1. User type - think about what you need a laptop for. Is it for occasional web-surfing, daily work use or regular gaming or video-editing?
2. Portability - how often are you actually going to put this computer in a bag and leave the house with it?
3. Power - do you really need the latest ultra-fast, second-generation Intel Core i7 processor?
4. Connectivity - do you need to invest in a 3G dongle or SIM card to make sure you are online wherever you go? Or will Wi-Fi suffice?
5. Netbook vs ultraportable - the netbook is the ideal portable for the casual user, while the ultraportable is a must for the power user.
6. PC versus Mac - PCs are fine for general office or work use, while Macs are ideal for creative tasks such as music production or video editing.
7. Extended warranty or extra insurance - this really depends on how often you plan to travel away from home with your new computer and how much of a risk-taker you are. If you lose it, break it or it gets nicked, what then?