After years of jealously watching our Ameri-friends getting cheap laptops from Google, Australians can now partake in the spoils! Chromebooks have landed in Australia and they're going to be sold from both retail outlets and online in the Google Play Store.
For the uninitiated, a Chromebook is a cheap laptop from Google that is built by a third-party manufacturer — in this case, Acer and Samsung — running Google's own operating system, named ChromeOS.
ChomeOS isn't like your ordinary operating system. It's based entirely around a web browser, with very little emphasis placed on files actually being stored on your physical drive. You don't install software on a ChromeOS machine, you install apps from the Chrome Store. You don't open Office on the Chromebook, you run Google Drive and Google Docs. It's essentially a cloud-based laptop. They aren't pitched as replacements for your existing laptop, rather they're designed to be a secondary device for people who want more out of their mobile computing experience than a tablet can offer without having to spend too much.
The devices have been on sale in the US for a number of years now, but finally, Australians can now get them.
You can pick up an Acer Chromebook C7 for just $299, or you can grab the sexier, thinner Samsung Chromebook for $349. Under $350 for a secondary laptop is pretty impressive in my mind.
Having used the Samsung Chromebook for the last week, I'd be happy to give it a place on my coffee table as my secondary device.
You can get the new Chromebooks from the Google Play Store, from JB Hi-Fi or Harvey Norman.
As far as the Chromebook Pixel is concerned — Google's touchscreen, high-resolution model that just launched in the US — Google Australia has told us it has no plans as of yet to release it in Australia.