Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 2nd Sep 2018 23:32 UTC
Google

Among the new hardware launched this week at IFA in Berlin are a couple of premium Chromebooks. Lenovo's $600 Yoga Chromebook brings high-end styling and materials to the Chromebook space, along with well-specced internals and a high quality screen. Dell's $600 Inspiron Chromebook 14 has slightly lower specs but is similarly offering better styling, bigger, better quality screens, and superior specs to the Chromebook space.

These systems join a few other premium Chromebooks already out there. HP's Chromebook x2 is a $600 convertible hybrid launched a few months ago, and Samsung has had its Chromebook Plus and Pro systems for more than a year now. And of course, Google's Pixelbook is an astronomically expensive Chrome OS machine.

These systems should cause ripples in Redmond.

In a way, Google is employing the same tactic Microsoft used to get people hooked on DOS and Windows. Back in the late '80s and early '90s, people wanted the same computer at home as they were using at work, which were DOS and Windows machines. Now, it may be that younger people going off to college want what they were using primary and high school - Chrome OS machines.

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I already have it at home and work.
by moondevil on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 06:03 UTC
moondevil
Member since:
2005-07-08

It is the Chrome browser running on my Windows, Linux and OS X computers.

Reply Score: 3

BlueofRainbow Member since:
2009-01-06

You have the façade (browser) but not the foundation (ChromeOS, ChromiumOS and derivatives).

The legacy-free, minimalist, and high security skeleton of ChromeOS are what appears to make it a strong contender especially with inexpensive devices in the education market.

It was an expected outcome that once the kids who studied/did their home works within the ChromeOS environment would simply desire to have the same, albeit not so cheaply made, after their graduation.

Reply Score: 4

moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

I rather have native applications that can take advantage of OpenGL 4.6/DX 12 class GPUs, instead of being stuck with WebGL.

Chromebooks are only relevant in the American education market, they are largely ignored outside US.

Reply Score: 4

BlueofRainbow Member since:
2009-01-06

The desire for native applications is likely a driver for the Linux container development. Too bad that many devices are being left behind in this because of the underlying Linus kernel version.

As I recall recent statistics, Chromebooks are the main devices purchased in the K-12 US Education Market. With respect to the global market, there are regions in which the market share of Chromebooks is approaching levels seen in the US. The number of units sold has been consistently increasing. I am curious, but no enough to pay the fees asked for the recent market share reports.

Reply Score: 3

moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

So much uproar about Windows telemetry, yet US parents are pretty happy to have all their kids activities go through Googleplex.

Reply Score: 3

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Yeah, I don't get it. Why does Google get a pass on what every other company gets castigated for doing?

Reply Score: 2

Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Corrup... sorry, lobbying ?

Reply Score: 3

BlueofRainbow Member since:
2009-01-06

There has been much criticism about the tracking Google does when one is using its services. This is especially with respect to the prevalent use of Chromebooks in education and existing laws regarding students' privacy. The criticisms may not have been as noticed as for many other companies.

So far, Google appears to have been quite open about the data gathered and its uses - for the education related services. Unsure about the non-education related services.

One thing helping Google's cause here is for the open-source nature of the Chromium projects at the origin of Google's offerings. Projects like Nayu OS ( http://www.nexedi.com/blog/NXD-Document.Blog.Nayu.Os.Introduction ) have taken the Chromium code base and massaged it to enable using Chromebooks without Google proprietary software and services (i.e. tracking).

Reply Score: 2

Comment by smashIt
by smashIt on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 06:30 UTC
smashIt
Member since:
2005-07-06

My guess:
People will by the Yoga and slap Windows on it.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by smashIt
by Kochise on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 08:55 UTC in reply to "Comment by smashIt"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Without a mate screen, not even close to me. Seriously, what's the hype about these "clear"/"glossy" screens ? Why not swapping them for semi-translucent mirrors directly ? What's the point of having a notebook in the outside just to have the surrounding reflecting in your screen ?

Reply Score: 2

value of chromebooks
by project_2501 on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 09:48 UTC
project_2501
Member since:
2006-03-20

I can see from the previous comments that the value of chromebooks isn't fully apparent (chrome browser, install windows).

In a managed environment - eg education and enterprise - chromebooks drastically reduce the complexity, cost, effort of managing and securing endpoints ..

.. if (big IF) .. you can work purely on the web.

