Google announces $249 Chromebook

Google has announced a new Chromebook that will available on Monday for $249. The new ARM based computer will be a fan-less machine and Google is hoping that it will be your next companion device. 

Samsung will be building the new Chromebook and it will run on a Exynos 5 processor with an 11.6in screen, weighs 2.5lbs, 6.5hrs of battery life, boots in 10 seconds, and you get 100GB of storage via Google Drive for two years. 

Google touts easy account switching, portability, and of course, Google products are built in to the device. An interesting feature that comes with these devices are 12 free Gogo Inflight passes. This will allow you free access to the web when you flying on a plane equipped with GoGo's in-flight Wifi.

Google also states that they are taking care of viruses too by stating: "Viruses, malware and other nasties are taken care of. No extra software (or worrying) required.". It does not state if anti-virus software is included or if they are counting on the fact that ARM based malware/viruses are not a threat at the moment. 

The low priced Chromebook reminds us of the Netbook craze that swept across the industry a few years ago where consumes bought up tons of cheap laptops at a similar price point. While that phase has passed, Google looks to be playing into that same segment with the Chromebook. Will the Chromebook live up to the standards we expect from Google, only time will tell, but a $249 laptop is certainly on our radar. 

Source: Google

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If Google was really serious about their own OS they would have made it a variant of Android with easy porting mobile apps to the desktop.
Maybe even with a second UI implemented in universal binaries.

So... buy one app, use it anywhere at its fullest potential.

But no, they had to play their old "You could do that on the web!!!!!!!!11!" game...

Google, just because stuff can be done via internet, building up so many dependencies doesn't always work well.
*sigh*

GS:mac

Sold out on Amazon as of a few minutes ago. I noticed it only has wireless ABG? I was almost set to buy it after happily using my CR-48 until I saw that.

KarbonKopy said,
Sold out on Amazon as of a few minutes ago. I noticed it only has wireless ABG? I was almost set to buy it after happily using my CR-48 until I saw that.

Looks like Amazon had the wrong specs, it does indeed have wireless N

I mean the idea of Chromebooks started off ok, but now that people can get Windows RT, it seems less amazing. RT has similar (maybe even faster) boot up times. Looks much nicer. And it'll be on more devices.

ACTIONpack said,
Buy it and install Windows 8 on it! ChromeBook is worthless in my mind!

While you try getting Windows 8 to work on this ARM-based netbook, see if you can give installing a go on my PowerBook G4 as well. Let me know how it turns out!

Absolutely not interesting. Will have limited niche client base.
Somewhat heavy for its class, average battery life considering the low power CPU. Boot time should not even be mentioned considering Windows 8, a full class OS, boots faster than this.

This device belongs to another era. Unfortunately recently gone.

TheCyberKnight said,
Absolutely not interesting. Will have limited niche client base.
Somewhat heavy for its class, average battery life considering the low power CPU. Boot time should not even be mentioned considering Windows 8, a full class OS, boots faster than this.

This device belongs to another era. Unfortunately recently gone.

It sold out as quick as the Surface did, is Surface is niche then?

I'm interested in this for maybe getting and installing something else (arch linux arm). Anyone know if it's possible or if they lock you out from doing it or what?

Who is the target market for this. It's not a laptop replacement for most people and it's not the best consumption device. USB is nice i guess, but with limited chromebook what exactly are you transferring that not already in the cloud?

Having chromebook and android tablet os exist at the same time is a very 2000's Microsoft like thing to do. Infighting between divisions?

So when will neowin post "google announces 249.00 chrome book and stock falls 10%" ?

(yes, i'm poking fun.. but you guys did run a story about surface announced and stock is flat/down..)

this should have a quad core, 1920x1080 screen and a bigger battery. An arm computer should get way more than 6.5hrs! Do that for £199 and you would have a very nice product.

torrentthief said,
this should have a quad core, 1920x1080 screen and a bigger battery. An arm computer should get way more than 6.5hrs! Do that for £199 and you would have a very nice product.

Quad-core and bigger battery could be brought and the price point of £199 be met but the screen res is simply to expensive, the vast majority of laptops do not have a resolution that high, why would a device like this?

Honestly i don't see the point.

Google should focus on Android and forget Chromebook. Hybrid tablets with removable kb are the way to go.

technikal said,
And the surface costs twice the price.

It also does a whole lot more than just open up a browser window.

technikal said,

And the surface costs twice the price.

And is twice as fast,
has more than twice the apps,
twice the portability,
can do more than twice the work......... and the list goes on

Toysoldier said,

And is twice as fast,
has more than twice the apps,
twice the portability,
can do more than twice the work......... and the list goes on

My point exactly. Other guy comparing the two when they aren't even in the same ball park.

"you get 100GB of storage via Google Drive for two years"

for a device that actually lives on online content this is the biggest scam i've heard in some time

"Viruses, malware and other nasties are taken care of. No extra software (or worrying) required."

with androids reputation who would be concerned about that?

morden said,

with androids reputation who would be concerned about that?

