Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) on Thursday introduced a Google-branded high resolution Chrome OS portable touch screen laptop as the web giant’s first machine to come with a touch-sensitive screen.
The new device represents a new front for Google’s Chrome operating system, which was developed for stripped-down laptops known as Chromebooks. Sundar Pichai, SVP of Chrome and apps, demonstrated the Chromebook Pixel, the first Chrome OS device aimed at power users, at a media event in San Francisco on Thursday.
“This Chromebook has the highest pixel density (239 pixels per inch) of any laptop screen on the market today,” said the company.
“Packed with 4.3 million pixels, the display offers sharp text, vivid colours and extra-wide viewing angles.”
“With a screen this rich and engaging, you want to reach out and touch it — so we added touch for a more immersive experience.”
According to Pichai, the Pixel features an Intel Core i5 processor and a 239 ppi screen. The Pixel’s screen is “the highest resolution screen that’s ever been shipped on a laptop.”
Chromebook Pixel, designed to run internet applications rapidly, is about a pound heavier than Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s MacBook Air, which appears to be the Pixel’s primary competition.
“I think it will stand up very, very well against a Macbook Air,” said Pichai. “… What you’re getting from our hardware is in many ways far superior.”
The new machine will carry a premium price tag of $1,299 for a machine with WiFi and $1,449 for a version with LTE that is expected to ship in April.
Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has received a major price boost from three leading analyst firms and now has the chance to make deeper inroads into Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s core operating system business with its own touch screen laptop running on its own operating system.
Talking about the possible challenges that Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s new Chromebook might face, CCS Insight analyst Geoff Blaber thinks that “The challenge for the Chromebook is that computing is shifting towards tablets whilst most consumers lives are not yet fully embracing the cloud versus local storage.”