back to article Google takes Chromebook upmarket with touchy-feely Pixel

Chromebooks have traditionally been priced for the low end of the market, but Google has decided to go for the well-heeled cloud warrior with the Chromebook Pixel, a touchscreen laptop with a super-high resolution screen and a price tag to match. "We've designed this for people who live in the cloud, even if they're like my …

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  1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge
    Facepalm

    But will it have

    both backspace and delete keys? Nope. Because it's a Google keyboard. I also notice there's no mention of battery life. Guess I'm sticking with my netbook for now. Sorry Google. You're not a Big Player in hardware. You're a wannabe that Doesn't Get It...just like everyone else.

    Can we get some innovation to aisle 5? Innovation? Aisle 5. Right next to "just" and across from "works" please. Thank you...

    1. Prof Denzil Dexter

      it does mention battery life...

      "Google is claiming a battery life of five hours for the unit."

      that's pretty clear.

      I look forward to seeing the review. seems pricey but the screen res is lovely. i guess i'll hold judgement for now.

      1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

        Re: it does mention battery life...

        A) That's me being derpy and failing to read properly. Bad me. 50 lashes with a Microsoft Bob manual.

        B) 5 hours. That's appalling.

        1. Mark .

          Re: it does mention battery life...

          Often these ratings are measured along the lines of "whilst running full screen video", so you might get a bit more out of them with say web browsing.

          Though yes - people can moan about Atom being slow, but I'll gladly keep my 10 hour battery life on my Samsung netbook :) (And if I'm at home and want performance, I'll take my i7 and NVIDIA Clevo laptop.)

          To be fair, this is no worse than any other Intel Core based laptop. And it's good to see more choice and competition in laptops. (Though I do wonder how much extra battery the high resolution saps - still, for people who think that pixels is the only thing that matters, it'll stop Apple getting all those sales.)

    2. SuccessCase

      Re: But will it have

      "You're a wannabe that Doesn't Get It...Get It...just like everyone else."

      Usually with a phrase like that indicates the one who doesn't get it can be found in the mirror.

      Netbooks have been a big fat fail. Get over it.

      1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

        @SuccessCase

        Actually, you're full of shit. Netbooks have been a raging success amongst the people out there buying computers. They are not a success amongst the people who sell computers. People want to buy netbooks. Nobody wants to sell them.

        It's a case of manufacturers protecting margins, not demand falling out from under the category. But hey, you have fun with your toys, I'll have fun with mine. I'll wave at you from the bar all the way over there by the overloaded power plug. Hey, did you just unplug that guy so you could charge? First come first serve; get over it.

        1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

          1. Dave 126 Silver badge

            Re: @SuccessCase

            I tried an EEE PC with its stock Linux distro on it... it wasn't great.

            Netbooks tended to be second machines, when the user's primary machine most likely ran Windows- so no matter how easy the Linux distros on them were to use, the user would be learning their way around a new-to-them OS (and associated applications) for a machine they only used occasionally. Average Joes found it easier if their netbook just behaved as a 'mini me' to their primary machine. Simple.

            The Linux distro that came on EEE PCs seemed pretty limited and designed to point the novice user at a web browser. Many of the concepts required to use Linux (package managers, mounting disks, SUDO) are logical and make a lot of sense- but they still do require a few sessions to get used to if you are a newbie, as does knowing which GNU program is the equivalent of one you are used to using on Windows.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @SuccessCase

          "It's a case of manufacturers protecting margins, not demand falling out from under the category."

          I don't think the manufacturers are the problem. I sense the hand of evil.

          Manufacturers made them. People bought them. People liked them. More people bought them. More manufacturers made them. They were a sensation. Microsoft Inc. wanted in. Manufacturers suddenly had to replace the light, efficient, modern OSs they were providing on them with Microsoft™ Windows™ XP™ - under threat of having their margins on lucrative Wintel kit suddenly evaporate. Manufacturing overheads suddenly went up while margins went down - few manufacturers want that. Previously inciting netbook prices went up - few consumers want that. Running Microsoft™ Windows™ XP™ on a netbook is like transporting an elephant in a Prius - few consumers want that. Netbooks died. Instantly.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @SuccessCase

            :O OMG!

