Google on Friday launched three new budget Chromebooks in India focussing on education – XOLO Chromebook is to be made available on Snapdeal priced at Rs 12,999, Nexian Air Chromebook with same price tag will be available on Amazon – in the coming months latest units from ASUS including the Chromebook Flip and C201 and Samsung will also be available from local retailers.
Google also launched a Chromebox for businesses. The Chromebox, which is a video meeting utility, will be priced at Rs 90,000 and will be manufactured by Asus for India. “HP and Acer are making the Chromeboxes that are being sold in Europe,” Smita Hashim, Global Product Manager, Chrome OS, said. “Chromebox for meetings brings together Hangouts, Google Apps and easy to manage chromebox, making it simple and affordable for any company to have high definition video meetings,” a release from the company claimed.
The budget Chromebooks are targeting educational institutions and during the launch, Google showed off its new capabilities and new apps that are now available in the web store. “We are trying to get a lot of Android apps on the Chrome OS as both the OS complement each other. We can send regular updates to the OS after intervals of six weeks,” Hashim said implying quicker and faster development to the new OS from the stable of Google.The budget Chormebooks will come with with Google Apps for Education enabling the user to work in an already well-defined environment.
All the new devices will come with a management control console through which the educational institution or business can manage the devices. Each device use will be charged — a revenue model that Google has long been using with its email services.With the Chromebook management console, administrators can set up and manage up to thousands of Chromebooks from a computer or phone. “Plus, regular updates from Google mean that Chromebooks actually get better over time, reducing school’s maintenance and software costs,” Hashim said.
The Chromebook runs on a much lighter OS and thus boots up easily. The tech giant claimed that it has prepared the device for more offline activity than its earlier releases. “When we introduced Chromebooks four years ago, we
wanted to build a laptop for the way people use computers today always fast, easy to use, and secure by default.Since launching Chromebooks in India, we’ve been working to ensure that Chromebooks work in an environment where connectivity can be spotty, and many people’s first experiences with technology are through a phone rather than a laptop,” Hashim added.
According to IDC’s latest report on tablets and laptops in K12 education, Chromebooks were the bestselling device in the US last year. While the devices released on Friday will run on the RK3288 Rockchip processor, the ones to come in the market will use Intel chips at its base.