Google's venture into the desktop operating system space has been getting a lot of the right kind of attention lately. Acer's C7 Chromebook has been well received, as has the latest Samsung Chromebook. Google announced that their security competition, Pwnium, would be focused on Chrome OS. And now HP has let slip that they'll be building a Chromebook of their own. Tagged the HP Pavilion Chromebook, the 14-inch screen provides more screen than Chrome OS has seen on a laptop before, but the same 1366x768 resolution limits the value of that real estate. The internals will look familiar; it has the same Intel Celeron 847, and 2GB of RAM, as Acer's C7. The HP model comes with a 16GB solid state drive, in lieu of the Acer's mechanical drive. The 37WHr battery reportedly offers a modest 4 hours and 15 minutes of longevity, similar to the Acer C7. So, once again, not a road warrior, but enough perhaps to serve a lightweight user's needs. 

When and how much? The original leak's been pulled, but it looks like the HP Chromebook will premier on February 17th for $329.99. That MSRP puts it above the Acer that it resembles, but for those that like the idea of a larger keyboard and screen the increase could be worth the added cost. We'll be interested to find out how it does. 

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  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    Given they're sticking with the lower resolution and the keyboard appears to have plenty of unused space on the sides, I predict that the actual utility of the larger size will be nil. 13.3" vs. 14" is already such a silly differentiation; ever noticed how Apple has 13.3", 15.3", and 17.0" displays with no 14" option? It's because half an inch isn't really noticeable at this size.

    Anyway, I hope they do more than just have a larger chassis, but it doesn't sound like it. A better touchpad, keyboard, screen, and build quality would at least have done something to warrant the $130 price premium over the Acer C7. 16GB NAND these days should actually cost less than a 320GB HDD in the Acer! Especially since we're not talking highest-performance NAND.
    Reply
  • themossie - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    I otherwise agree with you, but as long as they're not offering both sizes (13.3" and 14"), no big whoop.

    Justify the premium with better build quality and, please, battery life!
    Not that I expect anything so cool out of HP.
    Reply
  • JasonInofuentes - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    Jarred, you're probably hitting on why it's happening. Say you've got some chassis's on the shelf. One is selling pretty well, the other lagging behind. You've already got the chassis sitting in the warehouse, you gotta do something with them. So hand them over to the Chrome team and let them go for whatever price you can justify. It doesn't matter what the size is, nor really the specs. The key is to make them as cheap as you can.

    I think in this case, Acer probably was a little more willing to push the prices down to make it work. HP's just not placing as big a bet on Chrome yet.
    Reply
  • lmcd - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    Well, and Acer isn't using an SSD, as to the price bit.

    Yeah, these are probably unsold units getting a 2nd life.
    Reply
  • A5 - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    It's Linux-based, but tying it to a specific release of Ubuntu isn't a meaningful distinction. Given that we're still in the very early stages of ChromeOS, expecting more than 2-3 years of meaningful software support would be misguided. Reply
  • HibyPrime1 - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    If Chrome OS is successful, which it's looking like it's carving out a decent niche in the market, then I would expect support to out-live the device. They aren't likely to ditch x86 entirely for ARM in the near future, so I see no reason why they wouldn't continue to offer updates.

    To me, asking that question is a bit like asking how long will windows offer updates? Well even if Win 2000 is discontinued, you can update to windows 7 or 8 as long as the hardware is fast enough.
    Reply
  • powerarmour - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    If I'm not mistaken Chrome OS is a rolling release (and based on Chromium OS, not Ubuntu), so it'll be supported until Google decide to pull the plug, so quite a long while yet I'd have thought! Reply
  • pixelstuff - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    1366x768 on a 14"?

    Didn't PC sales start to decline at the same time manufacturers started offering crappy low res and 16:9 screens? This is probably the sole reason for the decline of the PC in popularity.

    I have no proof to back that up of course, it is pure speculation, and based only on my own decision to repeatedly gloss over any PC with those specs. :-)

    Does anyone know if a manufacturer has released the same laptop with both a 1366x768 and a 1440x900 option to see which sells better?
    Reply
  • lmcd - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    The difference being that FOSS support for Intel graphics as old as that in my 2005 laptop still exists, and will continue to exist for a long time. So why would a 2011-era platform be any source of worry?

    "more true of Linux" seems like a mistaken statement. It's more true of Windows, really, since the kernel will be compatible with Mesa for a LONG time.

    A parallel example: Linux supports every printer that ever had a CUPS driver. It's a standard. Support isn't thrown out to make you buy a new product because Linux isn't selling things.

    Last I checked, my Nvidia Vanta was still supported by FOSS. -_- what more could you ask for.

    It's not even the device drivers determining EOL on Android, either. That's carriers, dumb partitioning, the excess large-capacity surcharge, and software skinning.

    Google's got the carriers, dumb partitioning, excess high-storage capacity charge, and software skinning handled. Find me evidence that Chrome OS is going to run into an issue.
    Reply
  • lmcd - Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - link

    I don't even mind that it isn't 1080p or 2160p or whatever everyone wants, but a 1600x1200 or even a 1600x900 (damn 16:9 ratio) screen would be a fantastic upgrade for this.

    Too bad 1600x1000 never caught on. It'd make a great next budget resolution, in my opinion.
    Reply

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