Chromebook samsung

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook review: beautiful to a fault

Who is buying a $1,000 Chromebook? That’s the question people debated across the internet when Google unveiled the Pixelbook in 2017, and it’s a debate that will continue as the 2-in-1 Samsung Galaxy Chromebook makes its way onto shelves.

In a market packed with laptops that are getting thinner and faster each year, a Chromebook’s comparative advantage is usually in battery life and price. Sure, a number of companies make Chromebooks that are meant to compete with Windows machines on specs and performance, but those “premium” Chromebooks (aside from the 2017 Pixelbook) don’t carry starting prices above $650, and many (such as the Asus Chromebook Flip C434) are under $500.

And then there’s the Galaxy Chromebook, which is not at all cheap (it’s $999) and has battery life that leaves much to be desired. Samsung has taken a wrecking ball to what have traditionally been the two strongest arguments for buying a Chromebook. It’s clearly pushing a different vision for what a Chrome OS product can be: a premium device for power users.

Unfortunately, I think those power users will have to wait a bit longer. I have to credit Samsung for making this beautiful and bold bet. But it’s a bold bet that’s not ready for its $999 price tag.

I’ll start with the good things. The Galaxy Chromebook has a few standout features, but the most notable is what Samsung and Google are referring to as “craftsmanship.” At just 9.9mm thick and 2.29 pounds, this is the thinnest Chromebook in the world. The chassis is aluminum and comes in “Mercury gray” or a bold “fiesta red” color that looks orange in bright light. I had the red model, and the silver panels on the sides add a modern, chic touch. It’s a really beautiful device. My one nitpick about the build is that the 360 hinge isn’t terribly sturdy, so there’s a bit of a bounce every time your finger or stylus taps the touchscreen while it’s not in tablet mode.

The keyboard, while clicky, is a bit flat — but the keys and palm rests feel so nice that I am more than willing to forgive the shallow key travel. Similarly, the trackpad is somewhat stiff compared to those on some premium Windows laptops, but the smooth material made using it a good experience overall.

A unique design choice is that Samsung has placed an 8MP camera on the top right corner of the keyboard deck. If you fold the Chromebook into tablet mode, you can use it to shoot photos with the screen as a viewfinder. I’m not sure how many people actually want to take photos with an 8MP camera, but I can see it being a fun trick during video chats.

  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge
  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge
  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge
  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge
  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge
  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge
  • Photo by Monica Chin / The Verge

The second home run — and a big reason for the $999 price tag — is the display. This is the first Chromebook to sport a 4K OLED screen. The display is stunning, with vivid colors that make even those on the MacBook Pro look washed out in comparison. It is glossy, which means some glare, but the whole picture looked so good that I barely noticed. (Of course, 4K screens are notorious for decimating battery life, and this one is no exception. More on that in a bit.)

The Chromebook also uses Google’s Ambient Colors feature to adjust the display’s color temperature to suit the environment around you. It made the screen easier on my eyes, especially at night.

But my favorite feature of this Chromebook is the included stylus. It looks similar to the S-Pen that comes with Galaxy Notes, and it’s quite satisfying to pop in and out of its silo on the side. More to the point, it glides very smoothly across the screen. I found myself using it instead of the touchpad in all kinds of situations, from Buzzfeed quizzes to scrolling through Slack to moving sentences around in Docs. It was just more fun.

It can do some cute tricks as well and — unlike with some S-Pen tricks — they all have obvious, practical use cases. You can use it as a laser pointer during presentations. You can use it to outline a region, screenshot that region, and immediately annotate the picture. It can function as a magnifying glass that you can drag all over the display. And the Google Play Store has a list of stylus-specific apps, including various drawing, signing, and note-taking programs.

Open this thing up and its specs measure up to other respected Windows laptops. It’s got a 10th Gen Core i5 10210U, 8GB of RAM (LPDDR3), and 256GB of storage. I’m surprised to see Samsung using DDR3 rather than DDR4, but doubt most people will notice the difference on a Chromebook.

Samsung originally said there might be additional configurations up to 16GB of RAM and 1TB of storage, but those seem to be on ice (for now, at least).

The good news is that the i5 can handle a heavy browsing load. The machine never froze, and nothing randomly crashed. I loaded it up with 20 Chrome tabs and seven Android apps (a mix of Slack, Twitter, Gmail, Spotify, Facebook, Reddit, and the various Drive things) and everything ran smoothly. Google Assistant also worked well: it understood all of my voice commands perfectly and was a pleasant conversational companion.

The bad news is that to maintain this user experience, the Galaxy Chromebook has to heat up. There’s no fan in this thing, and its passive cooling system was inconsistent during my testing. The chassis’s temperature seemed to be, at best, loosely correlated with the stress the CPU was under. There were times when it was quite cool running 17 tabs, or three apps and 15 tabs, and times when it sweltered running just six tabs, or three tabs and Slack. When I say hot, I mean that the keyboard was slightly uncomfortable to type on and the deck was beginning to fry my legs. I could usually cool everything down by closing a few things, but that didn’t always last.

The heat, while unpleasant, may not be a deal-breaker for everyone. What is a deal-breaker, though, is the battery life.

Yeah, you didn’t think that 4K screens’ 8 million pixels powered themselves, did you? Samsung claimed eight hours of battery life; I got four hours and 20 minutes on a charge, swapping between several apps and several Chrome tabs at 50 percent brightness. It also doesn’t juice back up particularly fast. After an hour of charging via one of its USB-C ports, the Chromebook’s battery was only at 50 percent.

Four hours and 20 minutes is flatly terrible. For perspective, you’re getting about two hours of juice for every hour of charge; this thing will spend a third of its life plugged in. To put it bluntly: that’s unacceptable on a $999 Chromebook. Four hours and 20 minutes isn’t just low for that price; I’d be unimpressed with that on a $400 device. Samsung clearly thinks that battery life is a worthwhile trade-off for the fancy display, and maybe that’s true for you if you never intend to take this thing anywhere. But then, why are you paying a premium for a product that’s small and light?

