What is a Portable Desk?

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  • Written By: B. Miller
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 28 February 2020
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A portable desk refers to a desk that is not stationary, or fixed in one place. The portable desk might be a small desk on wheels, to make it easier to pull around the room. The desk might also be a lap desk, which also have different designs for varying needs. This type of desk does not have legs that reach the floor; instead, the desk is fitted over your lap while sitting in a chair, or even lying in bed.

Portable desks on wheels are convenient for office buildings, hospitals, or anywhere else where multiple people need to use the same computer in different locations. A portable desk on wheels will be much smaller than a standard, fixed desk, and usually only has room for a laptop computer along with a small drawer underneath. Of course, these types of portable desks are available in different sizes to suit different needs. Generally, one would not have this type of portable desk in the home, because it is simply not practical.


Portable lap desks are much more common in the home. This type of portable desk might be as simple as a tray with unmovable legs that is placed over the lap, or it might have a more complex design. Some lap desks feature legs that can be bent and positioned in different ways, to raise or lower the height of the desk or to help balance the desk on an unstable surface. Some of these lap desks also feature surfaces that can tip at an angle, which can be helpful if it is necessary to tilt a laptop computer or document to improve ergonomics. One other common design involve a hard surface built on top of a small cushion.

Another type of lap desk is one without any legs at all. This type of flat portable desk is meant to go underneath a laptop computer when it is placed on your lap, to insulate the computer and prevent the heat from transferring onto your legs. These types of desks are convenient because they can often fit right into a laptop bag. Some even have fans to improve ventilation, and prevent a computer from overheating. Both types of portable lap desks are often designed to keep laptops safely in place, so they do not slide off the desk and become damaged.

For those who work from home or find themselves frequently working on a laptop, a portable desk can be a big help. They can be more ergonomically correct and help relieve discomfort from working long hours on a laptop. They also allow one to easily move from one room to another, if needed. These types of desks range in price, and one should shop around to find one to fit a specific need or budget.


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