Originally Posted by MikeDT
http://www.google.com/chromebook/"Nothing but the web."
which means exactly that.
From what I understand about these Chromebooks, they're entirely dependent on the internet for any functionality. No internet and they're bricks. No local storage or local applications at all, and no Skype either.
Chromebooks actually cost as much as a full blown Windows laptop, but with non of the advantages.
Given the above would anyone actually buy one of these things?
BBC Click video review of the Chromebook here.http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programme...ne/9514017.stm
Note that it wont even play MP3s, videos, Office documents, etc, from a USB stick or HDD.
I'm actually typing on one right now. Google sent me one of the free Cr-48s back in February (mostly similar to the commercial versions for sale now). It sat on my shelf until my primary computer (MacBook Pro that had a fall) started showing mobo issues. I can't wait to replace it.
It's not that the idea itself is bad. I do most of my computing on the cloud anyway. But it is extremely limiting, especially not being able to use the utilities I became reliant on like Keepass and Dropbox (at least in the "direct folder sync" sense).
On the other hand, your impression that there are a) no local apps and b) no local storage are incorrect. The Cr-48 comes with a 16GB SSD with about 10ish (I have no clue really, but I know CrOS doesn't take up that much room, although two copies are kept on the computer at once) available. It has an SD card slot which presumably supports an additional 64GB. It also has a USB port which can accept USB keyboards, mice, hubs, printers, hard drives, flash drives, etc. There are also a handful of Chrome apps with local storage (i.e. "local apps"), usually note application. It also has a VGA out port, which I tested today. Theoretically, you could turn it into a "Chrometop" with a keyboard and mouse, although it's a pretty stupid idea.
--PDF files can be viewed natively off the device, as can pictures (actually the best use for this thing is a light-weight non-glossy PDF reader with long battery life for someone who doesn't have a dedicated device).
--Video files and music can be played on the device but appear in a tiny pop-up menu from the bottom of the screen that you can't change the size of or move around.
--Document files can be uploaded to Google Docs (it's a pain), but in the absence of Microsoft Office, I've found Google Docs to be an acceptable, if slow/feature poor/slightly incompatible replacement for the time being.
--Text documents can be displayed natively. The default font reminds me of something you'd see on a "we are not alone" sign in Nevada.
Where this computer really fails is in stability. They're free computers, so the processor sucks, memory sucks, trackpad sucks
, screen sucks. The only decent thing is the keyboard. I get a ton of render/video card errors/flashing that make it impossible to use the computer for an extended period of time. If something resource heavy (e.g. any number of modern websites) is running in one tab, others frequently crash. I have no idea why it has such a hard time running Chrome over Linux with no UI.
Also, no WPA2 Enterprise in the UI means you have to dig around in some command line stuff if you want to authorize an enterprise network (e.g. university or business network), which has some security issues and resets every time you restart the computer. Coupled with the fact that my free Verizon internet doesn't work due to some modem error that I've never bothered to call to fix, the computer is virtually worthless on my school campus, despite its very usable 7-hour battery life.
I really wish they had put something like an AMD Fusion chipset in this computer. Maybe then it'd be able to handle enough memory and graphics to run more than 4 tabs at a time.
This said, it was free, and it's helping me out while I'm otherwise computer-less. But I have no idea why anyone would ever pay for one. (sorry if this was a little long, but now you know...)