Finally, let’s talk about the state of Chrome OS. If you stick to web apps, you’ll find you get a speedy, elegant experience — even tablet mode is improved these days. Google hasn’t made huge changes that might appeal to consumers, but support for Linux has improved quite a bit.

Then there are the Android apps. When the Pixelbook launched in 2017, Android apps for Chromebook were just out of beta, and many of them weren’t on quite the same page as the operating system.

Some of the worst kinks have been ironed out (flipping the screen in and out of tablet mode no longer scatters your apps to the wind and no longer turns programs like Spotify into a phone-sized window floating in a black void), but Android is still a mess on Chrome OS three years later.

Some of the issues are small. Highlighting large sections of text is difficult in the Google Docs app, for example. Slack for Android is quite clunky compared to its Windows and Mac counterparts. Mobile gaming also wasn’t great: Rest in Pieces was stutter-y (with nothing running in the background) and, of course, blurry and pixelated since it was blown up to fit a Chromebook. Call of Duty: Mobile still couldn’t get past the first loading screen without crashing.

Facebook Messenger, in particular, is a disaster. Whenever I got a Messenger notification while working in Chrome, the browser would immediately freeze and stop loading all webpages. I’d need to sign in and out of my Google account to get it running again.

I think these issues are a shame because there are clearly benefits to Google’s system. I prefer the simpler app interfaces of LastPass and Google Maps to their browser versions, and certain Android apps, such as 1Weather, Podcast Addict, and Solid Explorer, work great on the Galaxy Chromebook and don’t have browser equivalents at all.

But at the end of the day, it’s Samsung’s and Google’s responsibility to put out a product that plays nicely with the services people use the most, especially if they’re charging $999 for it. Yes, you can just do all these things in Chrome if you want to, but part of the appeal of Chrome OS is supposed to be that you can use your favorite Android apps. (And yes, I know you can do more things with Linux, but the average user doesn’t).

I doubt that my primary criticisms of this device will come as a surprise to Samsung and Google. I’m sure the companies are aware that they aren’t shipping a device with impressive cooling or a hefty battery. In releasing the product in this state, they’ve decided those are acceptable sacrifices to ask of Chrome OS users in exchange for an AMOLED screen and an eye-catching build. I disagree. The 4K display looks great. But laptops with a killer feature still need to be laptops everywhere else.

I have to give Samsung credit where it’s due: this is the nicest-looking Chromebook I’ve ever seen. It looks and feels gorgeous. The pen and the keyboard camera show that Samsung has put a lot of thought into designing a unique device.

But when you price a Chromebook at $999, you’re putting it in the big leagues — not just among Chromebooks, but among all laptops. Microsoft’s Surface Pro X, Surface Laptop 3, and Apple’s MacBook Air all start at $999. I’m not saying the Galaxy Chromebook is directly competing with those models — I’m aware that Samsung and Microsoft are largely targeting different consumers.

What I am saying is that at that price point, we should expect laptops to do everything pretty well. Some have a standout feature or two, but all should have the basics nailed; we expect a good screen, reliable performance, and acceptable battery life. Samsung delivers on the first and mostly on the second, but at the complete detriment of the third. That very well might be a combination some people are willing to pay for — but they probably shouldn’t pay $1,000.

Photography by Monica Chin

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Sours: https://www.theverge.com/2020/4/6/21206151/samsung-galaxy-chromebook-review-android-laptop

Chromebook

Laptop or tablet computer running Chrome OS

A Chromebook (sometimes stylized in lowercase as chromebook) is a laptop or tablet running the Linux-based Chrome OS as its operating system. Initially designed to heavily rely on web applications for tasks using the Google Chrome browser, Chromebooks have since expanded to be able to run Android and full-fledged Linux apps since 2017 and 2018, respectively. All supported apps can be installed and launched alongside each other.[1]

Chromebooks can work offline, applications like Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Keep, and Google Drive synchronize data when reconnecting to the Internet.[2]Google Play video content is available offline using the Google Play Movies & TV extension with the Chrome browser.[3]

The first Chromebooks shipped on June 15, 2011.[4] Other form factors include Chromebox desktops, an all-in-one" called a Chromebase, a stick PC called a Chromebit and Chromebook tablets.

In 2020, Chromebooks outsold Apple Macs for the first time by taking market share from Windows laptops.[5][6][7]

History[edit]

The first Chromebooks for sale, by Acer Inc. and Samsung, were announced at the Google I/O conference in May 2011, and began shipping on June 15, 2011.[4]Lenovo, Hewlett Packard and Google itself entered the market in early 2013. In December 2013, Samsung launched a Samsung Chromebook specifically for the Indian market that employed the company's Exynos 5 Dual core processor.[8]

Critical reaction to the device was initially skeptical, with some reviewers, such as then New York Times technology columnist David Pogue,[9] unfavorably comparing the value proposition of Chromebooks with that of more fully featured laptops running the Microsoft Windows operating system. That complaint dissipated later in reviews of machines from Acer and Samsung that were priced lower.[10]

In February 2013, Google announced and began shipping the Chromebook Pixel, a higher-spec machine with a high-end retail price.[11]

In January 2015, Acer announced the first big screen Chromebook, the Acer Chromebook 15 with an FHD 15.6-inch display.[12]

By March 2018 Chromebooks made up 60% of computers purchased by schools in the United States. In October 2012, Simon Phipps, writing in InfoWorld, said, "The Chromebook line is probably the most successful Linux desktop/laptop computer we've seen to date".[13]

Non-laptop models[edit]

Besides laptops, there are several other types of devices that run Chrome OS.

