Although Chromebooks have stood out as lightweight, affordable laptops with basic features for many (their operating system is based on the Chrome browser), this does not mean that they are not computers capable of offering more than acceptable performance as work devices. with an office suite such as Microsoft Windows. They are also computers that, despite being designed to work almost always connected to the Internet, can also work without an Internet connection.
The truth is that despite the evolution that ChromeOS has undergone over the last few years, it still does not allow the direct installation of Windows or Mac software, having to resort to the Google Play Store application store where, unfortunately, , there are no specific versions of popular Microsoft productivity software. The good news is that there is another way to have these applications on the Chromebook laptop.
These are the so-called PWA (Progressive Web Apps) or progressive web applications, in practice web versions with an appearance very similar to that of an app although including different options, such as the one that allows offline use. It is also allowed to pin them to the taskbar or manage notifications or access to different functions related to the hardware.
In the case of Office, the user must register in Office 365 (it can be done with any email address) and after having an active profile, an icon can be downloaded from the Office website itself that is anchored in the upper right part of the bar address of the browser and that when activated runs the “application”.
Office also offers the option to install some applications of the suite individually, such as Word or Outlook, in case the complete software package is not needed. The result will be the same: the corresponding icon will appear in the browser bar to open that specific application. The result will be a browser window containing the functions of the Office mobile app (or the individual application chosen).
One of the advantages of using these PWAs is that no application is actually installed, so since they are computers with usually modest features, they do not slow down in their operation and the experience is fluid and almost indistinguishable from working with the web versions or with the of programs installed on PC/Mac computers.