Friday, June 17, 2011

Google Shows: New Chrome OS Notebooks

The Chromebooks, which aim to compete with rivals like Apple's iPad, are made by Samsung and Acer and range in price from $350 to $500 in the US. Google said they also went on sale in the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands.

While the Chromebooks feature webcams and USB ports, they both lack hard drives, envisaging a model in which users will do all their computing online. Users store their files in the cloud using Google's free online software like Picasa for photos, Gmail for email and Google Docs for word processing spread sheets and slide shows.

The computer is activated by using the Google log-in. This means that documents, bookmarks and other preferences remain identical on whatever Chromebook one uses, as well as in different Chrome browsers used on other computers.

Boast an impressive eight hours-plus of battery time, start-up time of less than 10 seconds, and minimal risk of viruses and malware.

Chromebooks won't be right for everyone, but for some users, they'll be a welcome change from the tethered-down and often bloated world of traditional PCs.

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