Chromebook Vs Laptop: Which One Should You Get
Those in the market for a new laptop have probably stumbled upon a few Chromebooks at local stores or online. They look like any other laptop, but usually have a much lower price tag. That doesnt mean you get less value, though.
Chromebooks may be better than their Windows or macOS counterparts, depending on your needs. Regardless, its important to do your research before buying a Chromebook you might not want one at all if youve got particular needs. Choosing between a Chromebook vs laptop can be hard, so lets get into what makes them different.
What Is A Good Chromebook
Several years ago, all Chromebooks were pretty much the same regardless of what company made them. Now, there’s a far greater variety of laptops and two-in-ones — convertibles and tablets — to take advantage of Chrome OS’s current capabilities. You’ll still find more sizes and styles when it comes to Windows laptops, especially if you need top processing and graphics performance, but the variety of options is much better than in the past.
If you’re just after a good, basic experience with a Chromebook, the small, lightweight OS has minimal hardware requirements and the same goes for web apps. Having a faster, higher-end processor, more memory and greater storage for files and apps will help keep demanding multitaskers moving along, but otherwise here’s what I recommend when I’m asked what basic specs to look for:
- Intel Celeron or Core i-series, AMD Ryzen or MediaTek processors
- 4GB of memory or more
- 64GB of storage
- Full HD display
Regardless of what Chromebook you buy, before you buy it you should find out the device’s Auto Update Expiration date, or AUE. Currently, non-Google hardware is only supported for so long before it stops receiving Chrome OS and browser updates, including those for security. For models released in 2020, the date is roughly 7 to 8 years from the initial release of the device, but that’s not always the case. and you should check it before you buy a Chromebook, new or used.
Chromebook Vs Laptop: Security
While we cant say any OS is completely safe, Chrome OS is not as prone to attacks. Google has taken multiple measures to make sure its OS is safe from evil hands.
Chrome OS security measures:
- Sandboxing: Every application and tab in Chrome OS runs on its own sandbox. Even if some virus gets to you, it should be killed whenever that process ends.
- Automatic updates: Hackers and evil internet dwellers are working hard to get to your computers, so Google made it simple to act on any vulnerabilities that show up and get any new code to you ASAP.
- Verified boot: Chrome OS cant boot an infected system. It has to boot the way Google intended it to. Upon booting, the system will check all files. If anything is looking infected, it will be immediately resolved by pulling a backup.
- Power washes: Traditionally known as factory data resets, Power washes wipe everything in your Chromebook and get you back to point A in a few minutes. Since the OS mostly works with the cloud, you cant lose much.
Meanwhile, Windows is a prime target for hackers, viruses, malware, and other internet dangers. Microsofts operating system is complex, giving people more vulnerabilities to attack from. Windows is also extremely popular, which gives hackers more chances of success, and therefore they tend to focus more on the OS. Its definitely harder to keep a Windows laptop clean. macOS is generally considered safer, but its still more vulnerable than Chrome OS.
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Who Isnt A Chromebook For
If you prefer to have full control over your computer or enjoy being able to dig deeper into system files and customize your operating system install, then you probably would be better off with a traditional laptop rather than a chromebook. Chromebooks also arent really for gamers, as the stripped back hardware doesnt allow for high-demand graphics processing that popular games require nor are they really available in the chrome web app store.
Laptop Or Macbook: Almost All Apps And Programs
On a laptop or a MacBook, you can download and install just about any application you want. If you need particular applications for work or school, a laptop or a MacBook is the best choice. When it comes to downloading apps from a store, you use the Windows Store on a Windows laptop and the App Store on a MacBook. Or install software from other sources.
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Is A Chromebook Or Laptop Better For School Work
A Chromebook is a good choice for a student that is primarily using the computer for web browsing, word processing, or streaming video and audio. Storage isn’t a problem if Google-focused students can store their files with Drive. They can also use SD cards and USB drives to keep hold of their documents.
A Chromebook is also a great low-cost option, with prices dipping as low as $100/£120/AU$140 during the holiday season for the low-end models. However, the price of a Chromebook can skyrocket to $1,000/£1,000/AU$1,400 if you choose a corporate or luxury option like the .
For school work, the Chromebook is a winner because it has so few features. Without extra games or a lot of applications, the Chromebook becomes a homework powerhouse, allowing students to access their lessons online with few distractions.
Students can write their papers with Google Docs and share their work straight from the Chromebook to their teacher or parent, no printing necessary. The Microsoft Office suite is also available online, so students can create Word documents with ease.
The Chromebook is also just a hard device to break. If your student is prone to installing virus-laden programs, the Chromebook can be wiped and reset with ease. If the child isn’t particularly tech-savvy, there are few confusing functions: the Chromebook is a plug in and play device. Some of the newer Chromebooks are a little more delicate physically, but most can take a tumble, as many of the parts are plastic.