I've helped design new organisations and their IT infrastructure - and the chrome/google system drastically reduces not just the upfront cost but the ongoing cost and effort.

Chromebooks implement end point security that is far closer to several corporate standards than a raw windows/macos device does.

So - not for everyone, sure .. but really valuable in some cases.

Reply Score: 7

RE: value of chromebooks
by Kochise on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 11:20 UTC in reply to "value of chromebooks"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Like a "thin client" ?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: value of chromebooks
by TheForumTroll on Thu 6th Sep 2018 14:38 UTC in reply to "RE: value of chromebooks"
TheForumTroll Member since:
2018-04-28

Yes, but 9000 times easier and faster.

Reply Score: 1

I don't think so..
by bassbeast on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 10:21 UTC
bassbeast
Member since:
2007-11-11

Did everyone miss the article on the $1200 Chromebook that got EOLed after just 6 years? Heck my fricking $250 netbook is older and it STILL gets supported by MSFT for another year and a half!

The problem Google has is they are trying to act like its the 90s where PCs got tossed every few years...those days are thankfully over. With CPUs not having huge performance gains like in the 90s/00s people are keeping systems long and longer, I'm seeing all the time businesses with C2Qs and Phenom IIs because those machines are more than "good enough" for the tasks folks have and that is even true for laptops with some of my customers quite happy with their second gen C2D laptops and like MSFT or hate 'em you have to admit they support their OSes for a solid ten years if not longer and Google? They don't.

If Google wants to be a credible threat now that CPUs have leveled out they really need to up their game and give 10 years support standard, people are happy to replace their phones every few years because they get beaten up,laptops and desktops? Folks tend to treat those better.

Reply Score: 5

RE: I don't think so..
by Kochise on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 11:23 UTC in reply to "I don't think so.."
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

I'm wondering why they try to push newer hardware every now and then considering it's not their market and main source of revenues. As they are "web based", why so little "Nexus" lifetime ?

Reply Score: 3

really
by unclefester on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 10:45 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

I've never seen anyone use a Chromebook. I don't know anybody who owns one. Very few retailers in Australia sells them.

My guess it that the have little used outside the US.

Browser: Mozilla/5.0 (Android 6.0; Mobile; rv:61.0) Gecko/61.0 Firefox/61.0

Reply Score: 4

Same tactic as Microsoft?
by christian on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 11:37 UTC
christian
Member since:
2005-07-06

What, you mean like criminal extortion? That's a bold claim.

For all that people bash Google, they at least provide excellent value to consumers. They provide stuff that works, that people actually want. And they provide it at no cost up front. Personally, I can ignore adverts, so am happy to pay in kind with adverts I don't care about.

In contrast, people bought DOS because DOS came on their machines already, and Microsoft were criminally convicted of the extortion tactics used to force OEMs to include DOS. DOS didn't even provide any value other than allowing people to add other programs. MS and DOS held back the PC OS ecosystem at least 10 years, as WinXP like reliability and utility should have been available on PCs a decade earlier.

Now, it might be that I under-estimate the impact of the likes of Google's forced bundling of Play store by phone OEMs, but IMO, it's a long way from MS's forced bundling of DOS with PCs.

So, what am I missing?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Adurbe on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 13:02 UTC in reply to "Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Adurbe Member since:
2005-07-06

That isn't quite correct, Microsoft never Forced OEMs, they just made it cost-effective for OEMs to include their OS (rather than paying for 2)

In the late 1980s, Microsoft began requiring OEMs to pay Microsoft a “per processor license fee” for each computer they shipped, regardless of whether they installed Windows/DOS/DRDOS on the computer. This arrangement gave OEMs a powerful incentive not to pay for and install competing operating systems as they would end up "paying twice".
In 1994, the U.S. Department of Justice filed an antitrust suit against Microsoft challenging this conduct, resulting in a consent decree under which Microsoft agreed to stop using per processor license fees.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Morgan on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 14:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

That isn't quite correct, Microsoft never Forced OEMs


Actually, yes they did.

