Chromebook vs. Laptop. Which Is Better?

  • Chromebooks offer a less-expensive alternative to a traditional laptop, however they offer less features and flexibility.
  • Many things we do on a computer these days can be done in a web-browser – from email, messaging and conferencing, listening to music, watching video, word processing and spreadsheets, and of course everyday reading and web browsing.
  • If you can imagine using just a Google Chrome browser for all of your computing needs, then a Chromebook may be right for you.

On the surface, laptops and Chromebooks have the same build and element; however, one has to be better than the other for your needs.

Laptops have existed for years, a portable version of the desktop computer with the screen, keyboard, pointer, storage and “smarts” all-in-one device.. Chromebooks are a new breed that is different from regular laptops. They are budget-friendly and are sometimes faster. Though they are inexpensive, they are not for everyone.

The main thing to note when comparing a Chromebook to a laptop is their differences. Aside from the price, the main difference is the operating system. Chromebooks, running the ChromeOS operating system, can do the things laptops do, such as listening to music, streaming and watching videos, editing pictures, and more.

This, however, does not bring down the value of laptops. If you want to know which is better between Chromebooks and laptops, continue reading this article for a detailed breakdown.

What is a Chromebook?

Chromebooks are relatively new products to the mobile computer category. Chromebooks are technically laptops but look like notebooks from the outside. They are lightweight computers that run on the Linux-based Google Chrome OS, with the Chrome browser as its main interface. 

Thanks to their simplified design and ease of use, Chromebooks are a prevalent choice, especially in the education sector. They are meant for browsing and light work, making them perfect for studying and researching. 

According to a study, the sales of Chromebooks dropped 67% in the first quarter of 2022. However, Chromebook is still making an impact as people tend to buy more for educational purposes.

Chromebook relies on Google apps and cloud services to function because they don’t require a lot of RAM or heavy processing power. It has everything from a music and video player to word processing. It can sync with your Android devices and is updated automatically. Therefore, it goes without saying that a Chromebook can do most of the things a laptop can do.

Although Chromebooks can’t replace feature-rich laptops, they are for people on a budget and are worth every penny.

What is a laptop?

Laptops, as previously stated, are the ‘Undisputed Kings of Mobile Computers.’ They have the abilities of a desktop computer but are mobile and easy to use. 

Unlike Chromebooks that run on the Chrome OS, laptops run on Windows OS and macOS and are more well-rounded. They have more resources and require powerful components to work effectively.

Laptops were built to consume less power and are equipped with lots of RAM and heavy processing power to handle tasks effortlessly. They are used by anyone in various industrial, commercial, and even educational sectors. Due to their powerful OS, they can work with demanding software.

You can compare laptops to jack-of-trades; however, they are expensive.

Differences Between Chromebook and Laptop: Which is Better?

Operating System

There are three main competing operating systems for laptops: Windows OS (10, 11, or others), OS X for MacBook, and Linux. On the other hand, the operating system for Chromebook is ChromeOS.

The ChromeOS is a Google-developed OS and is similar and feels instantly familiar to the Google Chrome browser. Due to its smaller OS, it tends to load faster. In contrast, Windows 10, by far, has a large OS. This can be a blessing and a curse. Because laptops have a more extensive OS, they are more flexible and can run complex tasks and programs. However, it’s heavy, tends to load slowly, and requires regular updates.

Storage Capacity

Laptops come in various types of storage configurations. They have SSD, HDD, 3TB hard drive, and more storage capacities. There are laptops available for your specific storage; either you want an operating system on an SSD or games/movies on an HDD. The storage capacity of laptops includes 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, and more.

In contrast, Chromebooks only have an SSD storage capacity with onboard storage of 32GB or 64GB. As compensation, Chromebook has a cloud storage capacity of 100GB.

You should go for a laptop if you don’t want to store your data in the cloud.


Performance is comparative. A machine’s performance is influenced by its specs, workload, and other factors. Based on specs, a Chromebook outperforms the laptop.

However, if what you want is a great performance, you won’t get it in a Chromebook. Laptops have all the necessary power to perform and run anything thrown at them. Also, they are compatible with demanding software.

Battery life

In terms of battery life, Chromebooks have a battery life of about 10-12 hours. In contrast, laptops have a battery life of about 8 to 10 hours.

In laptops, the battery’s energy is mainly consumed from their processor, graphics card, and performance demands. However, because Chromebooks mostly rely on the internet, they do not require powerful processors or graphics cards, which results in lower battery use.

As a result, the life of the battery is dependent on the Chromebook or laptop’s performance.


Without a doubt, Chromebooks are more budget-friendly than laptops. Due to the hardware specs and the OS on laptops, they are more expensive. In contrast, because Chromebooks have minimal hardware specs and rely on the internet, they are more affordable.


When it comes to portability, Chromebooks have the upper hand. They are thin, lightweight, and have minimal hardware. In contrast, laptops come in various sizes, weights, and dimensions. Some laptops are light and thin, and some are heavy.

As a result, Chromebooks are more portable than laptops.

Offline Capabilities

Laptops are in the lead with their great offline capabilities. Without using the internet, you can utilize various software, do work or academic activities, play games, and perform multiple other tasks.

In contrast, Chromebooks have limited offline capabilities and require a constant internet connection to function properly.

Which is better? Laptops or Chromebooks?

It appears that the choice between Chromebooks and laptops will ultimately come down to personal preference.

Knowing what you’ll use your Chromebook or laptop for most of the time is the only way to determine if it’s the best choice for you. A Chromebook is the best option if all you need is to go online, open websites, and type away at will.

But investing your money in a laptop might be better if you require greater flexibility.

Contact us at Computer Techs if you need help deciding between a laptop or a Chromebook.