What Can And Can’t I Do With A Chromebook
When Chrome OS launched it was essentially . For those used to an operating system like Windows and Mac, it made the average Chromebook seem like little more than a laptop that runs a web browser and that’s all.
Even if the Chrome OS never matured beyond that, the fact is quite a lot can be done entirely on the web these days. Take stock of everything you do on a daily basis and you may find there’s nothing you can’t accomplish with Chrome at its most basic level.
That said, a Windows laptop or MacBook can run the Chrome browser as well as other software supported by those operating systems. Even if you don’t immediately need a particular piece of software, it’s nice to have the option. Plus, if you’re shopping for a Chromebook for remote learning with Google Classroom, a Mac or Windows PC will work as well.
Samsung’s Galaxy Chromebook 2 is a premium model with better performance than most.
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Today’s Chromebooks like the Asus CM5 are ready for playing cloud gaming services, Android games and even Linux games.
What Can A Chromebook Do
Chromebooks ship with their own operating system called Chrome OS, which is based on Linux and uses the Chrome browser as an interface. It has basic computing elements, such as a file manager and an app launcher, but most of what you use are web-based apps that require no downloading.
That might sound limiting at first, but many popular apps already offer web-based versions like Spotify, Netflix, Slack, and Evernote. Due to the prevalence of web applications, many people spend the majority of their time in a web browser anyway. If your typical workflow resembles this scenario, transitioning to a Chromebook will be relatively smooth. Just connect to Wi-Fi and proceed with your browsing as normal.
However, with the addition of the Google Play Store, you can also download Android apps to fill in any software gaps. Their implementation in a laptop setting might be a little funky in some cases some expand full-screen while others remain locked in smartphone screen mode but Android apps are available if you really need them.
Chromebooks also support Linux software. If you absolutely need desktop applications, setting up Linux is certainly an option. There are Linux versions of Audacity, Firefox, GIMP, OBS Studio, Steam, VirtualBox, and many more, but your favorite application may not offer a Linux-based variant. Check the developers website first before ruling out a Chromebook.
Do Chromebooks Need An Internet Connection
When Chromebooks first launched they basically became paperweights when they were offline — a real issue if you were in the middle of editing an important document you suddenly couldn’t save because your web connection dropped. Things have thankfully gotten better as Google improved offline capabilities and common apps like Netflix, YouTube and Spotify have offline options as well.
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For a regular laptop, being offline is a little less of a problem since you’re using installed software that saves to internal storage. While neither experience is great offline these days, Chromebooks are not a great choice if you’re not willing and able to be online most of the time. On the upside, Google has made it very easy for Android users to turn their phones into instant mobile hotspots and to have Chromebooks and Android devices work better together.
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Chromebook Vs Windows Laptop: Which Should You Buy
18 September 20
More people than ever use a smartphone as their only computer. That makes sense you have the web, apps for any service you want, entertainment via music and video, and it’s all shown on a reasonably large screen. It’s all in your pocket, all the time.
But a lot of people still need or want a laptop. Maybe a smartphone isn’t ideal for typing out long emails or you need to get some work done that wouldn’t be fun or easy to do on a phone. There are a lot of reasons people want or need a bigger device with a full keyboard. With Chromebooks becoming more powerful as Chrome OS finds its place as a mobile operating system, it’s time once again to see if a Chromebook can replace your laptop this year.
Laptop Vs Chromebook: Cloud Server
Conventional laptops, like a Notebook, require significant computing power which they derive from RAM and processors.
However, Chrome OS is practically the Chrome web browser but with additional features and functions.
This operating system relies completely on Googles online services, like Google Docs, Drive, Gmail, etc.
A Chromebook is cloud-based and its applications and software are all stored on the cloud server, instead of on the device itself.
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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.
Cost Of Ownership: Chromebooks Win Hands Down
More frequent repairs.
When it comes to upfront costs, Chromebooks win every time. Chromebooks are also smaller and lighter than laptops, which makes them more portable. You don’t need to buy a laptop bag since you can easily slip a Chromebook into your backpack.