            I just inadvertently echoed Eadon! Someone take me out back and shoot me :(

            1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

          2. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

            Re: @SuccessCase

            Can't really say I agree. Windows 7 Starter is just fine for a netbook, and it runs perfectly okay in 2GB of RAM. The only real issue is the stock 4200rpm drive my little Samsung shipped with, but a cheap-o SSD solves the problem.

            Presuming Microsoft wouldn't shit a brick, you could easily sell a 1280x800 netbook with 4GB of RAM on an Intel Atom with Windows 7 Starter and an SSD for $400 and the battery would last 12 hours. It would sell like fucking hotcakes. It would wreck the notebook market (whatever is left of it) and start clawing back some of the tablet market.

            Manufacturers won't. Microsoft certainly has no interest in letting them, even were they so inclined. End users, however, would buy the shit out of that netbook. The demand is there and "Windows on the device" isn't the problem...though Microsoft very much so is.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @SuccessCase

              So why WinRT? Tablets? LMAO

              Even we're now getting signs new "netbooks" are already in the pipeline. They're ARM based and leaner and more efficient than ever before. Microsoft can't ram XP onto them. Hence RT. It'll be interesting to see if manufacturers will follow the same path and allow Microsoft to skim their margins again. I doubt it. Not much room for a "Microsoft tax" in a $200 - $300 product. I'm expecting them to arrive as "hybrid" devices via phone channels from companies against whom Microsoft has no leverage. Time will tell.

            2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        3. SuccessCase

          Re: @SuccessCase

          @Trevor_Pott

          I can make a case for their being a motorbike industry conspiracy against motorised clown bikes. After all, stand back from them. They are really very useful. 1/5th the size of a full size motorbike. You can carry them on trains so are great for commuters. They actually go really fast and can genuinely get you from A to B effectively. They can be made much more cheaply than full sized motorbikes. I think the only reason there aren't more clowns bikes being sold is because there is a conspiracy, lead by Yamaha, to bury the clowns bike manufacturers. It's a conspiracy I tell you.

          1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

            Re: @SuccessCase

            @SuccessCase Funny, I am able to find quite a few active production liens on scale motorised bicycles ("trick bikes") all over the internet. Seems to me there is no conspiracy to stop producing them.

            I remember there being announcements to stop producing netbooks, some of which even mentioned explicitly (usually during earnings calls) how good this was for the bottom line. There was also Microsoft who explicitly forbade netbooks with decent specs in their licenceing, and Intel who explicitly forbade decently specced atom systems

            None of that is a conspiracy either; it is a bunch of manufacturers independently choosing to screw is all by avoiding – and actively attempting to suppress – the cheaper, "good enough" option. Especially because it was so popular.

            Just because you have a hard on for clock cycles you don't use doesn't meant most people do. Quit projecting your own inadequacy issues onto the rest of the world. Most of the rest of the world has nothing to compensate for.

            For those of us just tying to get shit done, battery life means more than anything. A1 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 12 3 n atom is just fine for us.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @SuccessCase

              Fuck Wintel... if the £300 Nexus 10 came in clamshell form with a decent keyboard & trackpad instead of the touchsereen madness I'd be jizzing all the way to the Google Store.

              ...and a big brother 12" version with that mouthwatering 3:2 2560x1700 panel... oops... just nipping off to change my underpants.

        4. TheVogon Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Re: @SuccessCase

          This is to a degree true. For instance Dell removed HDMI ports from their more recent netbooks largely to protect their laptop revenue!

          However, there was never a great demand for Linux on netbooks, other than as a way of buying the platform cheaper to install a pirate Windows copy on. Linux has tended to cost OEMs relatively more in terms of builds and testing, support and returns, so they have tended to avoid it.

          nb - Why on earth would anyone buy this Chrome book when you could get a Surface Pro or a good ultrabook for that money?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @SuccessCase

            Morning RICHTO. Another slow day at Microsoft UK?

  2. Piro

    Screw everything.. but the screen

    2560x1700? I'm creaming myself.

    Taller ratios? Be still my beating heart. Moving away from 16:9? Praise Google..

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Screw everything.. but the screen

      "I'm creaming myself."

