If you thought the $249 Samsung Chromebook is cheap, the new Acer C7 Chromebook is even cheaper at $199. That’s about P8,500 in Philippine peso, a price that will only get you a budget cellphone.
Chromebooks are laptops that run Google’s Chrome OS which is a far cry from full productivity operating systems like Microsoft’s Windows, Apple’s Mac OS or Linux. Chrome OS is optimized for Google services like Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps, Google Docs, Google+ and others. That means you will not be able to install programs the way you can on a Windows laptop. Which ultimately means, that Chromebooks are only useful for web-based apps.
Still, if your purpose is web browsing or using web services from Google or other web-based applications, Chromebooks like the Acer C7 should serve you well. The $199 price is actually surprising since the Acer C7 Chromebook is already similar to a netbook in many respects. A tablet is arguably more versatile than a Chromebook but in some areas, a Chromebook is better. Take for example the presence of physical keyboard which to most users, is still essential for typing. Google actually pushing for Chromebooks to be additional computers at home, which means it should really not be used as your main computer.
In any case, the Acer C7 Chromebook features a full-size keyboard, a trackpad, an 11.6-inch display and just 3.5 hours of battery life. Google says it is powered by an Intel Core processor but it did not go into details as to clock speed or number of cores. The Acer C7 boots up in 18 seconds and can play HD videos smoothly according to Google. For storage, the Acer C7 has a built-in 320GB hard drive but users will also get 100GB of free storage on Google Drive.