Whatever happened to the Chromebook?

Discussion in 'General Smartphone/Handheld/Wearable Discussion' started by LandSurveyor, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. headcronie

    headcronie Greyscale. Nuff Said. Super Moderator

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    They are taking over. Inch by inch. I've seen them explode in popularity in the education sector. For better or worse. iPads are taking a huge back seat. I'd like to claim credit for that, but I can't. I've got no influence over them now that I work remotely. I'm now finding myself fighting for the relevance of Windows systems. I do wonder how this impacts upstream education, if not the workforce. At what point does reliance on web based office suite come into conflict with software based office suites. I've seen a complete departure from Microsoft Office for students, and at some point, that could come back to haunt them. There's many industries where you won't find Google being used, and they'll be at a significant disadvantage when they try to enter those positions. Those industries may change their position as time goes forward, but for now, they aren't showing any signs of it.
     
  2. questionfear

    questionfear Google'd.

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    I think the flipside of that is that kids who have grown up navigating computers will be more flexible and likely to pick up MS Office later. They're learning with all sorts of new tools on the fly, so they'll get used to new concepts faster.

    I have mixed feelings about Apple (I say as I type this on my Macbook with my iPhone next to me), but regardless, it boggles my mind that Apple watched not only the education market but the vast majority of the work from home revolution woosh past them this year. Google and the other Chromebook manufacturers basically recognized immediately that even schools without big Chromebook programs were going to need them, and I know in my son's school every kid from Kindergarten on gets issued a Chromebook now. If Apple hadn't killed the eMac programs years ago, they might have been able to push out an eMac laptop to compete at least at the HS level with ChromeOS, but that would have required thinking ahead to the value of the education market.

    The other thing that makes me scratch my head about Apple-can you think of one thing that became indispensable during this pandemic that came from Apple? We all praise Zoom, and Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet, and we're all grateful for Facebook Messenger and DoorDash and a billion other services...but where was Apple's FaceTime in all this? Why didn't they take their FaceTime platform and bring back group chatting in earnest and push it as a more secure way to hold family chats? Before the pandemic, my parents (who I think are fairly average, not luddites but also not interested in learning every cutting edge thing just because) knew how to use FaceTime and Google Duo, but wouldn't have even begun to grasp what to do with Zoom. Now they hold weekly Zoom calls with their friends, book club, religious services, etc.

    All that opportunity and money was just sitting right there, and Apple is such a "mainstream" household name they could offer a less-robust solution and still get more users based on sheer name recognition. Tim Cook is amazing at managing things like supply chain but he's terrible as an imaginative leader.
     
  3. headcronie

    headcronie Greyscale. Nuff Said. Super Moderator

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    QF, you've got some very interesting points.

    I've only got anecdotal evidence that they struggle when presented with using an office suite. Whether that be due to disinterest, senior slide, or whatever the flavor of the day may be, they aren't grasping it. The inability to even navigate a file system leaves them stupefied. Time will tell how these changes come into play as the years progress.

    Outside of the iPads (and I consider those questionable), I do think Apple has really positioned itself out of education. There isn't a product in that 'sweet spot' price point that districts would consider viable for budgets. Unless you've got a boss that's all Apple or bust, you just don't see very much adoption. Meanwhile, OEMs that are making chromebooks are seeing insane back-orders. If we order now, we might get our orders delivered to us in September. Might... Windows laptops are getting backed up as well. Desktops appear to be business as usual.

    One of the things about Zoom, Teams, and Meet is that they are all on some level, subscription based. Facetime just requires that you have an Apple device. Apple would need to do two things at the very least - make a subscription model and make it cross platform. I don't see Apple ever moving to cross platform for this. They've perfected the art of the walled garden to an extreme, and now as you've pointed out, they're getting their lunch eaten by the competitors. You can't control the market when cross platform equivalents outmaneuver your proprietary tools. That, and Apple really isn't into being a service provider. They're masters of controlling the experience and the store, and that's where they get their money from. Unfortunately that ship has long since sailed. Apple would have to come up with a very groundbreaking video conferencing tool to make any sort of dent in the pretty well established market that already exists.
     
