The software engineers of Google and Samsung have been working hard to integrate the Chrome OS in personal computers, but it is only recently that both companies might have gotten it right.
The search engine giant Google and its hardware partner Samsung have rolled out a new Chromebook that may just make them pioneers of profitable thin web-based laptop. It seems the Chromebook that you may actually want to buy, has finally arrived.
Introducing the Samsung Chromebook 2
Google’s previous Chromebooks were more on the budget end. Priced almost always under 950 MYR, they had encroached on the niche market of Windows PCs.
This is where the new Chromebook is different. Priced a little over 1300 MYR, the new Chromebook sports a pricing model closer to Apple and not the lower-end Windows PC.
Samsung has packed the Chromebook 2 with as many features. Apart from the basic functions characteristic to any Chromebook – an internet browser, a host of web applications and cloud based storage capabilities, the Chromebook 2 packs in an array of other laptop-like functions. The tech website Wired was so impressed, it has called the Chromebook 2 “almost a real laptop”.
Why you may actually want to shell out RM1,300 for the Chromebook 2
Sporting a respectable 13.3 inch screen, the Chromebook 2 is the first of its kind (Chromebooks with 13.3 inch screens) to provide you with a great high definition display (1080p) . Other similar Chromebooks like the ones from HP and Toshiba are definitely cheaper in price, but they are also cheaper in resolution – none provide 1920 x 1080 display.
The Chromebook 2 is faster. Powered by Samsung’s Exynos 5, the eight-core Octa CPU which is also the mobile processor of some Galaxy S5 models, the new Chrome OS ensures faster speeds. You could argue that the Chrome OS stands nowhere close to the operating systems that power Windows PCs or Apple’s Macs. However, here’s why the Chromebook 2 could still be a great deal: Chrome OS is more lightweight. As the lighter OS of the lot, Exynos 5 ensures your Chromebook functions at the same speed (more or less) as the other more powerful operating systems and notebooks while using lesserpower.
The computer also delivers with its memory capacity. Sporting a 16 GB flash drive, the new Chromebook’s storage is respectable considering you’ll use it to access data mostly stored on the cloud.
Further, it uses high and low-voltage cores to maximize the battery life. The 4GB DDR3L is a low voltage RAM that the Chromebook 2 uses when you’re generally browsing around the Internet. It uses the higher-voltage processor cores when you’re watching HD movies and making your Chromebook perform other processor-intensive tasks.
Samsung says this use of dual-category cores helps the new Chromebook squeeze the maximum amount of battery-life. However, rated at 8.5 hours maximum, the Chromebook 2 does fall behind other Chromebooks that boast 10+ hours of battery life.
You’ll be able to use the 720p Webcam to hold Hangouts on Google + using your Chromebook 2. According to Samsung, this is the first Chromebook to have been certified by Google for Hangout chats.
You may find yourself questioning Samsung’s choice of leather stitching and leatherette finish (i.e. We have no idea what they were thinking), BUT if you can bring yourself to look past it, you’ll have at your hands a RM1,300, 13-inch Chromebook that displays better than and functions just as good as a RM3,600 Macbook. A smaller 11-inch version OF the new Chromebook exists too, priced at around RM1,050.
The Chromebook 2 is expected to be released in April 2014.
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