Opting For a Chromebook Can Save You a Lot Of Money, But Is It Right For You?
If you spend the whole day in a web browser, you don’t need the stuff that comes with Apple’s macOS or Microsoft Windows because Google’s ChromeOS offers a sleek computing experience that allows you to run both Android and Linux apps. Yes, I am talking about replacing your laptop with a Chromebook.
What Exactly Chromebook Is?
A Chromebook is a laptop using Linux-based Chrome OS as its operating system. They are primarily used to perform various tasks using Google Chrome, with many applications and data placed in the cloud rather than on the machine.
Chromebook dominated the affordable laptop scene in 2018. It wasn’t true a few years ago when people didn’t know what to do with Google’s browser-based operating system. But now, after Chromebook has successfully infiltrated the education market, users, both young and old, are familiar with Chrome OS.
Chrome OS runs exclusively on Chromebook, the name for a laptop, two-in-one, and the tablets, nowadays, that run on Google operating system. If you’ve used Chrome, you should know that the browser is the portal. You can nearly do everything on Chrome OS. Google has created an easy-to-use operating system with low maintenance because it doesn’t utilize much power to run a Chromebook.
Difference Between a Chromebook And a Regular Laptop?
Yes, Chromebooks and laptops are different in many ways. Chromebook is used for the most diverse tasks, like using the internet, playing games, or watching movies. Either you work directly on the Chrome internet browser or install Android applications from the Google Play Store, you depend on the apps available for your Chromebook in the Play Store. For this purpose, there are numerous apps. You can find an app in the Plays Store that’s suitable for what you want.
On the other hand, a laptop is suitable for browsing the internet, writing texts, and sending emails. You can also watch movies on the laptop. Depending on the processor and the RAM, you can also edit photos and videos on some laptops. To play games, you need a laptop with a ‘separate’ dedicated video card. MacBooks are less suitable for gaming because few games are released for macOS.
What Makes Chromebooks Different From Other Laptops?
The big innovation that a Chromebook brought to market is eliminating a typical and multi-function PC operating system that does everything from booting system and sort documents to run programs and play CDs. Instead, Chromebooks use minimalistic Google’s Chrome OS, based on Linux. In turn, the Chrome OS uses the Chrome browser as a primary user interface, similar to the way other operating systems might launch programs from the so-called “desktop.”
The Most Important Chromebook Factor:
Unfortunately, many people buy Chromebooks and feel like they’ve been led astray, swindled, and bamboozled when they realize it’s nothing like the Mac or Windows devices they’re used to.
Unlike Windows laptops and MacBooks, Chromebooks don’t run programs (anything with a .exe or .app file extension). This can be the biggest adjustment for anyone switching over to a Chromebook.
It’s common for people to turn on their new Chromebook and instantly start searching for the apps or programs they’re used to running, only to realize they’re out of luck on the Chromebook.
Chromebooks, unlike other options, are cloud-based devices that essentially run as powerful Chrome browsers. This means that you won’t be able to download the apps or programs you had on your Macbooks or Windows laptops.
This can immediately take the Chromebook out of contention for many people. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s just a different experience than you’re used to. But, I can say that the Chromebook can be a great investment if you need a new laptop that won’t make you sweat when you check your bank account.
What Are Some Advantages Of Chromebooks?
With cheap hardware and software components, Chromebooks have quickly earned a spot in the PC marketplace for buyers seeking a low-cost laptop, allowing them to conduct most activities online. With the popularity of Chromebooks going beyond the budget, more advanced PC users are giving value to Chromebooks for fast boot times, lightweight systems, and overall mobility.
Advantages of a Chromebook computer include:
- Lightweight OS
- Long battery life
- Optimized for Google apps
- Fast boot times
- Browser-based simplicity
- Extremely thin and light
- Long battery life
The minimalistic Chrome OS and the absence of a typical spinning hard drive mean it can be unplugged for a longer time.
1. Optimized for Google apps:
If you already rely on Google apps such as Calendar and Gmail, the Chrome OS is optimized for using these Google products conveniently.
2. Fast Boot Times:
With an intentionally minimalistic OS and data stored on a solid-state drive, Chromebooks have less to accomplish when booting up, drastically reducing startup time. Chromebooks boot up in just 10 seconds!
3. Browser-Based Simplicity:
If you can use a web browser like Chrome, you can also use a Chromebook. The user interface is the Chrome browser, a familiar platform to many.
4. Extremely Thin and Light:
With fewer bulky internal components, Chromebooks are among the thinnest, lightest PC devices available today.
Things To Consider While Buying a Chromebook:
It’s worth noting that all Chromebooks are not created equal. Some are powerful, while a small number have a premium price.
You can spend $1,000/£1,000/AU$1,300 to buy a Chromebook having powerful hardware, even though it won’t be able to run outside Google Play and Google Chrome Stores.
Like the Google Pixelbook, some Google Chromebooks will set you back – though we have the best look at the Pixelbook Go, which should give budget-conscious, a more affordable Pixelbook. At this price range, there are no advantages over a Windows laptop.
It might not be obvious for you to decide what to consider while buying a Chromebook from hundreds of Chromebooks of the different brands out there in the market. Here is a complete guide of the points you should check every time before buying a suitable Chromebook for you.
According to the type of device, not all of the features we consider “standard” will come standard on every Chromebook. Chromebooks usually come as laptops or two-in-ones, so you’ll need to decide if you want the versatility of a 360-degree hinge. If you want to use numerous Android apps on your Chromebook, get a two-in-one with a touchscreen. It is indeed the best option since you can switch it into tablet mode and use it as an Android mobile device. The same goes for those who plan to use it as a multimedia device— streaming videos on YouTube and Netflix is easy when using convertible intent or show modes.
Beware to check the tech specs of the Chromebook to ensure it has basic features, such as an HD or FHD screen, backlit keyboard, a non-touch or touch panel, and an included stylus. You should also check ports to see if your preferred Chromebook has the ports you need.
RAM helps the device to run quickly when several tabs are open. Most Chromebooks come with 4GB of RAM, sufficient for those who use the Chromebook for leisurely YouTube watching, Web browsing, and light Android app.
Those who want to push Chrome OS forward—users with more than 20 browser tabs open at one time or while streaming YouTub, should get a machine with at least 8GB RAM. It ensures that the machine doesn’t lag as you open more tabs and programs and use them simultaneously.
Storage isn’t the most important factor in a Chromebook, but it shouldn’t be overlooked. Chrome OS works because Google expects users to rely (at least partially) on cloud-based storage services—things like Google Drive, DropBox, and others. Every Chromebook needs some storage—people who go Google’s recommended route can get by with just 16GB or 32GB of storage. Remember, it is similar to those in low- to mid-range smartphones. So, the Chromebook will have the same storage capacity as one of those handheld devices.
If you prefer to save some documents locally or download different apps and programs, you should get a Chromebook with 64GB to 128GB of storage.
Some prefer affordable Chromebooks. Mostly, Chrome OS laptops and convertibles are priced from $199 to $499, a couple of hundred dollars less than the affordable Windows devices.
All of the previously outlined factors contribute to the price of a Chromebook: design, RAM, and storage. A Chromebook that works well for most customers can be found at nearly $299-$499.
We are now presenting some best Chromebooks to assist you in buying your favorite according to your needs.
Best Chromebooks 2022:
Here is the list of best Chromebooks that you can buy in 2022 and 2023.
- Acer Chromebook Spon 713.
Acer’s Chromebook Spin 713 is the best Chromebook you can buy because it has a gorgeous 3:2 screen that rivals other expensive competitors.
The keyboard is excellent with nice and comfortable backlighting. There’s an HDMI port that you don’t see on a thin Chromebook every day. The 10th-Gen Intel processors handle a heavy load of tabs easily. The Spin’s speakers are not great, and there’s no biometric login as well, but these are reasonable sacrifices for a laptop of this quality at an affordable price.
In the market where the main differences between Chromebooks at this price range boils down to their screens and maybe a stylus, Acer sets itself apart by making an affordable laptop that’s excellent in almost every way.
The best Chromebook, Flip C434, is an excellent successor to the Flip C302CA. Not only, its super-small bezels allow Asus to fit its large 14-inch screen into a smaller chassis than you’d expect, but that screen is also both bright and vibrant. On top of that, its aluminum design gives a more premium feel than most of the Chromebooks out there. Oh, I almost forgot to mention: it lasts about 10 hours on a single charge.
If you’re looking for your on-the-go work at an affordable price, Lenovo Chromebook Duet gives an excellent value. It’s an ultra-portable 10.1-inch device with a kickstand cover and detachable keyboard.
The Duet has a MediaTek Helio P60T processor, up to 128GB of storage, 4GB of RAM, and performs well if you are browsing and don’t want to use a super heavy load.
It also uses Chrome OS, made for its convertible form factor. When detached from the keyboard, the Duet supports an Android-Esque gesture navigation system, switching between apps. But the most impressive feature of this Chromebook is battery life. It can run up to 11 hours straight with a heavy workload.
Of course, there are drawbacks to this Chromebook. The touchpad is quite small, with no headphone jack, only one USB-C port, and a 16:10 screen. These are reasonable compromises to make for such an affordable price. Thus, it makes a great secondary device for schoolwork or on-the-go browsing.
You might be thinking, is it a Chromebook or a tablet? Well, luckily, you won’t have to decide as long as you have a brilliant Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook. It delivers two form factors in one while utilizing the Chrome OS’s versatility and sets you back less than many of the top Windows tablets.
Of course, unlike all the best Chromebooks, its battery is an incredibly long life of almost 22 hours – so you can pull an all-night work through the day, and you’ll still have it before it runs out of juice.
Naturally – the keyboard is tiny, and the trackpad is not reliable. The charger and headphones share one port. However, if budget is your top priority, these Chromebooks are definitely not deal-breakers.
Easily the best Chromebook value, Samsung’s 11.6-inch laptop is light enough to carry anywhere. With 4GB RAM, the Celeron N3060-powered Chromebook 3 handles multitasking without any difficulty. For an affordable device, it looks really classy. It is plastic, but the metallic black covering is comfortable enough for any space. On the Laptop Mag Battery Test, the Chromebook 3 runs for 9 hours, 44 minutes straight, which is more than enough for working and surfing the Internet all day. It’s easily one of the cheapest and best Chromebooks you can buy.
The Chromebook 3 performed excellently in our Chromebook drop test, which involved dropping 11 of the most popular Chromebooks from 2.5 feet and 4.5 feet onto concrete and carpet. Although not technically ruggedized, Samsung’s laptop didn’t show any signs of wear after our first few drops.
It is indeed a powerful Chromebook with a sleek and beautiful design
If you are looking for extra power, then don’t mind getting a slightly larger laptop, that is the HP Chromebook x360 14. HP has numerous configurations falling under this name, but we will suggest the model we had tested with 8GB RAM and 64GB storage to run with the i3 processor.
We picked Asus because of its elegant design as there isn’t much to complain about because of its slightly larger display. It has the same ports, storage space, and RAM. The keyboard is excellent. It also sounds better because the speakers are on the keyboard deck instead of the bottom.
The Google Pixelbook Go is a beautiful, 13.3-inch laptop, weighing just 2.3 pounds. It has a magnesium chassis and a ridged grip on the bottom to keep it from slipping on slanted places.
The Pixelbook Go is portable and stylish and also delivers a solid performance. It supports fast charging through its USB-C ports. Battery life is also impressive as it lasts over eight hours, and it should get you through a full workday with no problem. Its excellent standout feature is its keyboard, which is quiet with good travel.
It is an expensive product, and it doesn’t top our list because the Chromebook Flip C434 offers similar specs and features for a comparatively lower price. We think many shoppers who value long battery and lightweight design might prefer to spend a bit more on this device instead.
The best Chromebooks balance the efficient use of Chrome OS and a bargain price. HP Chromebook 14, ultimately, is the perfect example.
While it is similar to the Acer Chromebook 15 in many aspects, this 14-inch Chromebook is more compact and looks slightly better than others. HP Chromebook 14 offers the best value of any Chromebook out there in the market with a bright blue finish and screen made to surprise.
The battery life and performance are average, but the HP Chromebook 14 is one of the best Chromebooks.
We are impressed by its slim and sleek design and light-weightedness. So, this means HP Chromebook 14 is a great device for anyone wanting a long-lasting laptop and can comfortably carry it around with them. If you want a laptop to work sitting on a sofa, it is a great choice.
Unlike some other Chromebooks, the HP Chromebook 14 comes with numerous ports, including HDMI-out, USB 3.0, and a microSD card slot, making a brilliantly versatile Chromebook.
If you want a portable and versatile Chromebook, then the Acer Spin 11 fits the budget very nicely. It reminds you that Chromebooks are fun and runs Android apps very well at the same time.
You don’t get the best specs, with the screen resolution and internal storage, the lowlights, but this is still very usable and will give you several years of good service—a true alternative to Windows and macOS laptops have to offer.
Premium Chromebooks occupy their own space in the laptop market, bridging that gap between powerful traditional laptops and super lightweight Chromebooks.
And, the Asus Chromebook Flip C436F is perhaps one of the very few examples of these out there, with its combination of superb power, terrific feature set, premium build, and a price tag that’s cheaper than its rivals.
We were really impressed with its gorgeous design during our time with the Asus Chromebook Flip C436F, with a magnesium alloy body, stunning 1080p screen, and wonderful keyboard. This could easily rival premium laptops like the Dell XPS 13 or MacBook, and it even comes with features like Wi-Fi 6 support and a fingerprint sensor.
If you’re looking for a lightweight OS machine that touts more power than the rest of the clan, this is one of the best Chromebooks 2020 has to offer.
It is the best 2-in-1 Chromebook. With a long-life battery and a detachable design, XP Chromebook x2 is everything one wishes for business purposes. It’s the same as a Microsoft Surface Pro running Chrome OS. It also offers a sharp and bright display, a comfy keyboard, and a quality sound for solid typing. The Core m3 processor is not blazing, but it’s plenty for working primarily in the cloud. Moreover, it includes the keyboard and pen in the price.
HP Chromebook x2 is better than Microsoft’s cute 2-in-1. You will get an in-lap typing experience bigger 12.3-inch screen and long battery life. Unfortunately, the Chromebook x2’s performance leaves some desires. Its bezels are on the thick side. But still, HP has innovated with this fantastic detachable laptop that’s not only one of the best.
HP includes a one-year hardware warranty and 90 days of phone support.
The 3.99-pound Inspiron 14 is a bit heavy, a sturdy convertible product with brushed aluminum chassis giving it a premium look. It has a wide backlit keyboard and a good 1920 x 1080 display with color accuracy. An 8th Gen Core i3 processor, 4GB RAM, and 128GB storage deliver snappy performance for multitasking, streaming, browsing, and even more demanding artistic functions.
The Inspiron 14 has a stylus that lives in a dedicated socket inside the chassis. Thanks to electromagnetic resonance technology, it doesn’t need any batteries or charging.
It favors longevity over beefy specs. With a solid build quality that rivals a MacBook, it’s easy to excuse the Acer Chromebook 15’s aversion to 2-in-1 form factors.
Still, given that the best Chromebooks rolling out this year are fully convertible, thanks to Android app support’s wide adoption, the Acer Chromebook 15 had to prove itself with more than great style.
Beyond its aptitude for lying flat using a 180-degree hinge, this beautiful 15-inch Chromebook also makes a great impression with its battery life, lasting nearly 17 hours in our battery test.
Convertible Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 is away from the budget purchase. It offers a lot for its price, including a built-in battery-free, extra front-facing camera for quick photos of blackboards or job sites, and a stylus. The camera above the keyboard is also of a high-resolution — 13-megapixel sensor with autofocus.
The V2 also has a nice design with other premium Chromebooks, including an aluminum lid. It’s portable at 2.9 pounds, and it has a microSD slot in addition to its two USB-C ports and headphone jack.
Who says Chromebooks have to look ordinary? It’s not the case with Lenovo C340 because it gives off the impression of costing a lot more money than actual. It is made of grey plastic and aluminum, with a large, vibrant screen and a nicely laid out keyboard giving a satisfying typing experience.
The 15.6-inch display flips, so the laptop doubles as a tablet, and you can prop it up in a ‘tent’ position if you want to enjoy some movies by sitting back. It’s not the finest or lightest Chromebook we’ve ever seen, but you will get a good selection of ports and buttons.
With excellent quality, impressive battery life, and flexibility, it’s a Chromebook worth noting. Definitely, it is worth a place on our list of the best Chromebooks of 2020. At the price, which is a fantastic value, and it’s a very appealing option overall.
Chromebooks are known as cheap and low-end devices. And, while they can be offering an exceptional bargain in many cases, so, that’s not the end. If you strip away the software fluff doesn’t mean you have to strip away the hardware power as well. There are high-end Chromebooks, powerful, capable machines. In many ways, they’re the best in the world, with good hardware, lightweight software, and everything you need for web-based work.
In this article, we have almost included the best Chromebooks available on Amazon. You can buy yourself one without any confusion.