Do Drawing Tablets Work on Chromebooks?

Drawing Tablet on Chromebook

Yes. Some drawing tablets do work with Chromebooks. However, it’s important to know that this is only the case for Wacom models. Since the creation of the Linux Wacom Tablet Project, Linux -based devices such as Chromebooks can now be used with certain drawing tablets.

Companies such as Huion, XP-PEN and Gaomon, among others, do not offer support for Linux, which means that graphics tablets sold by these companies simply will not work on a Chromebook.

The reason for this is that drawing tablet manufacturers have decided to focus their efforts on developing devices that work on Windows and Mac computers because these two operating systems are used by the majority of people. Offering support for Linux, at least for now, doesn’t seem to be profitable enough to justify the investment.

Which drawing tablets work on Chromebooks?

According to various users across the internet, there are numerous Wacom drawing tablets that work particularly well on Linux based computers, which means that they should work on Chromebooks as well.

That does not mean that every single tablet released by Wacom will work well on your Chromebook. Some simply work better than others.

I have put up a list of graphics tablets that work particularly well in most Linux environments (Chromebooks), if your drawing tablet is on this list, this is great news, but if it isn’t, the best thing you could do is checking by yourself if your specific Chromebook work with your specific tablet.

Check out the list below:

Wacom Drawing Tablets for Chromebooks

Model

Manufacturer

Linux Wacom Tablet Project Download Link

Wacom Intuos

(Click link to see it on Amazon)

Wacom

Download

Bamboo CTH

(Click link to see it on Amazon)

Wacom

Download

Bamboo CTL

(Click link to see it on Amazon)

Wacom

Download

One by Wacom

(Click link to see it on Amazon)

Wacom

Download

Connect

Wacom

Download

Splash

Wacom

Download

Capture

Wacom

Download

Intuos Draw

Wacom

Download

Cintiq 12

Wacom

Download

Splash

Wacom

Download

How about other Wacom drawing tablets, will they work on Chromebooks?

The list above simply shows the drawing tablets that we know for sure that work on Linux computers. This doesn’t mean that other Wacom tablets are excluded.

In theory, once you install the Linux Wacom Tablet Project, most Wacom tablets should work on your Chromebook, but there are absolutely no guarantees. You should remember that these drawing tablets were not designed to be used with Linux, the mere fact that there’s a possibility of using them under these circumstances is already extraordinary.

Are there any drawbacks to the Linux Wacom Tablet Project?

Wacom drawing tablets were not made to work on Linux, but developers found a way around it by adapting the drivers.

While this is great because it allows more people to enjoy drawing with tablets, it also means that users might experience unusual behavior from their devices.

The most common complaint is that it’s hard to configure the stylus (pen) buttons and the hot-keys (buttons on the surface of the drawing tablet).

Since none of these buttons are essential for art creation, even if you do come across this configuration problem, you will still be able to use almost everything your drawing tablet has to offer.

Are there any other options for Chromebook users?

Absolutely yes. Depending on the model of your Chromebook, it may have native pen support. In case it does, all you have to do is installing an app and you will be ready to start using your device as a drawing tablet.

Just remember that even if your Chromebook has native pen support, it’s still rather limited because you won’t be able to install a lot of different software in it and in case you decide to buy a drawing tablet from a company other than Wacom, you still won’t be able to use it with your Chromebook.

Among Chromebooks that have pen support you will find:

Chromebooks With Pen Support

Model

Manufacturer

Lenovo Chromebook C 330

(click the link to see it on Amazon)

Lenovo

ASUS Chromebook C202SA-YS02

(click the link  to see it on Amazon)

ASUS

Acer Chromebook R 11

(click the link to see it on Amazon)

Acer

chromebooks

Is it a good idea to buy a Chromebook if the primary reason for it is drawing?

No. Using drawing tablets with Chromebooks is almost a hack. Although developers have worked hard to make Wacom devices compatible with Linux, you will still be much more likely to come across technical issues with this setup than you would if you decided to take a more traditional approach, like a Windows or a Mac computer.

