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Chromebook Sales Rose 32 Percent During ‘Back to School’ 2014

Chromebooks once again proved a force to be reckoned with during the hotly contested/promotionally congested US Back to School shopping period.

Data from industry watcher NPD Group shows Chromebooks made up 4.5 percent of all back-to-school PC sales during the 10 week shopping period. This figure is up 1.2 percent on 2013 and makes for an impressive 32 percent rise year-over-year in all.

Apple’s Mac OS also increased its overall margin by 14 percent on 2013, with MacBook sales up 17 percent for the same period. The number of PCs and notebooks running Microsoft Windows fell by almost 4 percent, but devices running the OS remain the biggest overall sellers.

Source: NPD Group

Source: NPD Group

Low Cost

According to NPD Chromebooks accounted for “more than 5 percent of notebook sales, and 18 percent of all sales of notebooks under $300.” Given that few Chromebooks sell for more than this — and none of the 17 Chrome OS laptops taking part in Amazon’s promotional offer did — this isn’t entirely surprising.

‘Chromebooks made up 18% of all notebook sales under $300’

But Chromebooks weren’t the only winner at the low-end.  Windows increased its share of sub-$300 notebooks by 37 percent, a sign that its aggressive pricing to combat Chromebooks is showing some fruit — albeit at a cost to them.

NPD say Apple was the standout winner this year, managing to snatch more than a quarter of all sales. Their rise is especially surprising considering that it doesn’t compete at the ‘low-end’, where most of this year’s gains were found. This shows people are still willing to pay a premium for notebooks…so long as it has an Apple logo on it.

  • Frederic MANSON

    Sorry guys, but a Macbook Air/Pro is really something different than a W8 laptop and a Chromebook. Despite theirs RRP, they are not “Premium” laptops. For this, you also could say that the Chromebook Pixel IS a Premium laptop… and it is more expensive than an entry to mid Macbook Pro!!! I can say the same for a lot of W8 laptops which are largely expensive than a Macbook Air…

    Now, about this chart, what are the market shares between scholar/private chromebooks sales???

    • moe

      I think they will eventually make something that will rival both mackbooks, but for now i think Googles concern is just to get market share. The easy way to do that is like what they did with Android phones, cheap phones or in this case laptops and then focus on quality after they gain a substantial market share.

    • Vaykadji

      Chromebook Pixel is a premium laptop… clearly.

  • Christopher Woodhouse

    This trend is only going to increase as more and more Android apps migrate to Chrome. And once the public realizes this, Chromebooks will hold far greater value in their minds. Furthermore, I believe once this happened we will see an EXPLOSION of mid-range and even a few high end Chromebooks (just like with Android). It’s going to be glorious….

  • Smallwheels

    I sold my 2008 Apple Mac Book this weekend. It sold for 16% of the original purchase price. That is pretty good. I doubt any Chromebook but a Pixel would come close to that after six years. Apple does have its fans.

    I jumped ship in 2011 because the software was just moving into the realm of entertainment and not really productivity. Their hardware was only equal to what others made. Their only standout feature was the better screens. Other companies regularly incorporate the latest chips. Apple is six months or more behind. The features in each new version of 0S X required faster processors, more money spent, and gave less value for the dollar. Sure it still blows away Windoz but I don’t use Windoz either. I use GNU/Linux, which is free.

    My next machine will be a Chromebook. There are many apps I like in Android. When they eventually work on Chrome OS I’ll be super happy. That is why I’m waiting for a Chrome OS machine with an IPS or better touch screen.

    • othesick

      YES! linux is nothing but sheer awesomeness. my acer started to get a little bogged down with windows 7 so i tried out a few different versions of linxux and im already seeing massive performance improvements (or maybe thats just a placebo) the start up times are so much quicker its ridiculous. you should keep an eye on the acer chromebook 13. apparently on amazon.co.uk they have one that has a touchscreen and its apparently not available in the us. maybe its just an error on amazons part but it was there when i last checked. the toshiba 2 looks awesome also