Let me get this out of the way first, lest I be called a Microsoft hater (I’ve been called both that and fanboy). I have Windows computers and I use them for some things, just not for my regular, daily routine. I started with a Chromebook early on when Google itself released the HP Chromebook 11 G1 back in 2013.
Chrome OS was announced in 2009 and an actual “Chromebook” shipped in 2011, but it took a couple of years from then for the platform to pick up steam.
Once Schools began adopting the operating system people began to notice what it was capable of and also dream of the things it could do. Apps began to be created for it and developers of existing apps adapted a version of their wares for it, Microsoft and Apple among them.
I first began using Chrome OS in 2013 when my G1 arrived, but it took a while to adopt it mostly full time. I continued to use Windows, switching for things I could, mostly just experimenting. It eventually caught on with me and became my daily driver — there are a couple of programs I use that are Windows only, but ironically I can get web versions of them, just not nearly as full or well presented.
I work each day in Microsoft Word. Both it, Excel and OneNote are available from OneDrive. This, of course, involves keeping your files there, but with Office today, you’re probably doing that anyway. It’s not the full version of any of these apps, but for everyday tasks it’s fine. Alternatively you can use Google Docs and store your files in Google Drive.
Need to edit images? There are many plug-ins for Chrome. Pixlr isn’t Photoshop, but it can get most jobs done and it’s not nearly as complicated as its Adobe rival, which is also online, but not free.
Really, I’m kind of wasting your time here. If you can use an app on the web, it will run on a Chromebook, but you do get more. A Windows-like taskbar that can easily take you to what you need. The browser, Word, OneNote, Settings even messages so you can read and respond to SMS. Really, you can pin anything to the bar.
And with a nod to Microsoft, I have the Bing daily image set as my wallpaper which makes a nice change of scene each morning.
Some, if not all of what I just went through you have probably at least heard about, since the platform has been around roughly a decade (there’s no concrete birthday). Really, we’re just celebrating its decade and how far it’s come.
The real question is, what do all of you think of it?
Image Credit: Google