Google has announced first Chrome OS based tablet as Apple prepares to launch a cheaper version of iPad aimed at the education market. Google and its Chrome-OS based devices are the leader in US education market and with the new Chrome OS tablet, the search giant does not want to lose its grip.
The Acer Chromebook Tab 10 is a new form factor for Chrome OS, and Google says it is aimed at the K-12 market. While Chrome OS has expanded to laptop, all-in-ones, convertibles and even in the form of Chromeboxes, this is the first time the operating system is powering a tablet. The Chromebook Tab 10, made by Acer, runs the same Chrome OS found on existing convertible devices, and it also shows how Google sees more value for Chrome OS over Android in the tablet segment.
With Chromebook Tab 10, all Google-made education features like classroom IT management will work and will also support Play Store for Android apps. Google also plans to add support for Expeditions AR software with variety of lessons in biology, geography and astronomy in the next few weeks.
In terms of design, the Chromebook Tab 10 features a standard tablet form factor with a 9.7-inch display supporting a resolution of 2048×1536 pixels. The tablet also supports Wacom EMR stylus that can be stored inside the tablet and does not need a battery to work with the device.
The Chromebook Tab 10 is powered by the same hexa-core OP1 processor seen on Samsung Chromebook Plus, and will enable seamless Chrome OS experience across devices. It features 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, and users can expand the memory further via microSD card slot. Other specs include a 2×2 MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, a 2-megapixel front camera, and a 5-megapixel rear camera.
The tablet uses USB Type-C port for charging and supports 3.5mm headphone jack and dual speakers for audio playback. The battery is rated to last nine hours on a single charge, and it will launch in North America in April at $329. Google also plans to bring to EMEA later this May at $329 (around Rs 21,500).