Dell's Chromebook 11 breaks reliance on Google's cloud

Dell's first Chromebook is targeted at the education market, with consumer models coming later

Dell Chromebook 11 (1)

Dell Chromebook 11 (1)

Most Chromebooks on the market rely on Google for online services, but Dell's new Chromebook 11 adds another cloud option to extend file sharing across desktops, laptops and mobile devices.

The laptop, announced on Wednesday, will integrate Wyse PocketCloud, which allows files to be accessed, edited and shared across PCs, Macs and Android and iOS smartphones and tablets.

Chromebooks are low-cost laptops for those who do most of their computing on the Web. The Chromebook 11, which will ship in January, has an 11.6-inch screen that can display images at a 1366 x 768-pixel resolution. It will be priced under US$300, Dell said.

The laptop weighs 1.31 kilograms, offers 10 hours of battery life and has Intel's dual-core Celeron processor based on the Haswell microarchitecture. Other features include 16GB of storage, USB 3.0 ports and an HDMI port. The model, which runs Chrome OS, is targeted at the education market.

The PocketCloud application will also turn the Chromebook into a remote desktop. Users will be able to access Microsoft Outlook software on PCs or edit Word, Excel or PowerPoint documents. The application will be available for download in January.

"Most schools are likely to add Chromebooks to their existing Windows-based PCs, Macs and iPads, so having a tool like PocketCloud that can share files across multiple devices and multiple platforms is an advantage over those that can only use Google's services," said Bob O'Donnell, chief analyst at Technalysis Research, in an email.

The addition of Wyse PocketCloud heightens the value of the Chromebook 11 over alternatives from Hewlett-Packard, Acer and Samsung that have "run-of-the-mill" Google services, said Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT.

This feature will be helpful for students who want to remotely access Chromebook data from their tablets or smartphones, King said.

Dell bought Wyse Technology in April last year for an undisclosed sum, and the cloud software and thin client assets are becoming more important as alternative computing models emerge, King said. Dell in the past has sold low-cost laptop computers with PocketCloud as thin clients, and Chromebooks could be another option, King said.

A new wave of Chromebooks running an updated version of Chrome OS hit the market in October. Chromebooks with 11.6-inch screens include Acer's $199 Chromebook C720, HP's $279 Chromebook 11 and the $249 Samsung Chromebook. HP also sells a $299 Chromebook 14 with a 14-inch screen, and Acer's $299 Chromebook C720P has an 11.6-inch touchscreen.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Dellhardware systemschromebooklaptops

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?