Samsung’s New Chromebook: A Low-Performing Bargain

Samsung ChromebookGoogle’s new Chromebook, manufactured by its trusty hardware partner Samsung, comes with a 11.6-inch, 1366 x 768 display, Samsung Exynos 5 Dual processor, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage space, VGA webcam, 2 USB ports, one HDMI port and a battery that can last 6.5 hours.

The specifications are very decent, but the success of the device will ultimately depend on how many people are willing to spend money on a computer with a browser-based operating system. Although the offline capabilities of Google services have improved since Chrome OS was introduced, they mostly require an Internet connection to truly shine.

To attract users who are unconvinced, Google has made an offer hard to refuse: $249 for the Samsung Chromebook plus two years of 100GB cloud storage on Google Drive, which normally costs $4.99 monthly, or about $120 for two years. Deduct the amount from the Chromebook’s selling price, and the actual device price costs only $130. That’s even cheaper than Apple’s new iPod nano.

It’s a good bargain, especially if you rely heavily on Google services and have a way to use up  the 100GB of cloud storage. But if you’re planning to save a huge deal of money by making the Chromebook your primary computer, you might want to reconsider.

CNET wasn’t exactly pleased with Chromebook’s performance:

My current favorite browser torture test, panning across my nine columns of Twitter feeds in the TweetDeck Web app, could be slow on the Chromebook. And something I hadn’t seen before: initiating a new tweet often took the Chromebook 5 or 6 seconds before a window appeared where I could type.

The Chromebook must reload older tabs that haven’t been used in a while. That’s a fair strategy for devoting limited memory to the task at hand, but it happens more often than I’d like—when revisiting The New York Times or Hipmunk sites after just a half-hour away, for example.

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Comments

  1. BY RobS says:

    I know this is a bit off-topic from the intent of the article, but saying, “normally costs $4.99 monthly, or about $120 for two years. Deduct the amount from the Chromebook’s selling price, and the actual device price costs only $130.” is like saying that “this new car is normally $10K, but when you add the 6 different X-radio services we offer you, each valued at $100/month, then add in the free anti-rust option, a $2000 value, and the anti-paint-fading feature, valued at another $2000, free raodside assistance for specific services, valued at $6000, we’re actually paying YOU $1000 to take this car.

    The only way that you can lower the price of something is to not pay for it, not to pay for something else (that you may or may not want/use) and get a credit for it.

    so instead of paying $369 for a $250 product and $120 for a separate service that you may or may not use, you’re paying $250. Please don’t use logic that say’s I only pay $130.

  2. I like the idea of a Chromebook because I know what it is and what to expect if I were to buy one. However, I don’t think those in the market for cheap laptops would be pleased to learn they can’t run all the programs they need on the device. This will lead to confusion among consumers.

  3. BY georgeswain45 says:

    yes you are right robs.

  4. BY georgeswain45 says:

    nice post.

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