Integration with Android[edit]

In May 2016, Google announced it would make Android apps available on Chromebooks via the Google Play application distribution platform. At the time, Google Play access was scheduled for the ASUS Chromebook Flip, the Acer Chromebook R 11 and the most recent Chromebook Pixel, with other Chromebooks slated over time.[17][18][19] Partnering with Google, Samsung released the Chromebook Plus and Chromebook Pro in early 2017, the first Chromebooks to come with the Play Store pre-installed.[20] A February 2017 review in The Verge reported that the Plus with its ARM processor handled Android apps "much better" than the Intel-based Pro, but said that "Android apps on Chrome OS are still in beta" and are "very much [an] unfinished experience."[21] The number of Chrome OS systems supporting Android apps in either the stable or beta channel is increasing.[22][23]

Integration with Linux[edit]

In May 2018, Google announced it would make Linux desktop apps available on Chromebooks via a Virtual Machine code-named "Crostini", which exited beta in 2021.[24][25] Google maintains a list of devices that were launched before 2019, which support Linux apps.[26][27]

Design[edit]

Samsung Chromebook Series 3 with bottom panel removed

Initial hardware partners for Chromebook development included Acer, Adobe, Asus, Freescale, Hewlett-Packard (later HP Inc.), Lenovo, Qualcomm, Texas Instruments, Toshiba,[28]Intel,[29]Samsung,[30][31] and Dell.[32]

Chromebooks ship with Google Chrome OS, an operating system that uses the Linux kernel and the Google Chrome web-browser with an integrated media-player.[33][34] Enabling developer mode allows the installation of Linux distributions on Chromebooks. Crouton is a script that allows the installation of Linux distributions from Chrome OS, and running both operating systems simultaneously.[35] Some Chromebooks include SeaBIOS, which can be turned on to install and boot Linux distributions directly.[36][37] With limited offline capability and a fast boot-time, Chromebooks are primarily designed for use while connected to the Internet[38] and signed in to a Google account.[39] Instead of installing traditional applications such as word processing and instant messaging, users add web apps from the Chrome Web Store.[40] Google claims that a multi-layer security architecture eliminates the need for anti-virus software.[4]

Support for many Bluetooth and USB devices such as cameras, mice, external keyboards and flash drives is included, utilizing a feature similar to plug-and-play on other operating systems.

All Chromebooks, except the first three, boot with the help of Coreboot, a fast-booting BIOS.[41][42]

Sales and marketing[edit]

Chromebooks at a Staples retail store

The first two commercially available Chromebooks, the Samsung Series 5 and the Acer AC700, were unveiled on May 11, 2011, at the Google I/O developer conference. They were to begin selling through online channels, including Amazon and Best Buy in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Italy and Spain starting June 15, 2011; however, Acer's AC700 was not available until early July.[43] The first machines sold for between $349 and $499, depending on the model and 3G option.[44] Google also offered a monthly payment scheme for business and education customers at $28 and $20 per user, per month, respectively for a three-year contract, including replacements and upgrades. Verizon offers models equipped with 3G/4G LTE connectivity 100–200 MB of free wireless data per month, for two years.[45][46]

Google's early marketing efforts relied primarily on hands-on experience: giving away Samsung machines to 10 Cr-48 pilot program participants along with the title Chromebook Guru and lending Chromebooks to passengers on some Virgin America flights.[47][48][49]

At the end of September 2011, Google launched the Chrome Zone, a "store within a store", inside the Currys and PC World superstore in London.[50] The store had a Google-style look and feel with splashes of color all around the retail store front.[51] The concept was later changed to a broader in-store Google shop, which has not expanded beyond the PC World on Tottenham Court Road.[52]

In addition to these marketing strategies, Google Chrome has created several "Chromebook minis" that demonstrate the ease of use and simplicity of the devices in a comical manner. For example, when the question "How do you back up a Chromebook" is asked, it is implied to refer to data backup, but instead, shows two hands pushing a Chromebook back to the end of a table. This is followed by the statement, "You don't have to back up a Chromebook," showing how all data is stored on the web.[53]

In an article published on ZDNet in June 2011, entitled "Five Chromebook concerns for businesses", Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols faulted the devices for lack of virtual private network capability, not supporting some Wi-Fi security methods, in particular Wi-Fi Protected Access II (WPA2) Enterprise with Extensible Authentication Protocol-Transport Layer Security (EAP-TLS) or Cisco's Lightweight Extensible Authentication Protocol (LEAP). He also noted that its file manager does not work, the need to use the undocumented crosh shell to accomplish basic tasks such as setting up a secure shell (SSH) network connection as well as serious deficiencies in documentation.[54]

In one of the first customer reviews, the City of Orlando, Florida, reported on their initial testing of 600 Chromebooks as part of a broader study related to accessing virtual desktops. Early indications show potential value in reducing IT support costs. End users have indicated that the Chromebook is easy to travel with and starts up quickly. One stated that "If I just need to stay connected for emergencies, I take my Chrome," but when traveling for business she would still take her laptop. Orlando does plan to continue to use the Chromebooks.[55]

On November 21, 2011, Google announced price reductions on all Chromebooks.[56] Since then, the Wi-Fi-only Samsung Series 5 was reduced to $349, the 3G Samsung Series 5 was reduced to $449, and the Acer AC700 was reduced to $299.

The updated Series 5 550 and the Chromebox, the first Chrome OS desktop machines, were released by Samsung in May 2012.[57][58][59][60] While the two lowest cost Chromebooks emerged later in the fall: the $249[61] Samsung Series 3 and the $199[62] Acer C7. The following February, Google introduced the most costly machine, their Chromebook Pixel, with a starting price of $1299.[63] All models released after May 2012, include 100 GB–1.09 TB of Google Drivecloud storage and 12 GoGo WiFi passes.[64][65]

By January 2013, Acer's Chromebook sales were being driven by "heavy Internet users with educational institutions", and the platform represented 5–10 percent of the company's US shipments, according to Acer president Jim Wong. He called those numbers sustainable, contrasting them with low Windows 8 sales which he blamed for a slump in the market. Wong said that the company would consider marketing Chromebooks to other developed countries, as well as to corporations. He noted that although Chrome OS is free to license for hardware vendors, it has required greater marketing expenditure than Windows, offsetting the licensing savings.[66]

