Are Chromebooks Good for Office Work?

edited December 2023 in Business

Chromebooks are known for their reasonable prices, long battery life, and fast operating speed. They were initially developed as a window to the web, offering an optimized device that is predominantly intended for web browsing. Moreover, Chromebooks are durable and were built to provide computers for educational purposes. With tens of small hands eager to partake in interactive lessons, Chromebooks must be rugged enough to handle all eventualities.  

As technology has evolved, so have Chromebooks. The all-new Chromebook Plus devices are designed to support dynamic lifestyles and have enhanced performance. They offer up to double the speed and memory of traditional Chromebooks, allowing users a minimum 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage space. Moreover, Chromebook Plus devices are powered by an Intel® or AMD Core processor, giving users more power to complete demanding tasks.

What is a Chromebook?

Chromebooks are essentially laptops that run on ChromeOS, a speedy, simple, and secure operating system. These devices facilitate long work days with up to 10 hours of battery life on a single charge, so users can get work done on the go. Offering a fast start-up process and built-in virus protection, Chromebooks keep users protected while they work.

Furthermore, Chrome Enterprise is specially made for businesses, combining the Chrome browser, ChromeOS, and ChromeOS devices to power a cloud-based workforce. Doing business in the cloud can be risky, especially as hackers and cybercriminals are often on the lookout for their next victim. By using the Chrome browser, businesses reported a 97% reduction in security incidents and US $2.2 million in IT and management savings with Chrome devices. With enterprise-level support, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) can work with additional peace of mind.

Advantages of using Chromebooks for work

Are Chromebooks good for business use? Let’s consider some of the advantages of using a work Chromebook.

1. Affordability

Chromebooks are typically much more affordable than many traditional laptops. Designed for everyday workplace requirements, Chromebooks are around half the price of Windows or MacBook laptops. This is mainly because Chromebooks are powered by ChromeOS and use the Chrome browser, which is maintained by Google. By using a Chromebook, companies can expect to spend less on hardware while still securing themselves a powerful device. 

2. Speed

Chromebooks offer quick boot times and efficient performance for basic tasks, making them a suitable choice for business use. Chromebooks are not weighed down by background processes, legacy code, or bloatware like laptops or MacBooks, meaning they run quickly and smoothly. It takes roughly five seconds for a Chromebook to power up, allowing workers to begin their workday almost immediately.

3. Security

Automatic updates, sandboxing, and built-in virus protection make Chromebooks one of the safest devices available. The sandboxing approach means that each application runs in separate environments and cannot interact with each other, so any threats are contained and cannot make their way around the device. Moreover, starting up a Chromebook device triggers a self-check and addresses any issues if they arise. Although malware infections are still possible, the inherent security measures make Chromebooks exceptionally secure.  

4. Simplicity

With user-friendly interfaces and a familiar Google layout, Chromebooks ooze simplicity. Chromebooks are intended to be accessible to everyone, meaning they are easy and uncomplicated to use. Users can focus less on learning how to navigate their new device, and more on getting their jobs done.

5. Cloud Integration

Seamless integration with Google Drive and other cloud services means setting up a device has never been easier. Chromebook users can access their Google Drive and Chrome preferences by simply logging into their Google Account.

6. Battery Life

Forgotten your charger? No problem. Chromebooks are known for their long battery life — often lasting longer than other laptops. As the average Chromebook has a battery life of around 10 hours per single charge,, it is no wonder that Chromebooks are suitable for company workers on the go.

Limitations of using Chromebooks for work

Chromebooks are not suitable for everyone. Let’s consider some of the limitations of using Chromebooks for work.

1. Software Limitations

Chromebooks are created by Google and are not natively compatible with traditional Windows or Mac software. Moreover, Chromebooks are limited to apps available on the Chrome Web store and Google Play Store. This means that Microsoft Suite apps like Outlook, Word, and Excel will be unavailable, however there are web versions available. Chromebooks use Google Workspace and offer equivalent Google-powered applications.

2. Offline Functionality

Although some improvements have been made, Chromebooks are still primarily designed for online use. This means that their functionality will be significantly reduced if the device is offline. However, users can still access and edit Google Drive files and watch pre-downloaded videos without internet connectivity.