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2002/02/20/be_inc_sues_microsoft/

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Adurbe on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 22:55 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Adurbe Member since:
2005-07-06

Again, that's different. That was that MS's licence didn't allow other operating systems to be installed on the same machine. You could (and Hitachi did) sell Beos only systems. That case was also settled out of court, so (I assume) isn't what Christian was referencing when they said "criminally convicted of the extortion tactics"

I'm not condoning any of these actions, I'm just trying to avoid the conflation of multiple issues into an "accepted truth"

Edited 2018-09-03 22:57 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Kochise on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 13:47 UTC in reply to "Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Well, running Windows XP 10 years up front, on 1992 hardware (at most 486DX2 with barely 8MB of ram), should I explain what kind of pain you would have endured ?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Morgan on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 14:45 UTC in reply to "RE: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

I think you misunderstood the comment, christian didn't say he wanted Windows XP to be released 10 years earlier, he said he wanted XP's level of reliability and utility from Microsoft's OSes back then.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Kochise on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 15:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Well, while XP SP2 then SP3 offered pretty good experience (despite Thom's claims), XP from day one wasn't really good, even though it was built on 2000's NT5 legacy. So it takes time to make things right, even for Microsoft.

Regarding the level of software development in 1992, the maturity of C++, compilers, debuggers, reliability of many other factors back then, getting "XP level of stability" back in 1992 is still rather optimistic. We were just at Windows 3.11.

Reply Score: 4

christian Member since:
2005-07-06


Regarding the level of software development in 1992, the maturity of C++, compilers, debuggers, reliability of many other factors back then, getting "XP level of stability" back in 1992 is still rather optimistic. We were just at Windows 3.11.


MS were just at Windows 3.11, which is really my point.

OS/2 2.x was pretty solid, and perfectly usable on machines accessible in 1992. Stability isn't about whizz bang level of features. It's about working and not crashing, or pausing when the floppy disk is being read.

Basically, a 4MB RAM requirement is enough to run a pre-emptive, simple GUI operating system. In the 1980s, SUN were selling 68K based machines which topped out at 4MB RAM, and ran SunOS + GUI with little problem.

Windows 3.x, on the other hand, was stymied by its dependence on DOS, and MS DOS at that. And with Windows 9x being a crude botch job of grafting a 32-bit front end onto the 16-bit creaky foundations, machines of the late 90s were running possibly the worst case software stack in terms of efficiency and reliability, showcased spectacularly with the disaster that was Windows Me.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Kochise on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 20:46 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

Yeah, there was alternatives to DOS/Windows, like you mentioned 68k Mac, 68k Sun, but also 68k Atari or 68k Amiga. An Atari ST with 512KB of RAM can run a full featured GUI environment. I now all of this, but they were not more reliable due to lack of MMU, so multi-threading was unstable, look at the guru meditations of the workbench. Windows 3 crashed a lot, not just Windows Me. System 7 to 9 were also very unstable too. There was no perfect system. Even BeOS had its quirks.

To me "Windows" 2000 opened many "doors" and was the operating system I always dreamed of. Simple, lightweight, fast and darn stable. But we were already at the edge of the third millennium. XP SP3 is close to perfection, Vista was a joke trying to copy the aqua interface of OS X, Linux trying to copy that too with compiz+fusion (wobbling windows and translucency) but things remains a mess anyway.

Windows win32 being considered obsolete yet the new architecture doesn't offers a viable alternative to the ten of thousands win32 applications out there. The "old" desktop remains far more usable than the "new" "responsive" metro interface with tens of options ditched out for the sake of "simplification". You cannot buy your applications anymore, you have to "rent" them on several markets, one for each platform.

Windows brought a kind of standardization but things are running backward, with several competitive ecosystems but each of them offering less and less functionalities like if it is a feature.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by Alfman on Wed 5th Sep 2018 04:52 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

Yeah, there was alternatives to DOS/Windows, like you mentioned 68k Mac, 68k Sun, but also 68k Atari or 68k Amiga. An Atari ST with 512KB of RAM can run a full featured GUI environment. I now all of this, but they were not more reliable due to lack of MMU, so multi-threading was unstable, look at the guru meditations of the workbench. Windows 3 crashed a lot, not just Windows Me. System 7 to 9 were also very unstable too. There was no perfect system. Even BeOS had its quirks.

To me "Windows" 2000 opened many "doors" and was the operating system I always dreamed of. Simple, lightweight, fast and darn stable. But we were already at the edge of the third millennium. XP SP3 is close to perfection, Vista was a joke trying to copy the aqua interface of OS X, Linux trying to copy that too with compiz+fusion (wobbling windows and translucency) but things remains a mess anyway.