During the first 11 months of 2013, 1.76 million Chromebooks sold in the United States, representing 21% of the US commercial business-to-business laptop market. During the same period in 2012, Chromebooks sold 400,000 units and had a negligible market share.[67]

In January 2015, Silviu Stahie noted in Softpedia that Chromebooks were eating into Microsoft's market share. He said "Microsoft is engaged in a silent war and it's actually losing. They are fighting an enemy that is so insidious and so cunning that it's actually hurting the company more than anything else. The enemy is called Chromebooks and they are using Linux...There is no sign that things are slowing down and Microsoft really needs a win, and soon if it wants to remain relevant."[68]

In 2015, Chromebooks, by sales volume (to companies in the US), are second after Windows based devices (with Android tablets, overtaking Apple's devices in 2014): "Chromebook sales through the U.S. B2B channels increased 43 percent during the first half of 2015, helping to keep overall B2B PC and tablet sales from falling. [..] Sales of Google OS-equipped (Android and Chrome) devices saw a 29 percent increase over 2014 propelled by Chromebook sales, while Apple devices declined 12 percent and Windows devices fell 8 percent."[69]

As of 4 March 2020, Lenovo 100E was the cheapest Chromebook in the world.[70]

Education market[edit]

The education market has been the Chromebooks' most notable success, competing on the low cost of the hardware, software and upkeep. The simplicity of the machines, which could be a drawback in other markets, has proven an advantage to school districts by reducing training and maintenance costs.[71]

By January 2012, even while commercial sales were flat, Google placed nearly 27,000 Chromebooks in schools across 41 states in the US, including "one-on-one" programs, which allocate a computer for every student in South Carolina, Illinois, and Iowa.[72] As of August 2012, over 500 school districts in the United States and Europe were using the device.[73][74] In 2016, Chromebooks represented 58 percent of the 2.6 million mobile devices purchased by U.S. schools and about 64 percent of that market outside the U.S. By contrast, sales of Apple tablets and laptops to U.S. schools dropped that year to 19 percent, compared with 52 percent in 2012.[71]

Helping spur Chromebook sales is Google Classroom, an app designed for teachers in 2014, that serves as a hub for classroom activities including attendance, classroom discussions, homework and communication with students and parents.[71]

There have, however, been concerns about privacy within the context of the education market for Chromebooks. Officials at schools issuing Chromebooks for students have affirmed that students have no right to privacy when using school-issued Chromebooks, even at home, and that all online and offline activity can be monitored by the school using third-party software pre-installed on the laptops.[75] Further, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has complained that Google itself is violating the privacy of students by enabling the synchronization function within Google Chrome ("Chrome Sync") by default, allowing web browsing histories and other data of students – including those under-13 – to be stored on Google servers and potentially used for purposes other than authorized educational purposes.[76][77] A point of contention has been the fact that users of school-issued Chromebooks cannot change these settings themselves as a measure to protect their privacy; only the administrator who issued the laptops can change them.[76][77] The EFF claims that this violates a Student Privacy Pledge already signed by Google in 2014.[76][77][78] EFF staff attorney Nate Cardozo stated: "Minors shouldn't be tracked or used as guinea pigs, with their data treated as a profit center. If Google wants to use students' data to 'improve Google products', then it needs to get express consent from parents."[76]

By March 2018 Chromebooks made up 60% of computers used in schools. CNET writer Alfred Ng cited superior security as the main reason for this level of market adoption.[79]

According to research firms Gartner and Canalys, over 30 million Chromebooks were shipped in 2020. Sales were propelled by schools buying Chromebooks for students for remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[80]

Examples[edit]

Google supports new Chromebooks with automatic updates for at least 8 years since 2020, previously it was 6.5 years, the date when a device will stop receiving automatic software and security updates can be found in "About this Chromebook" section of device settings.[81][82] Google maintain an Auto Update policy listing Chrome OS makes and models with their auto update expiration dates.[83]

The hardware generation and Linux kernel version[84] of most products can be inferred from the code name[85] and its corresponding video game series:

Architecture Game series Characters
Bay TrailDonkey KongRambi, Swanky, Quawks,...
HaswellStar FoxSlippy, Falco, Peppy,...
BroadwellFinal Fantasy XAuron, Paine, Yuna, Rikku,...

Google[edit]

Cr-48[edit]

"Cr-48" redirects here. For the radioisotope, see isotopes of chromium.

At a December 7, 2010, press briefing,[86][87][88] Google announced the Chrome OS Pilot Program, a pilot experiment and the first Chromebook, the Cr-48 Chrome Notebook, a prototype, to test the Chrome OS operating system and modified hardware for it. The device had a minimal design and was all black, completely unbranded although it was made by Inventec,[89] and had a rubberized coating. The device was named after Chromium-48, an unstable isotope of the metallic element Chromium (chemical symbol Cr),[90] and the participants were named Cr-48 Test Pilots. Google distributed about 60,000 Cr-48 Chrome Notebooks between December 2010 and March 2011[91][92] for free to participants and in return asked for feedback such as suggestions and bug reports. The Cr-48 was intended for testing only, not retail sales.[93][94][95]

The Cr-48's hardware design broke convention by replacing certain keys with shortcut keys,[96] such as the function keys, and replacing the caps lock key with a dedicated search key (now called the "Everything Button"),[97] which can be changed back to caps lock in the OS's keyboard settings. Google addressed complaints that the operating system offers little functionality when the host device is not connected to the Internet, demonstrated an offline version of Google Docs, and announced a 3G plan that would give users 100 MB of free data each month, with additional paid plans available from Verizon.[38][98]

The device's USB port is capable of supporting a keyboard, mouse, Ethernet adapter, or USB storage, but not a printer, as Chrome OS offers no print stack.[99] Adding further hardware outside of the previously mentioned items will likely cause problems with the operating system's "self knowing" security model.[100] Users instead were encouraged to use a secure service called Google Cloud Print to print to legacy printers connected to their desktop computers, or to connect an HP ePrint, Kodak Hero, Kodak ESP, or Epson Connect printer to the Google Cloud Print service for a "cloud aware" printer connection.[101]

