Seemingly an afterthought until recently, the Chromebox has suddenly become a hot product, judging by the spate of recent announcements around the desktop platform for running Google's Chrome OS. Asus launched its mini-PC earlier this week, and Google just showed off a Chromebox for video conferencing. Now HP has revealed that it's joining in the fun as well.
The company's forthcoming small-form-factor PC resembles the Asus Chromebox, including its connectivity options (four USB 3.0 ports, DisplayPort and HDMI outputs). But it offers four color choices, including a stylish turquoise option, and it will also come with an Intel Haswell Core i7 processor, which Asus will only offer for its Chromebox in markets outside of the U.S. HP claims that with the new, beefy CPU, its Chromebox will be ready to tackle some of those video meetings Google was promising earlier today.
That processor will also mean the HP Chromebox will cost more its Asus competitor, which will start at just $179 (though probably with a less-powerful Celeron CPU). We'll find out this spring, when HP's model becomes available. With that company onboard, the Chromebox platform looks a lot more viable than just a week ago, when the only Chromebox you could buy was a refurbished Samsung model.