Life with a Chromebook

 

Screenshot 2019-02-19 at 4.35.12 PM

I did it. I’ve made the switch to Chromebooks. This Chromebook is now my main computer.

I am currently using the HP x2. This is my fifth Chromebook. Prior to, I had been a MacBook user. About a year ago, I made the switch to the Samsung Chromebook Plus. But, after a few weeks with the Chromebook, I had to switch back to the MacBook for two main reasons.

  1. I had difficulty printing documents.
  2. The Chromebook was not syncing with the church office cloud network.

Those were deal breakers.

But, here is the remarkable thing about Chromebooks – they get better with time. Google is regularly improving Chrome. With their regular updates and improvements the issues I had are no longer issues. So about four months ago, I started using the Samsung Chromebook Plus as my main work laptop.

Here are some of my reflections about the Chromebook experience.

Pros:

  • Cost – even though the HP x2 is a higher end Chromebook, it is still about half the cost of a MacBook
  • The screen – the screen on this thing is amazing. The Samsung Chromebook Plus/Pro and Google Pixel have better screens, but this one is right up there
  • It’s fast – for what I do, this is a great machine. I can already tell this is faster than the Samsung Chromebook Plus. My main use is writing documents on Microsoft Word. For that, this is more than enough machine for me
  • The stylus – I don’t use it much, but when I do need to use it, it is very handy. I use Squid from the Google Android App Store to take notes by hand. The writing experience is almost like writing with a pen and paper
  • Battery life – I can typically go all day without having to charge
  • Google handles virus protection
  • Any Chromebook is my Chromebook – we have three Chromebooks at home. With any of them, when I sign on with my google account, all my settings are there. The laptop may be different but it’s all my stuff that’s there on the screen. Love that

 

Cons:

  • Some of the Android Apps are buggy with the Chromebook. Android Apps can be used on the Chromebooks, but they are designed for android phones. And some of these apps don’t play well with the Chrome environment. I have noticed that I can have close to a dozen tabs open and the processor has no problems handling that, but if I have two or three Android Apps, the processor begins to lag.Because of that, I refrain from using the Android Apps and work on things like Twitter, Evernote, etc on the Chrome web page
  • Not every place has access to wifi. Google has made it better for work when there is no wifi (i.e. on a flight), it is still not a stand alone machine like a pc or a Mac
  • I don’t like the rubber/plastic track pad. After using the glass track pad on MacBooks and on the Samsung Chromebook Plus, the rubber/plastic track pad feels cheap

Bottom Line:

I am pleased with my life with a Chromebook. I love that Google continues to improve the Chrome experience.

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