Story 2015-04-03 6B3W New Chromebooks and Chromebit stick start at $100

New Chromebooks and Chromebit stick start at $100

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in hardware on (#6B3W)
story imageGoogle and its partners are preparing a flood of new hardware to sway consumers away from cheap Windows laptops. Chromebooks from HiSense and Haier go on sale today for just $150 each. You also might consider the Asus Chromebit that will cost less than $100. The Chromebit looks very similar to the Chromecast, but runs a full Chrome-OS instance, on-a-stick, ready to plug into any monitor. "Think of a school lab, all the peripherals, but stuck to a desktop. Now you can replace that."

The secret behind these low-cost devices is the RK3288, a very inexpensive quad-core Cortex-A12 ARM architecture processor, which was launched in mid-2014 from Rockchip, a Chinese chip maker that’s little known outside of industry circles. Because the chip can draw as little as 3 watts of power, the Chromebooks based on it are designed without fans, and can last all day on a single charge. You also get 2GB of storage, and a 16GB SSD in all 3 devices.

With fewer than 25 million Chromebook sales last year (opposed to more than 302 million PC sales), Google still has work to do. And thus today’s announcement. Google and its partners are lowering prices further while chasing the one commodity laptop users value most: battery life.
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