Welcome to the Cloud: Checking out my new Google Chrome Notebook

What’s the best package ever to find at your doorstep? That’s right, a Google Chrome Notebook! (Cr-48 to be exact) As soon as I opened the first box and saw the funny hamster wheel drawing I knew what it was. Why was I selected out of thousands of applicants to their beta program? FINALLY, being a geek really pays off.

I have used Gmail for years now. Google Docs has helped me get through research projects, essays, surveys, and presentations. At Livefyre we use Google Apps for our mail, constantly collaborate using docs, and schedule all of our meetings with the calendar. I have an Android phone that always navigates me where I need to go and keeps all of my accounts synced together with little to no effort. Almost all of my work is web/email based, except when I eventually get downtime to mess with my pictures in Photoshop. Hmm, looks like I’m the ideal candidate for one of these notebooks… Chrome OS here I come!

The unbranded notebook is actually pretty slick looking. It reminds me of the first generation black MacBooks that “ran faster” and had a “bigger hard drive (insert Apple Commercial Parody here). While it’s not as light as I would have hoped (just under 4 pounds), it has already replaced my spiral-bound notebook in my bag.

Hi Gini! I'm commenting on your give-aways blog using the notebook Google gave me! (btw, Livefyre works perfectly on this bad boy)

So what do I think so far? Well, it is definitely a prototype. If you’re expecting a fast machine that can load 20 tabs at once and continues to blaze from site to site, it’s not this notebook. I’m not sure of the speed (looking into more specs), but let’s just say it’s not what I’m used to. I’ve already had my tabs become inactive once, so I sent a bug report.

Is it perfect? no, of course not. Am I excited to use it, provide feedback, and share my experiences on the web? You bet. As a community manager of a new product, I know what it’s like to work with a beta product. I also know the potential behind Chrome OS and I’m looking forward to providing insight to what could be the future of computing.

Want to join me on the Chrome OS ride? I’ll be reviewing the notebook, Chrome Apps, and overall integration with the Google ecosystem as I go. Have you tried any web apps in your Chrome browser? Let’s share the best, the worst, and everything in between. Think you’d be a perfect test case for the Chrome OS Notebook? Apply here.

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