Is the i7 Pixelbook worth the price

Pixelbook Go not in Germany: Why only, Google?

Is that about us, Google? For a while, I really had you on my screen as the manufacturer of my upcoming notebook. And that's something you have to let yourself melt in your mouth: A long-time Mac user seriously considering switching to a Chromebook. Permanent. Simply because he thinks that Chrome OS is developing faster and that there is more music involved. And now the Pixelbook Go.

You introduced it together with the Pixel 4. A great smartphone, Google, with a lot of artificial intelligence. Above and above all With the assistant of the next generation will still have to be talked about! But this notebook grabbed me a lot more at your presentation this week. In my eyes, it's almost perfect.

Google Pixelbook Go: Highlights

13.3-inch clamshell form factor with thin bezels on the left and right, speakers on top. Not a millimeter of space seems wasted here
At 1061 grams, it is hardly heavier than 1kg.
Up to 12 hours of battery life
A dual front camera that also allows full HD video (1080p). This is finally a front camera!
According to Google, a particularly quiet keyboard
8th generation Intel processors up to Core i7 possible. Up to 256 GB memory, up to 16 GB RAM, display resolution up to 4K

In addition, you have given the Pixelbook Go an elegantly ribbed underside. There is a headphone jack and two USB-C ports - minimalist, like the overall design. Sure, I also see a few disadvantages, first of all the two controversial colors “Not pink” and “Just black”. I would have preferred a nice white.

Then it should have been even more modern Intel processors - the 10th core generation has long been on the market. It's also a shame that the Go, unlike the larger and older Pixelbook, doesn't have a yoga or tent mode. We cannot fold the screen all the way back.

For USA, Canada, U.K. only.

But for a Chromebook in 2019 it was definitely upper class, Google, and for me one of the most beautiful devices on the laptop market. I wouldn't even say whether it's really just a light or budget version of the Pixelbook, as some colleagues write. Of course, you can start the Pixelbook Go at $ 649 (the Pixelbook was significantly more expensive). You could make me pay up to $ 1,399 for the 4K and Core i7 version, though. I could well imagine the golden mean for myself: The Core i5 version with 128 GB for 999 dollars.

But now comes the catch with the whole story. And here, Google, I just don't understand you. Because the Pixelbook Go, like its predecessor Pixelbook, should not be available in Germany. Those who wish can currently pre-order it in the USA and Canada and also in Great Britain. You have not planned other countries for the time being. And because that has always been the case in the past, I have little hope that it will be any different this time.

Chrome OS: one step forward, two steps back

It would certainly be possible to get it to Germany via detours, with a little waiting time and delivery costs. But then of course not with a German keyboard layout. I would have to think twice about whether it would be worth it to me. After all, I haven't worked with any notebook for less than five years. A QWERTY keyboard layout would have been a serious disruptive factor for a long time.

The much more pressing question is anyway: Why, Google? Why do you bring out a powerful Chromebook every few years and then practically just sell it on your doorstep? Why are you massively advancing the system with support for (most) Android apps and discontinuing support for Android tablets a little later? As a result of the latter, of course, Android developers no longer design apps for large screens, just as little for tablets as for Chromebooks. Smartphone apps and scalable apps do not offer the same level of convenience for a long time.

Sure, the first Chromebook generations are likely to have flopped in Germany and the local market is therefore too hot for you and other Chrome OS hardware partners. But that was years ago now and was simply due to the fact that Chrome OS was far too little at first.

You've made it a lot easier now, Google. Android apps themselves enrich the system and always offer users something new to try out. I was very impressed with this year's test devices, the Acer Chromebook 714 and the Chromebook 514. The system and most of the functions also work wonderfully offline. Printer, mouse, external hardware - most can easily be connected to it. Stadia is also said to be wonderfully playable even with entry-level Chromebooks.

Satisfied in the niche? You are not otherwise either!

There is not much missing compared to Windows or macOS. A Chromebook is the ideal complement to a Pixel smartphone or any other Android smartphone. Many users would like something new. Why don't you take the chance?

At the moment you seem comfortable with Chromebooks in your niche, Google, and I respect that. Chromebooks sell quite well in the US, they are widely used in schools, they were and are the underdog among notebooks. In the entry-level segment in particular, they have dug up some Windows computers in the USA. And it might be enough for you to annoy your big rival Microsoft a little. Young users who have grown up with it can keep up with better devices like the Pixelbook Go. It's going, and it's going well in America.

Finally competitive: give Chromebooks another chance!

But that was never your claim, Google. You have always sought the highest. Regardless of whether it is for web searches, online advertising, browsers, e-mail services, cellular operating systems, maps, video platforms - you are the world market leader in many areas. And where you are not (yet), you at least join in. Be it with smartwatches, on televisions, in the car, in the cloud, with office software, with mobile payment, with voice assistants, with artificial intelligence, in the smart home ...

Only with notebook operating systems, in spite of all the chances you won't reach for the stars. And as much as I sometimes wish you were less active in other areas, Chrome OS could do a lot more. Maybe you too will see it at some point. Until then, my next notebook will probably be a MacBook again. And I find that almost a bit of a shame.

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