Should You Get A Chromebook For Christmas?

The shopping days before Christmas are becoming fewer–pause for screams of panic–and you need to start thinking about your wish list. And, at the top of your list? A new computer. You just need to figure out exactly which one you want.

wish list

“If I had eyes this would be much easier.”

If owning a Chromebook appeals to you, but you’re not sure about its capabilities, you will want to read on.

Price

One of the Chromebook’s best selling features is the price. Typically retailing for between $200 and $400, they are a budget-friendly alternative to the competitors’ products. If you are, however, chasing a high-end, Cadillac-esque model, Computerworld‘s “Chromebook Pixel Revisited” compares the $1300 Google Pixel to the traditional, inexpensive Chromebook models.

Speed

It’s hard to beat the Chromebook’s response time. If you’re late for class or need to look up the answer to last night’s homework in a hurry, you will appreciate the fact that it will boot up in the blink of an eye–if each blink takes about 8 seconds.

Microsoft Office

While Microsoft Office is not available for Chromebooks, you can access the web-based version called “Office Online.” Plus, Google offers its own collection of Office-ish programs–although they are lacking some of the features that the Microsoft product has. According to Laptop Magazine‘s “Should I Buy a Chromebook?,” Google Drive users will be able to create everything from text documents to spreadsheets and presentations, while all of your existing Word and PowerPoint files can be imported directly into Drive, letting you work on them as well.

Photoshop

If you’re a photography student, work for the campus newspaper, or you simple love taking pix, you’ll be happy to know that Photoshop will be available as a streaming Chrome application. Not only will you be able to touch up your favorite selfies, but, according to PC World‘s “5 Powerful Things You Didn’t Know Chromebooks Could Do,” the fact that you will be relying on Adobe’s servers will enable you to use this demanding function quickly and easily without draining your battery.

Apps

One common concern regarding the Chromebook is its lack of apps–especially when compared against Apple’s offerings. Techradar‘s “10 Things Google Should Fix on the Chromebook” asserts that while there are some genuinely useful offline apps available, the Chrome Web Store is “packed with feeble apps which are little more than links, or just don’t work properly.”

On the flip side, if Chrome doesn’t offer your favorite product or app, there is likely a way around it. Android PC Review‘s “Chromebooks vs Windows Laptops: the Truth” offers that instead of Skype, one could use Google Hangouts, Quicken could be replaced with Quicken’s online version, and there are games that look similar to Call of Duty as well.

Other features

Lightweight and portable, the Chromebook is easy to transport from home to school and from class to class. And, as “Are Chromebooks Good? Pros and Cons” states, they offer a battery life of roughly twice that of a standard Windows laptop–six hours or more–and they come with built-in virus and malware protection.

Well, there you have it. The lowdown on the Chromebook. You’d better get your wishlist finished and out to your gift-givers before they buy you something horrible like a–insert any Celine Dion, Justin Bieber, or Michael Buble CD here–and wind up sad and computerless.

Would you like a Chromebook for Christmas?

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I am a freelance writer, avid blogger, illustrator, and aspiring novelist who thinks the world is a terribly funny place filled with bizarre things to observe--and, of course, comment on. You can follow her somewhat neurotic and OCD ramblings at The Embiggens Project and at Searching for Barry Weiss.

One Response to “Should You Get A Chromebook For Christmas?”

  1. Tim

    Dec 01. 2014

    Great article. If you’re looking at Chromebooks, you might want to look at this Chromebox Buyer’s Guide

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