Intel Atom

Why I hate the CR-48 (but might like Chrome OS)

March 1, 2011: 4:27 PM ET

Google's cloud-based operating system seems promising. Too bad the lousy demo hardware gets in the way.

Google's Chrome OS isn't as farfetched as it sounds. The underlying concept, the computer and operating system as portals to content in the cloud, seems like an inevitability, really. While a lot of content still resides on hard or solid state drives, all signs point to a day when we'll rouse a sliver of a laptop from slumber and interact with all our content on remote servers.

Given Google's (GOOG) track record with cloud-based services, who better to make the next step, right?

I thought as much until my own Chrome OS CR-48 netbook arrived in the mail a few weeks ago. At 4 pounds, the CR-48 resembles a black polycarbonate (aka hard plastic) MacBook without the DVD drive. Even cooler is the total lack of a company logo on the thing – way to be anti-establishment, Google – and the inclusion of decals and laptop skins you could decorate it with. All in all, major points on the design. More

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