Tuesday , June 5 2018

The first ever Chromebook has now reached End-Of-Life with the CR48 no longer being updated

Google CR48
Announced on December 7th, 2010, the Google built CR48 was the first Chromebook released. Five years on it’s starting to show its age, but it’s still pretty current and runs pretty nicely; but all good things come to an end and as of today, the CR48 is no longer eligible to receive updates.

Google extended the support for Chromebooks in May last year, with the Google support page for Chromebooks now stating that support is for ‘5 years for Chrome devices from launch of the hardware’. That date has now come and the CR48 is the first Chromebook to reach the milestone. As a reference platform, the CR48 saw only limited distribution, and most of that in the US, so the impact of this ending of support will be minimal.

According to the list, the first mainstream Chrome OS device, the Samsung built ‘Chromebook Series 5’ will be the next to reach this unenviable milestone in June next year, with the Acer AC700 following soon after in August.

The CR48 was a hell of Chromebook, with a beautiful matte rubberised finish, similar to that which we next saw on Google’s LG-built Nexus 5. The lack of any branding on the device makes it still one of the best looking laptops I’ve ever owned and even after 5 years, it still works. Of course the CR48 will continue to work, it just won’t receive feature or security updates from now on – unless Google changes their mind.

If you’re interested, you can actually still pick up a good deal on the CR48 via eBay, but with no more updates inbound it may be worthwhile looking at newer models.

Chromebooks arrived in Australia back in March 2013, but of late they’ve been increasingly hard to find. JB Hifi no longer carries them in-store or on their website, and nor seemingly does Harvey Norman – though Google still lists only these two suppliers as the ‘official’ partners on their Australian Chrome devices page.

But, Chromebooks, and Chrome OS devices aren’t quite dead in Australia, Dick Smith does still at least list one Chromebook on their website and Dell ships one model to Australia as well. Asus will begin shipping their ChromeBit dongle to Australia this month, and Amazon in the US will ship you a Chromebook, ChromeBox, ChromeBase in no time at all.

If you haven’t yet used a Chrome OS device, it’s well worth your time to jump in and try one out. The ChromeBit will be a good place to start when it launches, but for true convenience and speed, the Chromebook still is a great machine and even though the progenitor of all these wonderful devices has reached the end of its life, there promises to be a lot more to come.

Google

Source: Google.

Daniel Tyson   Editor

Dan is a die-hard Android fan. Some might even call him a lunatic. He's been an Android user since Android was a thing, and if there's a phone that's run Android, chances are he owns it (his Nexus collection is second-to-none) or has used it.

Dan's dedication to Ausdroid is without question, and he has represented us at some of the biggest international events in our industry including Google I/O, Mobile World Congress, CES and IFA.

7 comments

  1. I’m on the Samsung Series 5 chromebook right now. In several ways, it’s great, but performance is pretty bad for the most part. With some patience, it’s alright, but it definitely did not meet Google’s advertisements for speed. And it’s gotten slower, not faster. In April 2012, they changed the interface to something desktop-like, similar to Windows, and the performance dove, maybe to half, and if it’s increased since then, it’s not clear. My chromebook came with a slip of paper that said it was designed to get faster with updates.

    I don’t trust Google or believe in Google the way I used to. I was very excited when I heard the announcement they were going to make a computer that ran on Chrome. If anyone could make this work, it was Google. But even though Google is a technology, Internet, and advertising company, in my opinion they failed big in all their specialties. They made promises they didn’t keep and in fields that were their strengths. Even though they could have done a much better job and tried to keep their promises (knowing full-well what was to be expected from the beginning as far as software and hardware), I think Google chose not to keep their promises because it was cheaper. They put money ahead of integrity. Remember that Google is the company behind Android, a much more complicated operating system running on a much wider variety of platforms, certainly not a couple dozen like with chromebooks.

