Google has passed Apple for the first time in the US education market, according to the latest statistics from the International Data Corporation (IDC) reported by The Financial Times. Google’s Chromebook laptops have become more popular in the classroom than Apple’s iPad.
In the third quarter of 2014, Google shipped 715,000 Chromebooks to schools versus Apple’s 702,000 iPads.
Experts believe the Chromebook has potential to dominate the education market. Rajani Singh, an analyst with the IDC, told The Financial Times that “Chromebooks are really gaining traction” and that this growth should be a “major concern for Apple.”
The report also indicated Google could be closing in on Microsoft’s Windows platform as a leader in the education space.
One main reason Chromebooks have seen such success is because they’re incredibly cheap. Since the laptops are designed to be used primarily with an internet connection, they don’t need high-end internal components like regular laptops. You can buy a Chromebook for as cheap as $US199; even an entry level iPad with an education discount can cost between $US300-$US400.
Microsoft is doing its part to give the Chromebook some tough competition, too. New products such as the HP Stream cost about the same as a Chromebook, but offer the benefit of running the full version of Windows and include a free one-year subscription to Office 365 Personal.