The Chromebook has a new family member and this one is an affordable featherweight PC companion item, just over 2 pounds, that will tempt some takers to leave their heavier clunkers at home and others to reconsider spending a week's salary on higher-priced lightweight rigs. Either way, Google's Tuesday unveiling of the HP Chromebook 11 is a headliner, with numerous plus points for mass-market consumption.
The $279 HP Chromebook 11, available now, runs off a cellphone charger, for one. It uses the same charger as most Android phones. Google's promo page shows the machine sharing the charger with a Nexus 4 phone. With all the bells and whistles of new PCs, consumer chatrooms in various sites often say how bendable screens, personal assistants, and killer camera features are terrific but how about doing something great with power, as in juice, and battery life? The HP Chromebook 11 single-charger feature may be a real deal-maker for consumers who can forget about packing up weight-adding chargers that come with laptops along with chargers for phones. A single Android phone charger is all one needs.
At the unveiling in New York City, Google 's vice president of Product Management for Chromebooks, Caesar Sengupta, spoke about the charger feature but also did not ignore the pricetag. He noted that Google wants this to be the laptop that everyone can buy.
The Chromebook 11, designed and built in partnership with Hewlett-Packard, has an 11.6-inch display at 1366x768 resolution, 2 GB of memory and 16 GB of flash . There are two USB 2.0 ports, a headphone jack and the microUSB charging port. The battery provides up to six hours' use.
Speakers are directly under the keyboard, a placement designed for better sound projection.
Google is also throwing in extras, which the search giant terms "Goodies," for those who buy the device: 100GB of Google Drive cloud storage for two years, a 60-day trial of Google Play Music All Access, and 12 free sessions of GoGo in-flight Internet.
While this is a Chromebook promoted as designed for everyone, the fact is, this is a Chromebook, and not all users may want a Chromebook. For those especially keen on touch capabilities, the HP Chromebook 11 has no touchscreen. For those who like to carry a high-end device with expensive casing as a status symbol, this Chromebook is shiny plastic.
For professional power users who have come to rely on Windows and Mac OS, the HP Chromebook 11 runs neither. The HP Chromebook 11 runs Google's Chrome operating system. You can run Gmail, Google Docs and other online services.
Color Strip Options
On the other hand, the new Chromebook entrant shows that thought went into optimizing that shiny plastic, for an attractive clean look nonetheless. The HP Chromebook 11 has no screws, no holes, no sharp edges. A magnesium frame lends rigidity. While color options are only white or black, the white model offers a choice among four accent strips, from blue to red to yellow to green.
The Chromebook 11 is available now at Google's Play store and selected retailers.
Google has noted that Chromebooks in general have been well received in schools Over 5,000 K-12 schools in the U.S. have deployed Chromebooks for their students. Market research firm NPD Group said in July that, in spite of a PC downturn, budget-priced Chromebooks were the fastest-growing part of the PC industry based on price.
Posted: 2013-10-10 @ 6:22am PT
Chromebooks got off to a rocky start when they were first released, but Google has finally started to get the Chromebook concept message across to more and more manufacturers, retailers, analysts and users.
But what about Chromebook users that need to access Windows applications like Microsoft office? They can try products like Ericom AccessNow, an HTML5 RDP solution that enables Chromebook users to connect to Terminal Servers and/or VDI virtual desktops, and run Windows applications or desktops in a browser tab.
There's nothing to install on the Chromebook, so AccessNow is easy to deploy and manage.
For an online, interactive demo, open your Chrome browser and visit:
Please note that I work for Ericom