The Cr-48 prototype laptop gave reviewers their first opportunity to evaluate Chrome OS running on a device. Ryan Paul of Ars Technica wrote that the machine "met the basic requirements for Web surfing, gaming, and personal productivity, but falls short for more intensive tasks." He praised Google's approach to security, but wondered whether mainstream computer users would accept an operating system whose only application is a browser. He thought Chrome OS "could appeal to some niche audiences": people who just need a browser or companies that rely on Google Apps and other Web applications. But the operating system was "decidedly not a full-fledged alternative to the general purpose computing environments that currently ship on netbooks." Paul wrote that most of Chrome OS's advantages "can be found in other software environments without having to sacrifice native applications."[91]

In reviewing the Cr-48 on December 29, 2010, Kurt Bakke of Conceivably Tech wrote that a Chromebook had become the most frequently used family appliance in his household. "Its 15 second startup time and dedicated Google user accounts made it the go-to device for quick searches, email as well as YouTube and Facebook activities." But the device did not replace other five notebooks in the house: one for gaming, two for the kids, and two more for general use. "The biggest complaint I heard was its lack of performance in Flash applications."[102]

In ongoing testing, Wolfgang Gruener, also writing in Conceivably Tech, said that cloud computing at cellular data speeds is unacceptable and that the lack of offline ability turns the Cr-48 "into a useless brick" when not connected.[103] "It's difficult to use the Chromebook as an everyday device and give up what you are used to on a Mac/Windows PC, while you surely enjoy the dedicated cloud computing capabilities occasionally."[104]

The Cr-48 features an Intel Atom N455, a single-core processor with 512 KB of cache and hyperthreading enabled. It also features 2 GB of removable DDR3 memory in a single SO-DIMM, integrated chipset graphics, and a 66 watt-hour battery.[105] It has been found that the Intel NM10 chipset can get very hot during operation due to lack of a proper heatsink, but this has been fixed in production Chromebooks.[citation needed]

Pixel[edit]

Main article: Chromebook Pixel

Launched by Google in February 2013, the Chromebook Pixel was the high-end machine in the Chromebook family. The laptop has an unusual 3:2 display aspect ratio touch screen featuring what was at its debut the highest pixel density of any laptop,[106] a faster CPU than its predecessors in the Intel Core i5, and an exterior design described by Wired as "an austere rectangular block of aluminum with subtly rounded edges".[107] A second Pixel featuring LTE wireless communication and twice the storage capacity was shipped for arrival on April 12, 2013.[108]

The machine received much media attention, with many reviewers questioning the Pixel's value proposition compared to similarly priced Windows machines and the MacBook Air.[109][110]

Pixelbook[edit]

Main article: Pixelbook

In 2017, Google launched the Pixelbook to replace the Chromebook Pixel. Like the Chromebook Pixel, the Pixelbook has a 3:2 aspect ratio touchscreen with a high pixel density 12.3" display.[111] Unlike the original Chromebook Pixel but like the second generation, the Pixelbook excludes an option for LTE. Instead, it implements Google's "instant tethering", which automatically tethers a Pixelbook to a Pixel phone's mobile connection.[112]

Pixelbook Go[edit]

Main article: Pixelbook Go

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Samsung[edit]

Samsung Series 5[edit]

Reviewing the Samsung Series 5 specifications, Scott Stein of CNET was unimpressed with a machine with a 12-inch screen and just 16 GB of onboard storage. "Chrome OS might be lighter than Windows XP, but we'd still prefer more media storage space. At this price, you could also get an 11.6-inch (290 mm) Wi-Fi AMD E-350-powered ultraportable running Windows 7."[58] On the other hand, MG Siegler of TechCrunch wrote a largely favorable review, praising the improvements in speed and touchpad sensitivity over the CR-48 prototype, as well as the long battery life and the fact that all models are priced below the iPad.[113]

In June 2011, iFixit dismantled a Samsung Series 5 and concluded that it was essentially an improved Cr-48. They rated it as 6/10 for repairability, predominantly because the case has to be opened to change the battery and because the RAM chip is soldered to the motherboard. iFixit noted that the "mostly-plastic construction" felt "a little cheap". On the plus side they stated that the screen was easy to remove and most of the components, including the solid-state drive would be easy to replace. iFixit's Kyle Wiens wrote that the Series 5 "fixes the major shortfalls of the Cr-48 and adds the polish necessary to strike lust into the heart of a broad consumer base: sleek looks, 8+ hours of battery life, and optimized performance."[114]

Samsung Series 5 550[edit]

In May 2012, Samsung introduced the Chromebook Series 5 550, with a Wi-Fi model and more expensive 3G model.[115]

Reviews generally questioned the value proposition. Dana Wollman of Engadget wrote that the Chromebook's keyboard "put thousand-dollar Ultrabooks to shame" and offered better display quality than on many laptops selling for twice as much. But the price "seems to exist in a vacuum—a place where tablet apps aren't growing more sophisticated, where Transformer-like Win8 tablets aren't on the way and where there aren't some solid budget Windows machines to choose from."[116]

Joe Wilcox of BetaNews wrote that "price to performance and how it compares to other choices" is "where Chromebook crumbles for many potential buyers." He noted that the new models sell for more than their predecessors, and while the price-performance ratio is quite favorable compared to the MacBook Air, "by the specs, there are plenty of lower-cost options."[117]

Samsung Series 3[edit]

Samsung Series 3 Chromebook

In October 2012, the Series 3 Chromebook was introduced at a San Francisco event with the Samsung Chromebook XE303. The device was cheaper, thinner and lighter than the Chromebook 550. Google marketed the Series 3 as the computer for everyone, due to its simple operating system (Chrome OS) and affordable price. Target markets included students and first-time computer users, as well as households looking for an extra computer.[118][119]

