Chromebook vs Windows 10 S-mode: which laptop to buy on Prime Day?

With Amazon Prime Day deals dropping from June 21 to June 22, we’re going to see plenty of Prime Day laptop deals drop that will be absolutely must-have. But if you’re looking for one of these laptops, it can be difficult to decide between a Chromebook and a Windows 10 S mode laptop, or even figuring out which one is best for your needs.

There are real differences between the two types of systems and each has its advantages and disadvantages. And while they will be competing against each other on Amazon Prime Day, especially in terms of price, it’s important to determine what best suits your specific needs rather than going for the cheapest.

For many Windows users, a Windows 10 S mode laptop probably seems better suited than a Chromebook, which they may never have used before. But the label “Windows 10” might be misleading for some who might have done better using a Chromebook than a Windows 10 S mode laptop that doesn’t have the kinds of features and functionality they do. could have waited.

Meanwhile, if you’re new to Chromebooks – especially if you’re coming from a Windows laptop or MacBook – you might find Chrome OS very disappointing, and with most of its features reliant on a good one. Internet connection, you may not find Chromebooks to be functional enough for your needs.

So, as you go through all the deals on Amazon Prime Day, we’re here to help you break down the strengths, weaknesses, and differences between the two so that you can buy the best cheap laptop for your situation.

Asus Chromebook Flip C214

(Image credit: Asus)

Chromebooks are designed from the ground up to be light and affordable

Windows 10 Chromebooks and S mode laptops are typically lightweight portable devices that you can throw in a bag and take with you during the day. And while both do the job when it comes to light computing tasks, Chromebooks are built from the ground up specifically for this purpose.

While you can find super premium Chromebooks running very powerful hardware, Chrome OS was designed to run on low-end machines while streamlining its use of resources. Loading RAM can let you open a lot more Chrome tabs, but Chrome OS is already very efficient, so you end up enjoying the full experience even with the thinnest specs.

Plus, because Chrome OS was originally designed around low-end hardware, it seamlessly expanded to include the entire Android app ecosystem through Google Play. There are still growth issues, as most Android apps are built around a mobile touchscreen user interface rather than a traditional laptop. The Android Marketplace is the largest in the world, however, you certainly won’t run out of apps to play with.

The other thing that Chromebooks are built around is a good internet connection. Chromebooks were supposed to take advantage of cloud computing services like Google Docs, Sheets, and Stadia, rather than locally installed software. And while you can install a lot of software, these are mostly mobile apps, so you might not find them as feature rich as you need.

Windows 10

(Image credit: Avenir)

Windows 10 S Mode Brings Familiar Experience While Being Affordable

It’s not entirely fair to say that Windows 10’s S mode is a lite version of Windows 10, but in practice that’s basically what a user is going to find.

In terms of user interface, Windows 10 S-mode laptops look a lot like more powerful, full-featured Windows 10 laptops that cost a lot more. The Start menu, desktop, notification center, taskbar, etc. are essentially unchanged in Windows 10’s S mode, which will be a major selling point for many users. Learning a whole new operating system, even though it’s as intuitive as Chrome OS, can be a real stumbling block.

To find the real difference between Windows 10’s S mode and Windows 10, you’ll have to dig a little deeper than the user interface. Many Windows apps won’t run in S mode, including some of the more popular ones like Steam, Adobe Photoshop, and Google Chrome.

The only apps you can run in S mode are those downloadable from the Windows Store, and while there aren’t exactly digital tumbleweeds, the Windows Store isn’t as popular as the Google or Apple marketplaces.

Windows 10’s S mode is also a scaled-down version of Windows 10, so while this makes it familiar to many, it also means that it wasn’t really designed from the start to run on low-end hardware like was Chrome OS. Windows 10’s S mode still works great on this hardware, it just doesn’t perform as well as Chrome OS.


(Image credit: Konstantin Savusia / Shutterstock)

Chromebooks vs Windows 10 S mode laptops: which one should you buy?

If you’re choosing between a Chromebook and a Windows 10 S mode laptop on this premium day and you’re not sure which one is best for you, the best thing to do is figure out how you plan to use it. and how comfortable you are with computers in general.

If you plan to spend most of your time online, whether it’s the web, streaming video, or working with cloud apps, a Chromebook is definitely something you should consider. If you’ve never used one before, but are comfortable with learning a new operating system and interface, then you really can’t go wrong here. Chromebooks are designed exactly for this type of computing, so you will generally get better performance in your day-to-day use.

If you don’t plan on spending a lot of time online – or if you’re just more comfortable with a Windows environment – then a Windows 10 S mode laptop may give you a more traditional laptop experience than you might expect. ‘a Chromebook, including more traditional. , full software via the Windows Store.

That said, since Windows 10’s S mode wasn’t built around low-end hardware – it’s more that Windows 10 was tweaked to run on it – your experience will depend a lot more on the quality of the hardware than it is. ‘she wouldn’t. be with a Chromebook, and you might still find the overall performance to be somewhat lacking.

Either way, whether you’re using a Chromebook or a Windows 10 S mode laptop on Amazon Prime Day, you’re sure to find plenty of great deals no matter which one you choose.

TechRadar brings together all the best deals during the Prime Day sales period, and we’ve put all of the best Prime Day deals in an easy-to-navigate article to help you find the bargains you’re looking for.

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Brian Steele

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