Google has announced the latest offering in Chromebook series running the Chrome OS, the Chromebook Pixel. Chromebook Pixel comes with a 12.85” Gorilla Glass multi-touch screen which has 239 pixels per inch which is very much higher than conventional laptops. It also features a Integrated 720p HD camera. On the processor side, it runs on Intel Core i5 processor along with integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 and 4GB of RAM.
There is a also backlit keyboard and the laptop is made of anodized aluminium. Chromebook Pixel also features integrated LTE which offers high speed internet access on the network along with normal Wi-Fi support. It is offered with 32GB solid state drive and 64GB on LTE model.
On the specs, Google Chromebook Pixel has quality hardware, but will it succeed? Here are some of the good and bad aspects of this new laptop:
1. Excellent Screen display:
As already mentioned the Chromebook Pixel has an awesome screen (239 pixels) with Gorilla glass and multi touch. The display is at 2,560×1,700-pixel resolutions and it has a taller display unlike conventional laptops. As 239 pixels per inch density, it is more than the Retina display of Macbook Pro. so on the display front, Chromebook Pixel really excels.
2. Google services integration:
If you are using most of Google’s services like Gmail, Google Docs, Google Drive, Google Chrome etc, then probably you will love it as there is good integration with all these services. Chrome OS with cloud based usage will make the integration better. There is also 1TB of storage space available for three years when you buy the laptop.
3. LTE support:
Since the Chrome OS is primarily based on Cloud, you will need a good internet connection to stay alive and for this there is support for LTE along with Wi-Fi only model. The LTE feature is integrated into the Chromebook Pixel. With LTE engineered directly into the machine, mobile download speeds can reach up to 100Mbps (LTE model optional).
4. Good Hardware:
On the hardware front, Pixel is pretty decent as it comes with good processor, 4GB RAM and also backlit keyboard. It also comes with standard connectivity options including Dual-band WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n 2×2, Bluetooth 3.0, 2 x USB 2.0, mini display port and SD / MMC card reader.
1. Chrome OS:
While the Chrome OS has good integration with Google Services, the cloud nature of the OS makes it unusable without a good internet connection. Moreover, the OS is not optimized for touch interface unlike Windows 8 with metro UI and start screen. Web-based Chrome OS requires you to be online to do most tasks which isn’t a desirable aspect as of now.
2. Lack of Apps:
While there are quite a lot of good apps in the Chrome app store, it still lacks many important apps like Office or Photoshop to edit images. You can only install apps from the app store and is similar to Windows RT in apps. Unless there are more apps available, it is difficult for users to work on it.
The most important aspect of the laptop, the price. At $1,299 for the Wi-Fi only version and $1,449 for the LTE version, Chromebook Pixel is extremely pricey. You get a lot of Windows 8 touch screen laptops which have better configuration and features (along with touchscreen) for that price. Moreover, there are certain basic things missing on Pixel like availability of USB 3.0 slots, Bluetooth 4.0 etc.
Should I buy Chromebook Pixel?
In simple words, NO. As of now Chrome OS is not suitable for heavy usage and lack of apps cripples it further. Also Chrome OS’s requirement of user being online will not work for all with low internet speeds. Even if you were to accept the fact that Chrome OS isn’t good enough, the high end laptop misses out on many features for its exorbitant pricing. You can pick up better Windows 8 laptops for that price.
Here are the complete specs of Chromebook Pixel.