My first reaction to getting the Google Laptop was great! Although it was about 10pm on my way home. I tend to forget to leave outlook on after checking it in the morning. Turns out I had a brand new laptop waiting for me in the mail room since about 3pm yesterday.
The first thing you are presented with is a box with drawings of a mouse and what looks like Mid-evil gadgetry. I couldn’t help but wonder if I were the mouse in this experiment.
Once you open the box you see the laptop and realize Greenpeace will not be presenting any awards for this packaging. The box could have been a lot smaller in comparison to the product inside. The instructions; all two pages were straightforward and even added a bit of humor.
There was enough power to turn the laptop on and start the registration process. You can not skip this part and you need wi-fi to do it. One of the two instruction cards said that Verizon Wireless service was provided for two years at 100mb a month for free. unfortunately you have no access to that until you register. (that would have been helpful to note on the instruction card)
After activating the CR-48; which was nothing more than entering your google information; you are good to go. The first thing you will try to do is close the Chrome Web Browser so that you may explore the laptop. After a few futile tries you come to realize that the browser is the laptop.
The Chrome extensions and Chrome OS Apps seem to be nothing more than glorified web links. Pinned Tabs must become your best friend when working in Chrome OS. Pinned Tabs are tabs you can stick to the browser’s top-left corner. So that is tabs and web links is all Chrome OS is. Well that was my first impression anyway.
Than I continued to play more with the system. It hit me a short time later everything I did on my laptop was on the web anyway or was a way to help me do something on the web. Email (Gmail), Music (Slacker Radio) and Movies (Netflix). Now add Dropbox and the Windows Cloud service Live Mesh. There seems little that is in your way of using this Netbook to the fullest.
Peripherals worked like a charm. My Logitech mic for podcast, my jump drive and even my iPhone was able to charge. But not at the same time. There was only one USB port. One SD card reader slot. A VGA out and a head phone out. There is a built-in mic and webcam. This review and as well as other reviews should not focus on the hardware. That will change.
Chrome OS notebooks won’t be for sale until mid-2011, this is only a small taste of the future now. Google’s unbranded Chrome OS test notebook the CR-48 will look nothing like production notebooks when Google is ready to roll out Chrome OS. The CR-48 is only a test model for us tech writers to get the word out about the possibilities of Chrome OS. So far the possibilities look great..