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  4. Hook

    Hook Have keyboard, will travel

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    You know, there's a very good, completely free video conference platform that requires no subscription called Jitsi. https://jitsi.org/ I learned about it from the FxTec forums because it is used in European academic communities. It does offer paid services, but for individuals it is free and pretty easy. We use it for my writing group.
     
  5. EdmundDantes

    EdmundDantes Mobile Deity

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    I only go by my nephews' anecdotal experience; but they don't have very good opinions of the Chromebook platform. They go to a fairly affluent school district, so I assume the hardware they're using is decent; but they complain that they crash often, and can't handle some of the basic tasks that their education software wants. I distinctly remember a conversation with more specifics, but it was a while ago. I will probably be seeing them soon, so I'll try and remember to ask some questions about this topic.
     
  6. internetpilot

    internetpilot Flying Dog (...duh...)

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    Of my four children, three of them went Macbook for college (I'm so ashamed) with my 3rd child happily continuing to use his Fujitsu high school laptop. My youngest (4th child) couldn't wait to ditch his Lenovo high school laptop (they changed from Fujitsu the year after my 3rd child started that school). Now both 3rd & 4th are mostly using their Alienware and Asus ROG gaming laptops for most of their college work since both of their colleges are still virtual. I'm sure 3rd will go back to his Fujitsu (with it's three batteries) and 4th to his MacBook when college goes back to in-person.

    No one except me is remotely interested in Chromebooks in this family. Having said that, my Chromebooks have saved each and every one of them on numerous occasions for school and/or work at one time or another, and they didn't have any complaints about it, but they're just simply not into them like I am. I will likely always have one, at least until Google likely eventually kills the whole project one day (probably abruptly). I honestly cannot remember the last time I touched my Android tablet or mini Windows tablet/laptop.
     
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  7. jigwashere

    jigwashere Mobile Deity

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    My Chromebook has been rock solid and has never crashed. I'd love one that could run Android apps and be convertible to tablet form. A little more power would be nice, but not really an issue.

    Sent from my moto g stylus using Tapatalk
     
  8. jigwashere

    jigwashere Mobile Deity

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    Tick....tick...tick....tick...the Toshiba Chromebook 2 is not expected to get any updates after 9/21, so I guess it's time for me to start looking for my next device. This chromebook has been a nearly perfect supplement to my Windows desktop PC and Android phone. Sort of like Goldilocks -- not too little, not too much -- it was just right! :) I paid $265 and got a few goodies, like free online storage. The chromebook isn't something I use every day, so it's not urgent that I replace it, but if a good deal comes along, I'd like to be ready.

    So, will my next purchase be another chromebook? Possibly. However, I wouldn't mind having something that includes built in GPS and has a SIM card slot that I could use for times when I'm out of WiFi range. Those features are more likely found on a tablet, but I've never had a great experience with Android tablets, so I might consider an iPad. My wife has one with a nice keyboard case attached, so I'll spend some time with it before I decide.
     
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  9. internetpilot

    internetpilot Flying Dog (...duh...)

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    I don't think any Chromebooks have GPS, but I do know that my Lenovo Flex 5 chromebook has a relatively seamless data connection to my android phone, which is only coincidentally Lenovo (Moto) as well. The experience is much more like the an iPhone/MacBook pairing now where you get text messages, notifications, etc. on both your phone and Chromebook. For this automatic data connection I believe that the phone just basically sets up a custom hotspot for your Chromebook to use, so I'm not entirely sure if it would work with every carrier (like if you don't have a hotspot feature), but it definitely works with mine (initially Sprint, but now T-Mobile). That being said about GPS above, if the data connection between a Chromebook and your phone works, it seamlessly gets GPS/location functionality from your phone (at least for my uses).

    As usual with most things Google, it's a really good almost or just not quite (depending on if you're a glass half empty or half full personality).
     
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  10. scjjtt

    scjjtt A Former Palm User

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    Jig - I too have enjoyed the Toshiba Chromebook 2 that my son gave me after he went totally to the dark side. He bought one for his wife (then girl friend) for Christmas on 2019. She wasn't too happy because she was expecting a ring - but that came later that afternoon when our daughters were able to arrive on Christmas Day.

    They both used their TC2's for their last 2 years of college. It did everything they needed.

    I plan to continue to use it even without the updates for awhile. I'm just careful on the internet...

    Sent from my moto g stylus using Tapatalk
     
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