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Chromebook Review – Lifestyle

22 Dec Chromebook Review – Lifestyle

The best reason to get a Chromebook is because there are many ways it can make your life easier. First, having such an extremely portable computer meant I could be productive on the road more frequently. On a typical day when I might be on the road and make multiple stops, I won’t take my laptop along unless I’m certain I’m going to use it- it’s just too big and bulky to be all that practical. The chromebook, however, went with me almost everywhere I went. When I found myself with the odd 10 or 20 minutes to kill throughout the day I could easily whip out the Chromebook and get a few things done.

Startup was a breeze. There was no need for tutorials or instruction manuals. The Chrome OS runs much like windows in many ways and is fairly intuitive.

I’ve been hesitant to make the leap to fully cloud- based, instead keeping a foot in each world. However, I found the more I used the Chromebook, the more I leaned on the cloud. I realized how much simpler it made my life to be able to access practically anything I’m working on, from any platform, and it spiraled from there. I’m late to the game in that regard, but now I’m jumping in with both feet.

I do have a bone to pick, however.  On the Chromebook website, Google proclaims, “Stick it in your purse!” Oh, how I wish I could. Although the weight and slender design are fantastic, at 11.4″ x 8.09″ x 0.69″  the Chromebook is just a little too wide, and a little too tall  to fit in 80% of my purses.  Granted,  I tend toward smaller bags and my tablet doesn’t fit in many of them either. Of the bags that will hold the tablet, the chromebook only fit in one of them.

I’m happy to report the Google Chromebook will fit in a Longchamp bag.

In every bag the Chrombook fit in, it do so much better than the tablet with a keyboard did.

Another slight criticism is the quality of the external speakers. I like to work with music playing in the background, but I’m by no means a music snob. However,  I found the speakers to be a little shallow, and fairly tinny at higher volumes. That said, one gets a Chrome for portability, and I tend to wear headphones when I’m listening to music on the road. Here, obviously, the sound quality is limited only by the headphones.

One thing I loved about the Chromebook was that I could use the HDMI to stream hours of Hulu programming to my TV. I didn’t have to adjust a single setting, just plug and play for hours until the battery ran out. It was great for those few web-only shows that Hulu annoyingly doesn’t allow one to stream, like Being Erica.

One thing I hated was not being able to do the same with Netflix.  Netflix requires Internet Explorer and Silverlight, both of which are not available on the Chrome OS.

Although the SD card allowed me to easily access photos I took on my camera, the lack of access to drop box meant I had to plug in my phone to get my pictures off it.

The Chromebook will never replace my big clunky laptop, but there are a great many things it does well. If you’re looking for an extra laptop, something to help make you more mobile or something simple and inexpensive for a child or older person, it’s a great fit.

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