Apps Will Be a Decisive Factor

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2011-06-16 Print this article Print


5. The Gmail, Google Docs lover

As with other Google products, Chrome OS makes full use of the company's many services, including Google Docs, Gmail and others. For those who are committed to using these cloud applications as an alternative for more expensive on-premises applications, buying a Chromebook would be the way to go.

6. The always-connected consumer

The biggest issue with Chromebooks is that if there isn't a Web connection available, they're little more than expensive bricks. So, folks who anticipate not being within range of a WiFi or 3G signal at all times won't like what they find in Chromebooks. But those who are confident of constant connections won't have an issue with buying a Chromebook.

7. The consumer on a budget

One of the benefits of buying a Chromebook is its price. Acer's AC700, for example, retails for just $349.99, while the most expensive Chromebook goes for $499.99. At those prices, consumers on a budget who need a new computer might like what they find in Chromebooks. After all, spending just $500 on a lightweight computer sounds much better than spending twice that on a Mac, right?

8. The early adopter

Though debate rages over the real value of Chromebooks, Google and its vendor partners know all too well that there is one group that is absolutely willing to buy the devices no matter what the quirks: early adopters. Those folks who buy products at or around launch are already jumping at the chance to buy Chromebooks to see if they have lasting power. As with other product launches, Chromebooks are benefiting from early adopters.

9. The education angle

Google has made it clear that it wants to bring Chromebooks into schools. That might be a good idea for educational institutions. Not only are the devices extremely cheap by school-computer standards, but they can also potentially help students prepare for what most agree is the future: the cloud. Though Chrome OS might not eventually rule the cloud, it could very well be the tool students need to learn about how to navigate the cloud.

10. It has neat apps

The importance of applications in today's mobile-computing environment cannot be underestimated. Apple's iOS-based products, Android-based devices and, now, Chromebooks rely heavily upon apps to be a success. Luckily for Google, its Chrome Web Store has several popular applications, though its marketplace is still much smaller than the App Store. However, consumers around the globe are always looking for innovative new apps. Thanks to Google's selection of highly popular programs, including Angry Birds, it should be able to coax some customers to buy Chromebooks on the promise of delivering the same apps people are enjoying on smartphones to the new Chromebooks.

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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