Xi3 Goes Right Ahead And Makes A Chrome OS Desktop

Posted: May 23 2011, 11:45am CDT | by , in Technology News


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Xi3 Goes Right Ahead and Makes a Chrome OS Desktop

It will cost you around $800.

Chrome OS was envisioned for products like the netbook and tablet. Ultralight, mobile devices that were inexpensive and extremely portable. Chrome OS won't run on anything with a spindle hard drive. So you wouldn't expect to see it on a desktop of any type. And yet, that's just what the folks at Xi3 gone and made.

A Chrome OS desktop.

It actually makes more sense than you'd expect. The Xi3 is a hand-sized, modular desktop with a unique- possibly revolutionary- "swappable" design. Each modular computer includes three boards, the Processor Module, Primary I/O Module and Secondary I/O Module. By switching these out, you can change every aspect of the machine. Current options include 32 and 64 bit Windows 7, Win 7 Server and Win 7 Embedded, plus the "default" Linux Suse.

The Xi3 ChromiumPC will sport a dual-or-single core 64 bit X-86 processor. The standard, basic Xi3 complement is 16 GB of RAM. With its self-contained design and a power draw of only 20 watts, the Xi3 is about as portable as a desktop gets. It's been envisioned as a mass computing device, something schools and businesses can purchase en masse to cut down on power and maintenance costs. In a way, the Xi3 ChromiumPC harkens back to the era of the dumb terminal.

While it makes sense for enterprise or educational use, I don't expect the Xi3 will create a lot of consumer converts at its current price level. The basic Linux model will set you back $849.99. The ChromiumPC pricing isn't set yet, but I don't expect it will be much less than $800. So the Xi3 is probably a bit pricey for the average user. A Chromebook makes more sense if you're buying for yourself. Still- if you want a portable desktop you can run off a solar panel, the Xi3 will open for sale on July 4, 2011.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/5" rel="author">Robert Evans</a>
The excitement about new smartphones, tablets and anything mobile drive Robert to unearth the latest rumors and developments in this fast moving space. He adopted 4G as soon as it become available and knows where the mobile market is going.
Robert can be contacted directly at robert@i4u.com.




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