Samsung has a new Chromebook model to go along with Google’s new version of Chrome OS, but it’s still a bit expensive for what it does.
The new Samsung Chromebook Series 5 is a laptop with a 12.1-inch display, an Intel Celeron 867 Dual Core (1.3 GHz) CPU, 16GB SSD, and 4GB of RAM. The specs should make the Series 5 Chromebook run Chrome OS smoothly, but even with the new update the OS can’t do as much as a tablet or cheap Windows 7 laptop.
The new Chrome OS eschews the original idea of opening directly into the Chrome web browser, and instead gives the user a Windows 7-esque desktop experience. Despite the desktop, however, Chrome OS is still focused around the Chrome web browser. Apps still load as pages in the browser, which means users can only use the apps in the Chrome Web Store.
The new UI certainly seems more user-friendly with Aero Snap-like abilities and multiple windows on the screen at once. The new Chrome OS should also run faster than previous iterations, even on the relatively anemic Celeron processor (compared to CPUs in other mobile devices).
Where the Samsung Chromebook Series 5 falls flat before we even touch one is the price. The WiFi only model of the Series 5 Chromebook sells for $449, and the 3G model sells for $549. The 3G model offers 100MB of free 3G data per month. The WiFi model sells for $50 less than the base model of the new iPad, which can do more than Chrome OS. There are also Windows 7 laptops available for less, that can do more.
Chromebooks seem like a great idea, but it’d be a much easier decision to buy one if they cost half as much as they currently do.