Surface Go vs. Chromebook: Which is better for you?

Microsoft’s Surface Go is going to be to be had quickly, and it is an intriguing tool: $400 will get you a well-built pill with complete Windows. You can use any piece of Windows device constructed within the final 20 years, or keep on with the shop and internet for an more straightforward enjoy. Microsoft is positioning this as the very best tool for scholars, faculties, and companies.

But Chromebooks is also a better choice for all of the ones. Chromebooks do not need the backlog of device that Windows does, however maximum customers can get by way of with the internet and Android apps. Chromebooks also are more straightforward on budgets and IT directors’ time

For this comparability, we will check out the Lenovo 500e since that is this yr’s very best Chromebook for scholars. There don’t seem to be any Chromebooks with the similar processor because the Surface Go, however this is shut sufficient for comparability’s sake.


To be honest, scholars should not in fact use native garage. Google Drive and OneDrive are each to be had and considerable for all your recordsdata, so you do not want to fear about dropping your thesis on a thumb pressure. On each Chrome OS and Windows, you’ll be able to want a little of native house for your Android or Microsoft Store programs and their knowledge. Chrome OS is a lot smaller than Windows, so it makes use of much less of the disk house.

The Lenovo 500e comes with 32GB of EMMC garage. This is not an enormous quantity, and it would possibly not be blazing rapid, however it’s going to be sufficient for what customers will do on a Chromebook. Meanwhile, the Surface Go comes with both 64GB of EMMC garage, or 128GB of quicker SSD garage.

Another factor to imagine when having a look at garage — each capability and pace — is updates. Chrome OS downloads and installs updates within the background, because the person is going about their day. Windows downloads updates within the background, however only a few updates set up within the background. The semi-annual massive Windows updates are going to be particularly painful at the slower EMMC garage. Chrome OS simply wishes one minute of downtime for updates, whilst the decrease finish Surface Go will want a lot, a lot more time.

Windows additionally wishes a large number of house for updates, in case a person must roll again to earlier variations. Two-thirds of your general house is going to be taken up for 2 months out of the yr, stressing cloud garage much more.


The largest draw of the Surface Go for some scholars would be the light-weight: it clocks in at 1.15 kilos (with out the Surface Cover) — a lot lighter than the 3 kilos the Lenovo 500e weighs. If you wish to have one thing to make use of as an e-reader or for inking, the Surface Go’s lighter weight will make both of the ones a a lot more stress-free enjoy. Even the removable HP Chromebook X2 weighs in at 1.6 kilos, making it heavy in comparison to the Surface Go.


The Surface Go features a USB-C port that permits for charging, knowledge switch and Display-Out, the proprietary Surface Connect port, and a three.5mm headphone jack. The Lenovo 500e comes with two USB-C ports that each permit for charging, knowledge switch and show out, two USB-A ports, a microSD slot, and a three.5mm headphone jack. The Surface Go is not a nasty choice in case your faculty or industry has invested in Surface Docks, however for maximum customers, the broader vary and selection of ports at the Chromebook will likely be better.


Nothing else about a pc issues if it can not run the systems you want it to. If one thing you want to make use of is not to be had in a web site or as an Android software, you are now not going to have a lot good fortune with Chromebooks. Conversely, 60% of U.S. faculties had been in a position to make use of Chromebooks to do the whole thing they want scholars to do, so you are prone to to find luck.

The Surface Go ships with Windows 10 Home in S Mode. This is the similar Windows 10 you realize and love, however out of the field it is locked to the Microsoft Store. This is extra safe than the wild wild west of standard Windows systems, and your device will likely be better for it. If you DO want an software that’s not within the Microsoft Store, you’ll transfer to the “normal” mode of Windows for loose.

There’s not anything that claims you ONLY have to make use of Chromebooks or Surface Go’s. If budgets permit, your faculty company may factor a Chromebook to each and every pupil, then pick out up some Surface Go’s for particular classes.


As somebody who professionally manages each Chromebooks and Windows laptops, I will be able to say with out a shred of doubt that Chromebooks are going to be more straightforward for faculty IT directors to configure and deploy. Setting up a Chromebook for Enterprise use takes about one minute, and shifting the tool to another pupil is as simple as having them check in with their e mail deal with. Windows laptops will take for much longer, particularly putting in and updating a customized symbol at the gradual EMMC garage. You’ll additionally want to issue within the downtime each and every six months for primary updates, or even somewhat little bit of time every month for smaller updates.

Price and Availability

The Surface Go, uh, is going for $400 for the 64GB garage/4GB RAM fashion or $550 for the 128GB/8GB model. But that is simply the pill. You’ll want a Type Cover keyboard for any critical quantity of typing, which provides any other $100. And stylus customers will want to shell out any other $100 for the Surface Pen. $600 is not horrible for a unmarried pupil, however the more cash provides up briefly for cash-strapped faculties or non-profits.

See at Microsoft Store

This Chromebook is $300 outright. The keyboard is hooked up, and there is a pen within the field. The stylus is not just about as succesful because the Surface Pen, however that implies it is affordable sufficient to be incorporated and affordable to exchange if want be.

You — or your faculty company — can order the Lenovo 500e or different related Chromebooks as of late, whilst the Surface Go would possibly not be to be had till early August. That’s nice timing for person scholars going to university, however it is going to be a little tight for faculty companies that want to get the pill imaged, configured and in a position at hand out when faculty begins in mid- to late-August.

See at Lenovo

Which is very best for you?

Unless there is a particular, Windows-only program you want for coursework — otherwise you intend to do A LOT of inking — the Chromebook is going to be a better purchase. It’s a minimum of part the cost of the Surface Go while you consider the cost of the keyboard and pen, Chrome OS is a extra safe working machine than Windows, and Chromebooks do what a majority of scholars and academics wishes them to.

Chromebooks additionally require much less time (and due to this fact cash) for faculties to arrange and administrate, permitting them to spend their cash on extra machines for extra scholars.

What are your ideas?

Are you enthusiastic about purchasing a Surface Go? Let us know within the feedback segment!


Surface Go vs. Chromebook: Which is better for you?

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