Chromebook vs Windows laptop – what’s the difference?
A Chromebook lets you do everything you can on a Windows laptop, but with a few subtle differences and a lower price.
Chromebooks are built to get the best from Google's suite of online services and its Chrome operating system. Gmail, Google Maps, YouTube and Google Docs are all built in – perfect for revision, homework, and chilling.
Everything is web-app based – so you don’t need to download any extra software. Instead, use app versions of Word, Adobe or similar. They’re all available on Google Play to download.
Files are saved online to your kids’ personal Google Drive – so nothing ever gets lost, and it can all be accessed from any computer.
Here are 10 reasons to choose a Chromebook…
- You can get one for under £200
Yes, it's possible to get your hands on a laptop for less than £200 - though prices will vary. Acer, Asus, HP and Lenovo all have them – each with their own price tag. You'll get a super-portable laptop ideal for homework and studies.
Why so affordable? ‘Regular’ laptops need more memory for storing documents and software, but Chromebooks, in their simplicity, are perfect for schoolchildren who don’t need the fanciest software.
- It's perfect for essays and spreadsheets
Whether it’s essays or reports, the Chromebook is good to go with built-in apps for word processing (Docs) and spreadsheets (Sheets). You can do pretty much everything on Google Docs that you can on Microsoft Word.
- Get your kids’ favourite Android apps
If your kids are used to using Word, you can get them the Office for Android app via Google Play, along with all their other favourite apps.
Say hello to Instagram, Minecraft, and many more.
- Work is saved securely online
On a conventional laptop, work is saved to the machine. But with a Chromebook, files are saved online to Google Drive. This is Google’s secure online storage service and users get a chunk of free space there when buying a Chromebook.
Work is also automatically saved as you type – no more excuses for lost homework.
- Anti-virus comes built-in (and updates automatically)
Your Chromebook will automatically update with the latest anti-virus and other software – so don’t worry about viruses sneaking in.
Each time you switch on your Chromebook, it’ll check for updates and install any that come up – without needing to restart.
- They start up incredibly quickly
Chromebooks boot up super-fast. Switch it on and it’ll be running in under 10 seconds – faster to get assignments, films and games started.
- You can easily download parental controls
Every parent worries about what their children can access online. But with Chromebook, Safe Browsing settings can be downloaded quickly and efficiently so you can block inappropriate websites – cue sighs of relief.
- Keep the kids occupied all day
Got a long car journey or plane ride to fill with entertainment? With a 12-hour battery, kids of all ages will be kept busy, so you can focus on the road or get in some chill time yourself.
- They're great for Netflix and Google Play
Kids and parents alike can enjoy a Chromebook's wide selection of entertainment choices. Watch The Witcher or Peppa Pig via the Netflix app or download a movie from Google Play.
Some Chromebooks even have a 2-in-1 design, letting you flip the screen to touchscreen tablet mode to better enjoy your favourite shows. Try the nifty Asus Flip Chromebook in tent-mode for uninterrupted viewing.
- Work offline too
Chromebooks are designed to be used when connected to the internet – but you can still use it when you're offline, too:
- View and edit your schoolwork anywhere
- Watch shows you’ve downloaded on Netflix
- Write and send emails in Gmail – as soon as you’re back online the email will be sent
Decided on a Chromebook? Find one for your child here.
Share this article
Related in Laptops, desktops & tablets