I liked win2k as well, but IMHO in it's earlier years microsoft was always behind the competition's technology and it was mainly due to the IBM deal and then OEM coercion that microsoft got ahead. I always wonder what would be different if that hadn't happened. It would have had quite the butterfly effect.

Reply Score: 2

moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

OS/2 2.x was pretty solid, and perfectly usable on machines accessible in 1992. Stability isn't about whizz bang level of features. It's about working and not crashing, or pausing when the floppy disk is being read.


If you had the money for getting a computer able to actually run it.

In Portugal, in today's money it required an additional 500 euro pay on the already expensive average price of 1 500 euro mid-range regular PC.

To put it in perspective, the minimum wage on those days was around 300 euros.

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by zima on Wed 5th Sep 2018 23:17 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

MS were just at Windows 3.11, which is really my point.

OS/2 2.x was pretty solid, and perfectly usable on machines accessible in 1992. Stability isn't about whizz bang level of features. It's about working and not crashing, or pausing when the floppy disk is being read.

Actually, MS was just releasing first Windows NT...

And you're looking at OS/2 through rose-tinted glasses; in it a single misbehaving app could freeze entire UI. Plus it had higher requirements than Windows, and don't forget that it was ultimately about returning to IBM control over the computer market - so perhaps you should be glad that it didn't succeed...

Windows 3.x, on the other hand, was stymied by its dependence on DOS, and MS DOS at that. And with Windows 9x being a crude botch job of grafting a 32-bit front end onto the 16-bit creaky foundations, machines of the late 90s were running possibly the worst case software stack in terms of efficiency and reliability, showcased spectacularly with the disaster that was Windows Me.

Win 3.x relied on another OS, DOS, only to boot, but was an OS in its own right under the hood... Also, Me was quite good if you didn't "tweak" it (many tricks people used from earlier 9x broke the OS) and had new hardware with WDM drivers.

Reply Score: 3

christian Member since:
2005-07-06


"MS were just at Windows 3.11, which is really my point.

OS/2 2.x was pretty solid, and perfectly usable on machines accessible in 1992. Stability isn't about whizz bang level of features. It's about working and not crashing, or pausing when the floppy disk is being read.

Actually, MS was just releasing first Windows NT...
"

Not until 1993. And Windows NT 3.1 required 12MB RAM minimum on x86 PCs.


And you're looking at OS/2 through rose-tinted glasses; in it a single misbehaving app could freeze entire UI. Plus it had higher requirements than Windows, and don't forget that it was ultimately about returning to IBM control over the computer market - so perhaps you should be glad that it didn't succeed...



While OS/2 could block all apps by not handling events from the single shared event queue (that was a Microsoft decision, I believe), I'd still take it over Windows 3.x (which had the same problem, and other stability problems to boot.) The event queue problem would have been an easy fix.

OS/2 was illustrative of what was possible on contemporary PCs of the time. Unfortunately, all the other commercial options (Unix and alikes) were similarly encumbered, but at least Linux and the BSDs were just starting to be available.

And Microsoft's control of the computer market worked out so well (said no-one, ever.)


"Windows 3.x, on the other hand, was stymied by its dependence on DOS, and MS DOS at that. And with Windows 9x being a crude botch job of grafting a 32-bit front end onto the 16-bit creaky foundations, machines of the late 90s were running possibly the worst case software stack in terms of efficiency and reliability, showcased spectacularly with the disaster that was Windows Me.

Win 3.x relied on another OS, DOS, only to boot, but was an OS in its own right under the hood... Also, Me was quite good if you didn't "tweak" it (many tricks people used from earlier 9x broke the OS) and had new hardware with WDM drivers.
"
[/q]

Windows 3.0 and 3.1 still used DOS/BIOS. Windows 3.1+ included more in its own protected mode code, but the initial 3.0 and 3.1 versions still used BIOS based disk access, with 3.1 having the option of protected mode disk access in enhanced mode.

I must admit, I've never ever even used Windows Me. I'd moved on to better things by then. Just heard the horror stories about it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Same tactic as Microsoft?
by zima on Sat 8th Sep 2018 00:55 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Same tactic as Microsoft?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

You'll really going to argue about one year? It's perfectly within "back then"; NT was in development for good few years by then...