Finally, if a Chromebook ever does fail, they’re easy to replace. You could buy 2 or 3 Chromebooks for the price of a full Windows laptop.
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Buying Laptop Vs Chromebook Which Is The Better Choice
When you decide to buy a convenient, lightweight laptop computer then you need to consider the type of operating system you would require, the overall versatility of the computer to make your tasks more efficient, etc.
In essence, a Notebook and Chromebook are both laptops that can replace the desktop computer for everyday tasks.
These are more advantageous than a conventional desktop PC because of their incredibly lightweight, smaller size, and portable design.
However, there are some significant differences between a Laptop and a Chromebook, such as:
Are Chromebooks For Casual Users
Eric Zeman / Android Authority
Chromebooks will work amazingly if most of what you do can be done with a browser. Email checkers, Netflix bingers, social media buffs, and web surfers will have a blast using these machines. You can use Google Drive for documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. Google Drive can also harness the power of the cloud for your storage needs.
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While Chromebooks have the Google Play Store and its broad portfolio of apps, I am not a fan of depending too much on these. Android apps are usually not well designed to work on larger computer screens. The UI can be a bit messy, and bugs are common. These Android apps work, but the experience isnt as refined as it should be.
If you decide to rely on Linux apps, given that your Chromebook supports them, you will find that the portfolio of available apps is not as broad. Windows and macOS still have Linux beaten on this department.
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Size And Weight: The Edge Goes To Chromebook
Generally, the lightest laptops on the market.
Models with larger displays have a comparable footprint to the MacBook and Windows counterparts.
Many small-footprint models are available.
More expensive laptops can be light but have a larger footprint than Chromebook.
The weight difference between most Chromebook models and MacBook Air is negligible.
MacBook and Windows-based laptops come in many form factors, with price ranges to match.
Chromebook models typically resemble slim laptops like the MacBook Air and the Dell XPS 13, often with a smaller display and thinner form factor. For example, the MacBook Air, which kickstarted the lightweight laptop market, weighs in at 2.8 pounds compared with the 2.6 pounds of the popular Samsung 4 11.6-inch Chromebook. There are some exceptions, like the Acer Chromebook 15, which sports a 15.6-inch screen and retains a small price tag.
This is a somewhat personal preference because Chromebook models with larger displays are similar in size to other laptops with the same display size. However, Chromebook comes in a variety of smaller sizes.
The Overview Of A Laptop
A laptop is a thin, lightweight, and portable personal computer that you can carry anywhere. It runs on the Microsoft Windows OS and uses a combination of hardware to perform its tasks. You will find all the abilities of a regular computer on a laptop.
The key difference between them is the laptop uses the AC power from a battery while the desktop uses the power of electricity from a DC output. Laptops can be very versatile and serve purposes beyond any limitations.
They are designed to offer heavy processing while consuming lesser power and handling the tasks smoothly. Laptops can also be customized to an extent if you need to add more RAM, additional storage, or replace key components.
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Laptop Vs Chromebook Conclusion
The operating system is the main factor of distinction between a Notebook laptop and a Chromebook.
The two might look similar on the surface but they have distinct features and functions. Getting 100GB of free cloud storage is a big plus for Chromebook users compared to traditional laptop users.
Laptop Vs Chromebook: Ms Office
Microsoft Office is an essential tool found in all Windows-powered laptops. However, MS Office is not compatible with a Chromebook.
Instead, you can use Microsofts cloud-based office automation features, such as One Note, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word.
In addition, you can also choose to use Google Docs and Google Sheets as alternates for MS Words and MS Excel.
Keep in mind that a Chromebook is not designed to download and install applications as it relies on web-based apps.
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What Is A Laptop
A laptop is a relatively smaller and mobile personal computer which is just like carrying a briefcase with you, but this briefcase has all of your data stored in a little chip. It has all of the characteristics of a full-sized desktop computer yet is compact enough to be mobile. It comes with a keyboard and mouse attached to the screen which runs with the help of a battery.