I would be slightly interested if it even ran android.. but it doesn't.

I look forward to 3 ecosystems so that all of us fanboys can simply say to someone "just stay away from the other 2."

I can see people using a Chromebook, specially those that can't afford a more expensive laptop or those that just need a browser, but for me it's just not an option.

I'd rather spend those $249 on a Nexus 7.

Vasya_Vodochkin said,
An ARM-based chromebook. It should have been made like that from the start, since Chrome OS can run only web-based apps.

Agreed, x86 is too expensive and too power demanding for any form of mobile device, Intel have been promising year after year that this year they've cracked it and their chips are really good in terms of power efficiency, every year it's a disappointment.

My first response was "er, Samsung? Can I get one of these with Windows RT and 32 gig for $349?" But then I jumped on Best Buy's site and realize I could get an Aspire One for $259 with Windows 8 upgrade for $14.99 if I wanted an inexpensive tiny notebook..it'd just have a lot more functionality to it with 250 gig drive. Sure, its a lbs heavier and 0.2 inches thicker, and worse resolution, but it sure gets rid of my initial "that's a great price!" reaction.

Cheap computers are never a bad thing for people who cannot afford an expensive laptop, is it just me or does it look a bit like a MacBook Air

liamdaly said,
Cheap computers are never a bad thing for people who cannot afford an expensive laptop, is it just me or does it look a bit like a MacBook Air

Of course it does, it's a Samsung.

I honestly don't see the appeal of this thing and I'm still trying to figure out what place it fills within the consumer market. The way I see it: Google wants you to pay around €200 for a computer that's pretty much incapable of doing anything else than open a browser window. Even today's el-cheapo tablets like the Nexus 7 will give you an app experience far superior to that. On top of that you'll have to put all your faith in online storage. You carry around a brick if for whatever reason you don't have a connection to the internet.

.Neo said,
I honestly don't see the appeal of this thing and I'm still truing to figure out what place it fills within the consumer market. The way I see it: Google wants you to pay around €200 for a computer that's pretty much incapable of doing anything else than open a browser window. Even today's el-cheapo tablets like the Nexus 7 will give you an app experience far superior to that. On top of that you'll have to put all your faith in online storage. You carry around a brick if for whatever reason you don't have a connection to the internet.

I'm not so sure of that. The vast majority of time I spend using my computer is spent in Chrome. I think that a Chromebook can be a very useful machine for a lot of people that want to be productive - something that still isn't really possible on a tablet.

Ambroos said,
I'm not so sure of that. The vast majority of time I spend using my computer is spent in Chrome. I think that a Chromebook can be a very useful machine for a lot of people that want to be productive - something that still isn't really possible on a tablet.

When I'm productive I spend my time in Word, Excel, Pages, Keynote, Final Cut Pro, InDesign, Pixelmoter or Photoshop. Anyway, hook up a keyboard and I don't see why you can't be productive on a tablet. At least, not any less than with a Chromebook.

Edited by .Neo, Oct 18 2012, 5:53pm :

Ambroos said,

I'm not so sure of that. The vast majority of time I spend using my computer is spent in Chrome. I think that a Chromebook can be a very useful machine for a lot of people that want to be productive - something that still isn't really possible on a tablet.

I actively try to avoid the browser when I want to be productive... way too many distractions.

This is because 1/2 of Google is supporting the Android initiative. The other 1/2 of Google is supporting the ChromeOS. They both say their half is the "future of computing". I guess if you bet on two horses in a two horse race you will win, this is what Google is doing.

.Neo said,
I honestly don't see the appeal of this thing and I'm still trying to figure out what place it fills within the consumer market. The way I see it: Google wants you to pay around €200 for a computer that's pretty much incapable of doing anything else than open a browser window. Even today's el-cheapo tablets like the Nexus 7 will give you an app experience far superior to that. On top of that you'll have to put all your faith in online storage. You carry around a brick if for whatever reason you don't have a connection to the internet.

NeoPogo said,
This is because 1/2 of Google is supporting the Android initiative. The other 1/2 of Google is supporting the ChromeOS. They both say their half is the "future of computing". I guess if you bet on two horses in a two horse race you will win, this is what Google is doing.

I guess. On the other hand I think for many years to come there will be a demand for native apps. Some companies like Facebook have tried the HTML5 thing for their apps and came crawling back because native code performs so much better.

DOA. Oh, wait, this is a great success, has been taking the world by storm because it is by Google, and Win8/RT is the real failure.

They announce this, and their stock price drops by 9% and their market cap is now $23B below MSFT, but that doesn't mean anything.

nohone said,
They announce this, and their stock price drops by 9%
Stock price drop is more to do with them just announcing their estimated third-quarter profits have fallen by 20% not this news.

