Laptop-Reliability Study Highlights The Most Sturdy Laptop Makers

There's nothing worse than buying new gear that malfunctions shortly after you purchase it. If you're in the market for a new laptop, check out warranty-provider SquareTrade's detailed laptop-reliability report to find the most dependable hardware.

The warranty company released a research paper late last year analysing failure rates for over 30,000 laptops covered by their warranties. The report is full of good information worth considering before your next big purchase. The highlights of the study:

  • Looking at the first 3 years of ownership, 31% of laptop owners reported a failure to SquareTrade. Two-thirds of this failure (20.4%) came from hardware malfunctions, and one-third (10.6%) was reported as accidental damage.
  • Netbooks are projected to have a 20% higher failure rate from hardware malfunctions than more expensive laptop computers.
  • ASUS and Toshiba were the most reliable manufacturers, with fewer than 16% having a hardware malfunction over 3 years.

It's interesting to note that, on a whole, netbooks are a lot more failure prone than laptops. It's also perhaps a little surprising that a company like Apple, known for its hardware, still ends up a percentage point or two worse off than companies like ASUS and Toshiba when it comes to laptop malfunction rates.

Got a laptop brand you trust above all others for its reliability? Sing its praises in the comments. leonardtj!

Laptop Reliability Report [SquareTrade via CNET]


    before I read the article I knew ASUS and Toshiba were the most reliable in terms of not malfunctioning during warrenty. but I'm still a sucker for HP, they look cool and they come with all funky gadgets. with HP just make sure you always get extended warrenty. I do and I always make at least one claim even if the problem isn't big, might as well.

    I love you ASUS.

    last year got a good deal on 3 toshiba laptops... all three have since had a flickering screen which i think likely to be crappy video cards, Toshiba has thus far ignored it.

    Does the above graph look at consumer or business laptops? I think the graph might look different when comparing business laptops.

    Latitude, Thinkpads etc. are among the most reliable. Downside of business laptops is that they look dull and lack high end graphic cards. Plus side is solid build quality and generally very low heat emissions. They also come without any crapware loaded, at least in IBM's case.

    I now own a Lenovo thinkpad and its been good so far, but only time will tell. On the plus side, it came with 3 year warranty as standard.

      Most seem to ignore the point of business model laptops, if only they really knew why they cost more but lack so much is precisley for the high reliability. Which is worth much more than a top of the line consumer model that is so damn good it cooks itself to death...

      My old toshiba gotta be coming up 5 years now was running stock at 3.2GHz, still very fast for laptops now, literally died by cooking itself, just after 1 or 2 years when the warranty ended. Further research into the model showed that it was an aweful design and Toshiba was doing nothing to fix the problem, dust build up was a huge problem causing the machine to shut off after only 30 mins of use, and removing the dust involved pulling the entire machine apart, or pay someone $70/hr to do it for you.

    That make any portable device much more expensive by any brand. I applaud Life Hacker for posting this it is lack of reporting that allows for the fleecing of consumers by Vendors that should know better.

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