New Intel Broadwell-powered Chrome OS board spotted in Chromium code repository

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A new Chrome OS board named “Auron” based on Intel’s Broadwell chip line recently showed up in the Chromium code repository. Spotted by Googler François Beaufort, this appears to be one of the first devices to use Chipzilla’s 14 nanometer system-on-a-chip. Not a lot is known about this mystery board, but it manages to follow the trend of being named after a popular video game character. Beaufort recently outed a Chrome OS board referred to as “Ryu” from Capcom’s Street Fighter franchise and Auron is a character from the world famous Final Fantasy series.

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Microsoft is ready to challenge Chromebooks with a $200 Windows 8.1-powered alternative

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Microsoft appears to be gearing up to challenge Google’s Chrome OS by partnering with companies to release affordable Windows-based alternative notebooks. Pictured above is the HP Stream 14, a $200 laptop that feels a lot like Redmond’s answer to the Chromebook. From its 14-inch 1,366 x 768 display, to its modest AMD processor, all the way down to its 2GB of RAM, 32GB of flash memory (optional 32GB) and two years of cloud storage from Microsoft’s OneDrive — sound familiar?

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Acer takes on Samsung’s Chromebook 2 with better battery-life & faster graphics for $100 less

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Acer is providing tough competition for Samsung’s Chromebook 2 with its new Chromebook 13, offering 11-hour battery life with full HD display for $100 less. The NVIDIA Tegra K1 2.1GHz quad-core processor should give the 1920×1080 display even better graphics performance than Samsung’s Exynos-powered model, as well as beating its 9-hour battery-life, for $299 against Samsung’s $400.

The downside, as noted by Engadget, is the cheaper-looking casing, being plain white plastic rather than the faux-leather stitching of the Chromebook 2 …  Read more

Google unifying Android and Chromebooks to keep you in its ecosystem

 

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Today during its annual I/O developers conference, Google revealed a bevy of new products and services, however a particular presentation managed to stand out among the rest. Shortly after previewing its next version of Android, the company started talking about Chromebooks. Not exactly the longest segment of the show, Mountain View’s focus appeared to be bridging the gap between Chromebooks and Android.

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Mystery Acer Tegra K1-powered Chromebook outed by Swedish retailer

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A listing for what could be the first Tegra-powered Chromebook may have just been outed by a Swedish retailer. Listed as the Acer Chromebook CB5 13.3″ HD, this unannounced system features a Tegra K1 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 32GB SSD for local storage and a 13.3-inch HD display. At a glance this white Chromebook appears to have a pair of USB ports (presumably USB 3.0) and a 3.5mm audio jack.

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Google+ Photos app update automatically sends Chromebook pics to the cloud

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Chrome OS devices typically run light on local storage space, but as a portal to the internet, they’re often tasked with managing a person’s media experience. So when your growing photo collection starts to outnumber your machine’s gigabyte count, you’ll likely want to move things to the cloud, but this can be a tedious task. Enter the Google+ Photo app. Weighing in at a lean 15.52MB, Mountain View’s new software automatically uploads photos from your SD card to a private Google+ folder, even when the app is closed.

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Google Play Movies & TV now available for Chrome OS, allowing offline playback of Play Store content

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Chrome OS users now have the ability to download and view movies and TV shows from the Google Play Store using the newly-released Play Movies & TV app. The app allows users to manage video libraries without an internet connection, something the operating system has previously been unable to do.

The library can also be synced across multiple desktop and mobile platforms, including Windows PCs, Macs, Android phones, and iOS devies. Chromecast streaming is available to play your downloaded content on an HDTV, and the app has full support for Google’s Info Cards, which display information about the content being played.

You can grab the app for free on the Google Chrome web app store. The full description is below.

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Google expanding Chromebook availibility to nine new markets (update)

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Since the very first CR-48 rolled off the assembly line, Google has billed its Chromebook platform as reliable but affordable alternative to buying a traditional laptop. Today, the company expanded on this idea by revealing plans to bring its next-gen netbook to nine new territories. Residents of New Zealand, the Philippines, Norway, Denmark, Mexico, Chile, Belgium, Spain and Italy will soon have access to Google’s Chrome OS-powered platform.

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HP officially announces 14-inch touchscreen SlateBook running Android, coming in July for $399

Back in April, word got out that HP was planning to announce a touchscreen laptop running Android, and today, the company finally made the device official. In a press release, HP officially announced its 14-inch touchscreen SlateBook running Android. The laptop is powered by an Nvidia Tegra 4 processor and 2GB of RAM. It will come in 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB storage variants, which is relatively small for a laptop, and have a microSD card.

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AllCast Receiver for Chrome lets you stream content from mobile to browser

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Building off the success of its mobile apps, ClockworkMod aka Koush has announced AllCast for Chrome. Available today at the Chrome Web Store, this fresh baked software lets you share photos, audio and video from your mobile devices to anything running Chrome, like a desktop, TV or Chromebook. Now before you start queueing up a playlist of content, you’ll wanna make sure that you have the latest version of the AllCast mobile, which is set to hit Google Play later today. In the meantime, you can watch this up-and-comer in action to see what the future might hold for your mobile media collection.

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Chrome OS updated with launcher folders and enhanced window controls

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Google released an update for its Chrome OS today and and in addition to some standard bug fixes and security patches, 35.0.1916.116 adds some noticeable features. For starters, the Chrome OS launcher now supports folders, so users can organize their apps as they see fit. Google has also updated window controls based on user feedback. The minimize button has now returned and the left/right tiling of windows is now accessible by long-pressing the maximize button. Hotwording (“OK Google”) in now available to US Chrome OS users through the New Tab Page and Google.com. Mountain View has also added captive portal detection during sign-in. This addition will make it easier to connect to public networks at places like hotels, airports and libraries that use a landing page to authenticate users before using the internet.

 

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Google updates Chrome OS device end-of-life schedule, Cr-48 operating on borrowed time (update)

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Nothing lasts forever and if you’ve invested in a Chrome OS-powered device, it’s good to know how much support time you’ll have from Google. The folks in Mountain View recently updated its end-of-life schedule for Chrome OS devices, letting people know how long a specific product will have guaranteed support from Google. What happens when your device reaches its EOL date? It’ll work, however it may no longer receive automatic software updates from Google. This will most likely result in missing features and possible performance issues.

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