Why Should You Go For A Chromebook
A moment of truth, Chromebooks will always be less powerful than a Laptop running Windows or macOS. Having said that, most of the time you dont need all that power. So, let us see some of the reasons why you should go for a Chromebook.
The following are some of the advantages of a Chromebook.
Now, let us talk about them in detail
Since Chromebooks pack less power, they are relatively inexpensive as compared to laptops. You can get a budget Chromebook at $200 and a higher-end one will cost you anywhere between $300-400.
Whereas, if you are in the market looking for a Laptop for $200, good luck! You will get a brand new entry-level laptop at $300-400 and a high-end one can cost you anywhere between $2000-2500, and sometimes even more.
2] Fast Boot
Since Chromebooks uses SSD instead of normal HDD and have a light OS, the booting speed is express. The average booting time of a regular Chromebook is 8 sec, which is super quick.
3] A Better Cloud Storage
Now, this can be debatable as for many of you, and will be a topic of utmost interest.
One thing which is not debatable is that you also are getting 100GB of free Google Drive storage with Chromebook.
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What Cant A Chromebook Do
The limitations of Chrome OS mean you cant install some important software that you might otherwise need. Some notable examples include certain Adobe applications or any kind of proprietary software thats restricted to Windows or MacOS. If you rely on similar applications, youll either need to find a Linux-based alternative or avoid Chromebooks altogether.
Limitations also extend to performance in general. Chromebooks do tend to run fast, but typically thats due to the lightweight nature of Chrome OS its not service-heavy in the background like Windows. However, in some cases, youll be limited by the components inside. Lower-end Chromebooks tend to use older or low-end processors that cant compete with what you get in the Windows and Mac space, especially in terms of multitasking. Then again, if youre looking at spending $200, a Chromebook is a far better option.
On the higher end, there are options like the HP Chromebook x2 or the Pixelbook, and youll find familiar processors like the eighth-generation Core i5, which features four cores and plenty of power Chromebooks tend to fly with these faster options. Some newer Chromebooks, like Samsungs Galaxy Chromebook and Acers Chromebook Spin 713, have Intels latest 10th-generation processors, further closing the Chromebook, MacBook, and Windows 10 laptop gap.
Chromebook Vs Laptop: Which Is Right For Me
Does a laptop’s overall versatility make it the better option? Or is a Chromebook’s minimalistic operating system and web-based usability more suited to your needs? Keep reading to learn the differences between a Chromebook and a standard laptop, the relative advantages of each device, and which one will serve your needs with the most overall value.
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What Chromebook Options Are Available
The most expensive Chromebook you can buy is Googles Pixelbook, with a $1,000 starting price. It represents the high end not only in premium materials and build quality but also performance.
Overall, youll find Chromebooks ranging from 11-inch 2-in-1s up to 15-inch options for additional screen real estate. HD resolution is the standard, while Full HD, touchscreen, and 4K options are becoming more common. Intel Celeron processors are a popular choice for todays Chromebooks typically, dual-core versions that rarely rise above the 2.0GHz mark although youll find Core i5 and i7 chips as the prices climb.
Most Chromebooks offer 2GB to 4GB of RAM, which is enough for average laptop tasks but low compared to traditional laptop models that regularly offer 8GB or 16GB of RAM. As for storage, Chromebooks dont have large disk drives, as they depend on the internet for most data purposes. Storage can usually be augmented with an SD card or USB drive if necessary.
For ports, most Chromebooks are largely comparable to laptops, though fewer in number. USB-A, USB-C, and headphone jacks are common connections.
Most Chromebooks have a better battery life than the typical laptop. Although about 10 hours is most common, newer models are more likely to have 12-hour battery life. Windows 10 laptops are slowly closing the gap, but on average, Chromebooks last longer.
Finally, Chrome OS tablets are available, but we wouldnt recommend those without a keyboard.
What Is A Chromebook What Is A Laptop
A Chromebook is a type of laptop that runs on Chrome OS. Most work on a Chromebook is done via the internet, so having a reliable internet connection is essential. This doesnt mean your Chromebook turns into a brick offline, but internet connection is necessary to provide vital updates, as well as sync and host apps.
In the simplest terms, a laptop is a portable computer, created as the compact and portable version of desktop computer. Notebooks are a thinner version and lighter version of a laptop, and Ultrabooks are thinner and lighter than notebooks typically with loads of features. For the purposes of this article, a laptop refers to any non-Chromebook portable computer, specifically a Windows laptop or MacBook.
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Chromebook Connectivity And The Internet
Keep in mind that chromebooks are designed to be used while you have an internet connection available. Chromebooks typically only have a small amount of local storage available , so most of your files and documents will be stored on the internet in the cloud.
While there are some apps that can be used in offline mode, the chromebook works best when its online, so its worth considering your internet connectivity and how available a suitable connection will be where you plan on using your chromebook.
