Long before I was forced to stay indoors earlier this spring, I spent most of my time … indoors. I built a PC back in college (with the help of some friends), and ever since then I’ve continued perfecting my home office setup—switching desks, keyboards, monitors, and more.
When many of my friends and colleagues were forced to quarantine because of the coronavirus pandemic, I realized most people don’t have a home office setup like mine. With many states reopening, more and more companies are considering permanent work-from-home solutions as well. So, my fellow folks privileged enough to work from home, below are some picks that might make that work more bearable. Many have been tested by WIRED’s Gear team, and we’re recommending others based on customer reviews across retailers, what other sites have to say, and our experience with the brands.
Have questions about the right WFH gear for you? Join the discussion in the comments section below. (Register here for an account.)
Updated August 2020: I’ve added several new items I tested, including a laptop stand, a standing desk from FlexiSpot, a Moshi wireless charger, and some accessories from Grovemade. Prices and links have been updated throughout.
You’ll Need a Good Laptop or PC
We’re guessing you have a laptop or desktop of some kind, whether it’s your own personal device or the one you brought from work. If not, check out our Best Laptops, Best Cheap Laptops, Best Chromebooks, and Best MacBooks guides. If you’re eyeing a desktop PC, we have recommendations and advice for prebuilt gaming PCs that might be handy, or you can build your own for a lot less.
Here are a few of our favorites:
MacBook Pro (2020) for $1,299: Apple’s newest MacBook Pro is the best for people that need a reliable and powerful laptop for work. If most of your usage revolves around a web browser, the base MacBook Air will suffice, and you can save a few hundred bucks. Need more power? Get the MacBook Pro with the 10th-gen Intel processor. You get more ports, too! We have a guide that breaks Apple’s laptops down.
Acer Swift 3 for $680: If you need a Windows machine, this laptop topped out our Best Cheap Laptops guide. It’s plenty fast with the Core i5 10th-gen Intel processor, the screen is good, you get great battery life, plus lots of varied ports.
Asus Chromebook Flip C434 for $569: If you can do all your work via a browser and that browser happens to be Google Chrome, then you should consider a Chromebook. This Asus model is the best Chromebook we’ve tested yet. Reviewer Scott Gilbertson says it strikes a good balance between price, power, and features.