Google's New Chromebook Is a Joke
Pundits can't believe the $1.3K price tag
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Feb 22, 2013 12:05 PM CST
A man uses the Google Chromebook Pixel laptop computer after an announcement in San Francisco, Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013.   (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

(Newser) – Google unveiled its new touchscreen Chromebook yesterday, and it was not what anyone was expecting. Until now, Google's Chromebooks have been exceedingly cheap, but the Chromebook Pixel will cost a whopping $1,300—for a computer that can only run web apps. Here's what pundits are saying:

  • "What is Google thinking?" asks Jean-Baptiste Su at Forbes. "The Chromebook Pixel is, simply put, a ripoff!" It costs more than the MacBook Air, and it's "not even a real computer. ... Nobody in their right mind should spend that kind of money on a laptop that does so little."

  • Windows 8 got some pretty rough reviews, but this "makes that look like a design of genius," writes Preston Gralla at ComputerWorld. It "lacks serious storage," and it's useless if you're not online. But hey, it has three microphones. "Be still my beating heart—three microphones! That surely makes it worth every penny."
  • "The hardware is amazing" and it "exudes fine engineering," writes confirmed Chromebook fan Mark Hachman at PC Magazine, but even he'd balk at the price. The touchscreen is wonderfully responsive, but "you have to wonder: Why do I need this again?"
  • Sam Biddle's verdict at Gizmodo: "Any other computer at that price is better. Any." The screen's nutty 3:2 aspect ratio makes no sense, and most things won't be optimized for its high-res display. LTE data sounds great—but you only get 100MB a month for free. "The Pixel is a self-contradiction, an absurdity, a Kia with rims, a waste of your time. To say nothing of money."

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Showing 3 of 16 comments
Feb 25, 2013 2:56 PM CST
Google is an advertising company masquerading as a technology company. Their primary *customer* isn't really the consumer, it's the advertiser. As a result, Google doesn't really build consumer products --- they build personal data collection and advertising delivery systems that could be mistaken for consumer products as long as you don't examine them too closely. This is why their focus often seems a little off kilter (a solution looking for a problem, remember Google Wave?) to consumers who frequently don't fully grasp just how they fit into Google's business model.
Feb 22, 2013 10:11 PM CST
I fricking hate the direction that computers are going. I want a functional operating system, I want my own programs and storage (screw the cloud), I want a real keyboard, and I want to run actual programs like spreadsheets and word processors, not just cute little apps. I have an Android tablet which is useful for travel and a few other things, but I don't regard it as a functional computer.
Feb 22, 2013 2:55 PM CST
For 1300 I want a reach around.