The Electric Educator: iPad vs. Chromebook [Your Thoughts]

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

iPad vs. Chromebook [Your Thoughts]

I teach at a school that has a 1:1 iPad program. I am also a Google Certified Teacher and Trainer and have been following the development of the Chromebook closely.

I was fortunate to receive one of the Chrombook Beta devices Google sent to users in early 2011. I am also the owner of a Samsung Chrombook which I use when I am traveling.

Having used both the iPad and the Chrombook extensively, I am torn between the two devices. Each has some awesome features from a beautiful interface and a wonderful app ecosystem (iPad) to powerful collaborative abilities and always available internet connectivity (Chromebook).

Several schools and individuals have asked for my recommendation as they weigh hardware purchases for the coming school year. I'm torn. Which device would you choose?

There are lots of angles to consider these two competing devices on:

  1. Ease of use
  2. Cost
  3. Maintenance
  4. Available Apps
  5. Owned vs. Shared
  6. Portability
  7. Battery life
  8. Connectivity
Please weigh in! If someone asked you which device they should purchase as a 1:1 device, which would you recommend? What was the deciding factor for you? 


  1. My daughter's friend was part of a school trial that was given Chrome Books to use. She really didn't like them--I think, in particular, she didn't like that she didn't have a desktop/file system to store things on--that everything was in the cloud.

  2. I believe the Chromebook to be the better choice for schools. I bought an Acer Chromebook as a gift for my Mother, and have never seen a computer so easy to set up. Boot up in 10 seconds from off, and resume from sleep in 1 second...Of course my mother wanted a keyboard, so a tablet was not an option. I understand why kids would want the tablet, as my son has an ipad, but from a teaching and maintenance perspective, the Chromebook wins.

  3. I have had the Acer Chromebook since July 2011 and find it much more useful in an educational (and personal) setting. I have noticed that a majority of students only think of the iPad as a game player. The lack of a keyboard on a tablet and the closed ecosystem of Apple make it an easy choice. Chrome has thousands of the same apps you will find in the other closed(minded) app store as well. The price difference also would be a HUGE factor for schools. At almost 1/2 the price, get a Chromebook!

  4. Our school is looking toward having student devices and we are looking at both. We also just became a Google School this year and are going through that process. I'm a huge fan of the iPad but not of the cost. I have no experience using the Chromebook. I'm looking forward to your presentation next week at Wayne RESA.

  5. I have discovered your website by accident and I think it´s wonderful! Very practical and filled with useful information!

  6. we are facing the same dilemma. With Google providing Drive and offline files and a growing collection of offline apps, I am tending to the Chromebook. I have three children. The eldest (Year 12) has an Apple Mac. The middle and youngest share Windows based laptop. We also have an ipad at home. The Chromebook has become the choice of the younger two. Mind you this choice has come hand in hand with their shift to Google docs


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