Chromebooks vs. Windows Laptops: What Should You Buy?

Offering a simple and stripped-down experience, Google’s Chrome OS is extremely easy to use (if you can use a browser, you’re good), and it comes inside several affordable laptops that start as low as $199. According to research firm NPD, Chromebooks now account for 35 percent of commercial channel notebook sales. Plus, 3 out of the top 10 laptops on Amazon are Chromebooks. However, Microsoft isn’t taking this threat lightly.

These days, you’ll find a number of Windows-powered laptops that cost less than $300, and many under $400 offer touch displays. At the same time, Windows 8 continues to evolve, and now offers a more desktop-friendly interface, along with smarter search. Plus, there are simply some things that Windows laptops can do that Chrome OS can’t.

So, which computing platform truly is the best? To answer that question, we put both Windows and Chrome OS to the test and compared them in 11 rounds of head-to-head competition.

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