A lot of sites are starting to get their hands on Google’s Chrome OS Notebooks. And from the sounds of it, like most Google products there are some excellent features that nobody else is doing at the moment, but there are also some painfully bad decisions in terms of little details, etc. that mar the experience.
1. Gizmodo praises the hardware design of the machine.
The most remarkable design is so subtle you don’t realize that it is design. And that’s the Cr-48. There’s nothing unnecessary here (even if it doesn’t have some things that some people might say are necessary). Superfluous keys are deleted to make room for more useful ones, like search and screenshot. The trackpad is buttonless, so there’s more tracking surface. It’s plastic and lightweight, but sturdy. There are curves and edges exactly where they should be. Functional, beautiful minimalism. It’s like a ThinkPad designed for someone under the age of 30.
2. There was a commercial for the notebooks containing a math equation in the background. Well, one person solved the equation and now he’s getting a notebook.
3. TechCrunch’s MG Siegler, an Apple-devotee, actually thinks the design of the hardware sucks, insists the trackpad is “the worst excuse for a piece of technology that anyone has created in the past five years,” and oddly, he doesn’t spend much time talking about the OS.
But that simplicity is the OS’s strength. It removes several layers of junk that most people these days never use on a computer.
I know that personally, roughly 95 percent of what I do on a computer these days is in the web browser. Of the other 5 percent, 4 percent of it could probably be done in the browser too (light image editing, taking notes, etc). The other one percent is more difficult but those are mainly things (iTunes media management, Photoshop) that I only need to do some of the time and can use a desktop machine for.
That’s the thing: Chrome OS isn’t going to fully replace anyone’s desktop anytime soon. But it could become a very viable on-the-go computing solution.
Even in its current beta state, Chrome OS has definitely been a perfectly adequate travel companion these past three days (Cr-48 trackpad aside). And it’s only going to get better. And if Chrome’s (the browser) evolution is any indication, it’s going to get better very quickly.