Jan 22, 2014

How much RAM is needed for a Chromebook?

I’m thinking of getting a new Chromebook, but don’t know all that much about them. Basically, I want a light, simple, inexpensive machine that I can use to get online and use Google Docs. I’ve seen a lot with only 2 GB of memory, same as my phone. Is this enough, or should I look for a Chromebook with more RAM? I realize I’m only paying a few hundred dollars, but I still don’t want a super slow, laggy mess.

Go with the model that has the most RAM that you can afford. It's never a good idea to skimp on RAM since it can make a huge difference in performance. Spend as much as you can afford, and get the most RAM you can.
I would not go with a 2GB Chromebook, especially if you are like me and have dozens of tabs open at any given moment. The more tabs you have open (let’s think of this like a super browser, because to be honest that’s what a Chromebook essentially is), the more you are going to notice the difference between a Chromebook with 2GB of RAM and one with 4GB. Scrolling down will be laggy, sometimes annoyingly so, and there will be input delay. Annoying. Newer Chromebooks have swap enabled by default, which helps, but still spend the $50 or so extra to get 4GB of RAM. Think of it as an insurance policy against annoyance.
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