Google announced a new version of their instant-on Chromebook today, along with an extremely attractive price that should leave netbook makers shaking in their boots: Just $249!
From Google (via CultofMac):
The new Chromebook is a great computer at any price, but it’s an incredible computer at $249. It’s one of the lightest laptops on the market. You can easily carry it around all day—it’s 2.5 pounds, a mere 0.8 inches thick, with more than 6 hours of battery life for the typical user. And with 100 GB of free storage on Google Drive*, you can get to all of your stuff anytime, anywhere.
The entire package is completely fanless, extremely light (just 2.5 pounds!), and gets over 6 hours of usage from a single charge. It even comes with 100GB of free Google Drive storage so you can access your files, documents, as well as Google’s Chrome OS. That storage ends up being pretty essential, too – the tradeoff with a Chromebook is that, while it is capable of delivering a decent web browsing experience, editing most types of documents, accessing email, running a Google+ hangout, and even playing back 1080p video, it is completely dependent on Google’s cloud, and cannot run without an internet connection.
It’s a viable alternative to a laptop or netbook, and a stellar alternative for or companion to a tablet as well for many typical users, and for $250, the price can’t be beat! The new Chromebook will be available starting Monday at various online retailers, including Amazon.com. It’s also a compelling option for bringing technology into low-income areas and developing countries.
Still, it’s disappointing that Google chose to rather shamelessly rip off the MacBook Air with their design. You’d think that any company capable of producing a usable $250 laptop would be able to come up with an at least somewhat original design. Then again, the Chromebook is made by Samsung. So, there’s that…
For more information, or to pre-order a Chromebook straight from the source, head on over to Google’s Chromebook website.
Update: The new Chromebook will also be available in a 3G version, complete with two years of basic 3G service for just $329. That’s a pretty tempting offer! Details on Samsung’s product page.