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All posts tagged "chrome os"


Friday, May 13, 2011

Why Chromebooks Will Fail

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Laptop Thoughts Talk" @ 12:00 AM

http://www.digitaltrends.com/comput...e-born-to-lose/

"Google's Chromebooks risk repeating the same mistakes made by many failed predecessors, which could leave the door hanging open for Windows 8 to swoop in and dominate the cloud.

It is funny how often it generally takes for a new idea to stick in the market. We first started messing around with tablets in the early 90s. Now, nearly 20 years later, only one vendor has made a successful one: the Apple iPad."

An interesting argument against the entire Chromebook concept is presented in this article, citing an example of the failure of a whole genre of thin-client products from years ago. While some of the arguments are valid, a Chromebook is not a Sun Ray brain dead monstrosity. I know about the failure (or maybe better stated as lack of expected success) of the thin-client concept first hand, from beta testing the Sun Ray. Great concept, absolutely abysmal execution. No standalone capability. Fast forward to today, and enter the Chromebook: one can only hope that the designers and engineers have learned from history.

Great while online and connected, but, what happens when you're a two-hour drive from anywhere, and you want to use your Chromebook. Will a login even work while not connected to the cloud (somehow)? No WiFi, No 3G. Tablets were used as an example of a technology that failed the first time around, but improved and were successful in a second attempt. Will the second attempt at a thin-client (albeit a much, much better one) succeed? Rob's conclusion is that the Chromebooks will fail, and drive users to Windows 8. Personally I think that they will have some limited success, as many users really want only a browser, and do nothing else on a computer. It's early in the Chromebook game, but I'd be interested in what readers think of this whole Chromebook thin-client concept. Is $429 or $499 too expensive?


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Samsung's Chromebook Series 5 Makes a Cameo Appearance

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 11:00 PM

http://blog.laptopmag.com/hands-on-...mebook-series-5

"Tonight at the Samsung Chromebook Series 5 launch party we got a chance to go hands-on with the first Chromebook, a sleek little notebook that could be the vanguard of a new laptop category."

I think that Samsung has met and exceeded expections with its new Chromebook Series 5. Looking very much like a lighter and sleeker MacBook, the Series 5, at about 3.3-pounds, with a 12.1-inch screen with 1280x800 resolution, is expected to power-on in under ten seconds, sport a dual-core Intel Atom N570 processor, 2GB of RAM, a 16GB SSD and a lithium polymer battery expected to last about 8.5-hours between charges, over 1000 charging cycles. Most of the negatives so far deal with the cost of $429 for a WiFi model and $499 for a WiFi + 3G model. As with the CR-48 testing, 100MB of data transfer will be provided by Verizon for three years at no extra cost (and you can of course buy more!).

Amazon already has a Chromebook page up, and ordering is expected to be live on June 15, 2011. I've seen several hands-on videos already, and this looks (technically) like a winner, and even some of the big objections like lack of native apps are being addressed by Google and partners like Citrix. I love the "thin client computing" concept, and the inherent security, so this may be on my summer wish list. Maybe even an option for my father-in-law (at 89 years old) who only wants to use a browser and nothing more - open it, do something, close it.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Chrome OS: From the Cloud to the Desktop

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Laptops & Netbooks" @ 01:00 AM

http://gdgt.com/discuss/what-does-c...tm_medium=email

"What does Chrome OS -- or any cloud OS -- need to do to go mainstream? I was a little surprised when a Cr-48 -- that new Chrome OS laptop Google has been sending people to test -- showed up on my doorstep last week. I honestly wasn't expecting to get one -- Ryan got gdgt's review unit -- I just applied for one online like everyone else and kept my fingers crossed. I've spent a decent amount of time with it over the past few days (I'm writing this newsletter on it), and so far have some things I like (how easy it is to get setup, how quickly it boots up) and few things I don't like (the horrible trackpad and how awful fonts look)."

An interesting perspective on where Google may be going with this whole Chrome OS (CR-48) thing. Is it really intended for enterprises, or are consumers the target audience? With 60,000 or more CR-48s heading to various places and people, we should soon start seeing more and more reviews. The gdgt article lists some of the things that will be needed for the platform to succeed: price (lower than a netbook); battery life (eight hours would be nice); speed (faster than a netbook); simplicity (easier); support (less hassle please!); connectivity (cheap and ubiquitous). For me personally it won't replace the 'big iron' (or rather, 'big aluminum'), but it'll be a great in-between device for light duty.  Imagine one of these in each room ... I can.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Chrome and Nothing but Chrome ...

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Laptops & Netbooks" @ 11:30 PM

http://lifehacker.com/5713348/six-d...kyline=true&s=i

"For the last six days, I've used a Chrome OS netbook as my primary computer, and it's been a blast. Using a "just enough", basically Chrome-only system provides a rare chance to reexamine what it is you really need to be productive."

