Acer, Samsung Chromebooks due out on June 15

At last, Google has set a firm release date for the first notebooks based on its Chrome OS operating system: June 15. The search giant announced the news on its blog earlier today, revealing that Acer and Samsung will be the first out of the gate with Chrome OS laptops, a.k.a. Chromebooks. No pricing details have been made public yet, but we’ve got some pictures and specifications.

The Acer system, pictured below, has an 11.6″ 1366×768 display, a dual-core Atom processor clocked at 1.66GHz, a couple of gigs of DDR3 RAM, a 16GB solid-state drive, and other amenities often found on systems of that caliber, including 802.11n Wi-Fi, HDMI out, and a 1.3-megapixel webcam. Total weight with the six-hour battery: 2.95 lbs.

Samsung’s Chromebook, meanwhile, couples the same processor and similar built-in storage with a slightly larger display (12.1″) that has a different resolution (1280×800). Samsung boasts the LCD panel is 36% brigher than a “standard display.” Other perks include a card reader, HD webcam, and mini-VGA port. At 3.3 lbs, this system is a little heavier than its Acer counterpart, but Google says it has longer battery life (up to 8.5 hours). Chiclet keyboards and MacBook-style button-less touchpads appear to be standard on both the Acer and Samsung machines.

Both systems are already listed on Amazon in Wi-Fi and 3G variants. According to the introductory video below, users who pony up for the 3G models will get a free 100MB of monthly 3G data courtesy of Verizon:

Incidentally, Google has more or less confirmed yesterday’s rumors about that subscription service. The service will include “a cloud management console to remotely administer and manage users, devices, applications and policies” in addition to “enterprise-level support, device warranties and replacements as well as regular hardware refreshes.” Monthly subscriptions will start at $28 per user for businesses and $20 per user for schools.

Update: According to Engadget, the Acer and Samsung Chromebooks will start at $349 and $429, respectively.

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    • ApockofFork
    • 8 years ago

    I just want to say that the next time I have to set a grandparent up with a computer I going to seriously consider giving them one of these. For the subset of the population that literally only checks e-mail, looks at pictures and goes to the occasional website this is perfect. I know I wanted to give this to a grandparent before. I did my best to by setting up a computer to automatically boot into chrome with gmail open but it still had all that pesky windows stuff underneath to confuse them. This would have made things much easier for them and for me. The only problem is that it only comes in small laptop form which isn’t exactly the best for older people who can’t see well or type particularly well…

    • Cranx
    • 8 years ago

    I think this is a great idea. I also realize that we have come full circle from mainframe terminals. However, these web terminals are a lot more sophisticated. Welcome to the future past 😛

    • ronch
    • 8 years ago

    At that price you can get a netbook and just put Ubuntu in it. Or at least the OS of your choice. Windows compatibility? It’s not like ChromeOS is compatible with your Windows apps anyway.

    And if you’re stupid enough to get this you’ll be stuck paying the subscription for as long as you own this. More bills!

      • ronch
      • 8 years ago

      Advantages: You can continue from where you left off, you keep your data in case you lose your machine.

      Disadvantages : You’re at the mercy of your WiFi or 3G signal’s speed and availability, just 16GB of storage, you’re at the mercy of your service provider as they can increase the subscription rates at any time, if you’re one of those who still don’t have an internet subscription you have no choice but to apply for one (or subscribe to a 3G subscription).

      All in all, I think I can live without the advantages, considering how many disadvantages this dumb thing has. It’s not like we’re not used to saving our work before logging off our PCs. And Windows PC or Chrome PC, shouldn’t you take good care of your device and make it a habit of creating backups? $350 – $420 (which isn’t exactly cheap either to make a good value proposition considering the advantages/disadvantages) plus indefinite additional operating costs doesn’t sound appealing to me at all.

        • indeego
        • 8 years ago

        The major disadvantage will be latency. I haven’t had a gmail account for a while but when I did there were times where there was no inbox access for minutes at a time. “Please wait…” Applications + latency = really bad user experience. The browser is not in my mind the best place for applications. Especially because this is a whole new area of development and is untested.

        Google docs was a complete joke compared to even Wordpad, let alone MS Office. We have ~20 additional tools we use to validate XML, doc and PDFs, when will Google apps even…have one of those?

        If my Google account is hacked, do I lose everything? Google’s stellar support hasn’t been there for me in the past when I supported a small business on Google Apps. Someone with the same issue contacted The Register, THEN google did something about it.

        If Google is down and out what do I do? If they are breached(again? Why I left in the first place)

        If Apple or Microsoft are breached, I don’t lose access to my data. I might turn off automatic updates, freak a bit, but my data is local and available. Of course I’m aware I could be breached as well. Somehow I’d kick myself less if I was responsible for a breached system rather than Google/third party.

        Not to mention that Google’s network now becomes quite a target. Google’s not just holding their data, but governments and corporations, and they hold your SSN and bank details. There’s always going to be a niggling “what if” feeling in the back of my mind if I used those services.

        Finally, and this isn’t inclusive of all my issues, Google (and Amazon and Microsoft) can and will submit to government subpoena requests, whether you are a U.S. Citizen or not. This has been abused in the past, and will be in the future.

          • ronch
          • 8 years ago

          This is like buying a game console that only plays games via OnLive (heck, I even already totally forgot that name. Had to google ‘cloud game service’. Guess it just didn’t catch on.)

    • clocks
    • 8 years ago

    What I would like to know, is when will be see some LlanoBooks?

      • ronch
      • 8 years ago

      Since they’ve started shipping about a month or two ago you should see products around the 3rd qtr.

    • odizzido
    • 8 years ago

    Yet more netbooks, and they have yet to release one I want yet….While the hardware/size is the exact same as 400 other netbooks, at least the software is different here……that’s something I guess.

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 8 years ago

    Ah, ok. The first link has a better video of the ad I posted earlier. Cute ad.

    BTW, if I were Microsoft, I might be crapping my pantaloons right about now.

    ALSO: When these things come out, can we get a TR review/impressions?

    • indeego
    • 8 years ago

    [quote<]According to the introductory video below, users who pony up for the 3G models will get a free 100MB of monthly 3G data courtesy of Verizon[/quote<] So a half-day's worth? Sweet Verizon you are the best.

      • sweatshopking
      • 8 years ago

      half day? that’s at LEAST 3/4 of a day

      • Skrying
      • 8 years ago

      I use less than 100MB a month on my iPhone. That’s almost entirely email. I keep cellular data off 90% of the time and only turn it on when needed or if I’m expecting an email. WiFi is so widely available these days that I find very few instances where it would even make sense to use cellular data and not have WiFI available. But usage cases vary. Anyway, 100MB is a good enough amount for cases where someone might need unexpected access to the Internet but would otherwise not be able to reasonably justify paying the ridiculous data plan prices out there. For that reason alone I would probably by the version with 3G even if it holds no other benefit to me.

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