I just wrote an article last week detailing my affinity for the MacBook Pro (2016), but I’ll be straightforward with you, the new Samsung Chromebooks look super exciting, even a little tempting. I don’t think they’ll have quite the functionality that I need, the MacBook is still safe, but they’re definitely worth checking out. I’ll put a review up when I get my hands on one.
There are two variants, the Chromebook Plus and Chromebook Pro. The Plus is on sale starting today! Price is $449. The Pro will go on sale in April. It will be a little more expensive ($549) and will include a pretty modest spec bump. Other than the spec bump, these guys are exactly the same.
Here’s the exciting stuff. These Chromebooks, though manufactured by Samsung, have Google’s fingerprints all over them. They are a peek into Google’s vision for a desktop(ish) operating system moving into the future. A few anticipated features:
- Android apps! By all accounts it’s not a seamless integration yet, but the apps are there, and they add a tremendous amount of utility. For instance, Chromebooks can’t get Microsoft Office (because they can’t install programs), but Office apps are available for Android, hence you’ll be able to have a version of Office on your Chromebook (technically you could also use Office online). Also, you’ll get games, e-reader apps, budget apps, weather apps, the opportunities are endless!
- A stylus! Another cool functionality piece. I know a lot of people don’t care about writing on their computer screen, my main device is a MacBook so I obviously found a way to live without it, but it’s hard to deny its usefulness. Anything from signing/filling out pdf forms to writing notes or highlighting articles can be done without ever having to print. Probably not necessary for most people, but I think it’s more convenient and useful than perceived.
- Awesome hardware! Chromebooks are generally cheap laptops. With rare exception they’re made with lots of plastic, crappy screens, annoying trackpads, etc. These Samsung Chromebooks are a really nice looking foray into the more premium market. They’re all aluminum, the screen is gorgeous, they simply look like a decent computer. I’ll admit they’re not the most beautiful looking laptops around, but they don’t look like a typical Chromebook, and that’s a good thing.
I am geeked about the idea of a real ‘all-in-one’ type device. It’s fine carrying around an iPad and a MacBook, but how cool would it be to have a device able to do it all? By ‘all’ I mean apps for games and e-reading on the tablet, full browser and computing functionality on the laptop. Windows has been working towards this, but they don’t have apps, they’re basically just a laptop with a touchscreen. We need Android and/or Apple to come through for us here, and these Chromebooks looks like a step in a good direction.
Check it out on Amazon:
Samsung Chromebook Plus Convertible Touch Laptop with Pen XE513C24-K01US