The Linux-based Chrome OS took to the streets in early 2010, and Google followed it up with their Chromebook pilot program later that year. While the Chrome OS doesn’t pose as a grave danger to Microsoft, it has certainly perked up over the last couple of years.
We haven’t heard much from Google about their Chromebook sales, and as it is, they focused their market at large enterprises and educational installs.
But according to Acer’s logbook accounting for their $199 C7 Chromebook holding about 5-10 percent of US shipments, it seems a portion of regular users also handles these machines.
Acer’s $199 device is WiFi-only, while Samsung dabs in the market with a $249 Chromebook and a $449 fully-featured version. Since the early days of the Chromebook program, Google had Acer and Samsung as partners, and now Lenovo is joining hands too with its $429ThinkPad X131e Chromebook.
The low-end price is an attractive feature of these devices, and customers would weigh their options when purchasing a laptop. There are over 2,000 schools that use Chromebooks, and given the popularity, the device does seem to be conducive for the educational field.
The fact that they come at an affordable price with service contracts and management consoles for administrators, as well as with a full keyboard and larger screen makes them a viable option. Chromebooks update regularly and are safer from viruses which help them score sales.
Moreover, for Google, the users will be acquainted with their Gmail and Google Drive, which, when one thinks over, would come pretty useful for kids in when they grow up. When the search giant launched the Chrome OS, during the event, Google said that they are looking to “rethink the personal computing experience for the web.”
But since Internet connections aren’t as widespread as we think it is, the company has added more offline features and file-management capabilities to Chrome OS, coupled with larger hard-drives. Google is hoping for a longer run and is instilling their Chrome OS with an insight into the future.
So, even if they don’t pose a challenge to Windows or OS X anytime soon, they would certainly snuggle in comfortably over the years.