Differences between a Chromebook and a laptop

What are the differences between a laptop and a Chromebook? Maybe you have heard about the advantages of the latter, which are the best Chromebooks on the market or what apps you should install on one of them.

These are articles that we usually publish on TreceBits, but the reality is that there are still many users who do not fully understand what a Chromebook is and what features it has that make it different from traditional laptops. Therefore, in this article, you will find a solution to all the doubts that you may have in this regard.

What is a Chromebook?

First of all, it might be good to understand what a Chromebook is. These are very light computers, much cheaper in price than normal personal computers, which run a specific operating system, ChromeOS, developed by Google and which works in the cloud.

They were launched in 2010, first as part of a Google pilot project for schools, but soon manufacturers such as Acer, Samsung, HP, Dell, Lenovo and ASUS, among others, were releasing their own models. Even Google started manufacturing them – the equipment was called “Pixelbooks” – but stopped marketing them in 2022.

There is a wide variety of Chromebook devices on the market: from the simplest ones designed only for browsing to devices for gaming or corporate purposes. There are also very different screen sizes, some with a touch panel or that fold as if it were a tablet.

How is a Chromebook different from a laptop?

All Chromebooks are laptops, but not all laptops are Chromebooks. The differences between one and the other, in addition to the fact that Chromebooks work in the Cloud, are the following:

-OS. As we have already said, all Chromebooks run the ChromeOS operating system, while personal computers run either Windows or macOS.

On Chromebook you need to have a Google account to log in and Google productivity apps are installed by default (Gmail, Google Drive, Google Photos, etc.)

-Applications. Native Windows and Mac apps cannot be used on a Chromebook. However, Android apps can be used (including those from the Microsoft Office suite) and you can download them from the Google Play Store.

You can also use extensions for the Google Chrome browser that are downloaded from the Google Chrome Store.

-Security. Chromebooks have 10 years of free software updates, free monthly updates and patches, and their own protection system against Malware and viruses.

For its part, on traditional laptops it is necessary to install specific antivirus security software, a separate program.

-Storage. While on a laptop you will need more storage capacity (starting at 128 GB if you don’t want to run out of free memory in the blink of an eye), on a Chromebook 32 GB may be enough. Keep in mind that most of your documents and files will be stored in the cloud.

-Price. In this aspect you will also find important differences. By having fewer technical requirements, you can find a Chromebook with good quality-price ratio for about 250 euros on the market and go up to 500 euros for one with medium-high qualities.

However, a good quality computer will cost around 600 or 700 euros if it is Windows, since if you want a MacBook you will have to pay at least 1,100 euros.

Which is better to buy, a Chromebook or a laptop?

It is difficult to give a generic answer to that question, since it will depend on your personal case. As advice, the recommendation would be to look at three fundamental factors:

-The price. What is your budget?

-Your personal needs. What are you going to use the equipment for?

-The software you will need to run on the computer.

By combining the answer to these three questions and knowing what a Chromebook is and what it is for – something this article will have helped you with – you will be able to decide if in your personal case it is better to buy one or the other.

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