      Porn these days is mostly 16:9.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Screw everything.. but the screen

        Maybe he's got a thing for black bars.

        1. Robin

          Re: Screw everything.. but the screen

          He can never go back.

        2. Piro

          Re: Screw everything.. but the screen

          It's like watching asian porn - you can only get off if the people have blocky genitals.

  3. Neil Barnes Silver badge
    Alert

    people who live in the cloud

    Please tell me I'm dreaming.

    Or have the lunatics finally taken over the asylum?

  4. Androgynous Crackwhore
    Facepalm

    Oh FFS

    Yey! A laptop with an adequate CPU & RAM, and beautiful display - hi-res AND 3:2 ! 2560 x 1700 no less! Yippee!!!!!!!ONE!!!! At last someone's got it!!!!!!!!ONE!!!ONE!!!!! YIPPEE!!!

    Wipe off the GoogleOS stuff and whack a proper OS onto that 64GB SSD and away!! YIPPEE!!! Where do I order?

    Oh... They've stuck it behind a glossy touchscreen?

    Oh.

    Fuck.

    1. the-it-slayer
      Gimp

      Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

      Touch-screen laptops/desktops DO NOT WORK. People don't need touch-screen when it has a trackpad. I just don't get it. Okay, if the screen detached to make a independent tablet, that's okay (even though hybrids are just as pointless without a transformable OS - none exist yet). Everyone tried this and they never sold.

      Rather spend £1000 on a MacBook Pro thanks very much.

      1. Eenymeeny
        Thumb Down

        Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

        The sales figures for the DELL XPS 12 would seem to at least slightly counter your argument there...

        1. the-it-slayer
          Thumb Up

          Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

          When it's their only high-spec laptop close to 13" available in the home section, people have no choice but to buy it? Doesn't mean people need/want the touch-screen. We all know it's a crap concept. I'd rather have the physical keyboard removed and have a touch-screen put in place that acts as a keyboard. Then at least you can alter the keys based on the program you're using.

          1. Androgynous Crackwhore
            Thumb Up

            Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

            I'd rather have the physical keyboard removed and have a touch-screen put in place that acts as a keyboard. Then at least you can alter the keys based on the program you're using.

            What an AWESOME idea! With an efficient low-res cheap-n-nasty monochrome OLED/whatever display behind it to define the keys... Still horrid to type on compared to a real keyboard but at least you'd still be able to see what you're typing into while you're using it. Nifty solution to localisation too. You could even define your own keys. Think I'll add an additional custom top row to mine providing some extra currencies, a couple of common ligatures and diaereses and some handy unicode symbols. Add a decent stylus and the more-graphics-than-typing creative types would probably go mad for it.

            1. the-it-slayer

              Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

              Patented by the slayer, or I wish! Why not place small low-res OLED/eink keys (rather than making it totally flat) in the QWERTY format as a start? Again, would save experts in audio/video/gaming having to place stickers over the top of keyboard for shortcuts. That would make a start until you could create a screen that physically changes shape so you didn't have to type on a flat surface.

              Come on Apple, make me one damn it! That's technology worth paying for.

        2. the-it-slayer
          Facepalm

          Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

          ...Oh to add, it's the one on the spindly frame that thinks it's a hybrid. More things to break and get conned on when outside warranty.

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. TheVogon Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Oh FFS - It's like Google have chosen to forget the past.

        Touchscreens are working just fine here. Are you Abu Hamza in disguise?

    2. Spearchucker Jones

      Re: Oh FFS

      Why wipe it? I'd LIVE to pay $1,299 for a browser. Maybe next year Google will bring one out for $2,000 that only runs EMACS.

  5. Hooksie

    Seriously

    And people have the gall to slag off Microsoft for the Surface??? What a pile of shite.

    1. hplasm Silver badge
      Windows

      Re: Seriously

      Seriously?Are you 12?

      But I agree- the Surface is pile of shite.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Only crazy people need apply.

    A laptop locked to Google's cloud service for £1000+++? I guess if Google was running Gillette they'd be marketing disposable razors for £100.

    Whatever drugs they're sneaking into Googlers these days (yum "free" food) is causing certifiable hypomania.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Re: Only crazy people need apply.

