With Chromebook Pixel, Google is gunning to supply your primary PC.
On Thursday, Google unveiled a new Chromebook – the first with a touchscreen-- that it is selling from its store as well as retailers like Best Buy.
But it’s not designed to be an also-ran, joining the low-end Chromebooks made by Samsung and Acer.
In a blog post announcing the new computer, Google wrote that for many people Chromebooks had become the perfect “additional (and yes, affordable) computer.” In other words, they haven’t become a primary computing device for most buyers.
The Pixel, however, aims to go upmarket from the current generation. For one, it’s larger than some of the others, at 13 inches, and thus has a full size keyboard. Google claims it has the highest pixel density, at 239 pixels per inch, of any laptop screen available today. It runs on an Intel Core i5 processor and comes with a terabyte of Google Drive storage.
With those higher end specs, it comes with a higher end price. The Wi-Fi version costs $1,300 – more expensive than many Windows 8 machines – and the LTE version, which won’t ship until next week, will cost $1,449. That compares to $200 for the Acer Chromebook.
Google is competing with its OEM partners in putting out its own Chromebook, but it has managed that successfully in the Android world with its Nexus line of phones. Gizmodo reports that Lenovo manufactured the Pixel.
The Pixel will still have the same limitations that some people complain about with Chromebooks, including the ability to run only web apps, and the interface has not been redesigned for touch -- which could be a major drawback. Even so, the hardware could attract some buyers, particularly those who are baffled by the redesign of the new Windows 8.