The runaway success of Chromebooks still hasn't spilled over to their desktop brethren, as the all-in-one (AIO) Chromebase is still more a curiosity than a breakout product. That hasn't kept from Acer from trying to replicate the success it's had with laptops powered by the Chrome OS, as its recent Chromebase for meetings offering indicates.
That AIO was designed for video conferencing and enterprise support was baked into its $799 fee, but its basic hardware was shown as the Acer Chromebase 24 back in January at CES. The consumer version now is apparently available online in various configurations, most of which are significantly cheaper than the meetings-friendly edition.
As the name suggests, the desktop is built within a 23.8-inch 1080p display, and is the first Chromebase to feature Intel processors. Most configs will include a Celeron 3215U CPU, though pricier models will ship with Core i5 or i7 options. Other base specs include 4GB of RAM, 16GB of built-in storage, built-in 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and a trio of USB 3.0 ports (along with a legacy USB 2.0 one). The versions using Intel Core processors come with 8GB of RAM and double the storage.
While those beefier options can -- in the case of the Core i5 model -- nearly reach the price of the Chromebase for meetings or -- in the case of the i7 edition -- even surpass it, the Celeron-sporting versions can be significantly cheaper. For instance, Newegg.com is selling the base configuration for just $429.99.
That price point doesn't undercut the price for the cheapest Windows-based AIOs by much, however. Chromebases may get a shot in the arm from Google's recent move to allow Android apps to run on Chrome systems, though the roll-out is beginning with Chromebooks. If Chromebase PCs received the same capabilities, that would give users the ability to access Microsoft's Office Android apps, eliminating one reason to buy a Windows PC for those who don't need every bell and whistle the full version of Office provides.
[Via Brent Sullivan]