Laptops run on operating systems like Windows OS or Mac OS . Its equipped with every one of the functionalities of a PC, meaning it essentially runs similar programming and applications.
However, laptops will quite often be more costly than PCs. They are made to consume less electricity than a desktop since they run on batteries. They consist of powerful RAM and processors to deal with pretty much every task with ease.
Final Verdict: It All Comes Down To How You’ll Use It
If you’re like a large majority of computer users who only use their laptop to email, spend time on social medial, and mostly work online using cloud services like Google Docs and Google Sheets, a Chromebook is perfect for you. Buying a Chromebook instead of a Windows laptop could save you quite a bit of money.
However, you’re going to be limited in a lot of ways if you purchase a Chromebook. Plus, printing is possible but will take some extra work. If you use a lot of USB devices that require Windows drivers, or you’re attached to desktop versions of your favorite software, you should buy a Windows computer.
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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.
Chromebook Vs Laptop: Security
There are some very impressive security features with a Chromebook that you may not be aware of. One of the best security features is the sandbox. When you run an application or use a new tab on a Chromebook, it will run in its own sandbox. Should a virus infect an application, it will die as soon as you kill the process. It will not infect your whole operating system.
Every time you boot up your Chromebook, it will check for infected files. Yes, you can do this with a Windows laptop, but the process tends to take a lot less time with a Chromebook. If you do have some kind of security issue with a Chromebook, you can reset everything without the risk of losing too much. This is not the same with Windows or Mac laptops.
Because there are so many Windows computers, they are susceptible to more threats. The security in Windows 10 is much improved over previous versions, but there is still the possibility of infection. Mac laptops are considered to be more secure, but they can be vulnerable also.
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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.
Chromebook Vs Laptop Full Comparison Faqs
What are the Pros and Cons of Chromebook vs Laptop?
- Large amounts of RAM not requied.
- Powerful processor not required.
- Excellent security with automatic updates.
- User friendly
- Heavily reliant on in cloud services.
- Not designed for gaming or high-end computing.
- Unable to connect directly to a printer via Wi-fi or a cable.
What is a Chromebook?
It is a budget-friendly version of a laptop that is designed to operate on the Google OS with an internet connection. The majority of its applications are cloud based.
Which is Better a Chromebook or a Laptop?
A Chromebook is better when it comes to battery life, price, and security. Other than that laptops are better in every other category to include performance, functionality, and storage.
What is the Difference Between a Laptop and Chromebook?
- The main difference is in the operating systems they use. Chromebooks use Chrome OS while laptops use Windows or Mac.
- Laptops are not reliant on cloud services or storage.
- Laptops can download Microsoft Office and a host of applications.
- Laptops have internal hard drives and more local storage capability.
- Laptops can connect directly to printers.
- Laptops can be used for gaming and basically any computing needs.
Can a Chromebook Replace a Laptop?
It cannot because its operating system and design lacks the performance, memory, capability, and functionality.
What are the Disadavantages of a Chromebook?
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Chromebook Vs Laptop: How To Decide Which Computer Fits Your Needs
Can you get by with a budget-friendly Chromebook, or do you need a laptop with more functionality? We’ll help you figure it out.
Senior Editor / Reviews
Joshua Goldman is a senior editor for CNET Reviews, covering laptops and the occasional action cam or drone and related accessories. He has been writing about and reviewing consumer technology and software since 2000.
Acer’s updated Chromebook Spin 713 two-in-one is the first with Thunderbolt 4 support and is Intel Evo verified.
If you’re looking for an affordable new computer that you can take on the go, Chromebooks are a tempting option — with some even dipping below $300. The web-browser-based Chromebooks, which come in both laptop and two-in-one designs, run on Google’s minimalistic Chrome operating system. Before making the leap from a Windows or MacOS system, it’s important to consider whether a Chromebook will offer everything you need from a computer.
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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 turned 10 years old last 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.