      Oh look at the downvotes. I see the office launch party at Google HQ has finished.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Windows

        Re: Only crazy people need apply.

        Nah, just confirms that this site is overrun with Google fanbois...

        1. TheVogon Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Re: Only crazy people need apply.

          Well it is one of the few news sites on the web where people still suggest that Linux is relevant to the desktop...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OmMalik: "If you have photos on an SD card, then the device will automatically find and upload them to Google Plus Photos, a somewhat creepy and evil tactic by Google to goose its Google Plus un-social network.

    Of course you can share those photos via Google Plus and other Google services — nevermind the fact that we like to use Twitter and Facebook and Instagram to share.

    Pichai said that services such as Twitter and Facebook can write to their hardware APIs to do seamless uploads."

  8. dave 93
    Meh

    No touch, but more of everything else, for about the same money

    13-inch: 2.5GHz

    with Retina display

    I don't feel like touching my laptop screen very often, despite using a touchscreen phone and a tablet quite a lot.

    I could be wrong though, and touchscreen tech could be the future for all computers...

    Nice looking machine - can we have it with a cheaper screen, and more built in SSD (just in case cloud based Chrome doesn't work out!) for $500

    13" Macbook Pro with the 'retina' display

    2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5

    Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz

    8GB 1600MHz memory

    128GB flash storage

    Intel HD Graphics 4000

    Built-in battery 7 hours

    In Stock

    Free Shipping

    $1,499.00

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No touch, but more of everything else, for about the same money

      Now add on 1TB of Apple iCloud (if that's possible)...

      > "50 additional GB (55 GB total): $100/year"

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No touch, but more of everything else, for about the same money

        ...and a better screen (if that's doable)...

        No. Not playing a silly numbers game - that "retina" display isn't all that great in reality™. In fact, even the Zenbooks' 1080 IPS units blow it away for colour work.

        >priceless

    2. Euripides Pants Silver badge

      Re: No touch, but more of everything else, for about the same money

      "I could be wrong though, and touchscreen tech could be the future for all computers..."

      Got the wife an Asus Eee Pad Transformer with keyboard last week (Best Buy was throwing the keyboard in for free). Touch and keyboard is kind of nice IMO.

      Think I'll pass on the Chromebook, though. More than twice the price for the Eee Pad gets you a little bit bigger screen, 1/3 the battery life and a double helping of Google creepiness.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No touch, but more of everything else, for about the same money

      Why are the fanbois trying to equate this gorgeous (Samsung?) panel with Apple's "retina" display? Just because they're both hi-res the Apple one must be at least good 'cos it's trumpeted by apple?

      When you (and Apple Inc for that matter) see one of these beside a "retina" device there'll be:

      1) A gasp and long stunned silence.

      2) Floods of tears and annoying high-pitched whining.

      3) A new MacBook DoublePlusPro for actual professionals.*

      *Professionals: People who know how to profile, calibrate and test a display and/or are fully aware that letterbox formats, while fine for a telly or similar shiny toy, are unfit for a work machine. Especially on a small display where every scrap of VERTICAL space is precious. You know what work is... that thing professionals often use their computers for.

      No discredit to Apple. They did reintroduce sensible resolutions to consumer computers when the trend was convergence with cheap telly panels... but... as has been their pattern of late, their "revolution" came with raucous hype but tech that wasn't quite up to spec.

  9. John Latham

    ChrUbuntu?

    http://blog.laptopmag.com/chrubuntu-transforms-199-acer-c7-chromebook-into-a-cheap-linux-laptop

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: ChrUbuntu?

      No need. This one's AMD64

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fingerprints on your glossy high resolution screen, what a great idea.

    1. P. Lee
      Happy

      > Fingerprints on your glossy high resolution screen, what a great idea.

      So don't touch it...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: > Fingerprints on your glossy high resolution screen, what a great idea.

        >So don't touch it...

        So why pay for it?...

    2. Tapeador

      I don't think people will touch it because one's arms aren't conditioned to lift up and out that far (and then tense incredibly to let the finger perform a delicate/gentle touch) on a regular basis. If they do touch it regularly that might be an RSI risk.

