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CNET First Look
Samsung's Chromebook Series 5 550: the second generationOne year later, the newest second-generation Samsung Series 5 Chromebook has a faster processor and more RAM along with a better Chrome OS...but it's more expensive than an iPad 2. That just doesn't make much sense.
I'm Scott Stein and this is a Chrome book not a laptop Chrome book now. If you remember last year this is first debuted a year ago and Samsung and Acer models and has called Chrome book. And what was was a laptop like device that only ran Chrome -- Which is a pare down operating system that essentially runs like a browser. And runs Google's entire ecosystem. Of web based services and also a few apps through their web App Store. Now one year later we have the second generation Chrome book the Sampson from book 550 looks about the same it's got a twelve inch screen. It has four gigs of ram and as an Intel Celeron processor them. And it has sixteen gigabytes of SSD storage well sounds kind of like the laptop what's the difference. While again this only runs Google's Chrome OS that's it. Now it is fast booting a couple of seconds in -- -- you log in using your Google account kind of like when you first load up a Chrome browser why because. This whole OS is kind of like a Chrome browser in fact most apps run within -- browser window and while you can split windows now in this new version of Chrome OS. And you can run some of them and offline mode of a that's a bit iffy. And you can open files and play them without having to be online much of -- runs like a browser the mail runs their browser. Google docs runs through a browser any of those games you can download the web App Store run through that browser experience and will be -- like in a browser. I -- little confusing because if you close that browser window goodbye apps yet to load them again. Sometimes those apps will load up again when you're an offline -- other times we found it wasn't that successful. How much it's not like this cost -- -- useful if you're on the road he don't like to not have anything on your. Computer itself and you feel like living in the cloud and you have everything Google drive you have everything in Google's ecosystem. That sounds may be -- useful. However forge or fifty dollars. Yes that's right 450 dollars for this or 550 dollars for the version with a rise -- In ten installed that does come with a hundred megabytes of free data a month for two years. I -- -- quotes because you're paying a hundred more dollars for the Verizon antenna. There is an SD card slot here and you can read files off and they you can open up photos you can even open -- zipped files. You can open up -- yes you can open up PowerPoint presentations however he can't edit all those things. And while you can share something like photos it really only allows you to share easily with the process. It doesn't allow you to share and upload to other services like FaceBook. At least that I've seen. And as far as photo editing they -- -- -- included some basic photo editing that's built into Chrome last but it really is cropping rotating. And adjusting brightness and contrast that it. So you look at this sort of high grid. Not really OS OS environments that will get better over time in fact from west keeps improving. There will be a future version this is version nineteen version -- when he. Is actually going to have Google drive support and supposedly offline Google docs you can finally edit documents without being on line. That's great but you can already do that right -- word processor app. On an iPad on an Android tablet which happens to be made also by Google. Or on windows on Mac -- a ton of options. Offline online. The iPad is a great example of a small device that does offline spectacularly. Online spectacularly. And is able to -- the two. Something like this that only does online spectacularly -- does offline really if fully. It's not worth buying into you're paying for the fifty dollars here to be part of an experiment run by Google. Why would you do that I have no idea by something else. It's a shame at the OS is technically so limited because the hardware on this is actually nice it's a twelve inch laptop form. That is nice and slim its 3.3 pounds it's got two USB ports team that display port out and it's got an ethernet port to. For hard line Internet connections plus the SD card slot and headphone port so it's got you covered and it's also got a nice multi touch click pad. With two -- support and the keyboards nice and -- comfortable. I'm Scott Stein and this is a look at the still completely confusing Google -- --