Google and Samsung have just announced a new Chromebook, the Chromebox and the new version of Google's Chrome OS.
I have been a long time user of Google's Chrome OS and Chromebook (almost two years) on their beta device, the CR-48. I love it! I can do everything I need on it.
Chromebooks run Google's Chrome OS which is based on the Chrome web browser. They are fast, easy to use, secure (not data on device) and run all of Google's apps, along with thousands of third party apps. They are really great for schools because of the long battery life and the fact that nothing is stored on the device and there is no school IT support needed.
The new Chromebook from Samsung is fast, portable and easy to use. The Chromebox is a compact desktop device that is very powerful. They both have Intel Core processors and are 3 times as fast as the first-generation Chromebooks (which are very fast and boot in seconds). They include hardware accelerated graphics, multi-touch trackpad, and boot in less than 7 seconds. The Chromebook allows you to multi-task easily. I've used my beta CR-48 with 20 tabs open running lots of apps without a problem and these new devices are much more powerful.
The new version of Chrome OS also has a new user interface. The old interface looked like the Chrome browser and the new app window. The new interface looks more like a typical desktop OS interface, with a taskbar at the bottom. You can easily find and launch apps, and multi-task with apps and the browser window or use full screen mode.
Chrome OS includes the ability to view MS Office files (.doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, .pptx) and .zip, .rar, .txt, .pdf, .html, and most video, audio and image files. You can access all of your Google apps and your files on Google Drive (along with other cloud storage services),
Google is also rolling out Google Docs OFFLINE support in the next few weeks (yeah!). You can work on your files while offline and they will sync as soon as you connect to the internet. There are also offline capable web apps available in the Chrome Web Store. There are tons of apps for work and play.
Another great new feature is the Chrome Remote Desktop Beta. With this you can connect to your PC or Mac from your Chromebook or Chromebox and use your files and apps just as if you were sitting in front of your computer (similar to SplashTop Remote Desktop.). This can be used with Chrome OS or in the Chrome Browser.
The other major benefit of Chromebooks is that they are constantly, and automatically, being upgraded with new features and improvements.
There was one limitation to the Chromebooks - I could run a couple of Java apps I needed for school. That is no longer a problem with InstallFree Nexus and Rndr - free apps that add a ton of functionality to the Chrombooks. Read my review of them here: http://educationaltechnologyguy.blogspot.com/2012/05/update-on-installfree-nexus-and-rndr.html
I really love my CR-48 Chromebook and can only imagine the experience this new device will provide. the Chromebook is a great laptop - light, powerful, with a long battery life. The Chromebox would be a great replacement for desktop computers also. 99% of what I do is online, so a device like a Chromebook works great for me. I use Google's apps, Evernote, and Tweetdeck for most of my daily work. My Chromebook is my go to portable device, along with my smartphone. I really believe that a Chromebook is the best device for education. They are lightweight, have long battery lives, and require no support. They are easy to use and fast and there is no data stored on the device. They update automatically and there is no need for software or OS licensing.
If you or your school are looking for a new device, I highly recommend the Chromebooks.
Starting yesterday, you can get the new Chromebook and Chromebox from the online retail partners in the U.S. and U.K., and in other select countries over the coming weeks. The Series 5 Chromebook starts at $449.99 and the Chromebox is $329.99 with Education pricing available.
Here's a great video about Chrome OS and Chromebooks:
I did NOT receive any compensation for this post. I just really like Chrome OS and the Chromebooks.
Source: Official Google Blog
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