Laptop Requirements and Internet Access for Learning

After entering Kyoto University, students will be required to prepare a laptop computer, as they will need to use it and the internet in a variety of situations, including in class, at home, and other places.
For the first semester of AY 2021, the policy of Kyoto University is to conduct face-to-face classes in principle, while taking measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection. However, in light of the situation of COVID-19, there is a possibility that face-to-face classes will be replaced by online classes, so please make sure you have an internet environment that you can use without worrying about the data traffic.
Be sure to check the following information for details on the recommended notebook computer specifications and recommended internet environment specifications. However, even if your current laptop does not meet the specifications below, you do not need to purchase a new one. If you wish to purchase a new laptop, please make a decision after considering how you will use it after enrollment.

(a) Recommend Notebook Computer Specifications

  • 1) Hardware
    • Display: Diagona10 inches or more
    • Memory: 4GB or more
    • Flash Storage(SSD): 128GB or more (Considering start-up speed and power saving at the campus, fault tolerance by bicycle attending schooetc.)
    • Processor: Intesystem multi-core CPU
    • Battery drive time: 8 hours or more (There’s no charging equipment at the campus, so it’s expected to charge at home to use for a whole day.)
    • Need keyboard【detachable 2 in 1 type etc. is possible】 (Tablet-type device without keyboard is not fit to use for writing papers etc.)
    • Wireless LAN: IEEE 802.lla/b/g/n (available for ac is more desirable)
    • Screen output: VGA output or HDMI output (both of them are more desirable). However, VGA output or HDMI output is unnecessary in case that conversion adapter etc. is available.
    • Voice input/output: microphone input termina(monaural/stereo), audio output termina(stereo). However, it is unnecessary in case that conversion adapter or Bluetooth etc. is available.
    • USB 3.0 port ×1 or more. However, it is unnecessary in case that conversion adapter etc. is available.
    • Not specified : outside drive (camera,DVD, etc.), weight
  • 2) Software
    • Operating System: Windows or Mac OS X
      (Expired maker support is not available. Please pay close attention that Windows7 support ends on January 14, 2020.)
    • Office application: Microsoft Office 【Word, Excel, PowerPoint is available to use】(They’re often used for writing papers, making presentation materials etc. Also comprehensive contract version is available inexpensively at Kyoto University CO-OP.)
    • Anti-virus software: Must be introduced. Windows Defender bundled with Windows 8.1 and 10 is enough.
  • 3) Notes for Each Faculty
    • Faculty of Letters
      8GB or more memory is recommended.
    • Faculty of Education
      Students at the Faculty of Education are recommended to have a laptop with 8GB of memory, 256GB or more SSD and a camera for use in their major courses, if they are purchasing a new one.
    • Faculty of Science
      If you currently own a laptop computer or other device that meets the above requirements, there is no problem in using it during your first year. You can also use your smartphone to some extent to attend online class, but please note that it is only a supplementary role. In general, it is preferable to have a laptop at hand to attend online classes, write lecture reports, etc. If you do not currently own a laptop or tablet, and if you can afford it, we recommend you take this opportunity to purchase one. In addition, the Faculty of Science has a terminal room for full-scale programming practice, but due to the control measures of COVID-19, use of this room may be limited in AY 2021.
      As for the hardware requirements for the Faculty of Science, in addition to the overall requirements, 8GB of sufficient memory will not be a problem. Please note that it is difficult to add memory after purchase. USB memory can be used for external storage. Also, the display size, storage capacity, and battery life should not be a problem as long as there is no shortage of your current devices. In addition, a camera, speakers, microphone, and wireless LAN environment with stable connection are essential for online classes. And earphones or headphones with microphones would be desirable in preparation for watching online classes on campus. As for software, we strongly recommend that you install Office software and anti-virus software.
    • Faculty of Medicine (Department of Medicine)
      Students at the Faculty of Medicine (Department of Medicine) are recommended to have computers with 8GB or more of memory and a 64-bit OS if it’s Windows10, considering the use in their major courses.
    • Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences
      Students at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences are recommended to have computers with 8GB or more of memory and 256GB or more of SSD, considering the use in their major courses.
    • Faculty of Engineering (Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering)
      The following is recommended to attend online classes and meetings.
      • Audio input/output: A microphone and speakers are required (Built-in, wired, or wireless connection is acceptable).
      • Camera: A camera with a resolution of 720p or higher is required (Built-in, external, or any other type of connection is acceptable).
    • Faculty of Engineering (Department of Informatics and Mathematical Science)
      8GB or more memory is recommended.
    • Faculty of Agriculture (Department of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering)
      Students at the Faculty of Agriculture (Department of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering) are recommended to have computers with 8GB or more of memory and 256GB or more of SSD, considering the use in their major courses.
  • 4) Purchasing Laptop
    Recommended PCs that meet the specification standards are available at the Kyoto University CO-OP. The recommended PC comes with a 4-year version of Microsoft Office365ProPlus (latest version for Windows) and Office for Mac (latest version for macOS) (Kyoto University MS Comprehensive License), which are essential software for study.
    If your PC is not a recommended PC and does not have Microsoft Office installed, you can purchase “Office365” at a discounted price at the Kyoto University CO-OP under the comprehensive license agreement between Kyoto University and Microsoft Japan.
    For more details, please check the following website.
    Kyoto University CO-OP website:
    Regarding comprehensive license agreement:
  • 5) Caution Points of Carrying Laptop
    • Be sure to charge a computer battery at home.
    • Take care not to damage them by dropping them when commuting to and from school (especially when placing them in the basket of a bicycle).
    • Be careful not to be stolen, both on and off campus.
    • Establish a proper password for your laptop to prevent information leakage.

(b) Internet Environment

If you want to use the internet on campus, you can use the Wi-Fi connection service called KUINS-Air (Wireless LAN) for free. On the other hand, if you want to use the internet at home, student dormitories, boarding houses, apartments, etc., you will need to sign an internet connection contract. You can also use the tethering function of your smartphone or other cell phone to connect your laptop to the internet, but please note that cell phones have a limited data communication contract capacity. Online classes sometimes use videos and slide images, which can consume several hundred megabytes in a 90-minute class. For this reason, it is recommended that you have an internet connection (such as an optical fiber line) that does not have a limit data communication contract capacity.