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Google Sells One Million Chromebooks in Just 3 Months

google schools

Chromebooks are popular in classrooms

Google has announced that more than one million Chromebooks were bought by schools between April and June 2014.

The figure, shared by the company’s Director of Global Enterprise Marketing Chris Farinacci on Google+, comes after the search giant reported on its second-quarter earnings for the year.

Despite seeing revenue jump by 22% on last year the earnings fell short of Wall Street predictions.

According to IDC, worldwide PC shipments for the same period reached almost 74.5 million. Against this, the number of Chromebook education sales looks all the more impressive.

Google makes little money directly from the sale of Chrome devices, regardless of whether they’re sold in bulk to education or individually to consumers at retail. As with Android, they do not charge OEMs a licensing fee to use Chrome OS nor are they said to take a cut of the profits from units sold.

In essence, they’re best thought of are as a table on which the more profitable parts of Google’s business activities are served.

Why Education Loves Chromebooks

In a guest post on the Google Enterprise weblog, David Andrade, CIO of Bridgeport Public Schools, USA, gave a first hand account of why he, like many others in charge of administrating IT in education, are turning in droves to Chrome OS. He explains:

“The affordability and easy maintenance of Chromebooks clinched the deal – we could buy three…for the price of a single desktop computer and the district’s small IT team wouldn’t have to struggle to keep up with the repairs and updates on aging PCs. We would also save on support time and costs since [they] update automatically.”

Having so far deployed 9,000 Chrome notebooks across this one district alone, Andrade says his next goal is to ‘bring Chromebooks to every classroom in grades 4 through 12.’

‘Spending Less and Getting More’

It’s this ratio of performance and affordability that is making Chrome OS so successful, so quickly. You don’t need to have done your homework to know that most education boards would favour spending less and getting more.

With lower hardware prices set to make Chromebooks even cheaper in the future, but each successive version of Windows needing licensing costs and upgraded hardware, it’s unlikely that this A+ grade combination will falling anytime soon.

The threat this poses to the dominant platforms won’t have gone unnoticed at Microsoft or Apple. Both companies will know that those currently being weaned on a diet of cloud-centric Google products, apps, services and devices right now are more likely to continue using them as they get older.

Can either company match Google in offering schools such a tempting mix of cost, performance and maintenance? Chrome’s current rate of growth suggests not…

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    Wow, these are pretty good numbers!

    But please, Google, expand the chromebook availability! I’m dying to buy one, but none of the latest CB’s are available here in Russia, pretty much the “newest” I can buy is HP 14

    • Heimen Stoffels

      You can import from a country and ship it to you. If you buy at a big retailer online, shipping is usually not all that much.

    • Sam Hollis

      Without getting too political, I’m afraid with the recent events I don’t see this issue improving for Russian Chromies in the near future. :/

    • Alucard291

      the 14 isn’t bad though. I’m using it atm myself. Just saying.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        I don’t like the lack of a black color option, I hate white devices, especially if they are made of plastic because they look like cheap toys

        • Alucard291

          Well I got a red one. Mostly because it was in fact red if you know what I mean.

          Last colour I’d want is white tho… boring AND gets dirty.

          But fair enough on your preferences :)

  • Frederic MANSON

    Excellent news!! As an ex IT, I am satisfied that my colleagues are not more upset by the maintenance long hours. For the administrations, maintenance costs are drastically reduced and the content can be easily controlled. For the kids, it’s very good for them to have an access to a full useful laptop without all the fears known and unknown from the other OS.

    The Chromebooks are really “You plug, you register, you work”.

    The more I use my HP 11, the more I love Chrome OS. There is only one thing which I am not at 100% with: the SSD storage capacity. 16 gigs is not enough. 32 gigs is okay. IMO

    • Chuck Cortes

      You do know why they have small drives dont you? The point of Chromebooks is to have a cloud based experience and for that you don’t necessarily need to install larger drives since cloud based software does not have to be installed on a PC. This allows them to have the speed of an SSD without the high cost since its so small and thus a cheaper laptop.

      I can’t deny that I too think its rather small, 32 GBs at least should be the standard even if my Windows standards its still too small. But the way I see it you can get a 1TB portable drive for less that $100 which will solve your space problem and will work fine on all OS platforms.

      • Winnz

        Besides, with micro SD, external harddrives, flash drives and so on you got plenty of options. Not to mention Google Drive of course, dropbox, skydrive, and Google Play.

        And if that wasn’t enough, you can always upgrade the SSD to a 32 gig version.

        But with all that being said, your Chromebook shouldn’t be your primary work statioin where you have all your stuff anyways. So you shouldn’t need that much space.

        • Heimen Stoffels

          Well, for me my Chromebook is my primary workstation since recently (I bought one recently). I keep most of my stuff on my OneDrive and 1,5 TB external hard disk so…

        • Boothy

          I got a 64gb mSATA for my 550, £32. Bargain. Took 20 mins to swap in and re-install from recovery image.

      • Frederic MANSON

        Thank you for your answer. I know that the Chromebooks are for Cloud based users. In my case, I choose the Chromebook for its full utility, low power consumption, no maintenance and almost all, no more long lost hours of settings… I am done with MS, Mac OS and Linux.

        I am working on huge files, and I thought that I clearly need less than 16 gigs to work with. What I have not considered is that the Chrome OS is taking a huge 5 gigs on these 16 gigs. I thought that it was as light as Puppy Linux. Bad thought. But not a dramatic one. I will do as you said: an external HDD (or SSD) which will be also used on my next Chromebook (Acer CB5-311, full options!!). I have tried the GDrive but my upload band is very bad and the sync cache is very huge… Anyway, an external storage is okay. Thanks!!!

      • Heimen Stoffels

        Or if you want cloud storage, you can get OneDrive 1 TB for 6.99 a month and Google Drive has a 1 TB plan as well.

  • Will S.

    Nice achievement! Chromebooks are great for those looking for low cost, light, easy to use and hassle free system.

  • Joseph Dickson

    What’s the refresh rate on these devices in education, two years?

    I have to say I used apple products a ton when I was in elementary school in the 80s and continued through 2008. First non apple system I purchased was a self built pc in 2011 and a System 76 in 2012. So they heels onto me for awhile.

  • John Kerr

    For years we have heard that schools have to teach with Windows based computers because that is what is in the workplace, for the most part. For years us Linux advocates have been saying that it does not matter. Now that the schools have reached the same conclusion, finally, I can’t resist a “I told you so”.

  • Smallwheels

    I visit Apple related web sites regularly. Often there are news stories from different investment firms that publish sales numbers and estimated sales from different manufacturers. I’m eager to see the number of Chromebook sales exceed the number of Mac sales or even just one model of Apple laptops (though Apple doesn’t publish the breakdown of sales per model). The fans on that site do all they can to defend Apple and what it does in the market.

    For a year or so I’ve been posting that the cloud is the way the world is moving and that Apple had better follow the lead of Google with Chrome OS. Regularly I’m shot down. Regularly I say that super high end machines won’t be needed anymore with most tasks done in the cloud. Only a couple of people on those sites agree with me. I guess since Apple has iOS and iPads they don’t really need to worry about the longevity of their Mac lines.

    I own a Mac Book too.