Chromebooks Are Here, But Will They Go Anywhere?

The Chromebook has often been maligned as a portable for a slim niche market. The Chromebook, for now, is okay with that.

A Chromebook is a lighter, thinner portable-looking computer that houses a few differences; a solid-state drive instead of a conventional hard drive,and Chrome OS as the operating system, according to the Denver Post. The solid-state hard drive gives the customer somewhat limited storage capacity, but the Chromebook is designed to work with Google Cloud, so no big hard drive is needed. Google Cloud also means that you can sign into it from any device, so there is no more unit-to-unit data transfer necessary. The biggest selling point to the solid-state drive is that since there is no moving parts, the Chromebook wakes immediately from sleep, and boots in just a few seconds from a cold boot, more effectively managing your time.

Chrome OS is a web-based operating system, meaning that all plug-ins and add-ons load from the internet, and do not store on your hard drive. This means that each time you start your Chromebook, you get a fresh browser each time. The big thing is that there is no need to get any anti-virus software. Since the programming is not stored on your computer, each new launch gives you new information. That, and Chrome OS is a Linux-based program, making it harder for virus makers to write a program in Linux language that would do damage. You still want to be careful, but that is indeed a lot less worry owning a Chromebook.

The one drawback to Chrome OS is that third party software is often incompatible, as of now. With the increasing popularity of the Chromebook, software developers and Chrome OS will have to come up with ways to allow programs like Adobe Photoshop to work on a Chromebook. There are other software programs that you can get through Chrome OS, but people would still like the convenience of using what they like.

According to ZDNet, as of now, the Chromebook uses either an Intel processor, or an ARM processor. Now, NVidia is releasing its new Tegra processor, Most insiders believe that the Tegra processor is a good fit for Chrome OS's web-based applications. This will definitely not break Intel, but is should worry them a bit. However, most insiders think the Chromebook is going to stay a niche market for the next five years, but that market is set to explode. Schools are buying the Chromebook quickly, and consumers love the attractive prices (a Chromebook can start at about $180) when compared to a traditional portable computer.