Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 26th Oct 2017 16:38 UTC

Dieter Bohn:

When I think about whether the Pixelbook could reasonably replace a MacBook or a Windows laptop, my gut says that, for most people, the answer is "no." To solve the "last 10 percent" on a Pixelbook, you really have to be very savvy about how to navigate the different computing paradigms of Chrome and Android to make the whole thing work - and even then, it's not easy. Unless you're an expert in the ways of both the web and Android, it shouldn't be your only computer.

If I were Apple or Microsoft, I would be thinking a lot about the generation of students who are savvy with Chromebooks and Android apps, and who might just want the same thing they're used to from their classroom, just in a much nicer package. I don't know that it'll happen this year, though.

Honestly, I think the iPad Pro is a better comparison. On both devices, you can get quite a lot more done than you'd expect, but you have to deeply understand how the platform works to get there. And if you're debating between them, here's the TL;DR: the iPad Pro has better apps, is a tablet-first device, and has a worse web browser. The Pixelbook has worse apps, is a laptop-first device, and has a better web browser.

Dieter Bohn hits the nail on the head here - devices like the iPad Pro or the Pixelbook aren't so much about converting traditional longtime desktop/laptop users - they're about making sure that kids currently growing up with iOS and Android/Chrome OS devices in their pocket or at school have a powerful, all-purpose computing device they already know how to work with and that they already like for the future. It's similar to how people wanted to have the same computer at home as they were using at work - IBM-compatible PCs with DOS and later Windows.

The fact that the iPad Pro and Pixelbook are already as good as they are should really worry Microsoft, most of all.

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It's hard, but possible
by David on Thu 26th Oct 2017 17:57 UTC
Member since:

It's hard, but possible to make a Chromebook work as your only computer, depending on what your needs are. My son had a Chromebook as is main computer for several years, and only because I was particularly savvy and willing to google things and try some kludgey stuff that we were able to make it work for things like watching videos on an airplane. Ultimately, we threw in the towel when we were trying to get a wacom tablet to work.

Now he uses a Macbook Air. Interestingly enough, though, he still spends most of his time within the Google ecosystem on his Mac. But he's really happy to have Photoshop and Premiere and his Wacom when he needs it.

Reply Score: 4

RE: It's hard, but possible
by Sabon on Thu 26th Oct 2017 18:35 in reply to "It's hard, but possible"
Sabon Member since:

Actually it isn’t. You have to get used to ANY computer that you use. All you need is a computer that is powerful enough to do what you want to do. And that computer does NOT have to be the device you have with you. By that I mean, if the device you have with you isn’t powerful enough, remote into your computer that is that through that code and compile or do whatever it is that you want to do. It works better than you think most of the time.

THE limitation is the limitations of the user interface that you have on your local device. If you need a keyboard, most mobile devices have Bluetooth so you can use an external Bluetooth keyboard.

As for coding. Most coders don’t —need— a keyboard. Most things can be done at the command line or in an IDE with shortcuts/scripts to quickly do things.

Reply Parent Score: -1

RE[2]: It's hard, but possible
by tidux on Thu 26th Oct 2017 19:40 in reply to "RE: It's hard, but possible"
tidux Member since:

Programmers not needing keyboards? You're a special kind of stupid.

Reply Parent Score: 9

tylerdurden Member since:

As for coding. Most coders don’t —need— a keyboard. Most things can be done at the command line

The command line is not what you think it is, if you think you don't need a keyboard for it.

Reply Parent Score: 9

RE: It's hard, but possible
by BlueofRainbow on Sun 29th Oct 2017 13:53 in reply to "It's hard, but possible"
BlueofRainbow Member since:

Once Chromebooks gets used beyond the education space, it is likely that some of the current specialized applications available only for the OS X and/or Windows platform will be "ported" to Chrome OS. Also, Chrome OS specific replications of these applications are improving.

Until then, living within the Chrome ecosystem via the browser on a OS X or Windows systems may be the most practical approach for most users. Going the Chrome Remote Desktop approach to remotely use these specialized applications is another approach.

What could make a huge difference is that the manufacturers of the various devices (multi-function printers, printers, scanners, etc.) start releasing Chrome OS "device drivers". I don't think anybody has followed the footsteps of HP with an utility enabling printing from a Chromebook via USB.

Reply Parent Score: 3