Samsung, Acer & Pixel: Exploring the Google Chromebook Options

I'm typically not an impulse tech buyer, but when the Google Chromebook first came out, I was tempted by the reasonable price. I'm still using a 2007 Apple MacBook at home, casually on the look out for other options. What's tempting about the Chromebook series is its availability from a variety of manufacturers. Here's a breakdown of the three options...

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Acer C7
The Acer is probably the most standard option of the Chromebook you can pick. There are no frills or any complicated programs to learn. This would be the option for the casual web surfer. I imagine the Acer Chromebook would be a great option for parents or a family to use in one of the common areas of the house. If the majority of web tools you use online are Google, the Acer comes with all the Google products built-in. At a previous job a majority of our work was done with Google products in order for the east coast and west coast offices to work together. One of my favorite functions is the multi-user editing in real time and the ability to access pass docs if you need to.

The Chromebook will automatically update itself so you don't have to worry about making sure you have the latest apps and tools. You can also stream videos or play games and easily switch between different users as well, again making it an affordable family laptop. It's the most affordable option at $199.

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Samsung
Chromebook on Samsung is a little lighter and has more battery life than the Acer. The Acer weighs 3 pounds with up to 4 hours of battery depending on usage. The Samsung is less than 2.5 pounds and can run up to 6.5 hours of battery life. Looking at it at the store, it has lots of design similarities with a MacBook Pro. It comes with all the same perks as the Acer with the Google products built-in and boots up in less than 10 seconds. However, it's the more portable option for someone who works on the go. The Samsung Chromebook is $249.

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Pixel
The latest introduction into the Chromebook options is the Pixel, a touch-screen laptop. At a much higher price-point than the other two options, the Pixel is suited for power users who are comfortable and committed to working only on the cloud and need a powerful machine to do so. There's seamless integration with Google's products and media that you upload onto your Chromebook, such as pictures automatically uploading to Google+.

The touchscreen component allows you to easily organize all the apps in the Pixel by tapping and swiping, similar to the gestures we're used to for using tablets and smartphones. The Pixel comes in either a Wi-Fi model or equipped with LTE cellular network for about $150 more. For those looking for the best available in terms of cloud computing now, the Pixel would be your option starting at $1,300.

As for me, I'm not sure if I can commit completely to the cloud just yet. Programs like Micorosoft Office and the Adobe Suite are still essential to the bulk of the work that I do. However, as a present to my parents either the Acer or Samsung seem like good options. As for the Pixel, I'm eagerly awaiting reviews once the computers start shipping.

(All images from Google as credited above)