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Perhaps I’ve been a Google Chromebook(s goog) user for too long now because I’m nearly sold on the new Chromebook Pixel. I know it sounds crazy — who would pay $1,299 for a laptop that you can’t install software on — but anyone using a Chrome OS device today would be blown away by this machine. Simply put: It runs rings around all of the prior Chromebooks and is exceptionally better in every way.
Here’s a quick tour of the hardware including that 4.3 million pixel display. We have a 15-inch MacBook Pro(s aapl) Retina Display in the house and to my eyes, the screen of the Chromebook Pixel looks even better although that’s hard to translate in a video. The internal speakers are outstanding as well as I tried to demonstrate on camera. Unfortunately, my video camera is “smart” enough to level out the sound, so you’ll have to take my word for it.
Outside of the occasional podcast and video production, I have little doubt the Pixel could fulfill all of my mobile computing needs. And it would be a joy to use one of them as well thanks to the Intel(s intc) Core i5 chip and 4 GB of memory; bench-marking Chrome shows a four- to five-fold performance boost over the Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook I bought last year.
It’s even slightly faster than Chrome on my similarly spec’d MacBook Air. And unlike most other Chromebooks, no corners were cut: The Pixel’s design and build quality is top notch from the backlit keyboard to piano hinge that doubles as a heat sink.