What is a Google Chromebook?

David Trenmar
Jun 9 · 4 min read

You may have already heard about Chromebook on the web, and you might be willing to know what are some differences from regular laptops.

This guide will offer you a better understanding of a Chromebook, of the advantages and drawbacks of such devices, in order for you to decide whether you’d be better off with a regular laptop rather than one of the best Chromebooks.

What is a Chromebook?

Let’s see at a glance what a Chromebook is.

Basically, Chromebooks are lightweight and cheap laptops powered by Google’s proprietary ChromeOS operating system.

Most regular laptops are powered by Windows 10, while MacBooks run on macOS. ChromeOS is a lightweight operating system. This means that it doesn’t offer all features of Windows 10 or macOS.

Infact, the first ChromeOS version (launched in 2011) was rather basic. You needed an internet connection to use various apps such as Google Docs, as the system didn’t feature any stand-alone software.

Since 2011, ChromeOS has surely evolved quite a great deal. Now you can install apps (Android ones included) and use your device while offline.

However, it still has its limitations in comparison with Windows 10 and macOS. These being said, this tiny little gadget has its loyal users who prefer it to more expensive alternatives.

As ChromeOS is a rather lightweight operating system, it can run on less powerful processors and computer components. By being able to run of such hardware, Chromebooks are way more affordable than regular laptops.

In addition, this offers Chromebooks and impressive battery life. You can use such a device for a full day of work without the need to charge it again.

Samsung and Acer were the first manufacturers to launch Chromebooks, back in May 2011. The umbrella term ‘Google Chromebooks’ includes a wide range of devices made by different manufacturers such as Acer, Samsung, HP, Dell, and Asus.

In addition, Google has launched its own version of Chromebook at some point in time.

Although they are among the most affordable alternatives to Windows and Mac portable computers, Google Pixelbook, as well as other Google Chromebooks, are premium devices.

They prove that a Chromebook can be as stylish and as powerful as a Windows laptop or MacBook.

What kind of software programs can a Chromebook support?

Since Chromebooks run on ChromeOS, you won’t be able to install any MAC or Windows programs.

You’ll have to use Chrome apps, or online apps that are based on the Chrome browser.

There are lots of Chrome apps you can install and use. However, since you can also run online apps like Google Docs, this means that you won’t need to bother with installing too many apps on your device.

This means that Chromebooks can be perfectly fine with smaller hard drives, hence their very low prices.

Lately, Chromebooks have become able to run Android apps. This means that Chromebook users can take advantage of anything they can find in the Google Play Store.

Most modern software programs and tools have an Android version. This makes it possible for Chromebook fans to use Microsoft Office, photo editors, and a wide array of games on their devices.

Chromebooks can also run Linux-based apps. Compatible devices can use programs that were designed for Linux, the open source operating system that has changed the way we use and buy software.

A while ago, ChromeOS was rather limited.

Nonetheless, the range of software apps you can run on Chromebooks today is nothing short of amazing.

ChromeOS isn’t as exposed to viruses and other malicious scripts as Windows 10. These threats target Windows systems, sue to their tremendous popularity.

Thanks to the use of cloud-based services, Chromebooks don’t require a large number of files to download and install. ChromeOS gets its security updates automatically to keep your device safe and secure at all times.

Chromebooks and Education

Thanks to their low price, long battery life and enhanced security features, Chromebooks have become extremely popular in the education area of activity.

They can make the perfect laptops for students, as they offer all software this category of users may need. Cloud services such as Google Docs enable collaboration between students and their teachers.

Some manufacturers released Chromebook versions that are dedicated to students, with excellent durability and with great abilities to withstand rough usage conditions.

The Chrome Education License allows schools to offer Chromebooks to their students and manage all of these devices from a central unit.

This way, teachers can control which apps are installed.

Parental controls can also ensure that students only use approved and safe apps and online content.

David Trenmar

Written by

My name is David and I’m an avid outdoor explorer.