Chromebooks have been a bit of a mixed bag for many people. Some users love the idea of a lightweight, browser-focused operating system, and others feel like a computer that just runs browser apps is a waste of money. When Chromebooks occupied the $199-$300 space, they fit a niche as a lightweight “secondary machine”. Yesterday Google branched out in a shocking new direction, announcing the touchscreen, high-resolution, Chromebook Pixel. A touchscreen Chromebook is big news all by itself, but the price is really generating buzz. At $1,299 for the WiFi model, is Google overestimating the appeal of ChromeOS? The Gear Diary Team spent all afternoon debating the Chrome Pixel, and whether it’s worth that eye-popping price tag!
Joel McLaughlin $1300? Never.
Deni Tako I’m with Joel – the Pixel looks interesting enough, but with only 32GB of memory & WiFi only, I think it’s crazy and would only take one for free. Even for free, I’m not sure how much use it would get. $1300 would have to include an unlimited data plan forever for me to buy it. WiFi only when everything is in the cloud doesn’t cut it. They’d have to be responsible to KEEP me in the cloud for that much money!
Joel McLaughlin It’s pretty … that much is certain. However it’s just not viable.
Michael Anderson Never … I would buy a Surface Pro first. Nice Gorilla Glass panel, though … yay for that Also, I think it is a total ‘meh’ design.
Joel McLaughlin Actually I like it. It’s pretty sleek … but I fail to see why I would want to buy that versus a Samsung one.
Carly Z I think the Samsung Series 3 Chromebook (the $249 one) looks awesome. This? I just don’t know. It’s a lot of money for the leap of faith that ChromeOS grows up to need that kind of power.
Michael Anderson I haven’t explored Chrome OS deeply, but right now I think a $829 iPad with 4G would be more useful … at least for me. @Carly, I agree. But they look like awesome inexpensive laptops. On this space you are dealing with Apple and Sony, and this looks like a $799 ultra book
Carly Z Exactly. I am a big advocate of ChromeOS and I can’t even begin to outline a use case for a $1300 Chromebook.
Joel McLaughlin The ONLY way I could is if they actually made Chrome OS a FULL OS. Add some true desktop style apps — something like Libre Office or even their own. Maybe even add Steam to the mix as well. Since they ain’t doing that, then no. I DO want a Chromebook though, but I’d be just as happy with the Acer or Samsung, and they are MUCH cheaper. If I am spending $1300 I want a full system.
Michael Anderson My thought exactly – I would love a Chromebook with a low-end data plan for light use … but then again, that is what I use the iPad for!
Deni Tako I haven’t even tried the Chromebook OS yet, but from what I understand it’s supposed to be similar to using say, all the Google apps for iOS, but on a simple “desktop.” Desktop in quotes because I guess it’s almost more of a launcher than a desktop, but you get the idea. Anyway, my fully loaded Sony Vaio with a 17″ screen and i7, upgraded screen and SSD/HDD hybrid drive & blueray drive cost $1100 when I got that last year. I can add an external dvd drive & copy DVDs (I do that a lot when I visit family), and it came with WiDo or whatever that is. It totally sucks for service around me, but it is in there… What I really want to know is who WILL buy it. Or who they think will drop that much on something with limited usage. Carly, do you know how much of the 32GB of memory is available to the user? Also, the free 1TB for 3 years because that’s how long they expect it to last? Jeez! I mean, I understand planned obsolescence via upgrades, but to start off saying that’s how long they expect it to last?
Travis Ehrlich I would buy if it was the Zombie apocalypse and they killed the zombies.
There you have it. No one on the Gear Diary team is rushing out with a credit card in hand for the Chrome Pixel. What’s your take? Are you ready to bet big on ChromeOS, or are you thinking this is just Google’s latest flash in the pan idea?