Google Play for Education is an Android thing, not a Chrome thing. But considering the fact that Chromebooks' low prices and web-connected nature make them perfect terminal PCs for schools, it makes a lot of sense to bridge that gap. Today Google has done so, making the Google Play for Education page and app delivery system work for Chrome apps, Play Store books, and other content. It should be a familiar and relatively easy way for teachers and administrators to get things done.
Spectators have long wondered whether/vehemently argued that Android and Chrome OS will merge someday, and while Google hasn't shifted towards turning the two operating systems into one, it has taken advantage of this year's Google I/O to show Android apps running on a Chromebook. The company only demoed a few of them and made no promises of complete compatibility across all apps, but it did show the likes of Evernote and Flipboard running just fine.
In case we didn't make it clear with yesterday's post, we were more than a little miffed at Verizon's dismissal of Chromebook Pixel LTE owners. The company told customers that it had unceremoniously ended Google's free 100MB/month data bundle for the Pixel LTE after just one year, despite the initial two-year service promotion. Today Google is offering a consolation prize to those customers who bought the Chromebook Pixel LTE from the Play Store: a $150 refund credit.
Google and Verizon Wireless seem to be in a perpetual state of "it's complicated." The protracted issues with the Nexus 7 LTE, the infamously terrible launch and support of the Verizon Galaxy Nexus, and a few other spats come to mind. Now JR Raphael of ComputerWorld is reporting that Verizon has unceremoniously dumped the 100MB per month of free packaged wireless data that came with the LTE model of the Chromebook Pixel that went on sale last year.
Chromebooks are normally a little outside of our wheelhouse here at Android Police, but we figured that enough of our international readers would want to hear this that it warranted a post. According to this unaccountably rhyming entry on Google's official Chrome blog, Chromebooks will be available in nine new countries in the next few weeks.
Chile, Denmark, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, and the Philippines should have models coming in a matter of days (Google says "starting today"), and Belgium, Italy, and Spain will get them in the next few weeks.
Asus has lately become the king of anime-style transforming electronics, with their Transformer tablet line and Padfone devices. It looks like Google is paying attention, at least when it comes to conceptual hardware. US patent 8,649,821, granted to Google in February of this year, describes a laptop with a built-in and detachable cell phone, with the two working in tandem for various functions. While Android and Chromebooks aren't specifically mentioned in the patent documentation, it's easy to assume they were on the engineers' minds, since it was filed in September of 2012.
Got a Chromebook and an itch to broaden your musical horizons? Then check out this promotional page. According to a new post on Google+, Chromebook owners now have access to an exclusive deal for Google Play Music. Owners of (almost) any Chromebook can get a full 60 days of All Access, with unlimited streaming and radio playlists, for free. That's double the length of the standard trial.
According to this support page, the original Google Cr-48, the Acer AC700, and the Samsung Series 5 Chromebooks are ineligible for the bonus time (though owners of these laptops could still go for the 30-day trial, I suppose).
Yeah, we know – it doesn't run Android, and really, it has nothing to do with Android. But it is a Google product, so by default it's at least tangentially related - call it Android's cousin. It's also Google's statement that ChromeOS is important, that it's not just some side project. It's saying that we should all pay attention. That ChromeOS is the real deal, and the Chromebook Pixel is the best experience that ChromeOS has to offer.
Yesterday, Google did what Google does best: announce a first version of something that is completely ridiculous, very few people care about, most folks mocked, and that will ultimately end up forgotten in the annals of internet history. No offense, Goog. Some later products are spectacular, but let's be real. Very rarely does Google get it right on the first try.
However, the Chromebook Pixel is still a huge deal and the savvy analyst should take notice, because things just changed in a big way.
A few days ago, Google intro'd a new entry to the ChromeOS family: the 11.6", Exynos 5-powered Samsung Chromebook. At $250, this dual-core ultraportable isn't going to break the bank, and for users who don't normally venture outside of the web browser, it's a pretty ideal solution. And starting today, you can grab this little guy directly from Google Play.