Buying a laptop with little to no knowledge of what kind of hardware specifications would suit your needs best can be something of a nightmare. You might end up buying the wrong machine, or paying too much for an inferior system. Swogo is a simple web app that can help you make the right decision, or point you in the right direction at the very least. The app asks you to set a budget, specify what you want to use the computer for, select a screen size, choose some additional features (like BluRay drive or HDMI), and mention any brand preference that you may have. Swogo will then hunt down the perfect laptop(s) for you. It’s a simple six-step process that caters to your needs and budget; there is no need to create an account or anything. Just visit the app’s website, and click ‘Get started’.
Note: This service has pivoted to a different product and is no longer available with the same features it originally had when we first reviewed it.
Start off by selecting a budget. By default, it is set at $600 but you can change it by clicking one of the preset values, moving the price pointer slider, or just clicking the box and typing in a specific price. This price serves as a maximum and there is no support for specifying a minimum; Swogo will show you all laptops that match your requirements and have a price equal to or lower than what you’ve set.
Next, specify what you primarily need to use the laptop for. There are four broad uses to choose from: everyday, gaming, multimedia, and work. The choices you make here will help the app decide how powerful a processor you need, how much RAM will suffice, and what are your Graphics requirements. If you aren’t sure what a particular option means, click the help button on its tile to learn more about it.
In the third step, decide how often you intend to use the computer on the go. This will decide how long the computer can run on a fully charged battery. Naturally, if you don’t plan on using it on the go much or at all, Swogo will not give battery life a high priority when choosing the right laptop for you.
In the next step, select your preferred screen size. The selection refers to size in inches and not the screen’s resolution. You have four sizes to choose from.
If there are several results for the selections you’ve made, Swogo will ask you for a brand preference. If there is only one result by now, the brand selection option will not appear. This is only a preference and you will still be able to view laptops from other brands.
Lastly, select any additional features that you might want. You can narrow the results down to laptops with a touch screen, backlit keyboard, number pad on the keyboard, card reader, DVD drive, BluRay drive, webcam, and HDMI port. Again, if you aren’t sure what the feature does, click the help button to learn more about it.
Swogo will now show you the ideal match for your preferences (the least expensive one). At the bottom, you can view other recommendations as well. Scroll down a bit, and you will see the specifications for the laptop.
Click ‘More Details’ in the Specs tab to learn about the hardware and OS that the laptop is running. The specs include a rating of the laptop’s performance.
Swogo is pretty good for two things: forming a basis for finding the right hardware requirements for a laptop, and finding the right laptop when you aren’t up to researching the hardware requirements yourself. It might be a good idea to add a few additional questions like which OS it should run, what the screen resolution should be, and perhaps how heavy it is, in order to make it more useful for the more tech-savvy among us.