The lower price proved a watershed for some reviewers. New York Times technology columnist David Pogue reversed his earlier thumbs-down verdict on the Chromebook, writing that "$250 changes everything." The price is half that of an "iPad, even less than an iPad Mini or an iPod Touch. And you’re getting a laptop." He wrote that the Chromebook does many of the things people use computers and laptops for: playing flash videos, and opening Microsoft Office documents. "In other words, Google is correct when it asserts that the Chromebook is perfect for schools, second computers in homes and businesses who deploy hundreds of machines."[9][10]

CNET's review of the Series 3 Chromebook was even more favorable, saying the machine largely delivered as a computer for students and as an additional computer for a household—especially for users who are already using Google Web applications like Google Docs, Google Drive, and Gmail. "It's got workable if not standout hardware, its battery life is good, it switches on quickly, and the $249 price tag means it's not as much of a commitment as the $550 Samsung Series 5 550 that arrived in May." The review subtracted points for performance. "It's fine for many tasks, but power users accustomed to having more than a couple dozen browser tabs open should steer clear."[118]

Samsung Chromebook 3[edit]

The Chromebook 3 is distinct from and distinguished from the similarly named Samsung Series 3 in several respects: newer (released 2016), different architecture (Intel Celeron N3050 instead of Exynos 5 Dual ARM Cortex),[120] thinner (0.7"),[120] and less expensive (about $100 less than the Series 3);[120] while remaining a full implementation of ChromeOS.

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook[edit]

In 2020 Samsung introduced the Galaxy Chromebook, a high-end 2-in-1 laptop under the Galaxy branding for $999. Reviews praised the 4K AMOLED display, thin and light body, addition of the S-Pen, and speedy Intel Core i5-10210U performance. But they also criticized its poor battery life and heat output.[121][122]

Samsung Chromebook 4 and 4+[edit]

In 2021 Samsung introduced the Chromebook 4 (11.6") and 4+ (15.6") models. Both continue the budget model Chromebook line with a Celeron N4000 processor. The 4+ has a larger display and has model choices up to 6GB RAM. Reviews praised the cheap price and comfortable keyboard but criticized the terrible displays.[123][124]

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2[edit]

The follow-on to the Galaxy Chromebook, the Galaxy Chromebook 2 was introduced in 2021. With a cheaper price, lower FHD QLED display, lower Core i3 processor, and no stylus, it is largely a downgrade from the previous model. However, it is expected these changes will improve the battery life.[125][126]

HP[edit]

HP's first Chromebook, and the largest Chromebook on the market at that time, was the Pavilion 14 Chromebook launched February 3, 2013.[127] It had an Intel Celeron 847 CPU and either 2GB or 4GB of RAM. Battery life was not long, at just over 4 hours, but the larger form factor made it more friendly for all-day use. HP introduced the Chromebook 11 on October 8, 2013, in the US.[128] In December 2013, Google and HP recalled 145,000 chargers due to overheating.[129] Sales were halted, resuming with a redesigned charger the following month.[130] The HP Chromebook 14 was announced September 11, 2013[131] with an Intel Haswell Celeron processor, USB 3.0 ports, and 4G broadband. An updated version of the Chromebook lineup was announced on September 3, 2014. The 11-inch models included an Intel processor while the 14-inch models featured a fanless design powered by a Nvidia Tegra K1 processor. HP Chromebooks are available in several colors.[132]

Desktop variants[edit]

Three types of desktop computers also run Chrome OS.

Chromebox[edit]

Main article: Chromebox

Classed as small form-factor PCs, Chromeboxes typically feature a power switch and a set of ports: local area network, USB, DVI-D, DisplayPort, and audio. As with Chromebooks, Chromeboxes employ solid-state memory and support Web applications, but require an external monitor, keyboard, and pointing device.[133]

Chromebase[edit]

Available Earliest EOL Brand Model Processor RAM Screen Resolution Weight
2021 June 2028 HPHP Chromebase All-in-One 22 aa0050t Intel® Pentium® 6405U 4-16 GB 21.5 in 1920×1080 15.37 lb (7kg)
2019 June 2025 Acer Inc.Acer Chromebase 24I2 8th Gen Intel® Core i7-8550U 4-8 GB 24 in 1920×1080 19.84 lb

(9 kg)

2019 June 2025 Acer Inc.Acer Chromebase for Meetings 24V2 8th Gen Intel® Core i7-8550U 4-8 GB 24 in 1920×1080 19.84 lb

(9 kg)

Chromebase is an "all-in-one" Chrome OS device. The first such model was released by LG Electronics which integrated a screen, speakers, 1.3-megapixel webcam and microphone, with a suggested retail price of $350. The company unveiled the product in January 2014, at International CES in Las Vegas.[134][135]

Chromebit[edit]

The Chromebit is a stick PC running on Google's Chrome OS operating system. When placed in the HDMI port of a television or monitor, this device turns that display into a personal computer. Chromebit allows adding a keyboard and mouse over Bluetooth or USB port.

HDMI does not provide power to connected devices, so the Chromebit is supplied power from either an external USB power supply or draws power via a USB port on the monitor.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromebook
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Update: We've added results from our Chromebook drop test (see durability and drop test section) in which the Samsung Chromebook 3 fared surprisingly well.  

The $179 Samsung Chromebook 3 is a great little laptop for both school and entertainment, especially for younger kids and frequent travelers. This 11.6-inch notebook not only boasts a fantastic screen and nearly 10 hours of battery life but also comes with 4GB of RAM, so you can expect solid performance. And because its 32GB of storage isn't taken up by Windows 10, you'll find plenty of onboard storage for your personal files. For the price, the Samsung Chromebook 3 is one of the best Chromebooks, best laptops under $500 and best laptops under $300 around.