  11. Fuzz

    3:2

    awesome, not 16:9, not even 16:10, 3:2. 1700 pixels of vertical resolution. If it wasn't stuck with 64GB SSD and 4GB RAM I'd buy it to install a proper OS.

    Who is making this for Google? Can we petition them to put out a version for windows? Like this but with 256GB SSD, 8GB RAM and a matte screen option.

    1. Androgynous Crackwhore
      Linux

      Re: 3:2

      That's exactly what I'm thinking... presumably whoever it is who's making these 3:2 2560x1700 panels didn't set up the line(s) exclusively for Google... so they're coming! ...and "wide viewing angles" - usually marketingdroidese for IPS (or PLS or one of the similar HQ designs). All very promising!

      <-- PS... 64GB SSD and 4GB RAM is ample to install a proper OS ;o)

      1. dajames Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: 3:2

        ... 64GB SSD and 4GB RAM is ample to install a proper OS ...

        Yes, but not to hold an awful lot of data.

        It's probably fine if you buy into the whole cloud thing, but internet access while on the move isn't yet anything like ubiquitous (let alone fast enough or cheap enough) for that to be a sensible approach for the serious mobile user.

        This machine would be a whole lot more attractive with Linux and a 500GB+ spinning drive (oh, and a matt screen).

        Fail for the lack of capacity, not for your post.

        1. Androgynous Crackwhore
          FAIL

          Re: 3:2

          ~10GB for the OS and ~4 for swap leaves ~50GB for data. Not an "awful lot", certainly but I think ample for a portable device. I'm saying "ample" because I think ample is the point: A portable device of any kind isn't somewhere I'd choose to archive data... and one that's a tempting target for thieves but fitted with a temperamental shock sensitive storage medium least of all.

          <-- FAIL Not for your post ("matte screen" alone got you an automatic upvote), for your spinning rust contraption and the 500GB+ of your data you had on it

          ;-)

    2. hplasm Silver badge
      Windows

      Re: 3:2

      No.

  12. James Cooke
    Thumb Down

    I doubt this will be flying off the shelves. I really want that screen res on my next laptop but at £1000 for Chrome OS you're having a laugh. I'm writing this on a Samsung ARM chromebook and I love it - I can even dual boot into Ubuntu (goodness knows how the Reg reviewer found it hard to do). The thing about the Samsung CB is that its cheap, has no fans and a very respectable battery life. The Pixel has none of these and that screen doesn't make up for it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      YES! I wish Google would scrape the Intel crap out of this design and replace it with a nice modern big.LITTLE SoC. Price would drop a few hundred bucks and battery life would shoot through the roof. Bliss.

  13. CmdrX3

    Someone at Google has been at the Evostick Timebond again

    People didn't buy the cheap one, what makes them think people will buy a really expensive one.

  14. dz-015

    I can't imagine why any normal person* in their right mind would pay over a grand for a laptop running a system as restrictive as Chrome OS. This product seems like utter madness to me.

    * Yes, I know _you_ will install Linux Mint on it (although good luck getting the window manager and all your applications to work properly with that display). By "normal person" I mean "average person in the street".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Those "normal" people* seem to fall over themselves to buy IThings and MacThings. This'll have a stunning screen and ChromeOS will run like stink on it. If you're a Googlite that's probably pretty close to nirvana.

      * Not being "normal", it wouldn't be Mint for me but trying a selection of DEs on it could be fun. Don't see why most wouldn't work readily enough. Might even be moved to drop a patch or widgetset upstream if some niggle piques an interest.

    2. Mark .

      I think it makes a lot of sense - whilst low cost Chromebooks will bring ChromeOS to the masses, even though this Pixel will sell far less, they make much bigger profits. And looking at the people with Apple Airs, there are certainly people willing to spend over £1000 for a laptop even if it's just for things like web and email, maybe some word processing or games, all of which can be done on a Chromebook. I believe it supports offline - the "restrictiveness" is more that it only supports HTML5 for applications, which makes it harder to port software, and makes it less interesting to programmers like me unless I were to switch entirely to writing HTML5 applications - but most people aren't developers, and given the sales, I'm sure increasing numbers of applications will be written for it. (See https://chrome.google.com/webstore for what's already there.)

