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

HP-Stream 14

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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Deal Alert: HP Chromebook 14 w/4GB RAM, Haswell & 200MB/month of free 4G: $200 shipped

From 9to5Toys.com:

HP-Chromebook-14

Today’s Amazon Gold Box Deal of the Day is the HP Chromebook 14 in Red or Turquoise refurb for $199.99 with free shipping. That’s $129.01 off the list price and the lowest we’ve ever seen this Chromebook which includes 200MB of free 4G wireless for life thru T-Mobile with the ability to get more data at T-Mobile’s rates. The 4-lb machine features 14-inch/1366 x 768 display, 4GB RAM/16GB Storage amd 1.4GHz Haswell processor.
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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

Amazon’s back to school sale takes $20 or more off select Chromebooks and Chromeboxes

Amazon-Chromebook

Chromebooks are already making waves with educators and school districts and of course retailers are no exception. Amazon is currently running a back to school promotion that knocks $20 or more off the regular asking price of select Chromebooks. This brings some device’s like the Acer C720P Chromebook to an all time low. Other machines like the HP Chromebook 11, which features an Exynos 5 processor, 2GB of RAM and an 11.6-inch 1,366 x 768 display are available for $200.

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Chromebooks could get even cheaper thanks to support for a new MediaTek chip

Chromebook2_015_Detail2_Titanium Gray

Chromebooks are already being marketed as affordable alternatives to traditional laptops, but Google’s browser-based computing platform could soon offer hardware at a sub-$200 price point. Taiwanese SoC maker MediaTek recently added an ARM Cortex A7 board codenamed “Moose” to the open source Chromium OS base. This system is based on the company’s low-end MT8127 quad-core processor, which clocks in at 1.5GHz.

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Google Play for Education now available for Chromebooks

Google-Play-For-Education

Continuing Mountain View’s push for Chromebooks in classrooms, Google Play for Education is now available for the company’s low-cost laptops. This software hub helps teachers tailor their curriculum to fit the needs of their class by providing them with tools and materials based on students’ needs and interests. The program first started with tablets and Google says that teachers later requested support for Chromebooks.

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