What you need to know

  • Bill Nye compares Chromebooks to Windows laptops in a new ad.
  • The ad implies that Windows laptops are slow, freeze, and have viruses, compared to Chromebooks that do not.
  • Several of the claims are questionable when given context.

A new ad comparing Chromebooks to Windows laptops features Bill Nye "The Science Guy" breaking down the science of fear. The commercial claims that users are afraid to switch away from Windows machines and tries to convince people to overcome their fears (via ZDNet). It also makes claims about Windows laptops, stating that they are slow to boot up. It also implies that Windows devices are more prone to viruses by pointing out that Chromebooks have built-in virus protection.

It's not rare for companies to make ads specifically comparing a product to a competitor's device. This Chromebook ad never specifically mentions Windows, but it's clearly referring to it. The license plate of Nye's busted up car that's slow to start and prone to freezing is "WNDWS." Recently, Microsoft released a Surface commercial in which a person named Mac Book recommends a Surface over a MacBook. It's a fairly common tactic among advertisers. Microsoft has also taken jabs at Google in the past.

This ad has some questionable points, however. Nye states in the commercial that "one [while pointing to the Chromebook] has built-in virus protection... The other [while pointing to the Windows laptop] should be quarantined." Windows laptops come with Windows Defender, which recently received a perfect score in all three categories in an AV Test. It's also worth questioning if people are afraid of switching or just prefer to use what they like using.

Portable (and affordable) power accessories we love

Each and every one of these charging gadgets will keep your favorite gear and gadgets going for longer, and none of them costs more than $30.

VisionTek 8,000 mAh micro-USB power bank ($13 at Dell)

This compact dual-output powerbank can speedily recharge any and all your devices, thanks to a two-amp "fast charge feature," using its micro-USB out port. Its simple design includes an LED indicator, and it costs about as much as a single ticket to the movies.

Panasonic eneloop AA batteries (From $13 at Dell)

Panasonic's rechargeable batteries are among the best available, and just a couple of them will keep your favorite remote, mice or other peripherals powered up when you need them. They're also eco. And the company's affordable charger fits and charges both AA and AAA batteries at the same time.

Belkin Qi Wireless Charging Pad ($30 at Dell)

This unobtrusive Qi wireless charging pad looks good (and kind of like a UFO …) and easily charges all your Qi-compatible device up to 5W. Its LED indicator lights up when you're charging. And it costs just $30.

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.