      Indeed, whilst ChromeOS is obvious competition for Windows, I think Apple have more to worry about: people often buy them because they think PC laptops are bulky, and only Apple do ultra-portables - now Chromebooks are getting a lot of coverage; people who don't want Windows/MS now have a better alternative; people who think having as many pixels as possible is important now have a better alternative; raising the awareness and acceptance of touchscreen laptops makes MS look more like they made the right move, with Apple having to choose between following after with this functionality, or never having it; plus those rocketing Chromebook sales could put Mac OS into 3rd place - even if they don't actually lose any sales to it, marketing-wise that's a bad thing for them.

      1. Nadjau

        "Indeed, whilst ChromeOS is obvious competition for Windows"

        I think one of us needs to have a good lie down, and I suspect it's not me.

        1. Mark .

          I'm not sure how you mean - I mean yes, I'd rather run Windows (or Linux) than ChromeOS any day. But if people are buying Chromebook laptops instead of other laptops (and they are), it's competition.

          1. TheVogon Silver badge
            Mushroom

            That's relative. A very few people are buying Chrome tablets. It makes Windows RT looks like a top seller....Therefore whilst it might technically be competition, it's not really on the radar at this point.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Paint me nonplussed

    The screen is lovely but my MacBook Air lives in multiple clouds, and gives me a proper OS to play with. I'm not saying it couldn't be very useful but, current me is stuck in a hotel in West Africa where the internet goes up and down like a whore's knickers. On that basis, a Chromebook of any kind has a hard time appealing with me, and this really is just a super expensive Chromebook.

    Now, that £230 squids Samsung could be perfect when out and abut back home, as an additional advice, not my main device.

    1. Robert E A Harvey

      But... Re: Paint me nonplussed

      Do the whores in west Africa have knickers?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Forget the "more money than sense" market. Google is aiming this at the lots of money and nosense market.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Direct competition for Apple then. Should be interesting.

  17. Eenymeeny
    FAIL

    "Support for viewing and editing Word and Excel documents via Quickoffice has also been added, so that the device can slot easily into the enterprise market."

    ROFL. LMAO and so forth.

  18. JeffUK
    WTF?

    wtf?

    A high spec laptop for people who 'live in the cloud' ... so that's a high spec laptop for people who, by definition, don't need a high spec laptop, because all they're processing is done somewhere else...

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Love it if upgradeable

    Somewhat pricey, especially if you'd want to (like me) upgrade to a standard 256 GB SSD and 8 or even better 16 GB RAM. I hope that's possible. I'd have a dual boot to occasionally give ChromeOS a go and whatever Linux distribution reviewers will find play well.

    But the screen alone makes me want it very much.

    Oh wait. No 3G? That's a bit of a problem.

    I think I'll wait for the 2nd generation.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Love it if upgradeable

      >whatever Linux distribution reviewers will find play well.

      Anything built on Linux >= 3.9 by the look of things

  20. Dave 126 Silver badge

    Lack of storage...

    There was a bloke that made a lot of money by playing piano at posh parties and corporate events... his 'unique selling point'? Any tune that a guest named, he could play. This ability allowed him to charge top rates for his services, even though most of the time he would only be asked to play one of a few dozen famous songs.

    I'm beginning to have similar feelings bout the storage on my laptop, filled up with old projects, and films that I've already seen. The occasions that I'm away from a fast enough data connection are becoming shorter and less frequent. Time for a spring clean and tidy, methinks!

    That's not to say that the Chromebook is for me... convenience isn't the only concern; being dependant upon being able to find a working data connection isn't a good idea, and there are security concerns too.... but then I have mates who are issued Linux laptops purely for remotely and securely logging into their companies' systems.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Quite.

      ...and a portable, valuable gadget filled with spinning rust is hardly the ideal place to be archiving data anyway.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well

    I put my order in. I've been wanting a Chromebook for a while but the plastic crap with rubbish screens just didn't appeal. This is a bit more than I wanted to pay, but for that screen? What the hell;).

  22. handle
    Stop

    Wot no USB3?

    That and no ethernet port...

    Is this the same strategy that sees SD cards being removed from Android devices?

