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In Depth: Google Pixel Laptops Aren't Exactly Dead ... Just Yet

6 March 2017, 7:17 am EST By Anish Asokan Tech Times
Rick Osterloh clarifies that the Pixel laptops "will live on" amid reports that the Chromebook line is dead. He has, however, refused to reveal any future plans for the laptops.  ( Justin Sullivan | Getty Images )

Amid reports from various news outlets that Google's Chromebook Pixel has supposedly hit the end of the road, a top exec has now clarified that the Pixel laptops are not "dead."

But why do such rumors persist?

"They will live on, we just have no plans to share at this time," tweeted Rick Osterloh, senior vice president for hardware.

Two weeks ago at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Osterloh announced that the company had no plans to produce more Pixel laptops.

"Google hasn't backed away from laptops. We have the No. 2 market share in the U.S. and UK, but we have no plans for Google-branded laptops," he was quoted in a meeting with journalists.

These words, along with the current non-availability of the Pixel laptops on the Google Play Store, did seem for many as a definite end for Google's Chromebook. It now seems that Osterloh either failed to deliver his point or was misquoted.

While no plans regarding the laptops have been revealed or elaborated, the tweet does show that Google is still interested in the Pixel laptop lineup and would be unveiling more at a later point.

Pixel Laptops

Two releases of the Pixel laptops have been made thus far — with the last one happening two years ago — but these laptops remain Google's vision of how a premium Chromebook should be. The Chromebook is focused on enthusiasts and developers, and was never intended for sale in large numbers. It also only allowed Chrome browsers when it was first launched four years ago.

The signature design gave Google the much-needed control as it unleashed the power of its Chrome operating system on the Chromebooks. The first version of the Pixel laptop does have a place in history as the first Chromebook ever to have a touch screen. The hardware device shows the world that Google could develop vertically integrated devices that could compete with the likes of Apple.

The second iteration of the Chromebook saw a similar design to the previous version's. But it was more powerful in terms of its features and functionalities. It came with USB-C charging, ahead of any other laptop line.

Perhaps we could see some Google-made Chromebooks in the future or some other mechanisms for continuing the Chromebook Pixel legacy. In short, it is too early to count next-gen Google-designed Chromebooks out. But for now, the Pixel laptops will continue their quiescent life.

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