Interesting review on how to potentially minimize the various distractions that plague users (me, specifically) throughout the day, by "getting things done in Chrome." Many of the distractions simply are not there. One would think that the Chrome environment would (or will) be severely limited, but this article goes a long way toward proving otherwise - for what one would assume will be true for the majority of today's users. The browser is the computer. Extensions are the browser. When I stop to think about what I need to do during a typical day in front of a computer, probably 90% can be done right now in Chrome, without even thinking hard about it. Files out of Dropbox, do something with them, files back to Dropbox. Mostly word processing files, PDFs, and spreadsheets. Convert 'em to Google Docs. Simple image editing? Can be done in Chrome. Writing an article like this? Ditto. Access work applications through Citrix? Probably. Give me enough battery life, a good keyboard and screen, some web access through 3G/4G, and I'm in for at least one Chrome OS netbook ...


Thursday, December 9, 2010

What You Can Do When You Go Chrome

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 11:00 AM

"Chrome OS has always planned to offer "an experience that is nothing but the web," and that makes for some easy setup. In today's demo, Google showed how you can set up a Chrome OS notebook in just four steps. You log in to Google, set up your web connection, take a picture of yourself (or not), and get started."

WebBooks, thin clients, whatever you want to call it, have been tried many times before, but it looks like they may succeed this time. Actually, they have already succeeded. They are called smartphones and to a lesser extent, tablets. Still, it is hard to break from the installed application legacy; just look at how important the app store and Android market are to their respective phones. The Chrome OS seems to straddle the line, though instead of traditional Apps, meaning installed applications that are compiled for that OS, you are looking at web based Apps.

The release of the Chrome notebook also shows how pervasive we expect Internet connections to be. With Wi-Fi for urban areas and 3G/4G for everywhere else, it seems as if we almost would be aghast if we were somewhere without Internet access. I only shudder to think of how much our collective phone bills will cost.

I am in a situation where I still need traditional applications, and do find myself with spotty or impractical Internet access once in a while, so a computer that makes the assumption of always being connected does not make sense to me, but I am sure there are many out there where it does make sense. Is that you? Would you be tempted by a Chrome notebook, or would something like an iPad or netbook be of more interest?


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Deep Dive on the Concept of Chrome OS

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Laptop Thoughts Software" @ 05:39 PM

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4055/...les-chrome-os/1

"Microsoft needed to provide a lightweight OS optimized for the netbook experience a couple of years ago. It didn't. So Google is. The selling point behind a netbook is that it's small, cheap and fast enough for browsing the web. The problem is a netbook isn't fast enough for running the OS that you need to run in order to get access to the web. Microsoft refused to revamp the OS, so Google decided to put forth an OS based around a web browser. It's called the Chrome OS and it's built off of Intel's Moblin distribution of Linux. There's no conventional desktop, you turn on your Chrome notebook and meet a login window followed by an instance of the Chrome web browser."

If you're living your computing life in the cloud, then a device like this may be exactly what you've been waiting for. The speed, security, and stability may be the ticket for blissful computing - but only if you can put up with the limitations of course. What do you say Laptop Thoughts readers: is a Chrome notebook in your future? Personally, I'd be more interested in a Chrome tablet...


Welcome to the Chrome Cr-48 Laptop

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Laptops & Netbooks" @ 12:00 AM

http://www.engadget.com/2010/12/07/...rome-os-laptop/

"We've had plenty of pre-knowledge on this, but surprisingly this is our first actual glimpse of Google's new unbranded "Cr-48," the very first Chrome OS laptop. Google will distribute the laptop through its Chrome OS Pilot Program, in a sort of public beta. You actually have to apply to join the program, and there are going to be a limited number of the laptops available -- retail Chrome OS models from Acer and Samsung will be available in the middle of 2011 for the masses."

With a name and looks resembling a no frills cold war-era laptop knockoff from East Germany, the Cr-48 (named after an isotope of chromium) will be available soon in limited quantities to developers and testers. Pretty generic specifications: 12.1-inch screen; full-sized (slightly odd) keyboard; large clickpad; 3G chip; Dual-band WiFi; Webcam; 8 hours or more of use; 8 days or more standby; and flash storage only (bye bye spinning hard drive). I also read that the plan right now is to give 100MB/month of free Verizon (other carriers elsewhere) data transfer for 24 months as part of the package, to ensure that data in the cloud is always available even when disconnected from WiFi. Why 24 months? Is this the average time that a typical user keeps a computer? I like the concept, and the plan to provide persistent connectivity outside of WiFi is a great idea! Anyone have any predictions of what a device like this will cost, if it arrives as anticipated in mid-2011?


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