Will Hardware Become Second-chair to Software? My Chromebook Says So

You don’t need that $2,000-plus Macbook to check email.


Chromebook laptops are awesome. After using the light-software equipped rigs for years, I’ve come to believe expensive and high-performance hardware is no longer needed for the vast majority of the tech-savvy public. They don’t need the latest-and-greatest CPU chip from Intel or a budget Windows laptop; Chrome OS’ use of Z-ram and ECM storage, essentially, never pose much of a bottle neck.

Let me further explain.

Like many people, I live my working hours of the day on Google’s Chrome browser. I type all my documents in Google Drive. YouTube has replaced my cable package. I edit any photographs that I may need to plug for editorial pieces in Pixlr. I, like literally 80 percent of current computer users in the workforce, perform all my daily tasks in WiFi hubs.

So as I contemplated my full immersion in software the other day (no, I wasn’t Lawnmowered man’ed), I was thinking: will hardware become the second-chair to software as it capitalizes on our newfound cloud-based, Wifi ecosystems? I think it will, if for no other reason than Murphy’s Law. All the data shows that the new age of internet-based software will create a market of accessibility and quality. Buyers will no longer have to lay down over a thousands dollars for the latest, aluminum-clad Macbook Pro, nor will they have to resort to forking over near as much for a 360-degree hinge laptop from Lenovo.

My own experience explains the reasoning behind my thinking.

I own an Asus Flip C201A Chromebook and it feels as good and as quick as any Macbook I’ve ever owned. Seriously. It also has an incredibly tactile keyboard, a touch 2,400 x 1,350 screen that’s perfectly bright —and it only put me back whooping $437, with tax and shipping included. Suffice to say, it’s a clear as day pick for the more frugal among us.

The tables would’ve been turned against this type of positive review just a few years ago; pre-2014, capable CPUs and disk drive storage was still something left for elite price tags. But, just like in the automotive industry, innovation and engineering trickle down overtime. SSDs (Solid State Drives) and other means of flash storage, like turbo-throttling CPUs and decent RAM cartridges, are now commonplace in mobile computing devices. Essentially, once the mobility hurdle was crossed in the computing space, the only obstacle left to ascend was to make needed “performance” components available to the masses—and they’re here.

This most recent technological breakthrough leaves little wiggle room for groundbreaking performance enhancements that are relevant to the everyday consumer. But it leaves the door wide open for software to take the reigns and finally capitalize on products’ universal gains.

It’s a win-win that is worth every bit of consumer celebration. And for me, it all starts with the Chromebook.

Written by Matt Charnock

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