    1. handle

      By the way

      There is a good excuse for no ethernet port on things like this and the Lenovo Yoga - they are too thin to accommodate a standard RJ45 socket.

  23. preppy
    Pirate

    So...the idea is that you spend $1300 of YOUR money. Then you hand over all YOUR data, plus evidence of all of YOUR processing, and evidence of ALL THE PLACES WHERE YOU use your shiny new machine.....to Google.

    And apart from the money, why would Google be interested in this proposition? I'm sure I can't imagine.

  24. Gert Leboski
    Linux

    This will become more.

    http://www.engadget.com/2013/02/23/chromebook-pixel-linux-unverified-bios-slot-custom-bootloader/

    According to Engadget, Google are pretty much encouraging the install of Linux on these machines.

    This could be the start of a lot of growth in market share for Linux, if there are easy upgrade paths and full hardware support, which will both evolve in time.

    1. Androgynous Crackwhore
      Happy

      Re: This will become more.

      I agree. These are two more areas - high density displays and ARM support (other Chromebooks) - where Linux distros offer a real advantage over Windows (apart from the rather trivial not-having-to-pay-for-them thing)

      The "upgrade paths and full hardware support" are already in place! Google and its staff have a good record of actively supporting Linux.

      I'm starting to feel like I'm doing Eadon's job for him! Don't you work on weekends Eadon? ;o)

      1. TheVogon Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: This will become more.

        Windows 8 kernel supports ARM. For example Windows Phone and Windows RT.

        Linux is only free if your time is of no value!

  25. JDX Gold badge

    13"?

    I didn't actually see the screen size mentioned in the Reg or linked article, though a few have mentioned it being 13" in comments. Could someone confirm this?

    It seems VERY expensive for the spec other than the fancy screen - I mean 4GB only for a grand? Even cloud-based stuff might need more if you want serious apps in the browser like NaCl games or something.

    Two linked questions...

    1)Do Google make ChromeOS publicly available so you can install it in a VM or multi-boot/Bootcamp it? That might be fun to try. Or even on a bootable USB?

    2)If you bought a Pixel, could you put W8 on it either alongside ChromeOS or instead?

    1. Androgynous Crackwhore

      Re: 13"?

      Confirm 12.85"

      Agree about VERY expensive. The beautiful panel is beautiful and 3:2 and all but not all that different from the beautiful panel in the Nexus 10 - which sells for under half the price. ~$700 does seem a high price to pay for little more than 16GB flash, a hinge and Intel.

      1) Dunno. Probably... but why not just shrink the partition(s) which arrive on it or clone it/them onto an SD card or USB stick?

      2) I doubt MS is competent to make W8 & their own applications work consistently nicely on high density displays (nevermind "legacy" 3rd party apps) - I suspect that's the reason we're having to suffer crap screens in the PC sector... but I don't see any reason why it wouldn't run. You'll need to have drivers for the isl29023 ambient light sensor, the Atmel mxt224s trackpad and the Atmel mxt1664s touchscreen if you want those to work.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: 13"?

        There's no reason the display density is an issue. Simply set the video mode to 1280x850 if you are running apps which don't scale... the whole "retina mode" is the incompetent design in my view. Windows already lets you adjust DPI on icons etc so it should be fine, though I don't really see such a high DPI screen being sensible anyway... although games would look pretty incredible (except the hardware can't keep up).

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Androgynous Crackwhore

          Re: 13"?

          Yes, I think the super sharpness and detail of text and images when displayed at those high densities is most of the appeal of this Chromebook - but not just for games. If you're content running it at half its native resolution then, as you say, most of Windows' potential problems will disappear and you'll still get the benefit of invisible (physical) pixels - even though you'll have blockier (display) pixels. There's probably a text anti-aliasing setting which would deliver a pleasant enough rendering.

          I think I might have misread 1)...

          Are you wondering if you can download ChromeOS independently... i.e. without having a Chrome device? The project lives at www.chromium.org/chromium-os but doesn't provide any binaries. You can also download a prepared image (for either VMWare, VirtualBox or a USB stick) from chromeos.hexxeh.net (posted an erroneous link earlier - sorry if I sent you on a wild goose chase!)

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