Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Google Cr-48

My new life in the cloud!

When I arrived home on Friday there was a pleasant surprise waiting on my door step. Upon opening the box I found my new Google Cr-48. A big surprise for me because as of Tuesday when I received the email that I was eligible for one, I thought it would be a long shot for me to receive one!

So there are a few un-boxing and first impression reviews already on the web so I won't bore you with those details. I could not wait to fire this thing up and start kicking the tires to see for myself how living solely in the cloud would be.


So once I installed the battery and opened the lid the Cr-48 started right up and prompt me to setup my network connection, as easy as one, two, three. Then the login screen for my Google account info was next, the Cr-48 has a webcam built in and it opened to take my account picture (wasn't ready for that at all).

The system then downloads the latest updated for Chrome, once complete you are in the cloud!

First impressions:

After the setup was complete and I was online it was seamless working with Chrome; sort of like talking to an old friend. I was able to pick out a few things that seemed strange and cool to me and many others as well.

1. The touch pad - looks like an apple touch pad and works similar but the right-click option take a little getting use to as well as left-clicking and dragging.
  • Right-click is using two fingers to tap on the touch pad and it doesn't always work when you want it to. This feature works best as you are working and not thinking about it which comes in pretty quick once you are flowing.
  • Left-click works two way, 1. pressing the touch pad or 2. one tap on the touch pad. Left-click and dragging takes some getting use to as you need both fingers to accomplish this task.
I found myself again familiar with the touch pad once I stated to flow with my work and not thinking about what to do. I also plugged in a USB wireless mouse which the system recognized but no on screen prompt as with most conventional systems. The wireless mouse setup will work best for most.

2. At the top of the keyboard the traditional F1-F12 keys are gone and replaced with the cloud browser controls; I like this feature and seems right for this cloud computer.

3. Shutting the the Cr-48 is also a strange and cool feature. When you press and hold the power the screen shrinks and signs out to the login screen, press and hold again and the system shuts down. By closing the lid of the Cr-48 the system goes to sleep and once you open it again it wakes up immediately continuing where you left off.

So far I am impressed and like the new Chrome OS but it does take some getting use to being in the browser 100% of the time. I found myself looking to close the browser when I was finished working but no need to.

I believe that most people will like this system as many of us use the web 100% of the time when we are on a computer for personal use. I know all of my non-browser application use is done at work and after work I favor working with Google docs and Office live so this system works for me.

This is my first report of many to come as I get more engrossed with Chrome OS and the App store. I already sent Google a feedback list of six item I think will help improve some ares of this system.