The Good News About Chromebooks: Part Three

Chromebooks Are the Best – but why, exactly?

In my previous installment, I covered what a Chromebook is. Now I’d like to go over some points about why you should buy one. Simply put, you should buy a Chromebook because Chromebooks are the best.

Let me state the ways in which they are the best.

1) They start up immediately. Like, lift the lid, and you’re up and running. I’ve used many a high-powered PC for work. I run a lot of big reports, so the company supplies me with a ton of processing power, up there in the gamer range. And yet, each of these Windows laptops, for all of history, takes a minute (literally, a minute – on a good day but often more) to load. No matter how premium and new the company laptop is, you just have to be patient and budget some time for it to boot up.

One might think this is a fact of life… but it’s not. Chromebooks are different. On a Chromebook, you open the lid, and you’re off. This alone is a reason why you should buy a Chromebook; unless, of course, you simply do not value your time. In which case, by all means, persist with a Windows laptop or a MacBook.

2) Chromebook updates are instant. And they’re always an improvement. A Chromebook update is something to look forward to, like the iPhone update, except that it occurs in a fraction of a second.

A couple times a month, you get a notification that the next time you restart your Chromebook, it will have an update. Chromebook updates don’t just start downloading in the background and slowing down your performance. They don’t pop up out of the blue and say you have no choice now but to shut down and restart for 30 minutes. They don’t make you watch a mysterious, arbitrary progress bar that keeps resetting. They just happen on their own, out on a server somewhere, and the next time you restart your Chromebook (which, as I’ve mentioned, happens super fast), voilà! You’ve got updates.

It’s not like an iPhone where you just don’t have your Chromebook anymore for an indeterminate amount of time while it loads updates. Nope. You just get an improved device, in the blink of an eye.

3) Chrome OS is cheery and pleasant. Love or hate Google, you gotta admit, they have some awesome, minimalist design language experts there. Chrome OS is a great example of Google’s nice eye for design. It just looks good. It’s always fresh, and at the same time, intuitive. The updates are always improvements, and I welcome them, rather than get annoyed by them. Even some of the more radical changes are immediately intuitive.

As opposed to Windows. Every time Windows/Office updates to a new look, I find it jarring and disorienting. Even if, subtly, Windows improves over time, I’ve always thought it at best to be a hot mess, and it’s new looks over the years are frustrating to productivity, at least in the short term.

Macs on the other hand, are consistent to a fault. That’s Apple’s whole thing – don’t rock the boat. The interface hardly ever changes over time, and that is part of the appeal. Its great for grandma and your Aunt Nance that nothing ever changes on their computer. You always get the same old thing. Emphasis on OLD.

Why not have both, though? Usability and progress. Why not have something that grandma can figure out, that also continuously improves and looks great? Chromebooks manage to walk that fine line, rather well.

Practically speaking, I can say that as a guy who uses both Windows and Chrome OS on a daily basis, switching from my Windows PC to my Chromebook on a given day always feels nice and refreshing. It’s an intangible, but I gotta tell ya – it’s a real thing.

4) You wanna see some real speed?? It’s not just the startup and the updates that are quick. It’s everything. Open 20 tabs in your Chromebook, and all of them are just zipping around. No freezing. No pausing while some virus scan nonsense processes in the background. Chromebooks are streamlined to be internet machines, and you can feel it.

5) The batteries last forever. They just tend to get a ton of life. 10+ hours of good use, is pretty normal here in ChromebookLand. It’s to the point where, for years, I wasn’t really even aware of the battery on my Chromebook. It’s always just ready to go.

6) Chromebooks work great with the Google ecosystem. It’s my second to last point, and a minor one, but it’s worth mentioning. If you have a Pixel phone, or a Chrome Cast, or Google Home, or anything else from the always expanding Made By Google product line… odds are that the Chromebook is going to work especially smoothly with those excellent devices.

7) Chromebooks cost less than the competition. Saving the best for last. Chromebooks are the budget option, and that is really nice. I think that’s truly always been the first selling point. If you want the best value for a low-end, budget minded machine, the Chromebook wins guaranteed. And also, if you want premium hardware, well, Chromebook still wins. Sure, a high-end Chromebook, with an amazing screen, aluminum chassis, superb keyboard, stylus, fingerprint scanner, backup camera, lane-change assist, power sunroof, seat warmers, etc, is going to cost a lot. But that expensive, high-end Chromebook will inevitably still come in hundreds of dollars under the price of a similarly configured Mac of PC.

In summary, if you like to spend more money than necessary for things, then don’t buy a Chromebook. If you don’t value your time, then a Chromebook might not be for you. If you have a festering disdain for beauty in design, then steer away from Chromebooks. If you consider yourself a person who makes bad financial decisions, has poor taste, and often gets ripped off and taken advantage of, then by all means, consider a Windows PC or a MacBook. If you believe that the majority is usually correct about things, then embrace the majority, and stay with your Mac or PC.

If, on the other hand, you want a delightful, fast, fun, and affordable laptop, now you know where to look.

I hope you’ve found this installment of the Good News About Chromebooks helpful and informative, if not a tad abrasive and insulting. Tune in next time for what may be the centerpiece of this series: Answering the Chromebook Haters.


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