Google’s Chrome OS operating system has received fairly positive reviews from users since its release back in 2011. Joining a hardware line-up of ‘Chromebooks’ and ‘Chromeboxes’ is a new PC-display-on-a-stick version, called the Asus Chromebit.
The Chromebit looks like a large USB that when placed in the appropriate slot on a television or monitor, the device turns that display into a personal computer.
It connects via HDMI to a monitor or TV, giving you instant access to Chrome OS and many of its features. It’s stripped-down, so is essentially only a Chrome Web browser, augmented by some basic OS file functions.
It’s a cool idea but it’s not the only ‘PC stick’ we’ve seen this year with the Intel Compute Stick, which was previewed at CES, and The Raspberry Pi.
The obvious main perk is the streaming capabilities it could offer a Joe. Plugging it into a home entertainment system and streaming onto a large screen could be where this really comes into its own. The counter argument will obviously be that TVs and home entertainment systems are becoming more sophisticated these days, with more and more inbuilt wireless functions. Therefore the Chromebit may become a little pointless.
The Chromebit runs the same Rockchip 3288 processor as Asus’ other new low-cost Chromebooks, and it connects to the internet via Bluetooth 4.0 and 802.11ac Wi-Fi. It includes 2GB of RAM and a 16GB SSD, as well as a full-size USB 2.0 port.
The Asus Chromebit will be ready to ship this summer and should sell for around £70 which is very reasonable by our book.