Google has been steadily pushing OEMs and developers to extend the life of new and existing Chromebooks and Chrome OS devices. Over the past year, more than 150 aging machines had a year or more added to their respective “end of life” dates and many of the Chromebooks launched in 2020 will be getting no less than eight years of software updates. Without getting into the semantics of how long a device should get updates or how old your Windows device is, eight years is an ample amount of support for just about any platform and it eliminates one of the most common complaints from many Chromebook users and IT directors.
Any way you slice it, it certainly appears that Google is dedicated to offering long-term support from Chrome OS machines. In addition to longer life spans, developers are also working on a project that will bring a stand-alone Chrome browser to aging devices. It isn’t clear what the exact purpose is behind the effort but there’s a good chance that the ‘LaCrOS’ browser will ensure that users are still getting security updates for Chrome long after the device has reached its end of life.
This is all great news for Chromebook users but today, Android Police’s Corbin Davenport stumbled upon even more exciting news surrounding Google’s once criticized Auto Update Policy for Chromebooks. Two new devices have been added to the official support page but unlike the latest Comet Lake devices that have an AUE date of 2028, these Chromebooks won’t expire until June of 2029 at the earliest. That’s just a few months shy of nine years. Almost an entire decade! Now that’s some serious life span.
So, which devices are the recipients of such a glorious windfall? Well, they aren’t Project Athena Chromebooks. As a matter of fact, these Chromebooks aren’t even powered by Intel CPUs. No, these Chromebooks are rocking the AMD C-series processors designed specifically for Chrome OS. The chips come in Athlon and Ryzen flavors with the latter hopefully packing as much or more punch than 10th Gen Intel Core i5 CPUs. The two devices featuring these processors are the recently announced HP Pro C645 Chromebook and the Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook. These Chromebooks are geared towards the enterprise sector but AMD said that more than a dozen Chrome OS devices were on the way using these processors. Chances are good that we will soon see consumer devices rocking the more powerful AMD chips and the extended support dates.
This is big news for the Chrome OS world. Nine years of updates add even more value to many devices that are already very affordable in comparison to PCs in the same class. Getting a device that has a lightweight OS, powerful internals, and guaranteed updates for eight or nine years could very well push the entire industry closer to fully embracing the cloud computing lifestyle. Web-based apps and server-based programs are where it’s at and these devices are the perfect fit for such a world. I say, bring it on.
Source: Android Police