Even if you pick a Chromebook that has native pen support, there will always be a number of restrictions in terms of apps you can install and processing power. While you may be able to draw with Chromebooks you will not be able to create a professional setup with them.

Drawing is a secondary, perhaps even a tertiary, function of Chromebooks. It’s only a good idea in case you want to do it for fun or simply to practice your skills.

Who should use drawing tablets with Chromebooks?

People who have already purchased a Chromebook and would like to draw should definitely check out Linux Wacom Tablet Project and get one of the drawing tablets mentioned at the beginning of this article.

That said, if you still haven’t bought a Chromebook and is considering buying one for drawing purposes, I would strongly recommend that you pick another option.

Get a standalone drawing tablet or even a laptop and you will be much better suited to work with drawing tablets and heavier professional software such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator.

Conclusion

Even though Chromebooks can work with certain graphics tablets, they are far from being the ideal devices for drawing.

Only consider going through the hassle of making this work if you already have a Chromebook and simply don’t have any other option.

All things considered, if you do have a Chromebook and a Wacom tablet, while it may take a little while to make things work properly, eventually they will.

Do not feel discouraged, simply follow the advice on this article and you will soon be drawing on your Chromebook.

If you have any questions, I’m here to answer them,

Bruno

Bruno Santos

Hi! My name is Bruno. I'm a web developer/designer based in Toronto, Canada. I've been working with drawing tablets for over 20 years and I'm among the Top 10 Most Viewed Writers on Quora in the Graphics Tablets category. Do you have any questions? Just leave a comment =)

This Post Has 10 Comments

  1. Oioi, my name is Elayne. I have been trying to connect my intuos pro s for the longest time to my chromebook acer 11, is it possible? If so how? I already have linux on this computer btw

    1. Hi, Elayne!

      Have you tried downloading the Linux Wacom Tablet Project mentioned in the article?

      When it comes to making drawing tablets work properly on Chromebooks, unfortunately there are no guarantees. Sometimes it takes a lot of trial an error before something starts working.

      I hope you manage to fix it 😀

      1. Thank you so much (ovo)/

  2. I have a question!
    I have a Lenovo Chromebook S330, except that it doesn’t have a touch screen nor can it flip making the screen face you.
    I want to draw on an app, but what iPad should I use and what would be a good stylus?
    Or can it even work at all?
    If so, how do I connect the tablet to the stylus and the drawing tablet and stylus to the chromebook?
    Does this require a touch screen laptop?

  3. Hi! I’m Nash. I want to download the Linux Wacom Tablet Project on my chrome book. It’s a Samsung Chromebook 3. However, the downloading process seems complicated and I am not familiar with coding. Could you explain the process in a more simplified manner? Thanks!

    1. Hi, Nash!

      I will have to create a proper tutorial about this because most people are not familiar with a Linux environment.

      The process is indeed complicated and there are no guarantees that your drawing tablet would work on a Chromebook. Like I mentioned in the article, this method is a bit of a hack.

      If you would like to draw without worrying about technicalities, I would strongly suggest that you simply get a standalone drawing tablet. Some of them are pretty affordable and
      you won’t have to worry about anything else except for drawing: please, check out this article: Standalone Drawing Tablets.

      Take care 🙂

      1. Thanks Bruno! I’ll give it a look.

  4. Hi, I am in desperate need of help, I am an artist that wants to attempt digital art, but all I have access to is a Chromebook, with this Linux beta option, how well does it normally work even with all these hiccups with the buttons, and is this a good option for an artist that wants to experiment?

    1. Hi, Evan!

      In case you manage to install Linux Wacom Tablet Project AND you own a Wacom drawing tablet, you should be able to use the most important features of your device, which are: tracking and pen pressure.

      That said, unfortunately there are no guarantees. Chromebooks and drawing tablets are like water and oil, they don’t mix.

      Try installing Linux Wacom Tablet Project and see for yourself if it works for you.

      I wish you the best of luck 🙂

      1. thanks so much, so I took a jump into the dark and am now confused as what how to work the Linux Wacom project, so any help there would be helpful, but otherwise the tablet is working pretty well, but do ya’ll suggest any particular programs for starters like me?

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