One huge advantage of the chomebook is that your files are all on the cloud this means if your chromebook somehow gets broken or destroyed, all your files are still safe you simply just need to log back on to your google account. There is no need for backing up data manually, because of the way chrome OS works this all happens automatically for you.
Laptops Vs Chromebooks: The Practical Differences
Chromebooks aim to remove a lot of the file-management, program-installation, and other customization aspects that make PCs more powerful and versatile, but also more complicated to use. You can, of course, browse the web on a laptop, too, but youll also install programs, dig through and move personal files, and play games. The Chromebook experience, overall, is much more akin to how you use a smartphone, but in the physical form of a laptop.
On Chromebooks, all of your work is meant to be done via online services, and saved to the cloud. This fundamentally changes how you interact with and view the Chromebook as a device: Its more of a physical terminal that allows you to access a group of internet services you use to do work or entertain yourself.
Your data does not live primarily on the device, in the way that much of it does with Windows and Apple laptops. Those alternatives are, of course, able to use cloud services, as well, but the prioritization of online applications is inverted.
Youll have to get used to the Chrome browser if you arent already, because on Chromebooks, its your main interface. Its not especially complicated, though, even if you dont have options like you do on Windows machines. Chrome extensions can make your web browsing experience that much more robust.
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So Should I Buy A Laptop Or A Chromebook
The answer to this ultimately boils down to your needs and workload. For serious professional use, a laptop is almost always better, but some folks could get away with just a Chromebook for work. Anyone who primarily does word processing and e-mail communication for work could do these tasks on a Chrome OS browser. That said: More so than laptops, Chromebooks lose a big chunk of their productivity potential if youre without access to the web, so even though many services have an offline mode, keep that in mind.
One wild card, though, is actually Microsoft, and your reliance on itor non-reliance. The entire Microsoft Office suite is , which takes the potential of Chromebook productivity much closer to that of other laptops. For many students and workers, Microsoft Office is the be-all and end-all in terms of what they need from a computer. So now, with a Chromebook, your bases are covered for potentially much less than the cost of a $500-to-$1,000 Windows or macOS laptop.
Laptop Vs Chromebook: What’s The Difference And Which Best Fits Your Needs
Some Chromebooks can go toe-to-toe with Mac and Windows laptops, but they may not be best for everyone. Here’s how to choose what’s right for you.
Acer’s updated Chromebook Spin 713 two-in-one is the first with Thunderbolt 4 support and is Intel Evo verified.
Chromebooks are laptops and two-in-ones running on Chrome operating system. The hardware might look like any other laptop, but the minimalistic, web-browser-based Chrome OS is a different experience from the Windows and MacOS laptops you’re likely used to. Whether you’re considering switching to one from a Windows laptop or MacBook, your kid received one from their school or you’re simply Chrome OS curious, here’s everything you need to know.
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When Chromebooks first arrived in 2011 they were routinely derided — and rightfully so — for their limited functionality and reliance on a consistent internet connection. The operating system turns 10 years old this year and today’s Chromebooks are far from where they started, but some things haven’t changed and you might not be willing to work with the limitations they do have. Also, if you don’t feel like reading this and would just rather experience Chrome OS, here’s how to temporarily run it on any laptop using an inexpensive USB flash drive you probably already have lying around.
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Advantages And Disadvantages Of Laptops
Laptops are often the choice for people who need to lug their computer around with them. Laptops offer more portability than traditional desktops and come in varying sizes, weights, colors as well! They also provide better battery life when compared to all other device types because theyre designed primarily for on-the-go use rather than sitting at home typing away like some folks do while watching Netflix every day before bedtimeThe input information given can be summarized into two sentences without much embellishment from
The Differences Between Chromebooks And Laptops
A Chromebook is a special kind of laptop, different from standard Macs and PCs.
Its operating system the software that decides how the computer works and what programs it can run is called Chrome OS. It’s made and updated by Google.
As you might expect, Chrome OS is primarily built to run Google apps like , Docs, and YouTube, which are all installed on the Chromebook by default . You log into the device itself using your Google account and password, and will need an internet connection to use most of its features.
The keyboard also has keys you won’t recognize. Instead of a Caps Lock key, it’s got a button called “Search” or “Launcher” that lets you search your device or the internet for anything you type. And in place of the Windows or Command key, there’s a key that’ll bring up .
Finally, they’re not as powerful as most high-end MacBooks, and nowhere near as powerful as high-end PCs. If you want a computer for gaming, animation, or image and video editing, look elsewhere.
The chart below compares a top-of-the-line Chromebook with similarly priced PC and Mac models. The best of every category will be highlighted.
*Based on third-party benchmark tests, as Apple hasn’t released their own stats.
But when it comes down to it, a Chromebook is just another type of laptop. You can think of it like this: All Chromebooks are laptops, but not all laptops are Chromebooks.
If you mostly use Google apps, or are tired of Macs and PCs, Chromebook laptops might be worth a look.
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