Chromebooks Outsell Macs For The First Time In Q1 US Market Share

For many people, especially in education, Chromebooks offer the right combination of price, security, and functionality. According to Google, schools in the U.S. are now buying more Chromebooks than all other devices combined, and not to be scoffed at, that's helped propel Chromebooks over Macs in overall shipments to become the second most popular OS in the U.S.

That bit of accounting was provided to Google by International Data Corporation's quarterly PC tracking data. IDC didn't break down Chromebook versus Mac shipments for public consumption in its most recent report, but it did point out the "continued ascent of Chromebooks in U.S. K-12" as one of the reasons why it expects the PC market to experience a modest rebound over the next several months.

Chromebook Classroom

It's been a remarkable run for a platform that's largely focused on the cloud. While Chromebooks can function offline, they're best utilized with an Internet connection where they can tap into various online services, such as Google Docs, Gmail, and scores of web apps. Chrome OS is also considered relatively secure, or at least it isn't targeted by malware writers to the same extent as Windows and Mac OS X.

More than a passing fad at this point, Google is fully invested in Chromebooks and continues to add features.

"We’ve been encouraged by this growth, but our users have often told us that they would like to do even more with their Chromebooks -- run more apps, use Office files more easily, connect with a variety of apps, and do more when they’re offline. So, we're bringing Google Play (the most popular app store in the world) to Chromebooks," Google stated in a blog post.

The addition of Google Play is big as it means certain Chromebook owners can use Android apps and run the same programs on their low-cost laptops as they do on their smartphones and tablets.

Google Play will roll out to the developer channel with M53 on the ASUS Chromebook Flip, Acer Chromebook R 11, and the newest Chromebook Pixel. Over time Google will bring more Chromebook models into the fold.