Chromebooks are fast becoming the star devices in the PC market

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 tent mode

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority
  • Chromebooks were the best performing devices in the PC market in Q1 2021, per research data.
  • The sector saw 275% growth in Q1 2021 compared to Q1 2020.
  • While HP, Lenovo, and Acer lead the sector, Samsung recorded more than 2,000% growth in shipments over this period.

As the economic effects of the pandemic slowly subside, Chromebooks continue to be the standout sector in the PC market. Although the segment’s raw shipment numbers continue to lag behind tablets, laptops, and desktops, the year-on-year growth of Chromebooks remains unmatched.

According to research from Canalys, tablets saw 51.8% growth in Q1 2021 compared to Q1 2020. Even laptops saw a healthy 62% growth spurt over this period. However, Chromebooks achieved a 274.6% growth figure over this period, making it the device category with the biggest growth figures in the PC market in the quarter.

canalys chromebook shipments q1 2021

Credit: Canalys

The first-quarter growth of Chromebooks was shared across all OEMs, too. Compared to Q1 2020, HP saw an increase of 633%, shipping 4.3 million Chromebooks in Q1 2021. Lenovo (308%) and Acer (178%) also saw big shipment upticks during this period. However, it was Samsung that recorded the most significant jump with a 2,233% shipment increase. It shipped just 51,000 Chromebooks in Q1 2020, but that ballooned to 1.2-million in Q1 2021.

Why Chromebooks?

Chromebooks have come a long way since their inception. With some models’ ability to run Android apps and general ease of use, they’ve become attractive products for casual PC users. Canalys attributes Chromebooks’ growth to the education sector but notes more users are turning to them instead of laptops.

Those leaning heavily on intensive or specialist tasks like video creation or design may want a more powerful or versatile machine. Gamers may still consider Windows-based laptops to be king, while productivity fiends will likely still turn to MacBooks. But Chromebooks are filling a niche that the likes of Microsoft and Apple can’t quite serve.

What is your opinion on Chromebooks, and do you feel the sector’s growth will continue? Additionally, have you bought a Chromebook in the last 12 months? If you have, be sure to vote in our poll above. Tell us why you purchased it in the comments below.

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