Well, folks, this makes two.
We originally discovered ‘Eve’ having a dedicated Assistant button a few weeks back and, at the time, wondered if it would be the only device getting such treatment for the time being.
In the ‘Eve’ is a #madebyGoogle device theory, it would stand to reason that ‘Eve’ would be in sole possession of the Assitant Key out of the gate.
It appears there is another waiting in the wings.
‘Soraka’ Via ‘Poppy’
I’m not going to re-cover this topic, but in short, ‘Poppy’ is a codename for the first detachable Chromebook and ‘Hammer’ is the related keyboard device. Both of these are reference devices. The corresponding production devices are ‘Soraka’ and ‘Staff’. If you want a more in-depth look at the breakdown of these 4 devices, head over here.
While it isn’t 100% that all features in ‘Poppy/Hammer’ will show up on ‘Soraka/Staff’, so far it seems like all the features are moving in that direction. With that in mind, we’re going to move forward with the assumption that the things we’re seeing right now will eventually make it to production.
In this first commit, we are seeing the new keyboard layout being added. While we’ve talked about this before, it was only in reference to ‘Eve’. It seems ‘Soraka/Staff’ will also utilize this new layout, adding new functions right from the top row of the keyboard.
Second, in this next commit we are seeing the Assistant Key being added. Again, this is for the ‘Hammer’ keyboard, but we have to assume these changes will move down to ‘Staff’ as well at this point.
What This Could Mean
So, now we have 2 Google Assistant Chromebooks coming. There will be more down the line, for sure, but this raises some interesting questions. Is ‘Soraka’ just the first post-‘Eve’ Chromebook to deploy the Assistant button? Will ‘Soraka’ be a sister device to ‘Eve’? Will it also be #madebyGoogle?
Equally-weighted arguments could be made on both sides of those questions, so I’m not making any claims at this point. All I know is I’m super-excited to finally see these devices in the flesh and know, after all the speculation and wondering, whether or not we’re going to finally get an official Google-made Chromebook.
It will be here before we know it and all the questions will be answered. Until then, we’ll keep looking for more clues about these tantalizing Chromebooks.