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A laptop that runs Google's Chrome OS and Chrome Web browser. Introduced in 2011, Chromebooks were designed as an Internet appliance that provides a more secure system than Windows or Mac because data are stored in the Google cloud (see Google Drive), and all apps come from the Chrome Web Store. Chrome-based tablets came out in 2018 (see Chrome OS).

Widely adopted in schools, an Internet connection is mandatory, but some apps may run offline. Chromebooks boot up fast and require minimal user configuration. They also come with Google's office suite (see Google Docs). In 2017, Microsoft introduced a Chromebook competitor (see Windows 10 S).

Limited Storage
Designed for saving user data in the cloud, Chromebooks typically have from 16GB to 32GB of local SSD storage, although some models have 128GB. However, Chromebooks may accept SD cards for more storage.

Finally Network Friendly
Early versions of the Chrome OS did not recognize shared folders on other computers in a home or office network like Windows and Mac computers do. Eventually, file sharing apps came out that recognized file shares. However, in 2018, native support for SMB file sharing was finally added with Chrome OS 70, enabling Chromebooks to access Windows and Mac computers on the network (see SMB).

Android and Linux as Well
Chrome OS, Android and Linux are all based on the Linux kernel. In 2016, Chromebooks were updated to run Android apps, opening the platform to thousands of applications from the Google Play store. In 2018, the Debian version of Linux was added, making the Chromebook a very versatile computing platform. Both Android and Linux run in software-based containers, which prevent an Android or Linux app from compromising the security of the Chromebook, a feature of the platform highly touted by Google.

Stable, Beta and Developer Channels
By switching the OS to the Beta channel, users can review apps that are still in test mode. At a higher risk, brand new features of the OS itself can be tried out by switching to the Developer channel.

Desktop and Tablet Chromebooks
In 2012, Google introduced the Chromebox, a desktop Chromebook in a mini PC footprint. In 2018, Chromebook tablets debuted (see examples below). See mini PC.

A Chromebook Keyboard
Some, but not all, Chromebooks have dedicated Web browsing keys, such as the Back, Forward and Reload buttons on the top row of this Acer keyboard. Caps Lock was replaced with a Search key.

Just Like Any Computer
From the outside, Chromebooks look like any other laptop computer.

A Convertible Chromebook
With up to 128GB of SSD storage, the screen on the ASUS Chromebook Flip wraps around to function like a tablet. See convertible laptop. (Image courtesy of ASUStek Computer Inc.,

A Hybrid Chromebook
The screen on the HP Chromebook X2 detaches from the keyboard to become a tablet. See hybrid laptop. (Image courtesy of HP Development Company, L.P.)
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References in periodicals archive ?
The Chromebooks are also adorned with a front-facing HD webcam, and one of the models - the convertible Acer Chromebook Spin 311 also has a "world-facing cam" which allows users to capture 1080p video.
The project was phased over two years with approximately PS6 million spent on providing Chromebooks and embedding the use of G Suite for Education into the curriculum.
Additionally, management testing confirmed that, "...two AMD A4-9120C processor-powered Chromebooks and two comparable Intel Celeron N3350 processor-based Chromebooks all allowed us to install applications, change device settings, and deprovision systems using the same steps and in the same amount of time."
Students in the district's sixth through eighth grades began receiving Chromebooks in 2014-15 school year, and those in third through fifth grades received them at the start of the current school year.
The timing of AMD's push into the Chromebook market is interesting, too.
In addition to instant LTE connectivity, the Samsung Chromebook Plus (LTE) comes with a built-in pen that never needs charging.
Chromebook for retail is still not opened in the UAE and I am not sure if the retail market is ready for Chromebook as it is completely dependent on connectivity.
The Chromebook Spin 13 also supports Wacom stylus input.
"Acer has led the Chromebook market with a wide range of form factors, sizes and designs to meet the needs of our customers, and we're expanding our line with new exciting 15-inch models today," said James Lin, General Manager, Commercial & Detachable Notebooks, IT Products Business at Acer.
The Chromebook 11 has a display screen of 29.4cm, and weighs just over a single kilogram.
Google has been ruling the education space abroad with its Chrome OS that can be installed in low-cost laptops such as Chromebooks. According to Futuresource Consulting, in 2016, mobile devices running Google's Chrome operating system accounted for 58 per cent of the US market for primary and secondary schools.