Information technologies have witnessed major innovations in the last year. Apple pushed its silicon chips further, released the 15-inch MacBook Air, and updated more powerful machines. Lenovo has embraced an inventive spirit with a versatile dual-screen laptop. Dell, Acer, and Asus all debuted powerful 18-inch machines. Samsung has impressed us with ultra-wide monitors that are also smarter than ever.
Meanwhile, Google has shown us that a tablet can be more than just a tech slate to carry around. And let’s not forget that we tested high-quality desks, computer chairs and routers, helping you complete the ultimate home office.
Help us celebrate the best in computing and the home office by checking out all the winners below. For more categories and champions, check out the full list of Tom’s Guide Awards 2023 winners.
The best laptop
Best Laptop: MacBook Air M2 15-inch
THE MacBook Air 15 inch it could just be a bigger version of the MacBook Air M2 13 inch released last year, but Apple’s latest thin and light machine is arguably the best laptop for the money. The Apple M2 chip offers plenty of power for everyday computing, light video editing, and even gaming. It also has a gorgeous Liquid Retina display that offers solid picture quality. You get all this in a stylish and portable chassis. As we said in our review, the 15-inch MacBook Air M2 offers a near-perfect mix of performance, display quality, portability, and battery life.
The laptop with the best value for money
Best Value Laptop: Acer Aspire 5
THE Acer Aspire 5 it’s far from being the fastest, stylish, or flashiest laptop on the market. But this plucky little machine runs Windows 11 on a 1080p 14-inch display, a modern Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a reasonable 256GB of storage, all for around $500, and at that price it’s a excellent choice and the best cheap laptop you can buy. What the Aspire 5 lacks in overall performance and battery life compared to more expensive laptops, it makes up for in value and flexibility. The Aspire 5 is a great entry-level laptop for students and others on a budget, offering a good selection of ports and a surprisingly responsive keyboard for a great price.
Best 2 in 1
The best 2 in 1: Lenovo Yoga Book 9i
Most laptops, even the best 2-in-1 laptops, often have interchangeable designs. That would be an understatement for the Lenovo Yoga Book 9i, which is easily one of the most intriguing laptops (and products) we’ve ever reviewed. This is a compelling alternative to foldable screen laptops because you get two 13-inch displays in one package, which support multiple user modes. You can use it like a regular laptop or tablet or enter tent mode for presentations. With the included folio kickstand, you can position the Yoga Book 9i with its two displays stacked on top of each other or spread the two panels side by side like a book. The included keyboard and mouse provide additional functionality. If you’re looking for the Swiss army knife of laptops, the Lenovo Yoga Book 9i has you covered.
The best gaming laptop
Best Gaming Laptop: Alienware m18
The huge Alienware m18 takes the mantra of “go big or go home” literally. This 18-inch gaming laptop isn’t just gigantic, it packs plenty of horsepower to rival even the best gaming PCs thanks to its 13th-generation Intel Core CPU and Nvidia GeForce RTX 40-series GPU. And because its display is so broad, it can function as a desktop replacement, which is fair considering this laptop is anything but portable. While expensive, this behemoth has everything you could want in a gaming laptop and more. Large laptops are back and the Alienware m18 is among the best you can buy.
Best Tablet: Google Pixel Tablet
By itself, the Google Pixel tablets it’s nothing special. Benchmark performance scores, display, and battery life are pretty much average among tablets. However, the Pixel Tablet has something all the others don’t: a charging dock with a built-in speaker that turns the Pixel Tablet into a smart display with great sound. The tablet’s Tensor G2 chip allows for some great photo editing features, and a camera that can follow you around the room makes it useful for video calling. The Pixel Tablet is also the first with Chromecast built-in, so you can even use it as a kind of mini smart TV. Best of all? A special screen lets you control all of your smart home devices, making the Pixel Tablet the best tablet for homemakers.
Best Monitor: Samsung Odyssey OLED G8
If you’re looking for the best monitor for productivity and gaming, the Samsung Odyssey OLED G8 is a safe bet. Though pricey at $1,799, this 34-inch curved monitor delivers a bright, vivid image with a sharp 3,440 x 1,440 resolution. Also, games run smoothly and fast thanks to the smooth 175Hz refresh rate and low 0.03ms response time. While marketed as a gaming monitor, the ultra-wide panel also offers plenty of room for work. For what it offers, the Samsung Odyssey OLED G8 is a monitor worth considering.
The best standing desk
The best standing desk: Vari Curve electric standing desk
The original Vari electric standing desk remained at the top of our best standing desk page for some time and the Vari Curve electric desk builds on its predecessor with some welcome new features. In addition to the waterfall edge at the front which makes typing much more comfortable, it also has eyelets at both ends to make it easier to route cables up to the top of your desk. Vari’s streamlined assembly process is the best in the industry, and the Curve Power Desk can be assembled in less than 15 minutes using just eight bolts. It’s worth noting that Vari’s Curve electric desk has since been replaced by its new Ergo electric desk which is slightly smaller and comes in dark wood but has the exact same features.
The best office chair
Best Office Chair: Branch Verve Chair
THE Branch Verve chair combines style and comfort to create an outstanding office chair that will turn heads. Winner of an iF Design Award, the chair’s V-shaped suspended backrest also houses its adjustable lumbar support while its armrests curve outward, unlike most other office chairs. The unique 3D mesh fabric on the backrest keeps you cool while working, and Branch Furniture designed this chair for over 8 hours of comfortable use. In addition to the coral color seen here, the Verve chair also comes in mint and cobalt, as well as black and white if you’d rather it blend in with the other furniture instead of stand out.
Best Router: TP-Link Deco BE85
After wowing us earlier this year with one of the best wifi routers at CES 2023TP-Link has released the Deco BE85 which besides being one of the first Wifi 7 compatible devices is also a mesh router. In our TP-Link Deco BE85 review, we were impressed with the device’s quick setup process and its excellent performance. There are also many multi concert ports on the back including two 10Gbps along with one 2.5Gbps and even an SFP+ port for fiber internet. The future of Wi-Fi is here and the Deco BE85 is one of best mesh wifi systems if you want to fill your whole house with high speed internet.
Best antivirus: Norton 360 Deluxe
Norton 360 Deluxe is currently our pick for the best antivirus software you can buy today and it is also quite high in our list of best antivirus software for mac. The reason is that this antivirus software suite packs many useful tools to keep you safe online such as a password manager, VPN, parental control software, firewall, and even cloud backup. Norton also offers dark web monitoring and a way to erase any personal information that may have gotten into the hands of data brokers. Norton 360 Deluxe might be more expensive than the competition, but you get the best protection for up to five devices, including Windows PCs, Macs, Android smartphones, and Apple iPhones.
Best VPN: ExpressVPN
Of all best vpn services out there, Express VPN it remained in first place based on our extensive testing. The company has more than 3,000 servers in 94 countries around the world, which means it can bypass pretty much any region block you need. We also like that ExpressVPN’s open-source Lightway protocol is able to deliver blazing fast speeds without compromising your security thanks to the inclusion of AES-256 encryption. In addition to desktop and mobile apps, there’s also support for smart TVs and game consoles, as well as router apps. Being able to easily reach the ExpresssVPN support team is another big plus for us with live chat available 24/7 and experts available to walk you through even the most complex setups.
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