Display

The display is typically bargain bin stuff, though certainly a step behind the Samsung's panel. The resolution is a ho-hum 1366x768, and the viewing angles are abysmal. My colorblindedness makes it hard to discern the light blue hue that is all the rage in modern operating systems for selected text, but here it is utterly impossible if the vertical viewing angle is off by more than a few degrees. Distortion appears within a few degrees of viewing the display from any horizontal angle, but this isn’t a big screen for showing off your favorite movie; so, we’ll cut it a modicum of slack. It’s a bad display. Unless all you’re going to do is sit right in front of it and type.

LCD Analysis - White

LCD Analysis - Black

LCD Analysis - Contrast

Usability

Anand covered the details of Chrome OS before, and I won’t go into any great length here. The limitations of the OS are easy to overlook for anyone that spends most of their time in a browser. Any number of web services can fulfill the role of many standalone pieces of software, both for entertainment and productivity purposes. That includes image manipulation, a must for web publishing, though handling RAW files wasn’t a pretty experience, even with the cloud to help me out. Not all music services have a web player, so there’s some limits there, but there are enough options to choose from.


Chrome OS: Tabs on tabs on tabs

So, there are limits to what this OS can do for you. But are there ways to get around the limits of the browser? You bet. Chrome Remote Desktop is like any other screen sharing software, it allows you to view and manipulate another PC. The big difference here is that it all happens within the browser window.

The quality of the network connection is the biggest factor in whether the screen sharing experience will be good or abysmal. Connecting the Acer C7 to my MacBook Pro on the same network was a good best case scenario and showed that inputs are received with minimal latency, and responses are snappy, so long as you’re not doing anything too drastic. The stream from the host PC is only updated based on changes, so while typing the inputs are received and shown on the client screen almost instantaneously. But switching between full screen apps on the MBP showed some lag and a rather low frame rate.

Introduction and Design Performance: Core vs. ARM A15
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  • Spoelie - Tuesday, January 22, 2013 - link

    The exact same argument, without a word changed, can be made about Apple's approach to the market. Reply
  • BadCommand - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    Maybe I missed it, but there is also the 100 gigs of google drive offered for 2 years for free w/purchase. If you use drive, that storage would be about $5/mo thereby making this device cost basically $80. Not bad. Reply
  • mike55 - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    Coincidentally, I took a picture of the Chrome logo on a 13 inch 1280x800 LCD. It was on a much more expensive laptop, though. Here it is for comparison: http://i.imgur.com/qey7gUM.jpg Reply
  • evilspoons - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    You have a typo on your Display page - resolution reads 1136x768 when it should be 1366x768.

    Otherwise - thanks for the review. I'm not sure if I'd want one of these, since my Nexus 7 does most of what you'd do with this device just fine, but I am going to keep these in mind for people who just want a web browser / "typewriter" out of a computer.
    Reply
  • JasonInofuentes - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    Fixed. Thanks. Reply
  • whyso - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    Would be nice to have at least something other than browser tests. Reply
  • mayankleoboy1 - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    Eh ? But thats all what this Chromebook an do. Strictly browser stuff only. Reply
  • JasonInofuentes - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    We want to explore the relationship between the two Chromebooks further, but until then we can only do what will fit in a browser, since that's all we've got. Reply
  • lmcd - Saturday, January 26, 2013 - link

    Are there any FOSS benchmarks you could recompile for NaCl? Reply
  • Exophase - Tuesday, January 22, 2013 - link

    Where/how was the 800MHz clock measured? Acer says that the model clocks at the full 1.1GHz:

    http://us.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/model-datashee...
    Reply

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