Samsung Chromebook 3 price and configurations

Samsung Chromebook 3 specs

Price: $179
CPU: Intel Celeron N3060
GPU: Intel HD Graphics 400
RAM: 4GB
Storage: 32GB eMMc flash storage
Display: 11-inch, 1366 x 768 LED
Battery: 9:44
Size: 11.4 x 8 x 0.7 inches
Weight: 2.5 pounds

There are three variations of the updated Samsung Chromebook 3. Our $179 review unit comes with a 1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060 processor, Intel HD Graphics 400, 4GB of RAM and 32GB eMMc flash storage, and it's available at BestBuy.com and Samsung.com.

The two other configurations use the same Celeron processor and Intel graphics, but differ on RAM and storage capacity. There is a 16GB version of the Chromebook 3 for $170, and a $160 version with only 2GB RAM and 16GB of storage.

If you're interested in a higher end alternative of the Samsung Chromebook 3, consider getting the Samsung Chromebook Plus LTE. For $599, you'll get a stylish 2-in-1 laptop with an Intel Celeron 3965Y processor, 4GB of RAM, 32GB eMMC, a 12.2-inch, 1920 x 1200 panel and 4G LTE. It also includes a built-in stylus capable of capturing 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity with tilt recognition. On top of that, it features a 13MP world-facing camera with autofocus built into the keyboard.

Samsung Chromebook 3 design

For a sub-$200 device, the Chromebook 3's build quality is surprisingly good, even though it's made of plastic. The textured "metallic black" looks classy enough for any setting. The chassis has a silky-smooth palm rest, as well as a gently rounded lip to keep your wrists comfortable. The subtle texture around the display helps minimize reflections from the glossy bezel.

The hinge is strong and flexible, with the ability to tilt the screen to 180 degrees. There is no flexing around its keyboard, which is a problem that plagues most other laptops in this price range. The Samsung notebook is small enough to tuck under your arm, and hardy enough to slip into your luggage for international travel.

Measuring 11.4 x 8 x 0.7 inches and weighing 2.5 pounds, the Samsung Chromebook 3 is practically the HP Stream 11's twin (11.8 x 8.1 x 0.7 inches, 2.5 pounds) but with a different operating system. The two 14-inch laptops in the group -- the Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14 (13.3 x 9.3 x 0.7 inches, 3.15 pounds) and the Dell Inspiron 14 3000 (13.6 x 9.6 x 0.8 inches, 3.5 pounds) -- are much bigger and heavier than their 11-inch rivals.

Samsung Chromebook 3 ports

The Chromebook 3 has the ports you need.

On the left side, there is a battery indicator, a slim jack for the AC adapter, a USB 2.0 port, a full-size HDMI port and a microSD card slot. On the opposite side, you'll find a USB 3.0 port, as well as a combination audio and microphone jack.

Samsung Chromebook 3 durability and drop test

The Chromebook 3 did an excellent job in our Chromebook drop test, which involved dropping 11 of the most popular Chromebooks from 2.5 feet and 4.5 feet onto concrete and carpet. Samsung's laptop, although not technically ruggedized, didn't show any signs of wear after our first few drops. Only on the side drop from 4.5 feet did the Chromebook 3's bezel separate from the screen, but we were able to snap everything back into place and return the Chromebook 3 to near-new condition.

Samsung Chromebook 3 display

The real star of the Samsung Chromebook 3 is its exceptional screen. The Chromebook 3's 1366 x 768 LED display is brighter than its competitors', at 259 nits. That is more luminous than the 188 nits from both the Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14 and the HP Stream 11, as well as the 135-nit display on the Dell Inspiron 14 3000. Viewing angles are decent on the Chromebook 3, as you can clearly see all the colors on the screen from about 45 degrees on each side.

The colors on the Chromebook 3 are so realistic that they put other budget laptops to shame. Whereas most other panels in this class make everything skew blue and cool, the Samsung laptop delivered warmer tones that look more authentic and detailed.

In the Dunkirk trailer, only the Chromebook 3's panel showed the subtle hint of yellow sand and brackish green water in its opening sequence. I also appreciated the finer details of Vulture's metallic armor in the Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer, which was an improvement over the Stream 11's display.

The Chromebook 3's accurate hues are partly due to its near-perfect 0.2 Delta-E rating (closer to 0 is best). Its competitors' ratings, by comparison, miss the mark completely and all fall within the same range: 3.7 for the Stream 11, 3.5 for the Inspiron 14 3000 and 3.9 for the Ideapad 100S-14.

The Chromebook 3's 1366 x 768 LED display is brighter than its competitors' screens, at 259 nits.

On the flip side, the Samsung laptop has the most limited color range of the bunch, reproducing only 63.1 percent of the sRGB gamut. The 11-inch HP display reproduced 77.5 percent of the gamut, the 14-inch Dell panel delivered 81.4 percent and the Lenovo's screen had the widest color range, at 83.5 percent.

Samsung Chromebook 3 audio

The bottom-firing speakers on the Samsung Chromebook 3 are decent for the price. At least they are loud enough to fill a small room with sound, but they don't have the versatility and finesse of the Stream 11's DTS Studio Sound-enhanced speakers.

However, HP's system edged out the Samsung laptop on the jazzy "Summer Montage" from the La La Land soundtrack. The Chromebook 3's speakers distorted the trumpets whenever they reached the high notes, and the cymbals sounded more muddy than on the Stream 11.

Samsung Chromebook 3 keyboard and touchpad

Typing on the Samsung Chromebook 3's spill-resistant keyboard feels comfortable, as its keys are ever-so-slightly curved to fit your fingertips and keep your fingers oriented. The keys are well sized and take full advantage of the width of the device, which is good news for people with bigger fingers.

Because the Backspace key is just below the power key, you're just an accidental keystroke away from accidentally shutting down the machine.

Both the Chromebook 3 and the Stream 11 have 1.2 millimeters of key travel (between 1.5 and 2 mm is ideal), but it takes 63 grams of force to actuate a key on the Chromebook 3, versus 69 grams on the Stream 11 (60 grams is the minimum we prefer). When I took the 10FastFingers.com typing test, I scored 76 words per minute with a 9 percent error rate. That is just a touch slower and less accurate than my normal 80 wpm and 7 percent error rate on my Microsoft Surface Pro 4's Type Cover.

