Toshiba, this morning, announced that it’s bringing some welcome upgrades to its already-awesome Chromebook 2. The new Chromebook will feature either a 5th generation Intel Core i3 or Celeron processor, and up to 4GB RAM when it hits major retailers in October. As well as new processing power, the Chromebook 2 will come with an all-new LED backlit keyboard. Pricing will start at $329 for the Celeron-based models, and $429 for the i3-powered Chromebook.
HDMI ▪ September 22
HDMI ▪ August 4
The rise of Chrome OS has been nothing short of fantastic. With so many of our daily computing needs being met with online services, having a laptop which “only runs a web browser” and a bunch of useful web apps isn’t such a bad idea anymore. You can save on costs massively, and still be able to do almost anything you need to do. Unless you need lots of storage for gaming or media, it’s hard to argue against buying a Chrome-based notebook.
But is the same true of a desktop? I’ve been using the Acer Chromebase Touch for the past week or so and, as much as there are frustrations, there are also things I really enjoyed.
HDMI ▪ December 2, 2014
Google’s diminutive and cheap Chromecast is making strong headway against its competitors according to a report today by Parks Associates. Priced at $35 but now going for just over $20, the dongle, which is controlled by Apps on iOS and Android devices rather than a traditional remote has passed the almost forgotten Apple TV and is closing in on the king of streamers, the Roku. Roku and AppleTV represented two thirds of the market last year but with entrants like Chromecast and Amazon’s Fire TV/Stick, the two dropped to around half the market.
The research finds Roku is still the leading brand with 29% of sales, but Google Chromecast (20%) has supplanted Apple TV (17%) in second place. New entrant Amazon Fire TV is in fourth place with 10%. Consumer content choices are also increasing, with Showtime and Sony planning to launch their own OTT video services to compete with Netflix and HBO.
“Nearly 50% of video content that U.S. consumers watch on a TV set is non-linear, up from 38% in 2010, and it is already the majority for people 18-44,” said Barbara Kraus, Director, Research, Parks Associates. “The market is changing rapidly to account for these new digital media habits. Roku now offers a streaming stick, and Amazon’s Fire TV streaming stick leaves Apple as the only top player without a stick product in the streaming media device category.”
Sticks are where it is at it would seem. Conversely, Google’s Nexus Player, introduced in October, has yet to make a blip but it might also show up in results next year.
HDMI ▪ September 3, 2014
Toshiba upped its already solid Chromebook game today with the aptly-named Chromebook 2 laptop. With an optional 1920×1080 pixel display, Haswell processor, 4GB of RAM, HDMI AV out and AC/Bluetooth 4 wireless, it ticks most of the boxes on what you’d want on a high end laptop. It even claims 11.5 hour battery life and new forward facing speakers designed with help from Skullcandy.
It comes in starting at $249 for the 720P 16 Model and is set for release on Oct. 5
Spec sheet follows: expand full story
HDMI ▪ August 21, 2014
Some of us are old enough to remember when desktop computers were large towers that you stored under your desk; these days, you can hide the desktop PC behind your monitor.
HDMI ▪ July 24, 2014
Happy birthday, Chromecast! That’s what Google is saying today as it announced the HDMI media streaming stick has been used to cast content 400 million times in the 12 months since it launched. The Chromecast, of course, allows you to stream content from services like Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora to your HDTV from your Android or iOS as well as your computer via the Chrome browser.
We’ve added hundreds of your favorite apps, including WatchESPN, Pandora, Hulu Plus, HBO GO and PBS Kids; announced new features like mirroring your Android device to the TV and expanded to 30,000 stores across 20 countries.
That’s certainly a lot of casting from the $35 accessory, and Google is giving all Chromecast users 90 days of its Google Play Music All Access service for free to celebrate. The offer to redeem 3 months of free access to the $9.99/month music subscription service will run from today, July 24th, through September 30th, for all existing Chromecast customers not already subscribed to All Access. expand full story