Today Google announced a number of new Chrome OS products that will be available in the future from their OEM partners. The main focus of all these devices appears to be pushing the price of Chrome OS devices even lower so that they become accessible to more people.

The first two devices announced are the Haier Chromebook 11 and the Hisense Chromebook. Both of these laptops have 11.6" 1366x768 displays, 16GB of eMMC storage, 2GB of DDR3L memory, and surprisingly, 2x2 802.11ac WiFi. The main aspect that they differ on is their processors, and subsequently, their battery life. The Haier Chromebook 11 uses a Rockchip RK3288 SoC which has four Cortex A17 cores with a max frequency of 1.8GHz, and a 600MHz ARM Mali-T764 GPU. It advertises a battery life of up to 10 hours. The Hisense Chromebook also uses the Rockchip RK3288, but despite using the same name as the chip in the Haier Chromebook, it has a max CPU frequency of 2.5GHz. Hisense advertises a battery life of up to 8.5 hours. Both of these devices are sure to be popular with educational institutions and anyone looking for a very inexpensive machine to browse the web on.

Possibly the more interesting announcement of the day is the Chromebit. There's very little information about specifications, but the Chromebit is essentially a Chrome OS computer on a stick which can be connected to a display and other peripherals to be used as a computer. The Chromebit will be launching in the summer of this year for less than $100, and we'll likely see more concrete pricing and information about specifications as we approach closer to its release date.

Source: Google Chrome Blog

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  • BrokenCrayons - Thursday, April 2, 2015 - link

    The Winbook TW801 was selling for $99 over the holidays. The price has since jumped up 50% but it still is a far more compelling option when compared to Chrome OS-based devices. The HP Stream 11 laptop is also fairly competitive in price and offers capabilities that are more familiar to the end user. It means that, in order for Google Chrome products to compete with a feature reduced system, they need to be far below the cost of Windows hardware. In addition to the limited capabilities, I'm starting to see a lot more awareness among non-technical people about just how much data Google is mining about the end user from anything with one of their operating systems on it and how they're combining it with metrics collected from web browsers, YouTube usage, and Gmail (with nothing being sacred if you happen to use Google Wallet, an Android phone payment system, or have Google Fiber). The consumer backlash is looming over that and only narrowly avoided with their pulling Glass back from public testing. If nothing else Microsoft hasn't got as much of a monetary incentive to farm it's user community since their sales aren't advertising-driven so what little they do collect isn't vital to the survival of the company. Conversely, Google must monetize the end user in order to survive. As with Android, users of Chrome OS are the final product that are traded and sold by Google to other companies.
  • Marc GP - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    On those Tablets Microsoft gives away Windows for free, and Intel sells Atom under cost. Both, Microsoft and Intel, need to increase their market share on Tablets.

    Don't expect the same deal on laptops, neither Microsoft nor Intel need to give for free or sell under cost there.
  • NXTwoThou - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    Even better, get a miracast adapter if your monitor has HDMI in. Then get a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse. Mirror the screen with Miracast and the only thing you'd ever need to plug in would be power(and that's only if you are getting low)
  • cygnus1 - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    You realize MS gives away the version of windows on that $199 bay trail laptop for free right?
  • Marc GP - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    And also Intel sells them Atom under cost. Both, Microsoft and Intel want to increase their market share on Tablets.

    You'll never get the same deal on a laptop.
  • Kraszmyl - Saturday, April 11, 2015 - link

    Last I was aware ChromeOS is also free so what does it matter?
  • jospoortvliet - Thursday, April 2, 2015 - link

    Ok, but that has Windows, so much more maintenance work and risk of viruses. Fine for you, I would replace it with Linux so I don't care but my parents would be better off with chromeOS. There simply is a big market of people for whom NOT having Windows is a plus.
  • erple2 - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    Is the Chromebit the evolution of the Chromecast?
  • eanazag - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    The Chromebit sounds interesting. I can see a use for old desktops and laptops that Windows runs like crap on being repurposed for Chrome OS cheaply.

    It is a USB boot disk for Chrome OS; no way in hell am I going to pay anywhere close to $100 for it though. It can go at most $20 over the cost of a USB stick of the same capacity. I can boot Linux off of a USB stick and have more capability.
  • VoraciousGorak - Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - link

    "...the Chromebit is essentially a Chrome OS computer on a stick which can be connected to a display and other peripherals to be used as a computer."

    This actually sounds like it's got an HDMI output and Bluetooth or some other wireless capability. It's a bit more than just a USB boot stick, since nowhere is it specified it requires a host computer but is itself the computer.

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