Can You Learn To Code On A Chromebook?

Chromebooks have been around since 2011 but have only recently started integrating features and functions that allow for a much more extensive range of productivity tasks. These now include learning to code with apps, using apps for development, and more.

Chromebooks allow you to download and use apps from the Google Play store, which helps you learn and brush up on your coding skills for C, C++, PHP, Swift, Ruby, JavaScript, and Python, HTML, CSS, and more. They also allow you to code with text editors and apps such as Code Pad Text Editor, Text, and Caret.

We will briefly go over Chromebooks and their capabilities in terms of being able to use applications. Then we will discuss how you are able to learn to code and write code on a Chromebook and be able to use it for development purposes.  

Chromebook overview

Released in June 2011, Chromebook is a type of electronic device (laptop, tablet, desktop) That runs the Linux-based Chrome OS as its operating system rather than Windows or macOS. 

This operating system is based on Google’s Chrome browser, and it allows you to perform any task that you would be able to perform when using Chrome on a Windows system or Mac. 

Due to the fact that it is based on Chrome and is its own OS entirely, Chromebooks help you get things done faster and easier.

What is a Chromebook used for then?

Chromebooks run a lightweight operating system (minimal system resources) that allows you to run productivity tasks and applications that do not require many system resources. 

Primarily you would use a Chromebook for such tasks as browsing the internet, playing mobile games, and streaming video or music. 

What applications can you run on a Chromebook?

Today you are able to run Android apps, Google chrome apps, and Linux apps on your Chromebook, and for our concerns, even coding and developing applications, which we will get into a little further.

Besides playing mobile games, browsing Facebook, and streaming your favorite movies, you can also accomplish productive tasks to a small degree. If you need to get some work done, such as sending business emails, taking notes, and editing various documents, you are in luck. More so, you can even do a bit of creative design by installing and using Adobe’s Mobile Suite. 

Can you learn to code on a Chromebook?

Chromebook makes it easy to learn and keep your coding skills fresh with the aid of supported applications available from The Google Play Store. Here we will review the best ones available to date.


Enki is a free app with an optional subscription fee that will add premium features if you choose to subscribe. We have put this app first because it is excellent in terms of having the ability for you to learn and touch up your coding skills, which range from entry-level to experienced. 

It functions similarly to an exercise app because it gives you daily workouts that will take you through a variety of tests. Not only that, if you are new to coding, Enki teaches web technologies that you can learn before moving on to JavaScript. Program-related subjects are also covered, like managing version control with GiT and using the Linux command line. 


Grasshopper only allows you to code in JavaScript, so if you are looking to learn a different language, then you should consider another application. If you think that learning JavaScript is not useful, think again because even though simple to learn, it is used for a broader range of applications.

From fundamentals to advanced concepts and language features, you will learn JavaScript inside and out. There are always new courses to take and additional concepts to learn, so you will always be busy. What is great about this app is that it is entirely free with no in-app purchases.


SoloLearn is probably the app with the most amount of material available to learn in terms of languages in our list. It supports Java, JavaScript, C, C++, PHP, Python, Swift, Ruby, and more. 

Almost like a game, this app keeps you coming back by using points, achievements, and awards while you level up your coding skills. You are also able to compete with other students from across the globe and challenge them to code-offs.

SoloLearn is free; however, you can purchase a monthly or yearly subscription, which will remove ads and allow you to see personalized stats like goals and insights.  

Codeacademy Go

This app is excellent if you are already a CodeAacademy user. Linking to their website, this app takes courses and challenges and encourages you to complete them, giving you an incentive to complete tutorials. This app is free, with no in-app purchases. 


If you are looking to learn languages for web development, this app is excellent, allowing you to study JavaScript, Python, HTML, and CSS. It has excellent shortcut features enabling you to insert symbols used for coding. It is free to use, but you are able to purchase Encode Plus for a minimal fee unlocking extra lessons and challenges. 

Can you code on a Chromebook?

Since 2018 Chromebooks are able to create, test, and run any Android or web app for tablets, smartphones, and laptops. 

This feature allows developers to run editors, code in any language, and launch projects to Google Cloud. Jetpack is comprised of tools and components that will enable app development to be sped up and simplified is also available on Chromebook.

Text editors for Chromebook

There are many text editors that you can use on Chromebook for coding, and we will go over two of them here.


This is Google Chrome-packaged application (offline compatible), is not resource-dependent, and supports most syntax highlighting. 


This option is great for programmers and coders, offers offline support, and can save directly to Google drive. It integrates Mozilla’s Ace code editor, which allows it to highlight code in almost any language and is based on the Sublime Text editor. 

Text editing coding applications for Chromebook

Besides text editors, you can also download apps that allow you to code or even practice your coding skills if you like. There are many to list, but which are beyond this article’s scope; however, we listed our favorite one for you to try. 

Code Pad Text Editor

This free app from the Google play store is a multi-language code text editor crafted specifically for the Chrom OS. It is completely free and easy to use. In addition to that, it supports Apache, Bash, C/C++, CoffeeScript, CSS3, Dockerfile, GitIgnore, GoLang, HTML5, Java, JavaScript, JSON, Less, Lua, Markdown, MS SQL, Perl, PHP, PHTML, Plain text, PostgreSQL SQL Python, Ruby, Rust, Sass, Scala, SQL, TypeScript, XML, XHTML, and a few more..

Check out Code Pad Text Editor on The Google Play Store here

Can you develop on Chromebook?

Not only can you use a Chromebook to learn and practice your coding skills, but you can also write code with built-in applications and additional text editors. Developers can also find apps on the Google Play Store that will help them with programmers, develop applications, applications for tasks, develop underlying systems, and more. 

Video: Web development environment setup on Chrome OS

Apps the developers can use on Chromebook

Check out this list of developer apps that are available from the Google Play Store that allows developers to develop web apps and chrome apps in JavaScript or Dart as well as supporting Git and Polymer development. You can also find apps that let you remotely to terminals, emulate terminals, make developing applications more convenient, and many more. 


A Chromebook offers a lot of functionality considering its price compared to laptops, MacBooks, and other PCs.

Chromebooks have been around for almost a decade but have only recently in the past few years integrated other platforms allowing users to achieve a much more comprehensive range of tasks, which now include coding and developing.

Due to their specifications and their price, they are a perfect option if you are a coder or developer, bridging the gap between portability, features, functions, specifications, mobile devices, and computers.