Thursday, Google Inc. unveiled the first touch-screen laptops powered by its Chrome operating systemâ€”the latest foray into hardware development for the company best known for its Internet search and mobile software.
The laptop is now known as Chromebook has touchscreen capability, powerful chipset and an extremely high-resolution display.
The price, however, is relatively steep: the Pixel costs $1,299 for a Wi-Fi-only version and $1,449 for a version that also includes built-in LTE wireless technology.
It’s enough money to buy a solid Windows 8 system or a very nice MacBook Air. It’s just $50 short of enough to buy a MacBook Pro that has a similarly retina display.
Prior Chrome devices don’t have touch screens and cost as little as $199. The new computers will be sold through the Google Play online store and BestBuy.com, and people can test them in select Best Buy Co. stores in the U.S. and Dixons PLC’s PCWorld stores in the U.K., writes the Wall Street Journal.
Linus Upson, Vice President of Engineering, emphasised the high quality of the design, and released pictures of a device that takes its inspiration from the generation of ultrabooks that came after Apple launched its aluminium MacBook Pro and MacBook Air ranges.
In its blog Google wrote: â€śChromebooks were designed to make computing speedy, simple and secure.â€ť
Google was careful to emphasize that the Pixel isn’t for everyone. “This is for power users who live in the cloud,” Senior Vice President of Chrome Sundar Pichai repeatedly told a select group of journalists at a low-key launch event in San Francisco.
Google Chromebooks use an operating system called Chrome OS and encourage users to adopt the web for as much of their computing as possible, including using Googleâ€™s online services such as email, as well as Google Docs and Google Music, writes the Telegraph.
The Pixel is powered by an Intel Core i5 Processor and uses solid stade memory. A 4G version will launch in America in April, while in the UK it will be sold online and via Currys and PC World.
Although Chromebooks are increasingly useful offline, they only function fully with a web connection.
Google claims that Chromebook has the highest pixel density (239 pixels per inch) of any laptop screen on the market today. Packed with 4.3 million pixels, the display offers sharp text, vivid colors and extra-wide viewing angles.
However, Apple’s retina display MacBooks offer around 220ppi, and some experts claim that even this is at a level beyond that which the human eye can see.
The Chromebook Pixel, which boots up in a matter of a few seconds, has 32 gigabytes of storage on the Wi-Fi-only device (the LTE model has 64 gigabytes) and comes with one terabyte of storage space in Google Drive online file-storage program.
The aluminum-coated Pixel was designed and built by Google, with help from other unnamed PC manufacturers. Plenty of thought appears to have gone into the design.
For example, there’s an extra laser microphone under the keyboard, complementing the two mics next to the camera, allowing the software to cancel out any noise you might make while typing on a video conference ,writes CNN.