AAPL Stock: 117.81 ( -0.22 )

Printed from

Google outs Cr-48 Chrome OS netbook; most pushed to mid-2011

updated 03:25 pm EST, Tue December 7, 2010

Google intros test Chrome OS netbook, Verizon 3G

Google at its Chrome event today unveiled Cr-48, a testbed netbook for Chrome OS. The 12-inch system is designed for early adopters willing to use Chrome OS in its beta state. It comes completely unbranded and has design touches rare on other netbooks, including an Apple-style clickable trackpad and a full keyboard that omits some traditional keys, such as Caps Lock and function keys.

The device will also center on an optional 3G connection. A Qualcomm Gobi modem is built in on the Cr-48, and future Chrome OS notebooks, to get on to Verizon's 3G network. It will include 100MB of "free" data for two years and will have an iPad-style plan system that will let users start or stop access whenever they want, without contracts.

Hacking is encouraged, Google said. Although Chrome OS is locked down, a switch under the battery will stop the usual verified boot and let users modify the install to their own aims.

Inside, the system is Intel-based with an Atom processor and has 802.11n Wi-Fi and a webcam. Its battery will last for about eight hours of active use and eight days on standby. Storage hasn't been detailed but should be a small SSD to keep in step with Google's quick boot, instant-resume goals.

The Cr-48 will only be available both within Google and to those who sign up for a Chrome OS Pilot Program (above). Electronista and others who attended the Chrome event today will get a model, but users either have to qualify through the submission form, through an earlier survey, or through submitting a video response to a competition on saying why they deserve a unit.

As part of the news, however, Google revealed that its plans had been set back for a commercial launch. It admitted that some features, such as Cloud Print and USB storage, were in beta or otherwise unfinished. There was "some time left to go," it said. Acer and Samsung had committed to launching Chrome OS systems but now won't ship them until mid-2011, or almost a year later than planned. ARM also would have to wait for future development, but the platform isn't locked to x86.

The goals set back competition with Apple and Microsoft. Windows had already been in the same space through netbooks, but Apple is already preempting the the ultra-lightweight, web-focused category with the iPad and more recently the 11-inch MacBook Air. Google is hoping that the web will give Chrome OS an edge by reducing the requirements and providing continuous updates and tighter security than conventional PCs.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Grendelmon

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Also check out the data plans/pricing they announced with Verizon.

  1. Foe Hammer

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The Cr-48 will only be available both within Google and to those who sign up for a Chrome OS Pilot Program.

    Everyone who wants - but can't afford - a netbook ... apply today!!!

  1. legacyb4

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Omitting a Caps Lock key

    just to be different?

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Does this Chrome OS require a constant

    broadband connection to work or does it also function off-line? I thought the Joo-Joo tablet failed because it basically needed a network connection to do anything. I might be wrong, but I thought that's what was required since it didn't have much memory. Except for Chrome running everything that's Google, is this OS any more exceptional than any other smartphone mobile OS or is it more heavy duty? I need to do more research on this Chrome stuff, because I clearly don't understand its advantages that's exciting everyone. It's seems nice enough, but are businesses going to jump to using this. I think it could be good for consumers with broadband, though. Certainly less complicated than Windows and it's supposed to run very quickly.

  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Caps Lock

    I've often wondered why there was a dedicated key for caps lock rather than just keeping the caps key held down until lock is activated and do the reverse to de-activate. I'm relieved to know that it wasn't just me! :-)

  1. jpellino

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Gosh, how utterly familiar.

    A Black MacBook with iOS screens.
    The sincerest form of flattery...

  1. Cronocide

    Joined: Dec 1969


    (First Picture)

    Everybody say "Nerd!"

  1. nat

    Joined: Dec 1969




  1. Rezzz

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Let's start listing all the apps this thing won't run. Isn't that how Microsoft poo-poo'ed the Mac OS for 15 years?

    Oh wait.. To the Cloud!!


    Well, that covers about 0.0004% of what's out there. Phew! I was worried for a minute.

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented