Considering the dizzying number of various devices that most of us have at our disposal nowadays (even if we do not actually own a specimen of each), it is small wonder that many people become unable to differentiate between those that look similar or share some key words in their names. Of course everyone can tell a smartphone from a PC, but what about laptops and Chromebooks?
If you are one of those people still stumbling through the fog regarding the exact things that put the Chromebook into their own class, read on to see what makes them so different.
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What is a Chromebook, in plain English?
You can think of a Chromebook as a sub-kind of laptop that has been adapted into its own kind of device. They are designed to be very lightweight, and their work is based in the cloud via Google’s Chrome platform.
What makes them notable is the low cost: they are far more budget friendly than the average laptop or ultrabook (which are about the same size as the Chromebook). Their primary manufacturers are Samsung, Asus, HP, and Acer.
In the context of real life usage, you are most likely to see a Chromebook in a classroom, or as the “test machine” of a person who has never had a laptop before. They are best suited to fans of Google and Android.
How useful is it at work and in school?
Since they have so little space and are not particularly powerful, it is easy to underestimate the Chromebooks. However, in exchange for that, they boast a speed to be reckoned with, which few related devices can match.
The waiting time between startup and starting work is virtually non-existent, which is very handy when going between classes all day or having to catch up with your work on the go.
If you are having trouble deciding which one to get for your own academic or professional needs, you can check out an online Buyer’s Guide like the one at Orphan Laptops for example.
These types of guides are specifically geared towards helping you compare devices and pick the one that is best for you, and any reputable vendor who takes their business seriously will have one readily available.
Chromebooks are best suited to grade school and high school, since they are not powerful enough to endure the demanding programs and dozens of browser tabs that the average college student needs.
They are also not suited for watching movies, which can severely hinder those classes that feature educational films, and there is no way to use them for games either.
What specs does a typical Chromebook have?
When buying a new device, you will naturally want to be able to find your computer’s specs easily. These will vary between individual Chromebooks as well, but there are some universals they tend to follow.
Screens are HD and range from 11.6 to 15.6 inches. 4k and Touchscreen exist but are rare. Most Chromebooks have 2GB to 4GB of RAM and use Intel Celeron dual-core processors, typically maxing out at 2.0GHz.
You can boost storage using a USB drive or SD card. Common ports are HDMI, USB 3.0, and headphone jacks. Standard battery life is 7-9h, with newer models boasting a whole 12h.
What is the difference with a Chromebook’s OS?
The Chrome Operating System is kind of a boosted up version of the browser that everyone is familiar with. Any given laptop that runs on the Chrome OS is considered a Chromebook. This system heavily relies on Google’s related services, such as Gmail, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Keep, and the like.
To see how the Chrome OS compares to Windows and Mac, visit this link: https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/windows-vs-mac-vs-chrome-os-best-operating-system/
Because it functions in the cloud, the Chrome OS does not need a lot of RAM nor does it require a powerful processor.
All data is stored online, which is why the Chromebooks themselves have distinctly low storage. For this reason, they are not able to effectively run the full version of Photoshop, nor Microsoft Office (unless you go the extra mile and take the trouble to install the Windows OS on them instead).