The first thing anyone will notice about the Chromebook Pixel 2 will probably be the weight. While most laptops and netbooks are getting sleeker, thinner and lighter, the Pixel is relatively heavy by comparison. It is a full 3.3 lbs, nothing insane but certainly more than its more manageable counterparts.
Extra weight is courtesy of more power, which makes it worth it.
Design-wise, it (like the original Pixel) is surprisingly similar to older laptops in overall shape. It is very bluntly rectangular, and closed it looks so much like old school laptops of the 90’s that you almost expect to open it up and find a postcard sized screen. Luckily, that isn’t the case, but it was an interesting choice in aesthetic from a company that is usually all about modernizing.
Google has given this Chromebook Pixel 2 more power than the average user is going to need, and they are proud of it. The Intel Core i5 2.2 GHz or Intel Core i7 2.5 GHz processors are a major improvement, giving two processing models to choose from. To support each, there is an 8GB or 16GB RAM option.
What will users do with all this power in a Chromebook, which has limited features due to the nature of Chrome OS? Probably nothing more than they did with the last Pixel, or other Chromebooks for that matter.
But Google hopes that developers will take advantage of the boost and begin creating new applications compatible with the widening Google brand. It is an ambition that developers are sure to jump at, given the popularity of Android devices and the need for new blood on the market. This gives them added tools that could really help in that goal.
As for consumers, it is true that the average user won’t notice a whole lot of difference between this and the previous version. Early reports have said that the Chromebook Pixel is less likely to overheat than the original, and that there are no noisy fans to contend with.
Which is interesting, as that is a boast by the latest Macbook Air, as well. Coincidence? Yeah, probably.
You can pickup the new Chromebook Pixel 2 for $999 – $1299, pitting it in cost with the new Macbook, as well.