Google has outsold Apple in American schools, with its Chromebook laptop computers overtaking iPads for the first time as the most popular new device for education authorities purchasing in bulk for students, the Financial Times reported.
Google shipped 715,500 of the low-cost laptops into US schools in the third quarter, compared with 702,000 iPads, according to industry researcher IDC. Chromebooks now account for more than 25 percent of the market, FT said.
The lower cost of Chromebooks, which start at US$199, is a huge factor for school districts. Last year’s iPad Air costs US$379 after discounts are applied.
Aside from the cost, many school districts and companies prefer Chromebooks because of their full keyboard feature, as compared with the touchscreen found on iPads.
The multibillion-dollar education market has become a battleground for hardware makers trying to win the loyalties of the next generation of consumers, the newspaper said.
Microsoft Windows, which has a decades-long headstart on rivals, still dominates the broader education market, which includes higher education establishments, the report said.
Apple retains a slight lead over Google in schools and colleges when sales of its MacBook laptops, using the OS X operating system, are included, it added.
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