Acer And Haier Launch $149 Chromebooks
A couple of weeks in the past Google made headlines with the launch of the new Chromebook Pixel, the very best-finish Chromebook available on the market (and with a worth to point out for it). In the present day, the Chrome OS laptop computer ecosystem is launching two merchandise which are the precise reverse: the Haier Chromebook eleven (now obtainable on-line at Amazon) and the Hisense Chromebook (now obtainable at Walmart). Each of those eleven.6-inch Chromebooks will retail for $149, making them probably the most reasonably priced Chromebooks but.
As well as, Google at present introduced that Asus plans to launch a $249 convertible Chromebook/pill quickly, in addition to the Chromebit, a totally featured Chrome OS-based mostly pc on an HDMI stick, just like Intel’s Compute Stick. The launch date for these two merchandise is unclear.
Additionally coming down the pipeline is the brand new eleven.6-inch $169 Asus Chromebook C201. That one, too, is predicated on the Rockchip quad-core processor and also will are available 2GB and 4GB variations. It’ll go on sale at Amazon in Might.
The brand new Chromebooks from Haier and Hisense are powered by Rockchip‘s 3288 system on a chip (SoC). Likelihood is you simply did a double-take if you learn that. Rockchip isn’t precisely a family identify, in any case. However this firm isn’t some fly-by-night time outfit. The corporate, which was based in 2001, is one of many main fabless semiconductor companies in China and lately signed a strategic settlement with Intel to include its Atom cores into a few of its merchandise. The 3288 SoC is an ARM chip, nevertheless, based mostly on the 32-bit quad-core Cortex 17 design.
For many use instances, the 3288 ought to supply respectable searching speeds. We haven’t been capable of see it in motion but, nevertheless it outperforms a few of Intel’s current Atom chips in many benchmarks.
The essential specs for the Hisense and Haier Chromebooks are primarily the identical: 2GB of RAM, 16GB eMMC flash storage. Each function two USB ports, and SD Card reader and HDMI output, as properly a 720p webcam and WiFi and Bluetooth antennas. Each units help Google’s all the time-on “OK Google” voice instructions and include Google’s barely modified Chrome keyboard.
In addition to the $149 model, Haier will even supply a second model of its Chromebook with a bigger — and detachable — battery that guarantees 10 hours of battery life. For the common model, Haier guarantees 10 hours of battery life, and for Hisense, eight-and-a-half.
The show is usually the key damaging of cheaper units. Rockchip guarantees that its constructed-in GPU can deal with 4K video, however the show on these new units isn’t all that near 4K.
The Haier Chromebook weighs in at 2.fifty four lbs (just like an eleven-inch MacBook Air), and the Hisense one at three.three lbs (that’s precisely the identical because the Chromebook Pixel).
Each Haier and Hisense observe that whereas the units are low cost, they may nonetheless be sturdy. Hisense, for instance, has added a metallic palm relaxation to its machine, which ought to make it really feel higher than a few of the costlier plastic Chromebooks (we should always get a evaluation unit quickly).
With the launch of those units, the Chrome OS ecosystem pulls aspect-by-aspect with the Home windows world, the place Microsoft reportedly hopes its OEMs may also supply $149 laptops based mostly on Home windows 10 quickly.
Asus Chromebook Flip and Chromebit
The Asus Chromebit, which ought to retail for beneath $ninety nine, can also be a Rockchip system with 2GB of RAM and the identical 16GB of eMMC flash storage because the Chromebooks. It’s principally a Chromebox on a sweet bar-sized stick (I’m truly stunned it’s not referred to as the Chromestick).
As an HDMI stick it’s clearly focused at enterprises which will need to use it for cellular staff and perhaps corporations that need to use it for in-retailer shows (Google already has an analogous program for Chromeboxes, in any case). I’m fairly positive there shall be fairly a couple of hackers who will need to play with the system, too.