Search Canadian Reviewer

 

 

Featured Sponsors


--------------------------

DHgate.com 

2018 Canadianreviewer.com

REVIEWS

Kindle Oasis (2017) - The Perfect eBook reader

Azio's Retro Classic Mechanical Keyboard

Google Pixel Buds

Jaybird Run wireless bluetooth headphones

BlackBerry Motion

Apple iPhone X

Microsoft Xbox One X

Miele Blizzard CX1 Hardfloor PowerLine

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL

Sonos One Smart Speaker

Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

Anki Overdrive - Fast and Furious Edition

Apple TV 4K

Google Home Mini

Fitbit Flyer

Fitbit Ionic

Huawei P10

Apple Watch Series 3 GPS + Cellular

2018 Toyota C-HR

Apple iPhone 8 Plus

Nomad leather case for iPhone 8 Plus

Alcatel A50

Tile Pro Sport smart tracker

27-inch Apple iMac with Retina 5K Display

Anki Cozmo programmable robot

Microsoft Surface Laptop

Motorola Moto Z2 Play

Google Home

Sennheiser HD-1 in ear wireless headphones

Motorola Moto E4

Apple iPad Pro 10.5-inch

BlackBerry KEYone

Philips Hue Smart Lighting System

insta360 nano 360 camera for iPhone

2017 Cadillac CT6 Luxury

UAG Rugged Case for Surface Book

Motorola Moto G5

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+

2017 Chrysler Pacifica

2017 Cadillac XT5 Platinum

2017 Jaguar F-Pace

Linksys VELOP Whole Home Mesh Network

Fitbit Alta HR

2016 Range Rover

2016 Ford Flex Limited

Timex IQ+ Move fitness tracking watch

2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

2017 Mazda CX-9 Signature

2016 Mazda MX-5

Sennheiser PXC-550 Bluetooth headphones

2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 4MATIC Sedan

Sudio Regent Bluetooth headphones

Samsung Gear S3 Frontier

VisionTek SoundTube PRO Bluetooth speaker

Fitbit Charge 2

2017 GMC Acadia Denali

Apple AirPods

Apple MacBook Pro (Late 2016)

808

Game of Thrones Season Six Blu-Ray

Michelin Premier all-season tires

« Flickr offers 3 free months on Pro Accounts for the holidays | Main | Will RIM's first BlackBerry 10 device be called 'Z10'? »
Saturday
Dec222012

First Impressions of Google's ARM Chromebook

By Gadjo Cardenas Sevilla

Google's first ARM powered Chromebook, made by Samsung, is an intriguing new take at the personal cloud-connected notebook. Selling for $249 and available only in the US through online resellers like Amazon.com, Google says this is the Chromebook for everyone. Here  are my first impressions.

Out of the box, the 11.5 inch Chromebook looks like it might be made from aluminum but it is actually made from very rigid plastic. This is the first ARM Chromebook using Samsung's own dual-core 1.5 GHz Exynos processor (reportedly coming to mobile devices in 2013), which is a key component of a fanless, diskless and completely silent notebook. It is also thin and light at just 2.5 pounds.

The design of this ARM Chromebook owes a lot to the 11-inch MacBook Air, most specially the keyboard style, layout and placement. I use a 11-inch MacBook Air from time to time, and found that I could type on the Chromebook in relative darkness without missing a beat, the two keyboards are that much alike.

The construction and build quality of this Chromebook is impressive. It feels way more solid than many creaky notebooks that cost more and has an almost tablet-like vibe to how everything is integrated.

In terms of specs there's 16GB of flash storage, 2GB of RAM, a webcam, USB 3.0, USB 2.0, HDMI-out, SDCard slot and there's an optional dongle for Ethernet connections. Google gives users a 100GB free storage for two years with each Chromebook and also throws in 10 sessions of free Gogo inflight WiFi for use in planes, nice perk!

Booting up takes less than 10 seconds and since you're running on an OS based on the Chrome browser logging into your GMail account synchs everything you set up on any other machine. Being a heavy Chrome browser user, I was set up and good to go in under 5 minutes.

Now that the Chromebook now allows for offline work on Docs and basic image editing, the Chromebook isn't completely useless when there's no WiFi available.

I'm using a Roam Mobility Liberty Hotspot as my means of 4G-LTE access while in the US and it works just fine. The Chromebook seems to be better at picking up hotspots than many recent notebooks I'v, thanks to the dual band WiFi, which is great news. There's a SIM card slot as well which, while inactive in my WiFi-only model, indicates a 3G data version in the works.

I've had a few hours with the Chromebook and it's surprisingly capable. Performance is as good as or better than an entry level notebook with similar specs. The screen isn't super bright but it is good enough and it is matte and not glossy, big plus.

One issue that bothers me is how the screen goes to black when you push it all the way back for a better viewing angle. Pushing it forward fixes this but it feels like a defect like to video ribbon is getting caught somewhere in there. I've reached out to Samsung via email but the issue in question seems like it  might require a lenghty phone call. Thankfully, there's a one-year warranty on the Chromebook.

Since I already do most of my work in Chrome, I've found the Chromebook to be just fine for basic computing, blogging and Internet use (mail, Twitter, YouTube, online shopping, Google Plus). I haven't tried any of the web apps for editing photos or more demanding web design but will get to that in a full review. 

This is a pretty amazing computer for the price and It surprised me that everything has been running so smooth so far. This Chromebook is the most promising one yet.

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>