I received my new Samsung processor (ARM) Chromebook on Thursday. Linked is my overall view and notes as I tried different sites/apps.
Many folks, me included, have forecasted a possible innovator’s dilemma with Intel in the consumer computer space. ARM processors are rising up to meet the basic web needs of the everyman consumer, and it’s foreseeable that Intel could be forced to retreat upmarket to servers at some point. The new Samsung Chromebook might be the first reasonable example of this actually starting to happen in a laptop form factor. While Intel is marketing the $1000 ultrabooks, Google and Samsung are trying to sneak into the market with a $249 toy laptop. It’s interesting to note however that a market disrupting product is usually a toy version that grows up and takes over.
Professional users, developers, creatives and so on are probably too tied into the local app model today to adopt Chrome OS. As more folks move to a primary web-based app model though, the simplicity and cost of Chrome OS may attract more and more users. New technology products first attract innovators and then early adopters, and it’s interesting to think about what it would take to get Chrome OS from the experimenters (today) to the mainstream. Google’s brand name, its Gmail and Chrome products and their marketplace recognition create the possibility of an ARM/Linux/BrowserOS disruption. It just might still happen.