[Update] Chromebooks are Not Dead, But Google has No Plans to Share Right Now
Original Title: Google is Not Working on Another Pixel Laptop
Google’s Pixel lineup originally began with the company’s chromebook ambitions — the original Pixels were high-end, well-specced and premium laptops that managed to showcase Chrome OS’ true potential.
It wasn’t long before Google decided to use the Pixel branding for other endeavors, including the Pixel C (which could have very well been a Chrome OS device at the drawing board stages) and now the new Pixel phone lineup. However, TechCrunch reports that in a small meeting with journalists at MWC 2017, Google’s Senior VP for Hardware Rick Osterloh communicated that the Pixel Chromebook has hit its end of the line, and that there won’t be any more premium Pixel chromebooks for the foreseeable future. This is sad news for chromebook enthusiasts, as the Pixel laptop only had two runs to iterate upon itself, and it was definitely getting closer to that refined vision of a web-first computer — even if at a hefty price.
The Pixel name has found new success with Google’s smartphone line-up, though Mr. Osterloh admits that the company struggled to keep up with demand — supply has traditionally been a pain-point for Google releases going back to its Nexus devices. While future products may use the Pixel name to build upon Google’s flavor of hardware, laptops are not likely to bear the revitalized branding, as Mr. Osterloh says the company has “no plans to do one right now”. Furthermore, Google has no plans to keep producing current models of Pixel laptops. Chrome OS remains a “huge initiative in the company”, and Mr. Osterloh says that Google “hasn’t backed away from laptops”, where they have a strong marketshare in both the UK and the US,
It’s sad to see such iconic pieces of technology not get a third moment under the spotlight, particularly now that the Pixel brand has been getting traction and has reached new customers through the Pixel phones (and the intense advertisement campaign behind them). The Pixel Chromebooks might have been expensive, but they also pushed the boundaries of hardware for Chrome OS computers, and they also innovated in their own right, bringing many design elements that users loved, and some that carried onto other devices and platforms such as the famous lightbar on the Pixel C tablet (which is still on sale).
Alas, all good things come to an end. We certainly didn’t expect Google to drop such a well-received and foundational product after just two attempts. Hopefully, this frees up resources and talent within the Mountain View giant to enrich other Google (or Pixel) products.
Mr. Rick Osterloh has tweeted a clarification on the matter:
“Hey all, Google’s own Chromebooks aren’t “dead” as has been reported. They will live on, we just have *no plans to share at this time* 😉”
So Google is not killing off Chromebooks just yet. They just have no plans that can be shared right now with the media and the general public. Companies like to keep future projects secret, so Google choosing to remain mum on a future product and its existence is not surprising.
What do you think about the Pixel brand? Did you ever consider a Pixel Chromebook? Let us know in the comments below!