Chromebook Vs Laptop: Which Is Right For Me
You’re looking for a thin and light PC and have decided to buy either a laptop or a Chromebook. So which system is best for you? Will the laptop’s overall versatility give it an edge? Or is a Chromebook’s minimalistic operating system and focus on cloud storage and services more suited to your needs?
Which Brand Of Chromebook Is Best
What is the best Chromebook? Asus Chromebook Detachable CM3. Samsung Chromebook 3. Google Pixelbook Go. Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook. Acer Chromebook 715. Lenovo Chromebook Duet. HP Pro C640 Chrome Enterprise. Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook. The best Chromebook for a lightweight experience.
Final Verdict: It Depends On Why You Want A Laptop
Chromebook is perfect if you primarily surf the web, browse Facebook, catch up on email, stream music and movies, create documents in Google Docs, and balance your checkbook in Microsoft Excel for Microsoft 365.
Windows-based laptops and MacBook models are for people who need to leave the browser for installed apps and are willing to pay the price to do so. Cheaper laptops in the Chromebook range tend to be too slow to be worth it, and a decent laptop easily doubles or triples the price of a Chromebook. If you need specific software or higher-end performance, traditional laptops are worth the extra price.
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Chromebooks Are Cheap But Are They Any Good
- University of Maine
When you compare all of the features and capabilities of a Chromebook vs Windows laptops, you may find that a Chromebook does everything you need at half the price of a Windows computer. For others who use a lot of installed apps, like Photoshop, or peripherals with Windows drivers, a Windows machine is the better choice.
Must use cloud based apps.
Almost unusable without internet.
Limited support for USB peripherals.
Price far less than Windows laptops.
Use cloud based and installed apps.
Stay productive both online and offline.
Supports any device with Windows drivers.
Much more expensive.
A Chromebook is a viable option for a large portion of people who use laptops. This is true if you’re a user who mostly uses internet-based services like email or Google services, and doesn’t depend much on installed apps.
However, if you’re a gamer with a large library of installed games, or much of your productivity is based on applications like Microsoft Office, Adobe Premiere, or Photoshop, you’re going to find yourself severely limited when using a Chromebook.
But due to the significant difference in price, the Chromebook remains a viable option for people who would like to have a computer but don’t have enough money to invest in a traditional computer.
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.
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Oh And You Can Install Android And Linux Apps Too
OK, so remember when I said you cant install programs like Microsoft Office, Photoshop, Adobe Acrobat Reader, etc. on a Chromebook? Well, that was kinda true and kinda untrue.
It was true in the sense that you cant install the Windows versions of those products. But it was untrue in the sense that you can actually install most of those products, as Android apps or Linux apps.
Internet Use: Chromebooks Are Fully Capable
Access to all web based apps.
Include high-end Wi-Fi adapters.
Typically include Ethernet port.
Supports installed apps.
Since Chromebooks depend on internet connectivity, you’ll typically find the best Wi-Fi installed on these devices. However, there’s no built-in Ethernet port if you ever want to plug directly into your internet router.
With that said, ChromeOS does support USB Ethernet adapters, but you’ll need to purchase the adapter separately.
If you lose your internet connection, a Windows laptop remains usable thanks to the locally installed applications. You can continue writing a Microsoft Word doc without any internet connection. With Chromebook, you won’t be able to access that Google Doc file stored on your Google Drive account.
With that said, Google and other cloud services have improved offline capabilities that let you continue working on documents offline, but you need to enable those services and ensure sync is enabled with your Chromebook’s local drive or SSD card.
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How Are They Related
A Chromebook is a laptop that runs on the Chrome OS. A Chromebook has all the functionality of a laptop, but in the form of a lightweight operating system that doesnt require any applications to be installed. The apps are pre-installed in the system and you can use them just like any other app on your computer.
Before we go into the differences between a Chromebook and a laptop, lets take a look at the similarities between the two.
The operating system is a part of the hardware of a computer and is responsible for giving it its functionality. The operating system runs all the programs and all the programs can access the hardware. The operating system is very important as it makes the hardware and software work together. Both Chromebook and Laptop are electronic devices that run on an operating system.
The storage capacity is the amount of data that can be stored on a computer. This capacity depends on the hardware that is installed in the computer. Both Chromebook and Laptop can store data in their storage media. The storage capacity can be seen as the amount of RAM and ROM that is installed in the computer.
The display is the part of a computer that is used to display the images and the graphics. Both Chromebook and Laptop have a display and the screen size depends on the hardware installed in the computer.
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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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.
A Chromebook Can Update Itself
Being able to update itself is a huge benefit of a Chromebook over a laptop. Chromebooks basically keep themselves up to date and do seamlessly, whereas a Windows laptop will nag and moan far more and sometimes spoil your day by updating itself when you least want it to! says Tim Danton. Whats more, many Chromebooks now come with guaranteed updates.
One thing to consider is that Windows will continue to provide useful and possibly free updates for as long as you use your computer, which means it has a good shelf life. A Chromebook, however, comes with a AUE date that lasts roughly around 6 years. Once that date is up, the Chromebook won’t be as secure as it was when you first bought it.
