Samsung Chromebook (2 of 1)

For the last few years the wife and I have used an Asus Netbook for quick internet access and e-mail from the couch. The little atom processor inside was just fast enough to handle basic stuff, but it would start to chock when more then 5 browser tabs were open at the same time. The netbook did it’s job, but we felt like it was time for an upgrade.

After doing a little bit of research, we decided to go with a Samsung Chromebook as it’s replacement. Basically the Samsung Chromebook is the equivalent to a mid range cellphone in a laptop form factor. It’s not really designed for heavy gaming or processor intensive production work. Instead it’s perfect as that laptop next to the couch that anyone can log into and play a few casual games like Cut the Rope or surf IMDB to settle an argument about the voice over work on Season 3 of Archer.

Samsung Chromebook (2 of 4)

The form factor of the Samsung Chromebook makes the old netbook look obese. It’s sleek, light weight, and doesn’t get nearly as warm as the old netbook. Boot time is externally fast clocking in at about 7 seconds. This makes it feel a lot more snappy then the old netbook.  Even though the case is mostly plastic it feels like a well built product and there is a little bit of a snap to it when you open or close the lid.

Samsung Chromebook (4 of 4)

The keyboard on the Samsung Chromebook feels very responsive and the keys are comfortable enough to make long sessions of typing enjoyable. Screen resolution settles in at 1366 x 768 which is more then enough for internet and video consumption. As long as you are near wifi, it’s surprising how much you can do with this little Chromebook.

If you think about it, Netflix, Hulu, youtube, and Amazon prime all have web interfaces that work well with the chrome browser, this covers most peoples video consumption needs. If you want to make some simple background music for your video there are apps like AudioSauna that do a pretty good job, and a few people claim you can even do a bit of video editing with apps like Wevideo (haven’t tried this yet).

Since there is only 16GB of storage, video editing with any app might be a bit of an issue as it requires you to upload your footage first. Even if you only have a simple edit to make on a clip, spending 30 or 40 mins uploading a video to do 5 mins of editing might not be worth the hassle.

Video editing aside, there are enough casual games and internet surfing capabilities to make the Samsung Chromebook well worth the $249 price tag. It might not be a power house but so far it has easily out pasted the old netbook. If you need a casual laptop for the living room or something for the kids, the Samsung Chromebook is well worth checking out.

Once I’ve had a chance to play around with a few of the video editing apps I’ll post some more info on how practical they really are. It should be an interesting set of tests.

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