Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) Chromebooks toppled Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad for the first time in the United States Schools. According to a report from IDC, in the third-quarter, 715,000 Chromebooks were sold compared to 702,000 iPad units. Affordability could be the one factor that is driving growth for the Chromebook against Apple iPads.

Advantages enjoyed by Chromebooks over iPad

IDC noted in its report that schools that have a limited budget are conscious about the price difference between iPad and Chromebook, which is roughly $200 per unit. Another driving factor for Chromebook is its full keyboard compared to the iPad, where the schools have to incur extra cost for getting keyboard for the iPads.

IDC analyst Rajani Singh talked about the shifting demand from the iPad to Chromebook, acknowledging the increasing popularity of the latter in the recent times. According to Singh, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) should worry over the situation, citing that for students, keyboard is vital as they grow older.

This is not the maiden win for the Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) over Apple as the former has outplayed the iPhone maker in the past as well. For instance, in 2013, the Cupertino, California-based company was in talks with the Los Angeles Unified School District to sell its iPad within the district. The deal never materialized as there was no clear picture from Apple on how the iPad would be supplied to the students and also some students were concerned over the restrictions on the iPads that they will get. Later, the Chromebooks and Windows powered laptops made their way in this school district.

Students an important segment for Apple, Google

The iPhone maker excels over Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG), when it comes to educational apps as IDC mentioned that there were 75,000 more apps available for download in iPad compared to Chromebook. Apple iPad also has iTunes U system, which is a selling point for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad, enabling the professors and teachers to create custom courses and share lectures. In response, Google launched Google Play for Education, a competitor to iTunes U.

Tech giants are in rush to get the largest share of the school districts, community colleges and universities as these organizations are capable of offering long-term contract to the companies. To get the long-term contracts from the schools, the companies are ready to forgo high margin. Moreover, students are also comfortable in using the same hardware and Operating system as their education progresses.