Yes, yes, that flaw with OS/2 "could've been easily fixed" ...but somehow IBM didn't ever get to it. Nice double standard, you hardly seem to allow MS such lenience; meanwhile, Windows greatly improved; NT is what turned PCs into serious workstations, not OS/2....
But it would be funny, if it weren't so sad, that you apparently assign what is bad with OS/2 to MS, and probably what's good to IBM...

IBM control over the market would be likely quite a bit worse (but of course you give IBM some slack you wouldn't give MS...); just look at what IBM did in the times of mainframes, when they dominated.

The reign of MS and ~"The Gang of Nine", which happily jumped into bed with MS and Windows (and explicitly NOT IBM, OS/2, Microchannel, etc., they were rejected by most), brought us inexpensive powerful machines ...something you can run other OSes on, so you should be grateful at least for that.

After starting up, Windows 3 replaced most of DOS with its own internal code and never touched DOS again. Arguably it was an OS that used a different OS to boot. Windows 3.1 came with V86 and enhanced modes; after switching to 386 protected mode, with its own memory management, executable, driver model, MS-DOS was reduced to boot loader, kinda like UEFI now.

You won't hear horror stories about Me from me (Me me! ;) ), I was quite satisfied by it, it was fine if you didn't mistreat it, and it required much less RAM than Win2k (which was important, since in 2000 memory makers colluded to raise prices, so a PC I bought had only 64 MiB of RAM, while a PC bought a year earlier would have 128...)

Reply Score: 2

ChromeOS is the future
by cmost on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 14:28 UTC
cmost
Member since:
2006-07-16

It will only be a few years from now when students who were trained on Chromebooks in high school and then took them with them to college will begin asking for them at work too. Microsoft should focus more on its productivity and server offerings and less on Windows, which is very long in the tooth by now. I find it funny that it still contains icons and dialog box elements dating all the way back to Windows 3.0.

Reply Score: 1

Not so much
by nicubunu on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 15:09 UTC
nicubunu
Member since:
2014-01-08

I don't think that is the Google goal, more like targeting the people who have simple needs: web, facebook, youtube, netflix, email, music, maybe some image editing and such, but still want a device that does not look and feel cheap. There is a good amount of such people who don't need Microsoft Office, don't need Photoshop and play at most only simple games.

Reply Score: 4

Cheap and simple with brand
by Iapx432 on Mon 3rd Sep 2018 16:45 UTC
Iapx432
Member since:
2017-09-30

Chromebooks sell because they are cheap, simple to operate (for Googleverse inhabitants) and they have the trusted (market leader) Chrome brand. This is a unique defensible maketet proposition. I don't think the strategy will automatically convert to an expensive Windows (complex) machines. Those are already a dime a dozen (other then more than a dime).

Reply Score: 2

Enormous bottom bezels?
by pooo on Tue 4th Sep 2018 07:37 UTC
pooo
Member since:
2006-04-22

What's up with the ridiculous and unattractive huge bottom bezels on all those chromebooks? Gah, I'd never want one just because they are so ugly!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Enormous bottom bezels?
by viton on Tue 4th Sep 2018 18:20 UTC in reply to "Enormous bottom bezels?"
viton Member since:
2005-08-09

unattractive huge bottom bezels on all those chromebooks?

Not only chromebooks, but all Lenovo laptops shown on IFA 2018 have that bezel.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by model500
by model500 on Tue 4th Sep 2018 16:29 UTC
model500
Member since:
2016-12-22

"Now, it may be that younger people going off to college want what they were using primary and high school - Chrome OS machines."

for 600$ they can buy a range of laptops with Windows or a decent used Apple laptop and have a proper OS where they can use proper software, and not just "apps".

Reply Score: 2

Na
by Windows Sucks on Wed 5th Sep 2018 18:12 UTC
Windows Sucks
Member since:
2005-11-10

People look at Chomebooks as toys. My daughter just started college and first thing she wanted as a status symbol was a MacBook. (On top of schools requiring particular software to do your work)

Google is going to have to make it a more full function OS and allow regular Apps (like office) or they are going to have to move schools to using googles apps and tools.

Reply Score: 0

Comment by MadRat
by MadRat on Fri 7th Sep 2018 10:54 UTC
MadRat
Member since:
2006-02-17

I remember NT 3.5 and Windows for Workgroups 3.11, but I cannot recall an NT 3.1 at all. What was it?

Reply Score: 2