For the first time ever, Chromebooks outsold Macs across the board in Q1 of 2016. IDCanalysts confirmed with The Verge that “Chrome OS overtook Mac OS in the US in terms of shipments,” noting that the heaviest market for Chromebooks remains education systems targeting the K-12 demographic.
Although they did not confirm a specific number of sales for Google’s low-cost notebooks, they do report that Mac shipments were in the ballpark of 1.76 million during the three-month interval, meaning Dell, Lenovo, and HP must have hocked somewhere close to 2 million Chromebooks.
The future of these Chrome-powered notebooks remains a bit cloudy. Although they’ve seen success with education systems, Google really wants to get their products into the hands of more general consumers and business-oriented users. If these devices continue growth as Google hopes, then they will be posed to go toe-to-toe with Microsoft in the low-cost laptop realm. This is especially true in light of IDC’s analysis that Windows-running devices are in an overall decline.
Android is also taking up arms in this battle. Specifics regarding how Android’s slew of apps are expected to arrive on Chrome OS are expected to be unveiled at Google I/O this week, and this explosion of software diversity may must make Chromebooks more appealing to the kind of users that Google wants to target.