Chrome OS devices also run Android, or at least a big enough chunk of Android's base to get apps running alongside Chrome's browser tabs. But you might not have given much thought to exactly what version of Android your Chromebook uses. After all, it's not immediately relevant for most of a Chrome OS device's functions: that's handled by the larger Chrome OS, which is frequently updated by Google along with the browser.
It’s been over two years since CTL released the Chromebox CBx1, its first Chrome OS desktop designed for the classroom and corporate use. That Chromebox exceeded our expectations when we reviewed it, offering good performance at a low price. Now, the Oregon-based company offers the CBx2, upgrading the processor, storage, and networking performance, making the CBx2 a solid upgrade at an affordable price.
It’s no secret that Chrome OS has been improving over the lastseveralmonths. With skyrocketing sales contributing to increased polish into Google’s operating system, 2021 is shaping to be a good year for Chromebooks — and Chromeboxes, too. CTL’s CBx2 impressed us when we reviewed it, nailing the basics down at a reasonable price. That’s not the only new Chromebox in town. Asus has an updated Chromebox 4 hitting the market, offering a wicked-fast processor, ample storage, and killer networking performance. It’s a great follow-up to the popular Chromebox 3 for anyone who needs a powerful Chrome OS desktop for business and personal use.
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Asus is one of the most popular manufacturers of Chrome OS devices. The Taiwanese company took to CES 2021 to announce three new Chromebooks, one of which has a gamer aesthetic. But that's not all. It also added a Chromebox to the mix that looks very much like a Wi-Fi router: the Asus Fanless Chromebox.
Chromebooks might be the main way we experience Chrome OS, but Chromeboxes aren't going anywhere. The mini PCs that run Google's operating system are simple and speedy computers for education, business, and even home use. ASUS released its Chromebox 3 back in 2018, and now it's returning with a super-powered sequel that features some major spec boosts.
Acer's products are undoubtedly among the better options when it comes to Chrome OS, as our own Ryan Whitwam would tell you in his Chromebook Spin 713 review. And as part of its annual GPC event, the company has announced a significant milestone for Chrome OS hardware, the Chromebook Spin 513. It's the first to be equipped with the Snapdragon 7c platform, allowing for a fanless design, extraordinary battery life, and optional 4G LTE connectivity. Acer has also unveiled the follow-up to its 2018 desktop Chrome OS machine, the Chromebox CXI4. Both will be available starting Q1 next year.
We recently reviewed CTL's entry-level Chromebox CBx1, which comes equipped with an Intel Celeron 3865U processor and 4GB RAM. Despite the mediocre specifications, it's actually a fairly decent computer, especially at the low price of $219.99. If you need a Chromebox with a Core i7 processor for some reason, CTL now sells one for $599.99.
Two months ago, we reviewed the Acer Chromebox CXI3. Even though the CXI3 is a fantastic Chrome OS desktop, it's somewhat expensive - the model we reviewed with a Core i5 processor and 8GB RAM costs $519.99. There's a $469.99 Core i3 version and a $289.99 Celeron model, but those are also slightly expensive given the hardware inside.
If you've been looking for a basic Chrome OS desktop, there's another option - the CTL Chromebox CBx1. CTL primarily manufactures computers for the education and government sectors, and the company has been all-in on Chromebooks for years. The Chromebox CBx1 is CTL's first Chrome OS desktop, and it starts at the low price of $219.
Chrome OS has always been designed with low-power laptops in mind. There have been a few desktop machines over the years, like the ASUS Chromebit and LG Chromebase, but they're vastly outnumbered by Chromebooks. Seemingly out of nowhere, several companies announced new Chrome OS desktops at CES earlier this year - all of which are capable of running Android apps.
Acer's new desktop is the 'Chromebox CXI3,' which went on sale back in April. There are multiple configurations available, from an Intel Celeron version with 4GB of RAM to a Core i7 model with 16GB of RAM. Interestingly, Acer isn't marketing the CXI3 to consumers - it's designed for use in schools, where Chrome OS is wildly popular.