A recent study shows that Chromebooks have had a sharp ascent in web traffic for North America, jumping 700% since June 2012. While this is still a very small fraction of overall web traffic, it's also exciting news for Google. The little OS engine that could seems to be picking up steam!
Let's not get ahead of ourselves, though. A 700% increase is great, but what does it mean? Chromebooks are definitely gaining in popularity, having been among the top selling computers on Amazon for quite some time. The reduced price of recent Chromebooks, like the offerings from Samsung and Acer, make it a palatable option for consumers. The study also notes that Acer president Jim Wong mentioned their Chromebook offerings accounted for 5-10% of overall US shipments since November. This is indicative of Chromebooks, and Chrome OS, is beginning to gain the attention of a wider audience.
With increased sales, and an OS that operates almost exclusively on the web, internet usage of Chrome OS is bound to increase. Chrome OS is admittedly lacking, which is why Google produced the Chromebook Pixel, aimed at developers. Web traffic is great, but unless Google gives people more to do than tool around online, Chrome OS won't get much further beyond simple web surfing. Increased adoption, along with a powerful machine, should give developers a reason to start considering Chrome OS as a viable platform to develop for.
A 700% increase is amazing, but still only accounts for less than 0.1% of overall web traffic. That's only about 25% of what the PlayStation realizes, and is still far behind Linux… by about 99%. For a platform that has been available to consumers for less than two years, this news is still promising and welcome for Google.