Chromebooks. Microsoft really does not think too highly of these devices, as is evident from the various signals coming from Redmond. From company officials to Scroogled campaigns, Microsoft have made it clear that these devices are downright limiting.
There is no Office for productivity, the company says, no Skype for communication. Basically, these devices lack the essential apps. But despite all this, they still are an appealing option for consumers.
And that is all due to their budget prices.
All that is set to change, as The Verge notes, because Microsoft is ready to attack the Chromebook citadel by bringing to market super affordable devices that offer excitingly powerful feature sets at very low price points.
One such device is the Acer Aspire ES1, which is already available on the market and is the number one best seller on Amazon in the laptop computer category. You get a 15.6-inch screen with a 2.16GHz Intel Celeron processor and 4GB RAM for just $249.
Another one is incoming, right in time for the holiday season — a lightweight Toshiba laptop with an 11.6-inch screen and a 32GB SSD, weighing in at just 1.08 kg.
Additionally, HP is also said to be working on two devices with 7 and 8 inch displays that are to be called Steam, and will retail for the magical figure of $99. But these, while powered by Windows, are expected to be tablets, not notebooks.
Nevertheless, it has been a long time coming.
Microsoft finally seems to have taken notice of the immediate threat posed by Chromebooks, and longtime partners like Acer, Dell, HP and Toshiba launching these Chrome OS powered devices. The company hinted at this yesterday at the opening day of WPC 2014.
So far the results seem good, and one can hope they get better in the future.