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What Difference On Windows 10 Laptops And Chromebook
Chrome OS is a lightweight operating system compared with Windows 10 and macOS. Thats because the OS centers around the Chrome app and web-based processes. Unlike Windows 10 and macOS, you cant install third-party software on a Chromebook all the apps you get come from the Google Play Store.
Performance: Chromebook Wins Among Low
Other laptops outperform Chromebook models based on processing power.
Windows doesn’t scale down well.
MacBook performs better than Chromebook but carries a larger price tag.
If you can buy a Windows-based laptop for the price of a Chromebook, why buy a Chromebook? The magic of the Chromebook resides in the operating system that powers it. Windows is designed more for the enterprise than for low-end laptops, and it doesn’t scale down well. Windows and desktop apps require more hard drive space, more RAM, and more processing time.
In contrast, Chrome OS is built around the Chrome web browser and brings us back to the days of terminals and mainframes. Those dumb terminals depended on the mainframe but had one advantage. Those dumb terminals didn’t need to perform well because the mainframe did the heavy lifting.
This is the same model that makes the Chromebook so popular. The internet does the heavy lifting, which means that a $250 Chromebook can perform as well as a more expensive laptop.
Chromebook easily wins the performance medal when it comes to low-cost laptops. If you’re willing to drop the cash, a laptop can run circles around a Chromebook.
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Main Differences Between Chromebook And Laptop
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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Manage Your Photos And Home Videos
I use Google Photos to manage my photos and home videos. When I take a photo or shoot some video, the Google Photos mobile app automatically uploads it to Googles cloud. Then I can see them from any device with the Google Photos app installed, and also at .
This is very convenient, but I still like to have a local backup. You cant really back up to your Chromebooks local hard drive, because its too small. But you can still plug in an external USB hard drive or micro SD card, and store a copy of your photos there. device plugged into my router, and I use their DS Photo mobile app to automatically upload back up photos and videos, as soon as theyre taken.)
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.
Read more: Best laptop under $500 for 2022
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.
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The Ins And Outs Of Owning A Chromebook
So what should you know about owning a Chromebook? Here are a few of the major points:
1. These Chromebooks are Great if Youre on a Budget
If you just need to get back on the web so you can do some work or keep up with your information, a Chromebook might be just what you did. The cost of entry is low for this device you can find a Chromebook for about $300 or so.
There are some models as cheap as $150 or $200.
This cheap price point makes a Chromebook the ultimate backup computer. When you just need to get back up and running and need to know that youre still using a high-quality computer, it doesnt get better than the Chromebook.
2. Theyre Speedy and Easy to Use
Ease of use is one of the strongest perks of the Chromebook. You can generally get up and running with these laptops just a few seconds after booting it up.
Once you get it loaded every application runs seamlessly and allows you to go from task to task without setbacks. Many travelers love Chromebooks because they can quickly use them during layovers without worrying about slowdown or poor performance.
3. Youll Typically Get a Chromebook for Lightweight Activity
Make no mistake about it the Chromebook isnt what you want if you have heavy applications to run. They are built for streamlined work, rather than long-term, accumulation.
Using Software: Windows Laptops Are A Must
Access to both web apps and local apps.
Runs any browser you prefer.
Can handle processor-intensive tasks.
The single biggest difference between Chromebook vs Windows laptops is the fact that you can’t locally install software on a Chromebook.
For example, if you have a Photoshop license and use it often to do photo editing, Chromebooks just aren’t an option when you replace your Windows laptop. High-end Windows laptops also have the processing power for things like video editing that Chromebooks just can’t come close to matching.
Also, ChromeOS is built upon the Chrome browser itself, so if you prefer Firefox or Edge you’re going to be disappointed with a Chromebook.
With all that said, there are workarounds for Chromebook users. For example, you can install Linux on a Chromebook, which gives you access to full-featured apps like Gimp and other Linux applications. However, doing so voids your warranty and stops ChromeOS security updates so it isn’t recommended for novice users.
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Whats It Like Using A Chromebook Vs A Windows Pc
While its easy to focus on what youre going to do with either a Chromebook or a Windows PCweb browsing! games!its easy to lose sight of the little things.
One of the best features of a Chromebook thats easily overlooked is Googles approach to updates and security. Everything takes place behind the scenes. Windows downloads updates for antivirus and other programs in the background, but others require reboots. If you dont have Windows properly configured, those reboots can even occur while youre using the PC, which can be hugely annoying. While Chromebooks occasionally need to be rebooted to apply updates, the process is quicker and less intrusive, as Google reloads the pages you were on quite quickly.
In fact, quick is one of the best features of a Chromebook. While theyre less full-featured than a Windows PC, booting and resuming them just generally feels more efficient than it does on Windows. Part of that is the simplicity: Google takes care of most of the mundane tasks of powering a PC, like security and driver updates. Blue screens of death occur on Windows Chromebooks rarely crasha fact .
Googles new Chrome OS Diagnostics features are part of Chrome OS 90.
Even accessing those files on Chrome OS requires clicking the home circle in the lower-left corner, then either swiping or clicking the exposed up arrow to access the Chrome OS apps, some of which can be stored in the taskbar dock for easy access.