Jedimark said,
Stock price drop is more to do with them just announcing their estimated third-quarter profits have fallen by 20% not this news.

I know. It was a comment on how Neowin had to make a post about how MSFT's stock was flat after the Surface price was announced, and the coincidence of the GOOG price and this announcement.

nohone said,
DOA. Oh, wait, this is a great success, has been taking the world by storm because it is by Google, and Win8/RT is the real failure.

They announce this, and their stock price drops by 9% and their market cap is now $23B below MSFT, but that doesn't mean anything.

Just looked it up, the screen is bigger than the Surface, but the resolution is the same. Since we have been told the Surface screen makes it a fail, then this is even more of a fail.

nohone said,
DOA. Oh, wait, this is a great success, has been taking the world by storm because it is by Google, and Win8/RT is the real failure.

They announce this, and their stock price drops by 9% and their market cap is now $23B below MSFT, but that doesn't mean anything.

It's sold out already, just saying...

6.5h of battery life only. That seems very low for this configuration. However, no one will buy this anyway. Google gives them away to schools for free just so they can say we have thousands of installed units.

isn't the Fanbois thing getting old? anyone that says it now basically kind of just identifies themselves as a young teenager not to be taken seriously. Just the same for any "fan" base, there is no fans, just people who like the product they use. Some more then others but NOT in a fan way.

NeoPogo said,
Google FanBois and FanDroids, get your engines ready to buy!!!

rippleman said,
isn't the Fanbois thing getting old? anyone that says it now basically kind of just identifies themselves as a young teenager not to be taken seriously. Just the same for any "fan" base, there is no fans, just people who like the product they use. Some more then others but NOT in a fan way.

The hater thing has been old for a while. The BSOD thing has been old for a while. The M$ thing has been old for a while. The end of the PC thing has been old for a while. The DOA thing has been old for a while. And so on, and so on, and so on. But it doesn't seem to stop people from using them.

rippleman said,
isn't the Fanbois thing getting old? anyone that says it now basically kind of just identifies themselves as a young teenager not to be taken seriously. Just the same for any "fan" base, there is no fans, just people who like the product they use. Some more then others but NOT in a fan way.

I don't think you're experiencing much of the world. If you really think people aren't fans of brands, I'm curious which facet of reality you've chosen to expose yourself to.

I will bet if the article was about Apple and I made the iSheep reference you would be all over that...

rippleman said,
isn't the Fanbois thing getting old? anyone that says it now basically kind of just identifies themselves as a young teenager not to be taken seriously. Just the same for any "fan" base, there is no fans, just people who like the product they use. Some more then others but NOT in a fan way.

nohone said,

The hater thing has been old for a while. The BSOD thing has been old for a while. The M$ thing has been old for a while. The end of the PC thing has been old for a while. The DOA thing has been old for a while. And so on, and so on, and so on. But it doesn't seem to stop people from using them.

You forgot year of Linux, but that's okay.

KSib said,

You forgot year of Linux, but that's okay.


The irony is, if a year of Linux ever actually came to pass, it would have to be a Linux so completely buried and hidden that it's nothing like the Linux used by the sort of people who SAY "year of Linux".

We will have the year of Linux when it's layers and layers of proprietary, closed code sitting on top of the open source Linux kernel. In other words, any victory that Linux could ever possibly have in the consumer space would necessarily be a hollow one.

jakem1 said,

I think you forgot your sarcasm tag.

I understand that some people will be really psyched about this. But it's totally not a mainstream thing. Just fans and tinkerers

jakem1 said,

I think you forgot your sarcasm tag.

Actually I was being serious. Looking forward to the reviews and how it performs, but this thing is designed to sell.

FMH said,

Actually I was being serious. Looking forward to the reviews and how it performs, but this thing is designed to sell.


If I had to get such a limited device, I'd get a tablet - more comfortable and handy.

georgevella said,

If I had to get such a limited device, I'd get a tablet - more comfortable and handy.

I think its a device that students would find very attractive. Especially those who use Gmail and Google Docs.

FMH said,

I think its a device that students would find very attractive. Especially those who use Gmail and Google Docs.


Sure, until they have a professor ask for files in .doc format.

FMH said,

I think its a device that students would find very attractive. Especially those who use Gmail and Google Docs.

Most students are not that poor that we need to use this as our laptop... In college these days you get a pretty large check for other expenses from the gov or some colleges let you rent ultra-books. At my last college every student got an ultra-book it was included in the tuition. Not to mention that most colleges use Office and different Majors require specialized software. Oh and lastly most students these days communicate with FB or their university e-mail.

Joshie said,

Sure, until they have a professor ask for files in .doc format.

You can save your files as .docx files if i'm not mistaken.

Professors shouldnt ask for .doc any more either way.

MidTxWRX said,

You can save your files as .docx files if i'm not mistaken.

Professors shouldnt ask for .doc any more either way.


It's easy to say professors "shouldn't" do something. Then there's reality.