It is with a heavy heart I sit and write this article. I have long held firm to my belief that Google, in their traditional, eccentric manner, has been planning the emergence of a new Pixel Chromebook to market to the masses. From last years mysterious job posting for a Chromebook Pixel engineer to my resolve that another Pixel device is already in development, I have anticipated a new Chromebook Pixel to grace us with its presence at some point in time.
Alas, as Morpheus so eloquently breathed in The Matrix Reloaded, “I have dreamed a dream, but now that dream has gone from me.”
Is The Dream Is Over?
Today, at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Google made an announcement that could very well be the end of the famed Chromebook Pixel. Rick Osterloh, Google’s SVP of hardware, shared with reporters that the Pixel brand may and will live on in the form of the smartphone and other in-house products. The Chromebook, however, would most likely not be one of those devices.
All of this seems to point, very plainly, to the end of what could be considered a legacy of the Chrome OS world. The Chromebook Pixel, much like the Nexus brand, was a monument to all of the things a Chromebook could be. The price wasn’t exactly practical and the Pixel’s place in the Chromebook market was primarily to blaze the trail for other OEMs. With Google’s shift towards consumerism as of late, I was even more convinced a new Pixel device was on the horizon.
Perhaps I was wrong. It’s not like Google, or any other company for that matter, has never started off going one direction then took a violent u-turn. Still, I find it hard to believe that with the current trend of consumer-focused Chrome OS devices and Google’s recent, hard-hitting marketing strategies that a Chromebook isn’t being developed by our friends in Mountain View.
Then There’s This
The news of the Chromebook Pixel’s demise came across my phone via a Tech Crunch article which I quickly bookmarked for later reference. As I glanced back to make sure I had all the details in order, I was greeted by an update that goes a little something like this:
Update: Never say never! Osterloh sent us this additional comment after we published: “Regarding the future of Google-branded laptops (whether called Pixel or not), I should clarify that we don’t have any plans to discuss at this time.
So, what does it mean?
This is honestly about as cryptic as it gets. We’ll save all the speculating for a later date because I already hear the wheels of the internet trolls turning and I haven’t the bandwidth for that discussion tonight. But, it does appear from this Osterloh’s email that there’s more to this story than what Google is letting on. I’m not saying I am right. I, also, am not admitting defeat. For now, I will stand by my contention that another Google Chromebook will be a reality. Be it called Pixel or whatever they deem proper, a Google Chromebook by any other name is still a Google Chromebook just the same. (Shakespeare meets Dr. Seuss, right?)
I’m still a believer.