A few weeks ago I talked about tablets mainly the Apple iPad and the Microsoft ® Surface. This week I will add the Google Chromebook to the list of mobile computers.
A Chromebook is the latest innovation by Google to compete with tablet manufacturers. The Chromebook is physically designed to look like the traditional laptop but tends to fall into the tablet category. Google is hoping that this new device will make consumers consider their product when deciding which one to purchase to fit their needs.
Simply put, a Chromebook is a scaled down laptop you use for surfing the web, watching videos, typing emails, writing documents, and doing other things you can accomplish with a browser. Chrome also uses an exclusive operating system similar to Apple. The main difference is the design for those people who are familiar with using a laptop.
Here are some key advantages of a Chromebook
- Price – The cost of a Chromebook is far less than an Apple or Windows laptop (Pricing starts at 199.00)
- Speed – System boot up time is 10 seconds less thanks to the SSD (Solid State Drive).
- Battery – Battery life is 6 hours or more on average. This is twice the amount you might get on a standard Windows laptop.
- Security – The Chrome OS has built-in anti-virus and malware protection so there is no need to worry about malicious software.
- Parental Controls – Chromebooks are widely used in school systems, so their ability to create supervised accounts to track or limit on line activity is key.
- Synchronization – Chromebooks sync all of your apps and passwords with Chrome browsers on other computers.
- Cloud Storage – Google offers 100GB of free cloud storage for 2 years after purchase.
- Updates – Updates are done by themselves silently, automatically, and run in the background, making your device current and up-to-date at all times.
- MS Office ® – The Microsoft Office Suite is not compatible with Chromebooks. Google offers their own office suite version. Many of the programs are compatible but they lack some features offered in the Microsoft professional versions.
- Storage – Chromebooks only have between 16GB and 32GB of on-board storage available, but remember there is an additional 100GB of cloud storage space.
- No Optical Drive – Optical Drives are becoming a thing of the past with new laptops. If you need one then a Chromebook is not for you.
- Printing – You can have print capability using a Chromebook, but depending on the printer it may be more feasible using the Google Cloud Print.
Chromebooks offer many of the features offered on a traditional Windows PC. The question becomes “which is right for me?”. If you spend most of your time surfing the web, and are comfortable using web applications, then a Chromebook is a good fit for you. If not, you should stay with a standard PC.
I hope you found this information helpful. Please feel free to forward to others. If you would like to learn more on this topic or would like to request another topic for the future please contact me. If you missed any past newsletters or would like a printed copy, visit my website www.mdsystemsolutions.com.
Until next time…Happy Computing!!!
I have worked is various positions as a system administrator, support technician, as a help desk support, and as an IT consultant in a corporate environment. I currently run a small business where I provide computer services such as hardware configuration, installation, for residential and for medium and small businesses. You can contact me by email or visit my website at https://www.mdsystemsolutions.com.