My biggest gripe with the Chromebook 3's keyboard is its layout. I wish there were more distance between the power button and the rest of the keyboard. Because the Backspace key is just below the power key, you're just an accidental keystroke from accidentally shutting down the machine. I also wish the power key had an indicator light to let me know how long to press the button to turn on the device.

At 3.9 x 2.2 inches, the Chromebook 3's touchpad is generous for an 11-inch device. The material of the touchpad feels cool and smooth, like its palm rest. It's also highly sensitive, so we suggest lightly tapping the surface to navigate the device.

Samsung Chromebook 3 performance

With a 1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060 processor, Intel HD Graphics 400, 4GB of RAM and 32GB of eMMc flash storage, the Chromebook 3 has the performance you need for handling web surfing and word processing. I had 10 web browser tabs open while I did everything from edit a couple of Google Docs to stream a concert from YouTube, and nothing fazed the device. I even watched a couple of 1080p movie trailers while all those other tabs were running in the background, and the Chromebook 3 still showed no serious lag, other than a second to reload a web page.

The Chromebook 3 earned a score of 49.7 in the JetStream JavaScript benchmark, which beats rivals such as the Stream 11 (1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060, 39.8) and the Inspiron 14 3000 (1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060, 35.9). However, the Chromebook 3 is still no match for the faster Ideapad 100S-14 (1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060, 58.1).

In the WebGL Aquarium graphics test, the Samsung laptop thoroughly trounced its competitors by rendering 2,000 fish in the tank at 23 frames per second. All of its similarly outfitted opponents did much worse: The Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14 wavered between 6 and 7 fps, while the Stream 11 notched 12 fps. The Inspiron 14 3000 came the closest, at 17 fps.

With its integrated Intel HD Graphics 400, the Chromebook 3 can handle some casual web-based and app games, such as Cut the Rope, but the 3D first-person shooter Web Quake slowed to a crawl in the middle of gameplay.

Samsung Chromebook 3 battery life

The Samsung Chromebook 3 can easily last a full workday on a charge. It clocked 9 hours and 44 minutes on the Laptop Mag Battery Test (continuous web surfing over Wi-Fi). The Dell Inspiron 14 3000 was a close second with 9:01, and the HP Stream 11 posted a respectable 8:23. The Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14 flamed out with a time of 5:55.

Samsung Chromebook 3 storage

Because the Samsung Chromebook 3 uses Chrome OS, there is ample free space on its 32GB eMMc flash memory for your files. Unlike Windows 10-based systems with the same storage capacity, the Chromebook 3 offers over 20GB of free space right out of the box, versus the measly 9.68GB available on the Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14.

While this free space means you'll have ample room for the latest OS updates and Chrome apps, you should still invest in a microSD card or use a cloud storage service such as Google Drive to store your photo or music collection.

Samsung Chromebook 3 webcam

Of all four sub-$200 laptops I tested, the Samsung Chromebook 3 is the only one with an HD webcam that offers live filters such as Vintage and Big Eyes to enhance video chats, and Multi-Shot mode for the camera. My test selfie with the 720p camera looked slightly noisy, but I could clearly see details like the blue flowers on my shirt and the folds in my black couch. The blue piping around my collar also looked accurate.

Samsung Chromebook 3 heat

The underside of the Samsung Chromebook 3 gets a bit warm. After we streamed a HD video for 15 minutes, its underside reached a troubling 105 degrees Fahrenheit, which is a much higher temperature than our 95-degree comfort threshold. However, it never felt hot in my lap thanks to the insulating plastic chassis. The touchpad and keyboard were much cooler, at 81 and 91 degrees, respectively.

Samsung Chromebook 3 software and warranty

Besides the standard Google apps, like Google Docs and YouTube, the Samsung Chromebook 3 doesn't have any preloaded software. You can download other apps, such as games and browser extensions, through the Chrome Web Store. According to Google, you'll be able to download some Android apps to the Samsung Chromebook 3 in the near future, but the Google Play store is currently in beta for this particular model.

If you purchase this Samsung laptop, you would be entitled to an additional 100GB of free cloud storage on Google Drive for two years. But you'll have to claim this offer from Google's Chromebook Offers web page, as it's not preloaded onto the device.

Samsung provides a one-year warranty on parts and labor. If you want more extended protection, you have to purchase additional service through retailers such as Best Buy.

Bottom line

Everyone likes getting more for less. With the $179 Samsung Chromebook 3, you get the brightest 11.6-inch display in this class, speedy performance with 4GB of RAM, just about 10 hours of battery life and a fun webcam -- all for less money than the Windows-powered $200 HP Stream 11 costs. There are a few downsides, though including weak speakers and awkward key placement. You also have to be willing to live with the limitations of Chrome OS.

If your life and work are heavily tied to the Windows and Microsoft Office environment, then the $200 HP Stream 11 or $195 Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14 might make more sense. If you value a big and bright screen but you don't care too much about battery life, then the Lenovo Ideapad 100S-14 is a good choice. And if you want the best listening experience and at least 8 hours of battery life, then go with the HP Stream 11.

But if you're willing to give Chrome OS a try, this compact Samsung laptop is a solid choice for students and anyone who primarily uses their laptop to surf the web.

Samsung Chromebook 3 Specs

BrandSamsung
CPU1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060
Company WebsiteSamsung.com
Display Size11.6
Graphics CardIntel HD Graphics 400
Hard Drive Size32GB
Hard Drive TypeeMMC
Highest Available Resolution1366 x 768
Native Resolution1366x768
Operating SystemGoogle Chrome
RAM4GB
Size11.4 x 8 x 0.7 inches
Touchpad Size3.9 x 2.2 inches
USB Ports2
Weight2.5 pounds
Wi-Fi802.11a/b/g/n

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Sours: https://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/laptops/samsung-chromebook-3

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