|By Bob Gourley||
|October 25, 2012 12:06 PM EDT||
Google’s announcement of new Chromebooks and Chromeboxes last weeek has undoubtedly been eclipsed by Apple’s this week, Microsoft’s Surface RT launch, and Google’s own Android event next. But what you might have missed is one of the most exciting computing capabilities around right now. Google released their 6th Generation Chromebook, this time with an ARM processor and a $250 (yes you read that right) price tag.
Google’s Chromebook is 11.6 inches, possesses a HD quality screen (1368×768 pixels) and a Samsung dual-core Exynos processor. 2GB of RAM and 16GB of local storage are available, as well as 100GB of Cloud storage (for two years). The operating system has been updated to Chrome 23 as well. Google’s Chrome OS has had a somewhate limited value for users, they’ve charged champagne prices for beer (and it was no Miller High Life). However, the change in pricing strategy, jump to ARM processing and increased offline capabilities have completely flipped the switch on the OS and its incarnations.
Google’s Chromebox (think Mac Mini or Nettop) has also be upgraded, with 1 DVI output and 2 DisplayPort options. The Chromebox can drive two 30″ monitors. It also has more RAM and an x86 processor in lieu of the ARM architecture. The $329 price tag offers decent bang for the buck (although it is very possible to find comprable Nettops in the same price range, but the Mac Mini is around double the cost).
The Chrome OS offers a very simple premise – it’s the internet, delivered to you, online and offline. Users can listen to music, surf, create documents and stream their favorite shows, all for the low low price of $250. You aren’t offered a bevy of frills, nor should you expect them, but what you’ll get is Chrome, with the webstore, all the extensions and most of the games. Some users have found that websites need to re-compile code for the ARM processor (most notably Netflix) but you would be remiss to think this wouldn’t happen in the near future. You can also connect to your home desktop for free (a feature I cannot wait to exploit).
I am buying a Chromebook to simplify my lifestyle. Right now, I’ve been using Chrome as my browser for all of my devices, from the Galaxy Note or Nexus in my pocket, on the Nexus 7, my Transformer Prime and my workstation at home. The instant syncing of both bookmarks and open tabs allow me to access data, well from anywhere, and be plugged into what I need to know. While I love the Transformer Prime, Android just does not allow me to blog and write documents as well as I’d prefer. Rich text editing is a farce, and will continue to be until a new format is found. That said, for simple documents it works, and works well (I’m writing this on a rooftop with the Nexus 7 on the Google Drive application, yet will have to transpose to my workstation for editing and pictures!).
I’m switching to have a device that I can carry everywhere with me (at 2.5 lbs I’m not one to complain about the weight of the Chromebook) yet not lose a single thing from my office (other than the dual 26″ monitors). As someone who rarely photo edits, or well anything else like that, the internet (as accessed through Chrome) is more than enough for my concerns. I’ve also ported all of my music to Google Music (and use Plex Media Server).
This last point will be problematic for some. I do not recommend the Chromebook or Chromebox to be your only computing environment, the inability to install programs such as iTunes and more will be a show stopper for most. But the low cost to entry, the ubiquity of Chrome as a universal browser, and Google’s cloud-centric mindset opens up the Chromebook as a secondary computer of great potential. It fills in nicely where a tablet doesn’t quite fit, but offers none of the costs of a full-fledged laptop.
One place where the Chrome OS can abosolutely shine is in the enterprise. Armed with a Google Account and a network connection, users can access their entire library of internal documents, create content and collaborate. Chromeboxes paired with monitors can be instant workstations, while Chromebooks and hotspots are mobile workstations. Accounts can be provisioned in seconds, and removed just as quickly. At such a low costs, risks of loss and theft are minimized (not to mention the lack of local storage). Google’s multi-factor authentication strengthens the entire ecosystem, whilst offering simple remediation for authorized users.
The Chromebook, while overlooked in the press and news the past few weeks, may well surpass the iPad Mini, the LG Nexus and the Surface RT as the disruptive technology of the quarter. I know I will be jumping into the Chromebook with two feet, and I suggest many of you do the same.
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Dec. 17, 2014 08:00 PM EST Reads: 1,250
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built to optimize Microsoft workloads, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Gridstore™ is the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built for Microsoft workloads and designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Gridstore’s hyper-converged infrastructure is the industry’s first all flash version of HyperConverged Appliances that include both compute and storag...
Dec. 17, 2014 06:30 PM EST Reads: 1,135
"People are a lot more knowledgeable about APIs now. There are two types of people who work with APIs - IT people who want to use APIs for something internal and the product managers who want to do something outside APIs for people to connect to them," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 17, 2014 06:00 PM EST Reads: 1,106
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Dec. 17, 2014 11:45 AM EST Reads: 1,394
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Dec. 16, 2014 11:45 PM EST Reads: 1,228
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Dec. 15, 2014 11:45 PM EST Reads: 1,608
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Dec. 15, 2014 10:30 AM EST Reads: 6,841
As the Internet of Things unfolds, mobile and wearable devices are blurring the line between physical and digital, integrating ever more closely with our interests, our routines, our daily lives. Contextual computing and smart, sensor-equipped spaces bring the potential to walk through a world that recognizes us and responds accordingly. We become continuous transmitters and receivers of data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Bolwell, Director of Innovation for HP's Printing and Personal Systems Group, discussed how key attributes of mobile technology – touch input, sensors, social, and ...
Dec. 15, 2014 10:00 AM EST Reads: 1,930
In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect at GE, and Ibrahim Gokcen, who leads GE's advanced IoT analytics, focused on the Internet of Things / Industrial Internet and how to make it operational for business end-users. Learn about the challenges posed by machine and sensor data and how to marry it with enterprise data. They also discussed the tips and tricks to provide the Industrial Internet as an end-user consumable service using Big Data Analytics and Industrial Cloud.
Dec. 15, 2014 10:00 AM EST Reads: 1,597
Building low-cost wearable devices can enhance the quality of our lives. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Sai Yamanoor, Embedded Software Engineer at Altschool, provided an example of putting together a small keychain within a $50 budget that educates the user about the air quality in their surroundings. He also provided examples such as building a wearable device that provides transit or recreational information. He then reviewed the resources available to build wearable devices at home including open source hardware, the raw materials required and the options available to power s...
Dec. 15, 2014 09:00 AM EST Reads: 1,599
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Dec. 15, 2014 09:00 AM EST Reads: 1,417
There's Big Data, then there's really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, discussed how IoT, Big Data and deployments are processing massive data volumes from wearables, utilities and other machines...
Dec. 15, 2014 08:45 AM EST Reads: 2,004
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Dec. 15, 2014 08:15 AM EST Reads: 2,696
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Dec. 15, 2014 06:45 AM EST Reads: 2,144
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Dec. 15, 2014 04:00 AM EST Reads: 1,381
While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehe...
Dec. 12, 2014 05:00 PM EST Reads: 1,251
The Industrial Internet revolution is now underway, enabled by connected machines and billions of devices that communicate and collaborate. The massive amounts of Big Data requiring real-time analysis is flooding legacy IT systems and giving way to cloud environments that can handle the unpredictable workloads. Yet many barriers remain until we can fully realize the opportunities and benefits from the convergence of machines and devices with Big Data and the cloud, including interoperability, data security and privacy.
Dec. 11, 2014 06:00 PM EST Reads: 1,451
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Dec. 11, 2014 03:15 PM EST Reads: 1,914