Types of Computer

Based on purpose, size, capacity, and data types, computers are classified into various types:

Based on Purpose

General Purpose Computer

General Purpose Computers are designed to do more than one task. These computers are mainly used in offices or at home to do general-purpose tasks, like gaming, painting, and running office programs(word processor, excel, PowerPoint, etc). Microcomputers such as laptops, PCs, notebooks, etc are general-purpose computers.

Special Purpose Computer

Special-purpose computers are designed to do special or single tasks. ATM, washing machines, self-driving cars, military planes computing computers, weather forecasting, etc are some prominent examples of special-purpose computers.

Based on Data Types

Analog Computer

Analog computers operate on continuous data. The continuous data are obtained by measuring. Analog computers are designed to perform a single task. For example: a speedometer is an analog device used to measure the speed.

Digital Computer

Digital computers operate on discrete data. The discrete data are obtained by counting. Digital computers are based on binary systems (0s and 1s). Most of the computers we use today are digital computers. It gives more reliable and accurate results than analog computers. It can perform several tasks.

Hybrid Computer

A Hybrid Computer is a combination of both analog and digital computers. It operates on both continuous and discrete data. These computers are usually used in scientific labs, hospitals, large industries, etc.

Based on Size and Performance


Microcomputers are known as personal computers. Microcomputers are designed to be used by one person at a time. These computers are mainly used in offices or at homes. The first microcomputer was IBMPC designed by IBM company in 1981. Desktop computers, laptops, and handheld computers are prominent examples of microcomputers.


Minicomputers are powerful, larger in size, and have higher processing speeds than microcomputers. These computers are commonly used as servers where hundreds of computers are interconnected. It is used in business, education, and many other fields.

Mainframe Computer

Mainframe computers are more powerful, larger in size, and have higher processing speeds than minicomputers. These computers are commonly used as servers to keep the Internet alive. Thousands of people are required to operate these computers.

Super Computer

Supercomputers are the most powerful computers than computers. These computers are used to process large amounts of data to solve complicated scientific problems. It can perform trillions of calculations. These computers are commonly used for weather forecasting, nuclear energy research, aircraft design, etc. fields where tons of data calculation is needed.

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