differences to an Inspiron business laptop blueprint that’s been consistent for years. It won’t suit everyone, but it’s the epitome of mid-range quality and that’s especially important when you need a reliable workhorse.

Read our Dell Inspiron 14 review.

Dell XPS 13

Price: $2,798 | A business-grade, ultraportable stalwart that some execs and road warriors love

Dell XPS 13  - A stalwart Aussie Best Business Laptop (in April 2024).
Dell XPS 13.

We were asked to post our last review of the Dell XPS 13 on Smarthouse but we nonetheless tested it using High Performance Laptops’ in-depth methodology. It’s an industry-stalwart business laptop that impresses casual users and top executives alike, thanks to its raw, aluminium-appearance.

However, its paltry, two, Thunderbolt 4 ports (one of which is used by the power supply) are stingy and impractical in our book. The screen is also only good for office work rather than multimedia – but that’s less of a criticism here.

Nonetheless, there’s much to like, especially in terms of ergonomics and portability. It weighs just 1.16KG and has a battery that ran our PCMark Modern Office test for an impressive 14 hours and 13 minutes. It’s dropped in price and many businesses will already have lease agreements with MSPs that supply workers with Dells.

Read our Dell XPS 13 review.

Microsoft Surface Pro 9

Price: $2,949 (Plus $430 for Signature Keyboard with Slim Pen 2) | Thin and desirable tablet, but expensive

Microsoft Surface Pro 9. The business convertible laptop range from MS.
Microsoft Surface Pro 9.

The Microsoft Surface Pro 9 is designed for corporates who want a hybrid, mobile workforce to have a mobile tool that’s good for office work; reliable when out and about and good for web-conferencing when away from a desk. In these regards it’s a great success: it’s so easy to chuck in a bag and whip it out to start working on.

However, it’s expensive compared to rival business laptops and, having to pay an additional $430 for the keyboard and stylus, sticks in the craw, somewhat. It also has a long footprint which makes it difficult to actually rest on your lap. Still, it’s so easy to rip-off the keyboard and use as a tablet that it’s arguably the best convertible on the market. Many business laptop buyers will be getting a very different price via their company’s MSP, too.

Read our Microsoft Surface Pro 9 review.

Dell XPS 13 Plus

Price: $2,998 | An exec-friendly, souped-up version of the popular, business-like, ultraportable XPS 13

Dell XPS 13 Plus  - Australian Best Business Laptop April 2024.
Dell XPS 13 Plus.

The Dell XPS consumer laptop range is very popular with executives at companies where the common-or-garden workers get standard Dell business laptops. The 13-inch XPS 13 Plus is tiny and has a stunning OLED screen with Windows-friendly HDR. It’s partnered by an amazing quad-speaker system and yet weighs only 1.27KG. However, it does get a little warm (downright hot under heavy load) and the high-concept trackpad is difficult to use. It’s now available with latest-Gen Intel processors.

Read our Dell XPS 13 Plus review.

MSI Vector GP77

Price: $2,899 | A monster games machine that can hide inside an office

MSI Vector GP77  - Australian Best Business Laptop April 2024.
MSI Vector GP77.

The massive 17-inch MSI Vector GP77 follows in the footsteps of Acer’s Triton and Lenovo’s Legion Pro 5i laptops in that it’s a business laptop that can suit both office workers and gamers alike. It looks discreet and yet cool when the lights are off but the per-key RGB keyboard contrasts nicely with it when it’s turned on.

Inside our review unit was an Nvidia 4060 and an Intel i7-13700H but more-powerful versions are available. In April it’s on sale for $800 off!

Still, note the lack of fingerprint reader and facial recognition security features. Plus, remember that this 17-inch monster weighs over 2.8KG.

Read our MSI Vector GP77 review.

Gigabyte Aero 14 OLED

Price: $2,299 | A wannabe unicorn laptop that tries to excel at everything

Gigabyte Aero 14 OLED - Australian Best Business Laptop February 2024.
Gigabyte Aero 14 OLED.

There’s much to like in this office-friendly, business-like ultraportable. It weighs just 1.47KG and has a great, Full HD webcam. The battery only lasted seven and a quarter hours, but then the Aero 14 does have integrated Nvidia RTX 4050 graphics (they’re reduced in power, though) for some gaming prowess.

The OLED screen is quick and it also supports the entire DCI-P3 colour space which will please designers. That’s in addition to offering eye-strain-reducing credentials. It does everything you want from a business laptop, but the battery life is our primary concern.

Read our Gigabyte Aero 14 OLED review.

HP Spectre Foldable 17

Price: $8,499 | A desirable and functional multi-faceted convertible… for travelling executives

HP Spectre Foldable 17 - Australian Best Business Laptop February 2024.
HP Spectre Foldable 17.

HP’s ‘Spectre Foldable 17’ folding, convertible, OLED tablet feels like a regular laptop when its keyboard is placed upon its lower half. You can also elongate the screen by dragging it back towards you. Meanwhile, unfolding it can turn it into a tablet or even a desktop (via its built-in stand). In many ways, it’s the finished version of the Asus Zenbook 17 Fold which was the beta version of this form factor.

The Spectre Foldable 17 weighs just 1.32KG and the keyboard only adds another 267g. It’s got a 14-and-a-half-hour battery life, too.

At $8,499 it’s one of the most expensive laptops we’ve ever tested. But, if you’re a travelling business executive, who wants to travel with a large screen, while retaining business laptop functionality, it could be the ‘business notebook’ that’s exactly what you’ve been looking for.

Read our HP Spectre Foldable 17 review.

Let us know what you think about our business laptop group test or discuss the above results in the comments below or on this Reddit thread.

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