The PC, Laptop, Ultrabooks, and Chromebooks in more of a state of flux than “Back to the Future’s” Flux Capacitor on their time machine. We have become a “mobile nation,” where sitting at a desk to do our computer work is a thing of the past. According to The Guardian, the Desktop PC is fast going the way of the ancient dinosaurs – bigger, clunkier, and with no portability, sales and profits are on a downward spiral that certainly have not hit rock bottom yet. Although laptops are still very much in use in the business enterprise world, even they seem to be too “heavy” for most consumers to handle as we look to lighter Ultrabooks to handle our heavier computing and even Tablets for our lightest work or browsing the web.
This turn of events can also be blamed on our increasing technology and miniaturization of the electronic components that go into our devices. It was not that long ago that you really needed a PC to do heavy-duty computing – Laptops, although a nice alternative, simply did not have the processing power of a larger PC and their motherboards. However, since that time, Laptops have become every bit as powerful as their larger brethren and even the Ultrabooks can handle their own – with processors, graphics, hard drives, and memory that are up to any task. Now the manufacturers are striving for thin, light, and lower priced alternatives…enter the Chromebook.
Analysts have reported that of the 314 million PCs shipped during 2013, 2.5 million were Chromebooks, in the U.S. that equates to an increase of 112-percent over 2012. Since the Chromebook was released in 2011, it has only taken two years to go from a device only the inquisitiveness of a Geek could love, to a mainstream best seller – not bad for what critics called a “fad.” But the Chromebook offered a focus on the software experience, built-in security, long battery life, and the lightweight, slim form factor, and cheap price, all of which users really liked. IDC claims that by 2017 that Chromebooks will make up 2-percent of all PC sales and another, more optimistic research group, Gartner, claims that Chromebooks will take a 4.5-percent share of the PC market by 2017.
Chromebooks are quickly becoming a popular consumer purchase, so much so that Lenovo, is coming out with more Chromebooks than ever as they see this as a large growth segment in the market. Manufacturers are starting to beef up the processors and features and Chromebooks may give even Laptops a run for their money. Samsung’s next Chromebook may include an octa-core processor and a display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440. Where all of this is taking us, we will have to wait and see, but the consumer market looks prime for the growth of Chromebooks.
Please let us know on our Google+ Page how you do your computing – PC, Laptop, Tablet, or Chromebook – and if you have your recently purchased a Chromebook, what brand did you buy and are you happy with it or do you have complaints.