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Chromebooks are web-centric laptops that run Google's Chrome operating system (OS). Chrome OS is built around the Chrome browser, which runs web-based apps like Gmail and Google Docs, as well as some apps from third-party vendors, most can also run Android apps. This approach usually makes a Chromebook relatively low maintenance, with all software updated automatically and all your data and settings synced to Google’s cloud for easy backup and restoration. It also requires less computing power and storage, which means that they cost considerably less than Windows and Mac laptops. This has fueled their popularity in schools and other places that need inexpensive laptops for basic computing. We offer Chromebooks from the leading brands in the industry:
You don't install traditional software on a Chromebook. Rather, you use web apps that can be bookmarked on any website, like Gmail, Google Docs, Zoom, and Microsoft Office. Many Chrome apps can be used offline if you don't have an internet connection. Google’s Chrome Web Store also has web apps to download. These apps run in their own windows rather than in the Chrome browser and can also be used offline. Most of these devices also support Google’s Play Store for Android, which allows you to run many (but not all) Android apps in separate windows. Chromebooks run Chrome OS, which is based on the open-source Linux operating system. ChromeOS is known for being easy to use. Plus, it downloads and installs updates automatically without the user having to do anything. Chromebooks store files on solid-state drives (SSDs) like other types of computers, but the SSDs in them are typically much smaller than those of Windows laptops because Chrome OS needs much less space. One advantage of Chromebooks is that they boot up much faster than Windows or Mac laptops. However, because Chromebooks typically use the same Intel processors as Windows and older Mac laptops, their batteries don't last much longer than those more powerful machines.
Chrome OS uses Google Drive to back up files, like documents, photos, music, and videos. Google Drive provides 100 gigabytes (GB) of storage free the first year. A Google Drive subscription is worth the money if you own a Chromebook because all of your data and settings are automatically synced to Google’s cloud-based servers. This means you don't have to remember to perform manual backups. Google Drive also makes switching to a new Chromebook very easy because all you have to do is sign into your Google account and wait for everything to sync over to the new computer. If it has a problem with its software, you can reset the machine and get all your data back quickly.
The Chrome OS architecture allows for a wide variety of designs, ranging from thin-and-light models that can look more like tablets with external keyboards, to larger Chromebooks with the same screen sizes and range of expansion ports as new Windows or Mac laptops.
In terms of the actual hardware, many Chromebooks and Windows laptops can be hard to distinguish from a distance. This is because both support such features as touch screens and 2-in-1 convertible designs.