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27 Dec 12 Pros and Cons of the New Samsung ChromeBook

The recent release of Samsung’s newest Google-compatible product, the ChromeBook, has users exiting about an affordable laptop option, but is it worth even the low price of $249? It depends on how you plan to use it. The ChromeBook runs off of Google’s cloud-based Chrome operating system. The newer, cheaper version is great for casual internet users, but falls short for hardcore techies.

Pros of the Samsung ChromeBook

  • The price.  This is perhaps the most attractive feature, especially for those on a tight budget. It’s at least $200 less expensive than the Series 5 Samsung ChromeBooks, and a good $100 cheaper than the Series 3, making it the most affordable option so far.
  • The underlying operating system.  Although the OS is officially labeled as Chrome OS, the bones are actually those of Linux. For fans of Linux (and there are many), this is a definite plus.
  • Long battery life. The average ChromeBook will last about 6.5 hours on one charge, longer than most traditional laptops on the market.
  • Fast boot-up.  Like tablets, the ChromeBook boots up almost instantly, making it convenient for those who need access to their system quickly.
  • Great option for kids. If you have a child that is constantly stealing your laptop or begging for computer time, the ChromeBook makes a great device for their needs. Kids can play web-based games, do research for their homework, and hang out on their favorite social networks without you dropping $500 or more for a whole new system.
  • Highly portable. While it isn’t as small as, say, a tablet, the ChromeBook is light and thin, making it a great option for those constantly on the go.

Cons of the Samsung ChromeBook

  • You get what you pay for. In this case, the lower price-tag comes at the expense of processing power and overall quality.
  • It can be slow. If you’re just going to use the ChromeBook for light Internet surfing, minor office work, or more casual uses, it’s fine. However, if you’re the type who needs dozens of browser tabs open at any given time, you’ll be disappointed in the speed of the ChromeBook.
  • Average resolution. If you’re looking for a vibrant HD screen, you’re not going to like the ChromeBook very much. The screen resolution and picture is about average, nothing special but not horrible either.  The maximum resolution is 1,366×768 pixels.
  • Below average sound system. The speakers are mounted on the bottom of the laptop, a terrible place if you want to listen to music loudly or watch a video while holding it on your lap. In those cases, you’ll need headphones to get a fuller effect.
  • Limited functionality. Since the ChromeBook is more of a browser-based system, you can use a lot of Google’s apps and a few other web-based apps. However, you can’t use certain popular programs, like Skype, Microsoft Office or Photoshop.

 

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