Google has refreshed the Chromebook Pixel, and set it inside their snazzy new online storefront. This 2015 refresh brings a number of very notable changes that will probably have you itching to upgrade.
The biggest is the inclusion of not one, but two USB Type-C ports. Why is that a big deal? To now, Apple’s new Macbook (announced at the same event we heard about the ridiculous Apple Watch price tags) was the only device known to launch with the next generation USB port.
USB Type-C is a flexible new standard that serves multiple functions. It’s a charging port for one, and can also be used as a high speed USB 3.1 port, video-out and more. It’s reversible, to boot, so there’s no need to make sure you’re plugging the cable in the right way — either side is the right side.
There are adapters available for purchase that’ll let you connect Type-A USB 1.0 to USB 3.0 products to the laptop (there are two Type-A USB 3.0 ports available so this might not even be necessary), as well as adapters for direct USB 3.1 Type-C to HDMI, MiniDisplay and other video-out standards. It’s a pretty big deal and we’re glad to see more and more products popping up with the technology.
That’s not all. The 2015 Chromebook Pixel gets a whopping 12 hours of battery life compared to the 5 hours promised in the previous generation. It’s also a bit thinner by 1mm, sports Intel’s latest Core i5 and Core i7 mobile processors, and still looks downright gorgeous. Here’s the full spec sheet in case you’re wondering what, exactly, you’re in store for:
- 11.7” x 8.8” x 0.6” / 297.7mm x 224.55mm x 15.3mmWeight
- 3.3 lbs/ 1.5 KgScreen
- 12.85″ display with a web-friendly 3:2 aspect ratio
- 2560 x 1700, at 239 PPI
- 400 nit screen
- 178° extra-wide viewing angleProcessor
- Intel® Core™ i5 Processor, 2.2GHz or Intel® Core™ i7 processor, 2.4GHzInputs
- Multi-touch screen
- Backlit Chrome keyboard
- Fully clickable, etched-glass trackpadBattery
- Up to 12 hours of battery life¹Ports & Connectors
- 2 USB Type-C (up to 5 Gbps data, 4K display out with optional HDMI or DisplayPort adapter, 60W charging)
- 2 USB 3.0 ports
- SD Card
- Headphone/Mic comboCamera
- 720P HD Wide Angle camera with Blue GlassMemory
- 8GB or 16GBStorage
- 32GB or 64GB of Flash Storage²Wireless
- 802.11ac Wireless with support for A/B/G/N/AC, 2.4 and 5ghz, 2×2 spatial streams
- Bluetooth 4.0 BR/EDR/LE Smart Ready controllerAudio
- High Power Stereo Speakers, Dual Microphones, Headset jack,
- Support for headset with microphoneGraphics
- Intel HD Graphics 5500 (Integrated)Video
- Supports 4K video output over DisplayPort™ or HDMI with optional Type-C video adapter cableCharger
- Type-C USB Charger, new industry standard
Overkill for a laptop that basically runs nothing but a web browser? Possibly, but at least you’ll know you’re equipped with a device powerful enough to handle whatever innovations Google’s Chrome team comes up with next. And there’s always the ability to replace it with a Linux distribution if you’re handy enough to do something like that.
The 32GB storage, 8GB of RAM and Core i5 kit starts at a cool $999, while the 64GB storage, 16GB of RAM and Core i7 version will Cost about $300 more. Not bad for all the cutting edge goodness stuffed inside this portable package. The device ships a mere couple of days after placing your order so head to the Google Store to secure one if you’re interested.