3. Storage

Chromebooks are designed with simplicity in mind and typically offer less local storage compared to other laptops. Chromebooks come with about 4GB of RAM, which is around half the amount of other laptops, although sufficient for web browsing and using Android apps. But, models like the Chromebook Plus offer higher specifications, potentially doubling the speed, memory, and storage compared to basic Chromebook models. 

4. Performance

High-end tasks like video editing or intensive graphic design might be challenging for traditional Chromebooks. However, the Chromebook Plus addresses this issue, offering higher performance specs than regular Chromebooks. 

Ideal scenarios for using Chromebooks in the office

Chromebooks are great companions for office work. Here are some ways they can streamline the working day and help employees do their jobs more efficiently.

1. Creating and editing documents

Chromebook users can create and edit Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides just like they would on a standard laptop or MacBook. Although Chromebooks do not support Microsoft Office, the web version is still accessible with limited features. 

2. Email and Communication

Office work in the digital age would not be possible without the ability to send and receive emails. Chromebooks allow users to send emails through their Gmail accounts or other web-based platforms. Moreover, users can even read, respond to, and search through Gmail messages without being connected to the internet by enabling Gmail offline.

3. Web Browsing and Research

Chromebooks are suitable for workers who frequently browse the web and research information. With Google Chrome as its primary browser, Chromebooks use browser-based software instead of Windows or macOS software used in other devices. This makes Chromebooks the perfect browsing companion, meaning users can always stay on top of work deadlines.

4. Remote Work

Chromebooks are made for remote work as they facilitate integration with cloud-based tools and platforms. They encourage colleagues to collaborate on documents and spreadsheets using the cloud. This reduces the risk of losing documents or leaking sensitive information when sending documents by email and keeps everyone on the same page. 

5. Meetings and Presentations

Users can hold and attend meetings using tools like Google Meet from their browser and can even schedule them in their personalized calendars. Other communication applications like Zoom are also supported and available for download from the Google Play store. Moreover, Chromebooks also facilitate browser-based design tools like Adobe Express, which are great for creating company presentations. The share screen function on Google Meet allows users to showcase their designs to others.

When is a Chromebook not the best choice?

We have covered who might benefit from using a Chromebook, but they aren’t for everyone. Here are some reasons why a Chromebook may not be the prime choice for potential purchasers.

1. Specialized Software Needs

Businesses that rely on specific Windows or Mac applications may not be the best candidates for a Chromebook. As Chromebooks do not support non-Google applications, those with specialized software needs should consider other brands to fulfill their work requirements.

2. High-Performance Requirements

Chromebooks are designed to be simplistic devices. Tasks that demand significant processing power such as video editing or gaming usually require more power than Chromebooks can handle. Those with high-performance requirements can think about purchasing a laptop or MacBook.

3. Large Storage Needs

Chromebooks are streamlined devices with limited storage space. Making full use of Google Cloud storage means Chromebooks can run quickly and smoothly. If substantial local storage is a priority, users can purchase external storage devices or another computer brand.


While Chromebooks are not suitable for all situations,  they are streamlined devices that boast simplicity. Chromebooks may struggle to conjure up enough power to facilitate intense design sessions and do not always support non-Google applications and software, however offline file access and a high-quality display makes them great for office use. Moreover, Chromebooks are lightning-fast and start-up within a few seconds, meaning users can work quicker and more efficiently. They are designed to not get bogged down by files and applications, and users are instead encouraged to save their work to the cloud. This is a convenient choice for office workers, as colleagues from around the globe can work on the same documents in real time. Acer offers affordable Chromebooks with basic features. The Chromebook Plus features better processors such as an  Intel® Core™ i3 processor or an AMD Ryzen™ 3 processor and larger RAM and SSD storage. Furthermore, specific legacy models now have additional Chromebook Plus features as standard, giving them an extra boost. Do more than you thought you could with Google Chromebook Plus.

Jeni is a translator and writer based in Taiwan. She is passionate about business development and loves helping companies enter international markets. She is fluent in English, German, and Mandarin Chinese, and combines these with her industry experience to provide practical market entry solutions.


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