- Computers & Software
New Idea In Laptops: ChromeBook
Acer C7 Chromebook
After reading an article on the chromebook I decided to give my opinion on it.
A technical website and all it's techinical colleagues for the most part dismissed it as a disposable toy. The new ChromeBook Pixel was dismissed as an outragously expensive disposable toy. I haven't tried that one. The one I'm concentrating on is the Acer ChromeBook C7 with the 11.6 inch display and non touch screen.
Since I've been travelling for many months on a cross country trip I finally decided(after I'd outgrown my phone which only took a few weeks) that I needed something more functional but I didn't want the bigger, heavier, full fledged windows laptop. I've used these before when travelling and they are heavier and more cumbersome. I needed something that I could easily access my blogs and other websites that fall incredibly short when it comes to their mobile versions. I found that accessing my blogs on my phone is a virtual impossibility and even twitter was not as functional. Facebook, however, is fully functional in all formats.
I started with a tablet(the Samsung Galaxy with built in camera) and that was a complete waste of money for me. I quickly began looking around for a laptop that I didn't have to spend much money on since I'd already shelled out $200 on the tablet which I couldn't take back(after they've been opened they are nonreturnable). I'm probably one of the few that dislikes touchscreen so I didn't want that. It took only one trip into the nearest Walmart to find the Acer C7 Chromebook. I usually look for something bigger but working on a very tight budget beggars couldn't be choosers and laptops are returnable.
It has it's shortcomings. The first of course being it's smaller display at only 11.6 inches which is only slightly bigger than the old netbooks which I wholeheartedly rejected. Other shortcomings are it's inability to do gaming and hard drive space isn't as much as on a regular laptop(I don't even know what it is but I didn't care. I was only looking for internet access and a little hard drive space) but it is big on other parallels. It is very light weighing in at just under 3 pounds. And the most important thing for me is it starts up in under 10 seconds. No more waiting for applications to load and it has built in anti virus software and automatically updates itself and the operating system always stays up to date(at least according to the google website).
For me this little laptop or rather what I call it(my baby acer, baby laptop, mini laptop) works out just fine. It does everything my bigger laptop at home does without the hassles of waiting for it to start up and without being cumbersome and heavy.
For those looking for a bigger display they have chromebooks with 14 inch displays. I was looking just today to see if by chance they had 16 inch displays yet but they don't.
For those of you who might consider the smaller chromebook don't look at the Samsung(unless you are only looking for tablet functionality). The reasons: the samsung chromebook has no USB ports, no ethernet port and no jack therefore no way to hook up to a regular hardline internet connection, no way to hook up a mouse and no way to hook up headphones or earbuds which basically makes it, like the fellow I talked to in an Office Depot, a tablet so it is less functional.
I like having a mouse, earbuds and a way to hook up things to the USB ports if need be. As a matter of fact I've added a card reader which is the size of a flash drive so I can download my photography to my blogs or facebook if I desire but my intent on this mobile laptop(considering I only hook up to wifi connections) is to keep it light and as uncumbersome as possible.
The chromebooks are not for everyone. I wasn't sure I'd like it being that I've used the chrome browser in libraries and was quite displeased. My displeasure came from not being able to adjust the text size which isn't the same as on internet explorer which can be done right from the browser. On Chrome you must have access to the settings which at a library only staff has access to and my experience has been they know little to nothing about changing any settings and if they do they won't. My point being that if your vision is not what it used to be adjusting text size and fonts are a must. Once figured out it is quite easy. It's right in the advanced settings.
And for only $199 at Walmart, Office Max, Office Depot and most other office supply stores they are easy to find.
One thing to note: the battery life is about 4 hours. So if you don't need more time than that and are unable to find an outlet(this can be difficult at fast food places, etc. then you are in luck. One thing I do is to always make sure it stays charged up so when I go somewhere that has no outlets I have plenty of time and when I need to charge it I always make sure to find a library.
I was at a wifi hotspot one day and this man came in with his son to get on his laptop and the boy(must have been about 8 or 9) kept begging and pestering his father to get on his computer but the dad kept saying no because he was afraid the boy would mess his computer up. I almost told him he should get him a chromebook. There is nothing to mess up. There's no control panel, no internet options, no display or power settings. There's literally nothing to mess up except maybe the text size and fonts which are easily changed back and you have to type in settings to access it. Again no button to click on.
For complete mobility the Chromebook serves it's purpose well.
Truth be told I love my chromebook and could have never imagined liking a laptop with a smaller display but it is so functional and lightweight that any shortcomings fall by the wayside.