Meet Pixelbook, a laptop that legitimizes Google’s Chromebook Pixel legacy.
When Google expelled a initial Chromebook Pixel in 2013, many tech reporters (myself included) saw a Chrome OS-based laptop as some-more of a illusory egghead tender than a viable consumer product. It was a halo device that illustrated what a Chromebook could be—in a broad, unconditional regretful sense—if designed with finish negligence for consumer pricing sensitivity.
Indeed, would anyone spend roughly $1,500 on a mechanism that can’t even run Windows applications? The universe generally scoffed—and afterwards scoffed again when Google updated a Pixel in 2015.
But now we have a Google Pixelbook, that starts during $999 for a Core i5/8GB RAM/128GB SSD config, and goes adult to $1,649 for a Core i7/16GB RAM/512GB SSD config. (For full Pixelbook pricing, recover date, specs and more, review a news story.) The pricing is usually as high as before, and a appurtenance still doesn’t support Windows apps or PC gaming. But interjection to a handful of intriguing features, a Pixelbook unexpected seems like a viable initial choice for one’s primary computer, and no longer a uncanny oddity that we buy simply since you’re dumb, rich, and curious.
Pixelbook: Thin, light and flexible
Elegant laptop pattern always deserves jubilee (especially when so many computers demeanour like bad film props), and a Pixelbook is an intriguing pattern study, usually like a Pixel predecessors. The potion inlay on a behind of a arrangement refers behind to Pixel phone design, and is a pleasing flourish. At 10mm thin, a Pixelbook is unequivocally freaking thin. And during 2.4 pounds, it feels remarkably light for a earthy footprint.
The Pixelbook is also a initial Pixel laptop with a full operation of motion. A smooth, ideally resistant 360-degree hinge translates a appurtenance from laptop mode to inscription mode to easel mode to film mode. Meanwhile, a 12.3-inch, 2400×1600, 3:2 aspect ratio arrangement offers a inexhaustible area that creates 16:9 and 4:3 displays feel compromised for capability work.
Now, do we unequivocally need a Core i7 and 16GB of RAM to run Chrome OS and Android apps? This turn of firepower would seem to be vulgar overkill.
But here’s where a Pixelbook starts to make sense: A $99 Pixelbook Pen appendage hooks directly into Google Assistant, paving a proceed for a crafty new proceed to search. And an involuntary tethering underline taps your Pixel phone for a information connection, should we remove Wi-Fi on a road.
OK, now a Chromebook story is removing interesting. Let’s puncture a small bit deeper.
Using Pixelbook Pen for contextual search
The $99 Pixelbook Pen would seem befitting for sketch apps. It feels well-balanced in a hand, offers 2,000 levels of vigour sensitivity, and promises usually 10ms of latency. But what unequivocally creates a Pen engaging is how it hooks into Google Assistant.
Open adult Chrome. Load a webpage. See an picture that intrigues you? Press a symbol on a side of a Pen, afterwards pull a round around a photo. The Pixelbook will commend a essence of a photo, and afterwards open a Google Assistant event divulgence contextual information—for instance, links to a celebrity’s IMDB form and Instagram. You can use a same Pen slight to investigate a definition of difference and concepts.
I usually spent a few mins doing Pen searches, though we found a routine quick, natural, and rewarding. And since we use Google Assistant all a time on my phone, we fast began expecting how we might request a same use on my PC. Added bonus: You don’t have to talk to Assistant to run contextual searches. You can usually use a Pen, or strike a nifty Assistant pivotal built into a Pixelbook’s keyboard. This saves we a annoyance of vocalization out shrill in a open place.
Auto data-tethering between Pixel and Pixelbook
The strange Chromebook Pixel offering an LTE chronicle to pledge we could use Chrome’s cloud-based services when Wi-Fi was unavailable. Google strew LTE with a second generation. The new Pixelbook is also Wi-Fi-only, though if your phone is a Pixel or Pixel 2, it can offer as hotspot should Wi-Fi destroy you.
My Pixelbook demo wasn’t set adult to illustrate this feature, though Google says a “instant tethering” is seamless: When Wi-Fi drops out, a Pixelbook automatically connects to your Pixel or Pixel 2’s LTE connection, gripping we adult and running, and with no need to configure a hotspot.
This unequivocally closes a loop on a larger Chromebook promise—at slightest if we possess a Pixel phone. Instant tethering perceived a satisfactory volume of applause when Google announced a feature, and indeed, it’s sparkling to a PCWorld staff as well.
Chromebooks have a lot going for them, generally if we don’t caring about PC gaming or specialized, resource-intensive applications. They start adult in a flash, they’re not unprotected to Windows exploits, and they’re ideally matched to users who already do all their work in Google Drive and Android apps. Update by update, underline by feature, Chromebooks are looking a lot some-more attractive, and a Pixelbook innovations usually assistance concrete a promise—the high cost tab notwithstanding.