Google is determined to outwit Microsoft and Acer, along with Asustek and other major vendors are creating super lightweight laptops as well as an oversized USB like stick, the Chromebit, kitted out with an OS that uses HDMI to turn displays into computers.
Yesterday Asustek showed off a 10-inch Chromebook called the Flip which weighs only a couple of pounds, is priced at $250 and has 13 hours or so of battery life.
Chromebooks don’t have hard drives and store information on the cloud – they also don’t have the overhead of paying for a Windows operating system, making them attractive to Taiwanese vendors, who have razor thin margins anyway.
Earlier this week Microsoft introduced its Surface 3, which costs over £420. Microsoft hopes that it can use legacy Office software to persuade people to pay the premium.
Microsoft’s hopes to leverage the past are not as relevant as once they were – many people are now accustomed to slick interfaces produced for both Apple and Android devices.
There are even cheaper Chromebooks around – Google has showed off two Chromebooks costing less than $150.