Windows 10 vs. MacOS vs. Chrome OS – What Is the Difference?
When buying a computer, you have very limited options when it comes to operating systems. To be precise, you only have 4 options: Windows, MacOS, Chrome OS, and Linux. These 4 operating systems differ in many ways, and the choice you make can affect your experience.
Today, we will do a thorough analysis of Windows 10 vs. MacOS vs. Chrome OS and learn how the three most common operating systems differ from each other. We will share the qualities and drawbacks of each OS, so in the end, you can make an informed choice about which OS to opt for when buying a new computer.
But before we get into this comparison, let’s first see what an operating system is!
What Is an Operating System?
An operating system in a computer or in a phone is a software that runs the device. An operating system is what connects your system to its external hardware, loads programs, manages your storage, helps you connect to the internet, and runs basically any operation.
Today, operating systems have advanced dramatically to offer amazing user interfaces and utilities to help users do a lot of tasks without having to resort to a third-party software. For instance, today’s operating systems come with built-in clocks, calendars, text editors, photo and video viewers, music players, and email boxes so you don’t have to install an app for each operation.
An operating system also ensures that your computer runs smoothly and stays safe from cyber-attacks. They come with built-in security protocols to keep you hidden from the spotlight. They also include automatic updates to keep your computers updated to the latest releases.
When choosing an operating system, the following factors should be kept in mind:
- Hardware options available
- Software options available
- User interface, design, and ease of use
- Integration with mobile and cloud
- Apps, utilities, and tools included
- Security and updates
Windows 10 vs. MacOS vs. Chrome OS
Windows is the most commonly used operating system in the world, powering a whopping billion computers globally. Due to this fact, you can easily find most of the hardware and software compatible with Windows. While Windows had a few unpleasant releases including Windows Vista and Windows 8, Windows 10 pretty much makes up for all its screw ups in the past. Windows 10 is considered as the best Windows version till date.
Windows 10 is hard to match when it comes to interface and usability features, With a support for full touch touchscreens, voice assistants, clipboard tools, photo and video tools, calendar, mail, notepad, and all the other usability features, Windows 10 offers convenience at hand to its users. Its ease-of-use that comes in the form of moving and rearranging files is also exemplary.
In terms of performance, Windows 10 is extremely powerful, especially if you are a gamer. It offers support for VR gaming and most of the mainstream games are released for the Windows platform. It also makes syncing files for you easier using Microsoft OneDrive. You can also access files on your PC remotely using OneDrive.
Although very secure, Windows 10 still does not match the security offered by MacOS. It also lacks in terms of device integration as compared to MacOS, which beats all using the ‘Apple ecosystem’.
MacOS is a fan-favorite operating system mostly used by creative professionals who rave about it. MacOS is undoubtedly slick, reliable, and secure. In addition to being incredibly advanced, MacOS tires in perfectly with iPhones and other iOS devices, offering a great ecosystem with easy access to all devices. Although nearly all MacOS computing systems use the same hardware, it’s a pretty decent and slick one. It comes in beautiful finishes that exude exclusiveness.
As you can expect from Apple, the MacOS interface is as fast and stable as it gets with continuous consistency. With Finder, you can easily access tabs and other features from your desktop. The dark mode offers uniform results across all tools.
Every app in MacOS has the same menu, which makes it consistent and easy to use. But many people may find it difficult, especially those who have recently switched from Windows that uses program-based desktop.
In terms of utilities, Mac uses are pretty lucky. From the Preview utility that offers a quick look at any file to the media apps and iMovie, MacOS has pretty powerful apps which won’t require users to buy any third-party apps. You can also access your Mail, Calendar, Notes, Reminders, Apple Maps, Podcasts and more from your Mac. The best part, although is the AirDrop feature that allows MacOS users to seamlessly send any file from their iPhones to their Macs within seconds.
However, Macs have lacked in terms of gaming. Although the upcoming M1X is believed to be good for gamers, it’s not always a great idea to buy a Mac if you are a hardcore gamer. It does not even have support for VR gaming yet.
MacOS offers great parental control options for people who want to limit their children’s computer usage. Something that Windows does not offer yet.
Chrome OS started as a cloud-powered app that uses Google Drive to store data. But ever since then, Chrome OS has massively advanced, allowing you to use Android Apps from Google Play. The operating system also offers desktop features such as file folders, Google Assistant, screenshots, night mode, and a great integration with Android devices.
Chrome OS comes installed in Chromebook laptops as well as Chromeboxes, which are desktop computers running on Chrome OS. Chromebooks are an inexpensive option that mostly students opt for. There’s also a high-end option called the Pixelbook which starts from $999. Chrome OS comes with support for touch screens, stylus input, and several printer models.
In terms of the interface, Chrome OS has a pretty clear and basic interface with no real desktop. So you can’t save apps or files on your desktop. Just like Windows’ Taskbar, Chrome OS has Dock which is not really as functional as the Taskbar. However, the settings and the program launcher are great.
As compared to Windows and MacOS, Chrome OS has two drawbacks. Firstly, it has two app stores called the Chrome Web Store and Google Play, choosing one from which can be quite confusing. Secondly, the Android apps don’t perform really well on Chrome. They are inconsistent as they are developed for mobile phones.
While it all depends on your needs, Windows 10 and MacOS are the more reliable operating systems. If you are looking for an inexpensive computer to get the job done, Chromebooks are a good option too. For a more detailed discussion on whether or not to get a Chromebook, check out our guide.