Pros Frees you from having to worry about where your files are. Also frees you from getting married to a device. A computer is once again a tool and not a beloved device that I have to cherish because it has my whole life on it. Love people not things.
Cons Need internet access all the time.
Summary This review mostly just bashes Chrome OS. Am I the only one that loves Chrome OS? I think so. Yes the downside to this device is that you need an internet connection constantly. However, if you think about it, you probably have the same requirement for your other devices.The price may a little high but not much because if you spend $400 for a laptop you get a crappy windows machine. The Chromebook is excellent piece of hardware and you can work on it all day. Try finding a Windows laptop for $400 that will last you more than 2 hours.
Try this experiment. Go turn off your internet right now and see how much work you can get done. On your phone turn off your data connections too. Chances are you can work on a document or write an email but in about 5 minutes your going to need the internet again.
When my kids bring the iPad in the car, they almost always forget there is no internet and I have to remind to pick an offline game. They much prefer watching Youtube or games that require the internet.
80% of what we do today requires the internet. And if you change some of your computing habits, you can even live 100% in the cloud. I even code on the Chromebook using an online IDE and a Rackspace virtual server.
It's true that most people will not like the Chromebook because you'll have to change your lifestyle, but what this review neglects is there are a lot of people who will love the Chromebook. It is the easiest to use computer you'll ever have. And if your a person who just does e-mail, some docs, and Facebook, like my parents, the Chromebook is perfect. Get one for your parents and never worry about tech support again! It is even easier than a Mac which still confuses the heck out of my parents.
Every person that hates computers should get a Chromebook. It is so much easier and gives you a far more reliable and secure experience than anything else out there. Also anybody who can live in the cloud with online services should get a Chromebook.
I lived with a Chromebook for a year now and made it my main computer and I love it. Being in the cloud frees you from many common problems. I no longer worry about where files are it or if I'm on my work computer or at home. Everything is in the cloud, so no matter where I go just as long as I have a good web browser (aka not IE) I can do my work and be productive instantly. That is probably the best thing about using Chrome OS. Instead of locking you into one device, it frees you to work anytime anywhere on any device.
With that said because you rely on the internet so much I think the 3g is worth the extra $100 if you travel at all. I only use it once in a while but when you need it, it is awesome.
Updated on Jun 2, 2012
I agree you won't be able to run Minecraft, Runescae, or Quicktime. But many people don't even care about that. That is why I have a Chromebook and my son doesn't who wants to play Minecraft constantly. He has a crappy Windows laptop that gives him constant headaches with everything else that I always have to fix. And I just work seamlessly on my Chromebook with almost never a problem.
Pros Improved processor speed and improved graphics are what the original Samsung Series 5 needed. That is what the Samsung Series 5 550 delivers.
Cons A slight price reduction from $549 to $499 would be nice.
Summary Bashing Google's Chrome OS seems to be the current trend in technology media. This is just baffling to me. Google is producing amazing technology that is making people's lives better. I work with small businesses and charities, moving them to Google Apps, Chrome Browser, and Chrome OS. These are not sophisticated computer users yet they intuitively understand what the technology media does not: Google Chrome OS is easier to use, easier to maintain, and more dependable than Microsoft Windows. Not to mention, Google Chrome OS is vastly less expensive to own than either Microsoft Windows or Apple OS X.
Pros Super fast web browsing
Always up to day; no need for software patches or maintenance.
Long battery life
Nice size screen while still being lightweight.
SD card now supports SDHC
Cons Still uses a more obscure charger (ie I can reuse the box of thinkpad chargers I have).
Requires a adapter to get external VGA (DisplayPort and HDMI work great)
Doesn't have dedicated delete key (Mac users will be right at home)
Summary When you look at the fact that I've dropped MS-Office, MS-Windows, and all of the other bloatware baggage that comes on machines these days, this machine really shines for anyone that has made the switch to the cloud.
Pros Intuitive and easy to use. The Samsung 5 series has much faster and smoother performance with improved processor and graphics.
Cons Need to connect to the internet.
Summary Again, really easy to use, very intuitive and the hardware has improved so much. C|NET please stop the negative bashing on the product. Although I really like Apple, I feel you should give other products like this a chance. I mean yeah, the Macs are really good, but I think that the Samsung 5 is a leap forward into the future.
Pros Lightweight (easy to carry in my backpack or hand)
Long battery life
Fast browsing power
Allows for offline editing in Google Docs
Cons Price could be a little bit lower
Would like for larger integration with apps and Google Drive
Summary This is a great product. This is the type of device that students and people looking to be ahead of the learning curve should purchase. It helps you become a more cloud based person (this is a good thing). That way you can get access to your important documents from anywhere! Now my work computer, personal computer, android phone, iPad, and Chromebook all have access to the exact same materials.