Google's most recently spotted video campaign takes advantage of the science-driven antics of none other than Bill Nye the apparent Chromebook Guy to make its case for switching to Chrome OS. It's not clear whether the science communicator and engineer is quite ready to give up the "Science Guy" mantra in favor of Chrome. But Mr. Nye had more than a few words to say about switching to a Chromebook.
The ad spot centers on the various reasons people tend to hold onto old possessions. Chiefly those are the behavioral economics-related 'sunk cost fallacy' and emotionally-driven 'status quo bias'.
As explained in the advertisement, the first relates to individuals mistakenly thinking that there's more to be gained by keeping something that's already invested in than moving onto something new. The latter pertains to a preferential bias for how things are right now. As explained by Bill Nye, both tie directly into a fear of new things.
So what's the point, Bill?
More directly, the ad questions why anybody would worry about updating to something like a Chromebook from another laptop. There are, of course, many benefits to the average user despite common drawbacks with the devices' underlying OS.
The primary target of the ad, meant to highlight the benefits, seems to be Windows. In fact, at one point in the ad, Mr. Ny stands next to and tries to tape back together what appears to be an older Mazda Miata. The license plate on the decrepit car reads"WNDWS" and continues falling apart throughout.
That's an apt comparison since the video hits on the quick boot time of Chromebooks and the built-in security features. The fastest Chromebooks can boot up and even update in a matter of seconds — as few as 6-seconds.
They also don't need to always be connected anymore, especially with the use of Android and Linux apps available across almost all current devices. Those are selling points the ad hits on multiple times throughout the video, while also touting off the versatile 2-in-1 form-factor often taken by modern iterations of the gadgets.
As the ad ends, the final scene showcases premium mid-range devices featured in the spot. It highlights the Samsung Chromebook Plus, newer Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1, and the even newer Chromebook 15 G1 from HP.
Chromebooks are rivaling tradition
Whether or not Bill Nye is a big fan of Chromebook is a topic that's open to debate. Regardless, Chrome OS has steadily improved since its launch and the past twelve months, setting aside the most recent update, have represented a big year on that front.
As alluded too above, the devices are now more than capable of being used online or off. Thanks to ongoing improvements to progressive web apps as well as Linux and Android apps, they can accomplish almost anything most users will want to do.
This year has also seen Google shift toward allowing full-blown software development. Google has also finally begun to address media editing on the platform and other uses for non-Chrome OS media. That started with the ability to hear audio played back in Linux apps. But a fix is incoming to record audio input in those too.
So Chromebooks have certainly become much more worthy of consideration recently and that's bound to only get better as the year wears on.