    I think Google’s “Don’t Be Evil” motto (now “Do the right thing”) was violated. The idea was that Google’s competitors were taking advantage of their customers: “Don’t be evil. We believe strongly that in the long term, we will be better served — as shareholders and in all other ways — by a company that does good things for the world even if we forgo some short term gains.” That’s from Google’s 2004 IPO prospectus.

    I… used to really believe in Google. I thought they were the best. But they could be better and they chose not to be. I think they still choose not to be, and I think they do it for the money.

    Google has thoroughly abused me as a beta tester, especially since I had such faith in them that I spent the last of my money on this first-generation chromebook and was stuck with it for three years until I was given a desktop. But I recently gave away the desktop after a year of using it and I actually prefer this chromebook. It’s simpler and more direct. But it’s not fast. It’s not as fast as that 2008 desktop.

    My next computer will probably be a chromebook, though. After all my anger and frustration, chromebooks are still the simplest machines for using the Internet and they’re better today. I will never trust Google with warm fuzzies like I did before I got this machine, but since chromebooks are so commonplace today, Google will probably notice a lot more when they do the job right or wrong, and it was always easy to do the job right. They were just too lazy and arrogant and cheap to do the job right.

    There is something seriously wrong with Windows computers. They’re not designed as well as chromebooks. Their touchpads are split and feel cheap. Windows itself is a small chore to use and frankly gets in the way. They cost too much for too little and, again, the operating system takes up some of the juice and resources. What works in Windows is what Windows is stuck with. People are so used to it that that is its strength. Chromebooks prove that Microsoft was not truly a forward-thinking company when it came to technology. Windows NT should have been a lot better. A lot better designed. It should have been a true competitor to OS X and Linux, but it was just a different, improved version of Windows that still had many of the same faults. And they can’t afford to fundamentally change it so Microsoft will always be cursed with bad software design for everything Windows-related.

    Apple has taken a very different path, mostly because they can afford to. They’ve worked very hard on design but have put too much faith in their ideals and not enough thought into why they’ve made the design choices they have. The new MacBook is one of Apple’s greatest failures today in disguise as some sort of design success. Thinner and re-designing around thinner in no way compensates for a much slower machine that can do less yet costs much more money. While the MacBook Air has improved drastically since its first, the new MacBook is a huge step back, mostly because Apple has believed too much in aesthetics and not enough in purpose.

    But despite Google’s utter contempt for early adopters, Chrome OS has improved enough and the hardware and hardware partners have improved enough that a nice chromebook can be bought today. Hardware quality is generally in line with what you pay. I don’t know of any serious problems with any chromebook, save the unfortunate things I’ve heard about Acer’s hardware failing sooner than others. I had a friend who bought two Acer chromebooks, including the first-generation that come out months after this one, and both have failed on him. Even though I slammed the touchpad with my fist a couple of times in anger, I was so frustrated at the speed, it keeps trucking. It’s just fine. It has a nice screen, and everything works. It’s still slow, but it seems that eventually Google found ways to make it suck less, like including an option in chrome://flags that allowed tab discarding to be switched off. That’s right: If you got sick of waiting for one tab to load (say a movie was buffering) and switched to another tab, you might be rudely surprised when you returned to that tab and it refreshed, making you start the waiting process all over again.

    I don’t regret getting this machine, now, like I did a few months after getting it. I just needed to get rid of all my negativity so I could tolerate and ignore the negativity or symptoms of Google’s negativity in their lies, cheapness, maliciousness, and contempt.

    But I really like this little machine. It’s simple and when I get a new one, I can dual-boot Linux on it. It will be better than getting a bulky desktop if I don’t need one, and I love the portability, directness and (hopefully) the speed of any model with a processor better than this Intel Atom N570 or with greater RAM than 2GB.

  2. The great thing about Chromebooks is how fit they are for purpose – and that purpose is essentially web browsing and watching streamed video. In other words, 99% of what the majority of people probably use their PCs for these days.

    Sure, you can buy a similarly priced low-spec Windows PC, but the Chromebook will kill it in boot-up time and overall snappiness given how light-weight ChromeOS is.

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