Chromebooks should be seen as small-time no longer. On the momentum of being the fastest growing segment of the PC market, Chromebooks now hold two of the top three positions in Amazon’s best-selling notebooks ranking. In addition, Acer, Samsung, and ASUS’s Chromebooks are currently the top three laptops on Amazon’s best-selling laptop list.
This speaks to a vastly increased consumer interest in the operating system that not too long ago many felt was pointless. Now, with budgets in mind, consumers seem to be realizing that perhaps they don’t do as much outside the browser as they once thought. With that, the cheap, simple, and well designed Chromebooks certainly are the logical answer. As emphasized by the latest “for everyone” commercials, Google is trying to sell users on the simplicity and value of the lightweight laptops, and this suggests that the company has been quite successful.
Business too are following the trend, with NDP reporting that 9.6 percent of the computers sold to workplaces were Chromebooks. Though little compared to Microsoft’s share, this is more than MacBook and Android tablet sales combined. For devices sometimes criticized for not being useful for “real” work, this is quite an accomplishment.
Not only is this great news for Google, this puts pressure on Microsoft and other laptop OEMs to produce a better product. I quite like Chrome OS and will likely end up with another Chromebook in the near future, but now I’m even more interested in the potential Chromebooks have to force change in the laptop market. Windows may have to become cheaper and lighter on resources, and full-scale laptops could become even cheaper. In addition to the continued success of Chrome OS, that is certainly something that I would like to see more of in 2014.[Amazon, NPD Group via Computerworld]