Netbooks, once championed as the savior of the PC, will soon be a thing of the past. Both Acer and Asus, the last companies left standing in the netbook arena, have stopped making the portable, borderline adorable computers. The companies have said they won't produce new netbooks as of yesterday, but they do have some remaining inventory. If you've always dreamt of owning an undersized, underpowered laptop, you better act fast.
On day two of its 2011 I/O Conference, Google unveiled two different models of what it calls the Chromebook
, inexpensive, Chrome OS-powered laptops that are designed with web use rather than extensive desktop use in mind. One, made by Acer, will start at $349; the other, made by Samsung, will start at $429. Both laptops boast 8-second boot times and "instant" resumption, 3G and WiFi options, and tweaks that Google says will optimize their web performance. Both will be available to order from Amazon
and Best Buy
beginning June 15th.
Google also announced two rental plans for its new laptops: Chromebooks for Business is a package which covers software, hardware, support, and warranty and replacements for enterprise customers for a $28 per user monthly subscription. Chromebooks for Education offers the same to schools and government entities for $20 per month per user.